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Benton Heights students treated to special guest from Guatemala

Diego Juarez, 12, nephew of Patricia Medina, an ESL teacher at Benton Heights Elementary School of the Arts, shows a power point presentation to students on his home in Guatemala.

Benton Heights Elementary Schools of the Arts had a very special young visitor from Guatemala recently.

Diego Juarez, 12, is a nephew of Patricia Medina, one of the English as a Second Language teachers at Benton Heights Elementary School of the Arts.

Diego had the opportunity to visit the classes where his aunt co-teaches and share some information about his native country.

He showed students in first, second and fourth grades a power point presentation and talked about the geography, economy and cultural aspects of the country.

Then students had the opportunity to ask Diego questions about his personal life.

“I was very impressed with the types of questions the students asked about Guatemala, especially the ones about the active volcanoes that are in Guatemala City,” Diego said. “They also wanted to know how safe it is to live in a city close to an active volcano.”

Finally, with the help of his grandmother, Sheny Juarez, Diego showed students how to make a traditional weaving object called Ojos de Dios (God’s Eye).

“The students learned that this is woven with yarn and wood and they use several colors,” Medina said. “This ancient weaving is practice by many indigenous people in the Americas (Mexico, Guatemala and Bolivia).”

The people of Guatemala have different beliefs depending on their location and history. “However, in many of these countries, Ojos de Dios have traditionally been created and presented as gifts of blessing and to say Thank you.”

Medina said students were thrilled to take them home, give them to their parents and tell them the story behind it.

Written by: Patricia Medina, ESL teacher at Benton Heights Elementary School of the Arts
Posted: Jan 14, 2015 by Deb Coates Bledsoe

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