Tela

You will be teaching at the Blanca Jeannette Kawas Bilingual School in the small coastal town of Tela. You will be a form teacher teaching a number of different subjects in a reasonably well resourced school to children ranging between 5 and 14 years old.

Your Project

Tela is a coastal town close to three national parks. It is a tourist destination for local Hondurans now, but it began as the Headquarters of the Tela Railroad Company. Outside of busy holiday seasons when the centre of town is bustling with activities and life, Tela is a sleepy town and is located in one of the most beautiful parts of Honduras. The area is small enough to get to know well and you may be left two bikes from the previous volunteers for your own use.

Blanca Jeannette Kawas Bilingual School was founded in 1995 by a local mother, Graciela Bueso de Velasquez, who wanted to be sure children had the opportunity to learn English. She encouraged other parents in the community to participate and, she and her children have been directors of the school since its foundation. There are about 200 students in the school and the school year runs from August to June. It is a fee-paying school, but not-for-profit and runs several scholarships for children from the area. The school is dedicated to providing a diverse population of students with the best bilingual education possible which allows its students to become active and informed citizens. Many Honduran parents strive for their children to gain a bilingual education in order to increase the personal development of the students and job opportunities that may be available to them in the future.

You will be teaching a variety of English classes at primary level, particularly English, such as spelling, grammar, reading and phonics. You may also teach some Maths and Science lessons. You are very likely to have your own class. Its is a busy timetable, and you will have a great deal of responsibility in term of planning lessons and setting exams. You will be encouraged to set up extracurricular activities, such as art, music, drama and sport as afterschool programmes and the school is very interested in developing a junior choir, environmental group and debating society.

Accommodation

You and your partner will live in a volunteer house which is just a short walk away from the school. You will cook your own meals, but you will be encouraged to spend time with local Honduran families to understand how to prepare and cook local Honduran food, as well as immerse yourself into the community in the surrounding area of the school.

Life in Honduras

Spanish-speaking Honduras is the second largest and second poorest country in Central America and a fascinating part of the world in which to spend a year. It has a beautiful and varied landscape with a range of environments to explore during your holidays: rugged mountains and highland valleys, vast tracts of tropical rain forest and palm-lined Caribbean beaches with the second largest barrier reef in the world off the shore of the Bay Islands.

Honduras has a rich history, being the site of many historical ruins from the Mayan civilization. The Western Highwaymakes trips to other Central American countries such as Belize, El Salvador and Guatemala very easy. There are many differences in population, language, climate, scenery and lifestyle between the islands of Honduras and the mainland, which are very interesting to observe.

You will have an exciting opportunity to explore, learn about and work in a fascinating country, as well as reach a high level of spoken Spanish if you invest your time and energies into the challenge!

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