Two of our dual-language teachers are a husband and wife duo from Colombia teaching at Balfour Elementary. Mr. Sanmiguel and Mrs. Suarez use their roles to advocate for students while teaching them to be bilingual and about their own culture.
Mr. Sanmiguel says, "Students' cultures need to be highlighted and they need to know that they can be successful by being who they are." He also says that his role as a dual-language teacher helps Spanish-speaking students pick up details, use different skills, and fill in the gaps while not allowing language to be a barrier. A wish of Mr. Sanmiguel's is that Hispanic representation for the students continues to grow in all areas of the district
Mrs. Suarez, whose background is previously in psychology says that her favorite part about teaching is "being with the kids, laughing with them, and building connections and strong relationships with them." She also connects with newcomer students because she personally relates to feelings of loneliness after arriving here from a different country. She intends to show these students that they have a community that they can be a part of. She is also currently teaching her students how to dance the salsa!
We are thankful to have Mr. Sanmiguel and Mrs. Suarez as part of our ACS family.
Balfour Elementary will be having its Hispanic Heritage Assembly on October 11th.