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A Spanish Lesson Over Lunch

August 4, 2009, 5:56 PM by Cherlene Richards

A Spanish Lesson Over Lunch
Within the next couple of weeks, students across KELOLAND will head back to the classroom. But some teachers never left them.  One group logged hundreds of hours, not as educators, but as students.

"I think the most difficult for me has been rolling my r's, I walk around the house rrrrr, quite often,” 8th Grader Teacher Michelle Griffith said.

Griffith is one of 30 teachers from Axtell Park Middle School who traded in their classroom curriculum for Spanish-speaking textbooks, flash cards and computer programs. They spent the summer meeting every couple of weeks to brush up on what they learned.  This week some are testing out their skills at a Mexican restaurant.

It's all an effort to learn a language to better connect with their students.

"I believe that learning their language, it opens doors, education is all about building relationships,” Griffith said.

And those bonds started to form when teachers began taking the course in February.

"I would come to school and ask those students questions.  I'm telling you their eyes would light up, and they would smile,” Griffith said.

Now she hopes her summer homework pays off.

"I learned a phrase, 'Siempre en estudiante.  You're always a student.'  I love that,” Griffith said.

A grant, money from the school and the teachers all helped pay for the program. Tuesday was their last chance to practice together before school starts on Monday, August 17.

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