This month, the Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs is celebrating English language learning around the world! YES alumni joined in the activities by organizing their own English activities in their home communities this summer.
1. After organizing a successful English spelling bee last year in her hometown of Fier, Albania, Erta Prifti (YES 2015-2016, hosted by Ayusa in North Branch, MN) decided to organize another English language spelling competition on July 28 (photo above and below). With the assistance of an American Peace Corps Volunteer and Dafina Meco (YES 2015-2016, hosted by CIEE in Oscoda, MI), 25 students ages 11 to 14 participated in the competition. The top 3 winners received awards, including a number of new English language books that will surely help them expand their English vocabularies further!
2. Since July, the YES Alumni Association in Bangladesh has undertaken Voice for Change, an online competition encouraging high school students to think critically and creatively about eight social issues. Interested student can submit entries about the social issue of their choice to any of the following five categories: Public Speaking (English and Bangla), Writing (English and Bangla), Photography, Film-making, and Art. The winners of each category will be announced at the beginning of September. Until then, the 18 alumni involved in this project hope that Voice for Change will inspire youth in Bangladesh to use their language skills to make a positive impact on their communities!
Check out this information video to learn more about this project:
3. Anda Rama (YES 2016-17, hosted by ASSE in Berlin, PA) kept herself busy in July by volunteering nearly every weekday at the SOS Children’s Village in Prishtina, Kosovo. During her visits, Anda taught 30 elementary school children new English words and grammar, and read books to the students (photo below). But the summer wasn’t all about the classroom – Anda also made time to play language learning games with these young learners.
4. After his year in Iowa, Anis El Jorni (YES 2016-17, hosted by CIEE in Des Moines, IA) returned home with the wish to transfer his American English skills to his peers in Libya and beyond. Given his interest in technology, Anis created a free English language learning phone app called "Easy English!" Easy English tests users on spelling and vocabulary, and tracks words that the user needs to practice more. With this easy-to-use app, Anis is improving thousands of students’ access to English!
5. In Tunisia, Fradj Frad (YES 2015-16, hosted by AYA in Troupsberg, NY) volunteered throughout July at the American Corner in Sousse, teaching English to students of all ages (photo above and below). From creating fun challenges and quizzes, to organizing arts and crafts projects, we are sure that Fradj’s students were able to improve their English!
6. YES alumni in Indonesia prepared the newest group of YES finalists for their exchange year by giving feedback on cultural presentations during the pre-departure orientation. Not only did the alumni offer public speaking and English tips to the students, but they also gave suggestions regarding their country and cultural presentations. With the help of these alumni, our newest Indonesian students are ready to give hundreds of English language presentations during International Education Week proving #YESisIEW!