Tag Archives: english

Student Projects from Petrolina´s First English Immersion Camp

We waited to show our student´s creative and brilliant projects from the English Immersion Camp held back in October until the closing night of the Petrolina International English Fair.  Now that these films have been shown in Petrolina, they are ready for their international debut via ensinapetrolina.com.

The first are a compilation of songs:

And the second is a selection of skits about why English is important:

If we didn’t include your piece, it’s only because the sound was bad– all of your projects were amazing and we would have loved to share all of them.  Next time we will be sure to secure a less-windy location.

C² hopes you enjoyed watching as much as we enjoyed making!

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Breaking News: PIEF Countown, 24 days!

C² is thrilled to announce our big hurrah for the end of this year:

the Petrolina International English Fair (PIEF)!

The event is the first of its kind in Petrolina: think science fair (with English instead of science), academic congress, and cultural festival all tied into one. The Fair has two main goals: to showcase the work of English students in Petrolina, particularly from the public high schools and universities, and to demonstrate the importance of English as an international language in an increasingly globalized world.

The Fair will take place November 29-December 1, 2012. For two full days, there will be lectures and free English mini-courses during the day, framed by a science-fair style demonstration of students’ English creations and a stage to show their performances. At night, we’ll have invited guest speakers and round-table discussions on how to improve English teaching and broaden access to English classes. Finally, Saturday will feature sports events and a teacher training workshop, and a big arts and culture festival in the amphitheater at the city’s center. (Check out our full program.)

It’s amazing to think back at where we were when we started this blog, and where we are now–collaborating with other visionary English teachers and local educational leaders to realize an event that highlights a crucial key to Petrolina’s future. The blog itself shows some of this change; we’ve moved to an official .com domain and we’ve temporarily rearranged the organization of the site to be the Fair’s online home base.

I don’t think we’ve linked this video before, but we use it all the time in class. Jay Walker’s brief TED Talk on English Mania succinctly and powerfully describes the drive for the world to learn English–and it isn’t because of hamburgers and Hollywood. We’re proud to be taking part in helping our students achieve their highest potential.

Thanks to the PIEF sponsors below: particularly the U.S. Consulate in Recife, the State of Pernambuco Secretariat of Education, the Petrolina Prefeitura, and UNIVASF for their support and resources.

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Free Conversation Course and 4 Minutes of Fame

Free Conversation Course at the IF- Sertão in Jõao de Deus (2101-4300) every Monday and Wednesday (TOMORROW) from 11-12 or 13-14 in classroom H27.  All are welcome and encouraged to join!

For more info, or just for kicks, see my live interview (four minutes of fame) with Grande Rio TV:

Translated Script:

Female Anchor:  An opportunity for those who would like to work on their English, a free conversation course here in Petrolina with a North American professor, and here she is live with Juliano Roque. Juliano, I think you must have at least knowledge of English to participate in this course, right? Good afternoon…

Juliano: Good Afternoon (in English).  So, yes you do have to have some notion of English to participate, but as Professor Cara Snyder, the Professor of the course, and I were just talking about, it’s not outlandish for people today to know English.  In reality, English is a very much a part of our reality—someone may know a word, a phrase from a song, this also facilitates [English language learning]. 

Cara, good afternoon.  Besides having some notion of English, or for those who don’t, what will this course be like, how will you give a conversation course for people?

Professor Cara:  Well, that will depend on who comes, but it will be just an hour.  We’ll play games, learn songs, chat… it will be as challenging as possible within in hour.

Juliano: So would this class be good for people, say, who are wanting to travel outside the country and don’t want to arrive not knowing what to do.

Professor Cara: That too, but it’s also for people, I hear a lot of people say that they need to learn English, they need to practice, they’re a little rusty, so this will be a good chance for them once or twice a week as a sort of “refresh”… a sort of…

Juliano: As a reminder for people to remember the things they learned during x course, etc.

Now, who can participate in this course, is there an age limit for instance?

Cara: No, there’s no age limit. People from the community are welcome to participate, students from all schools, I want everyone to participate!

Juliano: Do you have to pay anything to participate in this course?

Cara: No, it’s totally free

Juliano:  The course will be held at the IF- Sertão in the Jõao de Deus neighborhood, is that correct?  Is there a certain time people have to register by?  When does the course begin?

Cara: Yes, you can register, or not, I just want lots of people to come and participate so COME, come and join us the course begins tomorrow so come, see what you think and then keep coming. 

Juliano: What times are the courses held?

Cara:  You can either come from 11-noon, before lunch or from 1-2 pm

Juliano:  I see that you have an excellent accent.  Now you’re from Washington (she was telling us that she’s from Washingon, D.C.), you’ve been here for one and a half years, I’d like to know—is it more difficult for a Brazilian to learn English or for a North-American to learn and understand Portuguese as you are doing so well?

Cara: I think it’s much more difficult for a North American to learn Portuguese.

Juliano:  What were the most difficult aspects for you to understand, speak and write in Portuguese?

Cara: Humm… I think the accent is probably the most difficult part.  As I told you, I arrived already speaking Spanish, so that helped a lot, but there are some sounds in Portuguese that are extremely difficult for us to master like aeroporto (airport), pão, cão: these sounds are difficult. 

Juliano: Cara, thank you so much.  According to Cara there’s no reason why anyone can’t learn English.  The number to the IF- Sertão in  Jõao de Deus is 2101 4300 and now for…

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American Easter at IF-Sertão, Zona Rural

Chocolate eggs, the Easter Bunny, decorating eggs only to hunt them later—what could be more fun than an American Easter? This year, me, Chels and Rafa with the help of art Professor João and with many thanks to Director of Administrations Alberto Bruno and Pedagog Rosilene Oliveira, put on an American Easter at the IF Sertão, Zona Rural Camps for the 110 students of the accelerated High School (Ensino Medio) program.  It was a hit.

It was a great to start to what will hopefully be a year full of culture and language-related activities.

This blog post will be done in three parts—the background and English activities, the decorating of eggs, and then finally the hunt!

Part I- The Class, A Palestra

Before the lecture we filled cups 2/3 of the way with water and 1/3 with vinegar before adding the food coloring to dye the eggs.  Then Chelsea and I explained some of the history of Easter and about the American traditions of Egg decorating and the Easter-Egg Hunt.  The students completed worksheets and had a review test—the first to correctly finish the test won a pin-drive!

Part II- The Decorating, A Decoração

After the lecture, it was time to decorate.  The students split into three classrooms.  There, they used wax crayons and rubber bands to form patterns on their eggs before submerging them in dye for 5 minutes.  Some added oil for a psycidelic, tye-die effect.   They turned in at least two eggs for the hunt and took two home to show to their family and explain the American tradition… and then, of course, to eat!

Part III- The Hunt, A Caça aos Ovos

The next day we hid the eggs in a top secret location as the students anxiously awaited.  Once set loose they took 30 mintues to find the carefully hidden silver egg!  They received prizes for the most eggs collected (35 eggs was the winner) and the finder of the silver egg.  Thanks to all who participated and collaborated for a delicious and hoppy Easter 🙂

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