Peace Corps Volunteer Matt Cusimano and villagers in Guyana work together to build a library with donated books and computers.
Happy International Mother Language Day! How are YOU celebrating linguistic and cultural diversity and multilingualism?
From Acholi to isiZulu, our immersive language training covers 159 local languages. Sadly, we only cover muggles at this time.
I had wanted to get an Islamic writing board to bring home and show American children what is used in Muslim schools in Sierra Leone to teach Arabic and learn passages from the Qur’an. No one was willing to part with theirs so I bought a new one and found someone who would trade their used one for it. After doing so, the father of the students who used the board, took it home and carefully cleaned off all the writing. Since I had wanted the writing on it, I asked if this was possible and he kindly had his children come and write passages from the Qua’an on it for me.
- Peace Corps Agriculture Volunteer Christine Musa
Peace Corps Volunteers organized a Readers Theater competition in Panama to actively engage their students in reading, writing and speaking English.
Readers Theater is an integrated learning approach in which students read a script aloud and use their voice, facial expressions and gestures to bring the scene to life – without stage settings, costumes or props. Nearly 200 students from fourth grade to high school performed in small groups to practice using their voice and intonation to tell the stories of childhood favorites from the U.S., including Dr. Seuss and Shel Silverstein, author of “The Giving Tree.” The competition, which included students from 15 different schools, gave the participants the opportunity to develop fluency and enhance their reading comprehension.
More than 20 posts across the globe are working in literacy and early-grade reading as primary projects, and even more Volunteers do secondary projects focused on literacy, reading and writing, and enhancing literacy in their communities through books and reading. Much like the focused efforts of the UNICEF programs I worked with as a Volunteer, our efforts today focus on the foundational skills young learners need to “crack the code” of reading.
Howard joins several local colleges on national list of those that provide the most Volunteers for the Peace Corps.
Howard has been acknowledged as a significant producer of Peace Corps volunteers among historically black colleges and universities, but the Peace Corps said that Howard’s appearance on Tuesday’s list marked the first time that an HBCU had placed in the main national rankings.
Today we announced the 2014 Top Volunteer-Producing Colleges & Universities!
Did your school make the list?
Elements of the story are pulled from a number of my experiences in Madagascar as a Peace Corps Volunteer and from my own childhood. I want to give children in Madagascar the opportunity to engage with a character that they find courageous, spirited and curious as she learns about malaria.
Peace Corps Volunteers Raegan and Patrick Spencer are educating schoolchildren in Madagascar about the causes and dangers of malaria and disease prevention through storytelling. The couple wrote, illustrated and published The Story of Soa and the Moka, a 40-page children’s book, along with an accompanying classroom curriculum that will be distributed throughout communities across Madagascar.
My teaching was a bit more interactive than the traditional Turkish teachers’. I’d ask students to act out what vocabulary they were learning. Here was a day’s lesson on prepositions. Most of my orta okul (middle school) students were from villages where hearing and speaking another language was as foreign to them as seeing a television (which was not even available in Turkey in 1965).
- Peace Corps Education Volunteer Margaret Miyake
Peace Corps Volunteers Christelle Domercant and Ursula Wright recently practiced our Second Goal by sharing the story of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. with preschool students who are learning English in Costa Rica!
Giggling girls at school in Colombia - 2013
Peace Corps Volunteer Emily McKeone is working with her community members and local school teachers to bring safe, clean drinking water to three schools in Zambia to improve students’ health and boost school attendance. People in the communities currently travel long distances to get water that frequently comes from unprotected sources like local streams, which often leads to water-borne illnesses and sanitation concerns at school facilities.
By constructing borehole wells, the community’s water sources will be protected from contaminants and safe to drink. The additional water supply will also support school construction projects and enable students and teachers to plant gardens and orchards. The resulting produce will help raise money to maintain the boreholes.
“School attendance by students and teachers will improve from enhanced sanitation and clean drinking water,” said McKeone, who is a graduate of the University of Nebraska-Lincoln and has been living and working in Zambia since July 2012. “The schools currently have construction projects that have been delayed due to a lack of water, preventing completion of much needed classrooms, and these boreholes will allow for the completion of those projects.”