- Published on Wednesday, 14 November 2012 22:06
About 180 elementary school students from throughout the Paso del Norte region will present books they wrote and illustrated during a “graduation ceremony” of the fall 2012 Literacy Camp at 5 p.m. Thursday, Nov. 15, in Room 302 of the Education Building at The University of Texas at El Paso.
The students were placed in Pre-K, bilingual, English speaking, and ESL - Korean, Japanese, Vietnamese or Arabic groups, and given one-on-one 90-minute sessions with UTEP pre-service teachers for eight weeks. The program helps the elementary students with their oral and critical thinking skills and allows the UTEP student to learn to be thoughtful and sensitive as they deal with the youngsters and their parents.
Another component is the free English as a Second Language classes set up for parents while their children are in camp.
Elena Izquierdo, Ph.D., associate professor of teacher education, started the popular camps about seven years ago to give her UTEP students “real teaching” experience and to keep more young students from falling behind in their studies. The whole program, including the introduction and familiarization of students and families with the University, creates a winning strategy for all involved, she said.
“This is a way the University can enrich the instruction and build self-confidence of children through its expertise in bilingual education,” said Izquierdo, an El Paso native who remembers translating for elementary school classmates who struggled because their teachers followed a “sink or swim” mentality. “I understand there’s a difference in languages, not abilities.”
Learn more at http://literacycamp.utep.edu.