No. 6: Weeks 5 & 6

September 26, 2008. Querétaro.

Hans drawingSix weeks have now passed and the students are feeling very comfortable in Querétaro, their new home. All have settled in nicely with their families and all are greatly improving in their language fluency.

Classes at the UAQ (University of Querétaro) also continue to go well. Each student is taking classes in Spanish grammar, composition, and conversation (depending upon his or her level), and all thirteen are enrolled in courses in Mexican History, Latin Dance, Engaging Cultures, and Mexican Art. Ali with mask

In the last half of September in Mexican Art, students finished their basket weaving projects and moved outdoors to try their hand at sketching nature. They also created a mask symbolic of who they are or how they see themselves. In Dance, students finished the indigenous Conchero dance and have started working in couples on the cumbia and salsa. Later in the semester, they’ll put on a recital for a live audience (stay tuned for this one!).

In History we’ve finished the unit on pre-Colombian civilizations and the conquest of Mexico, and are beginning to explore the colonial era. And in Engaging Cultures, students are challenged to reflect upon and integrate all they are learning in their other classes, in their homes, and on the road.

Group at sleepoverOutside of class, students amaze me with their ability to get out and enjoy all that Querétaro has to offer. They’ve been to soccer games, plays, clubs, and even a Motocross event. To celebrate the culmination of our first month together, students dreamt up a sleepover party at my house, which included a wonderful barbeque dinner prepared by Brittni, cake for Gabriel’s birthday, multiple hours of playing every game you can imagine (and many you cannot!), and even a few hours of sleep.

Enjoy the slideshow below!