Though I tend to focus on our work and adventures in the communities high in the mountains or deep in the jungle, a core aspect of everything we do happens in the much more accessible urban centers: teacher training.
In 2016, we hired and trained 30 teachers to implement innovative curriculums focused on critical and creative thinking and harmonious values, from early childhood stimulation through university prep levels. Our training programs are the core of our rural educational projects, because if we don’t have the best teachers to implement our programs, all the materials in the world won’t change anything in the education of our students. And in the long term, it is immeasurable how many students the teachers who have participated in our training programs with reach during their careers in the classroom.
Now in 2017, we have already started our outreach program to recruit recent education graduates into our training program for our primary school community projects in Cusco. Last week, I had the opportunity to speak with 20 soon-to-be graduates from la Universidad Nacional de San Antonio Abad del Cusco (or UNSAAC, Cusco’s public university), primary school education faculty.
After the presentation, all of the students were enthusiastic and we spent an hour and a half on what was planned to be a twenty minute question and answer period! The interview process will begin in the coming weeks, and I am looking forward to welcoming the new faces as well as our returning teachers into our program this year.