Tag Archives: learning English

Happy Childrens’ Day – Feliz Dia del Niño


September 9, 2016.

The little ones in the house are very happy, anxiously awaiting a special date, September 9, because it’s the celebration of little boys and little girls in Costa Rica. Likewise, many adults with their inner child alive and well also like to celebrate this day.

 On this special day, centers of education prepare an incredible day of fun for the little ones. Cultural and recreational activities are organized so that the kids can show off and have fun, dancing, laughing, playing games and smiling. And do you know what is the best part of this day? Yes, the sweets! The icecreams, bags of treats cake and best of all, presents!

 With a day like this full of candies and being spoiled, wouldn’t you like to be a kid your whole life? Well I would! And clearly if you check your Facebook these days, you’ll see a ton of pictures of teenagers that say to each other, “We should’ve stayed small forever! We were such little angels.”

 The important thing is to remember on this day our childhood and to fight for the rights of children in Costa Rica so that they will live and grow in a peaceful environment, with love around them, being educated and having the freedom that they deserve.

Enjoy your day, kids! Don’t eat too much candy!

***

Los pequeños de la casa están muy felices esperando con ansias una fecha muy especial, el 9 de setiembre, pues se celebra el Día del Niño y la Niña en Costa Rica. Asimismo más de un adulto, que tiene vivo a su “niño o niña interior”, también le gusta celebrar este día.

 En esta fecha tan especial, los centros educativos preparan un increíble día libre para los pequeños. Se organizan actividades culturales y recreativas en las que entre carcajadas, bailes, juegos y sonrisas ellos pueden compartir y lucirse en sus mejores galas. Y ¿sabe usted qué es lo mejor de este día? ¡Sí, las golosinas! ¡Los helados, las bolsitas de confites, el queque y mejor aún el regalo!

 Con un día así de tantos chineos y dulces, acaso ¿no le gustaría ser un niño o niña para toda la vida? ¡Pues, a mi sí! Y más claro está si usted revisa su perfil de Facebook en estas fechas, porque verá el montón de fotos de “güilas” que se dicen entre sí: “¡mejor nos hubiéramos quedado pequeños!” Éramos todos unos angelitos.

 Lo importante de esta fecha es que debemos celebrarla recordando nuestra niñez y como adultos velar por los derechos de los niños y niñas costarricenses. Para que vivan y crezcan en un ambiente de paz, amor, educación y libertad que merecen.

 ¡Feliz día güilas! No se abusen con los confites.

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Fast Decisions can be the best! / Las decisiones rápidas pueden ser las mejores


It was a fast decision to come to Costa Rica. I feel like I didn’t even think it through or research it like you really should before moving to a different country. But I remember thinking that if I didn’t do it, then I would wonder what I had missed every minute of every day after that.

It was less than a month between the time that the idea was introduced to me and the day I was on a plane headed to Liberia, Costa Rica – a place much different than the small town in California where I went to college and the even smaller town where I grew up.

Although I grew up in California, a place famous for beautiful beaches, I really hadn’t seen very many. Now, according to my pictures, I have been to at least 25 gorgeous beaches that each have a string of memories to go with them. Besides the beaches, I have visited rivers, waterfalls, volcanoes, and national parks that are too beautiful to put into words. Beyond all that, I have met countless awesome people, seen plenty of incredible animals, tried many new foods, learned a beautiful language, experienced and become accustomed to a different culture, and adopted a more relaxed, stress-free lifestyle that makes me thankful every day for the choice I made to come here.

My time in Costa Rica has also taught me a lot about myself and my own culture. Before I came here, I really didn’t think that I had much of a culture. I was often jealous in college when I met people who had customs and traditions that gave them a sense of pride and unity with those in their group. But in teaching my students about things I know well like Halloween Trick-or-Treating, Thanksgiving stuffing and pumpkin pie, hand-written Valentines, Easter egg hunts, and having a really good hamburger at a Sunday barbeque, I realized that I have a culture to share and be proud of. I love telling people about the way things are in my country and discussing the many differences between California and Costa Rica.

Even though I know now that I made the right decision, it was really intimidating for me to make the move to Costa Rica where I didn’t know anyone and I hardly spoke the language. I had to be serious and I had to be quick. I had to be open to new possibilities and I had to be willing to try new things. I think in the end that if I had really thought it through, I might have backed down. I might have chickened out and said ‘no I can’t do this’. But I didn’t over think it and I didn’t let it scare me. I said ‘yes’ and like that I made the best decision of my life.  It might not always be true, but my year in Costa Rica has convinced me that sometimes fast decisions are the best decisions that you can make.

 

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Sharai Kirk, writer of this blog, has been in Costa Rica for a year, studying Spanish and teaching English at Instituto Estelar Bilingüe in Liberia.

 

Fue una decisión rápida el venir a Costa Rica. Siento que no pensé  mucho sobre mudarme a  un país diferente. Pero recuerdo que pensé que si no lo hacía pasaría cada uno de mis días pensando que hubiera pasado si lo hubiera hecho.

Paso menos de un mes entre el momento en que tome la decisión y el día que estaba en un avión rumbo a Liberia, Costa Rica – un lugar muy diferente a la pequeña ciudad de California donde crecí y fui a la Universidad.

Aunque crecí en California, un lugar famoso por sus hermosas playas, realmente no había visitado muchas. Ahora, según mis fotos, he estado por lo menos en  25 hermosas playas que llevan un sin fin de recuerdos con ellas. Además he visitado ríos, cascadas, volcanes y parques nacionales que son demasiado bonitos como para poder describirlos con palabras. Más allá de todo eso, he conocido a innumerables personas impresionantes, visto un montón de animales increíbles, probado muchos alimentos nuevos, he aprendido un precioso idioma,  he experimentado y acostumbrado a una cultura diferente y adopte un estilo de vida más relajado y libre de estrés que me hace agradecer todos los días la decisión que tome al venir aquí.

Mi tiempo en Costa Rica también me ha enseñado mucho sobre mí y mi propia cultura. Antes de venir aquí, realmente no pensé que tenía mucho de una cultura. En la Universidad a menudo me sentía celosa cuando conocía a  personas que tenían muchas costumbres y tradiciones que con orgullo celebraban. Pero enseñando en Costa Rica he podido compartir con  mis alumnos sobre Trick-or-Treating de Halloween, Thanksgiving relleno y pastel de calabaza, he  escrito a mano tarjetas de San Valentín, buscar huevos de Pascua y disfrutar de una muy buena hamburguesa en un asado un domingo, me di cuenta de que tengo mucho para compartir y estar orgullosa acerca de mi cultura. Me gusta hablar con las personas acerca de nuestra cultura y tradiciones y discutir acerca de las diferencias entre Costa Rica y California.

Aunque ahora sé que tomé la decisión correcta, era realmente apresurado para mí hacer el traslado a Costa Rica donde no conocía a nadie y no hablaba el idioma. Tenía que ser serio y tenía que ser rápido. Tenía que estar abierta a nuevas posibilidades y tenía que estar dispuesta a probar cosas nuevas. Creo que si lo hubiera pensado más detenidamente, hubiera dado marcha atrás. Yo hubiera podido acobardarme y decir ¨ no, no puedo hacerlo¨. Pero no dejé que la situación me  asustara. Dije ‘Sí’ y así tome la mejor decisión de mi vida. Quizás no siempre sea cierto, pero mi año en Costa Rica me ha convencido de que las decisiones que a veces son  rápidas son las mejores decisiones que uno puede hacer.

A Year of Awesome Students and Staff / Un año de estudiantes y personal sobresalientes


It has been one year since we started recognizing the amazing people of Instituto Estelar in the form of Stellar Teacher of the Month and Student of the Month — “Estelares del Mes.” We are so proud to have such incredible staff and students that make our school great! We want to recognize this achievement one more time and thank them for their hard work, positive attitudes, and stellar dedication.

Ha pasado un año desde que comenzamos a  hacer reconocimiento a la increíble gente del Instituto Estelar, escogiendo un profesor y  un estudiante del mes – los estelares del mes. Estamos muy orgullosos de nuestros estudiantes y personal  del instituto! Queremos reconocer otra vez  su gran logro, duro trabajo, actitud positiva y su dedicación!

Estelares abr 2013-2014

 

Abril 2013: Greta y Teo

Mayo 2013: Melody y Ana Maria

Junio 2013: Merlyn y Lee

Julio 2013: Manuel y Hellen

Agosto 2013: Sharai y Diego

Setiembre 2013: Brittany y Felipe

Octubre 2013: Rosa y Jasmine

Noviembre 2013: Gabriela

Diciembre 2013 y Enero 2014: Stephanie y Emily

Febrero 2014: Sonia y Charlotte

Marzo 2014: Kate y Amelia

Abril 2014: Kate y Valeria

 

Our English students are the best!


We are very proud to display more writing from our high intermediate English students, Yuran and Dinia. Their teachers submitted their writing to be published on this blog. Happy reading, and congratulations to these excellent students!

Memorable experience – Yuran

I’m going to tell about one of my best experiences.  It was when I was just 6 years old and I really liked the race car. I liked seeing car competitions on tv. My dad at that time participated in motorcycle racing and I started my experience with adrenaline. My dad took me to see racing in guacima highway and you have no idea I liked me to see to those cars close. My uncle brought a mini car from USA and I thought I will could use this car the front of my garage only for practices.

One day my dad told me we were going out to visit my grandparents and that was a lie because it was not going to be right there. It was a surprise to take me to a place where they had a highway. I was very happy I could not believe that. Then I went every weekend to practice because my intention was to have the goal…a professional competition but I knew it was a effort to training and could do it. When I was 7 and participate this competition, I remember it was a Sunday and I was very nervous to see this place so full. The first laps I feel good during the race and I had confidence. Not win the competition but I really enjoyed.  I remember I had the tv interviews and photos with all other participants. I could not continue to participate because it is very expensive sport and had to study. Also participate in motorcycle rally car events and water 4×4 when had more age.

 

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Yuran is the student sitting on the left side of teacher Nate. This is his English class at Instituto Estelar Bilingüe in Liberia, Costa Rica.

Trip Unforgettable – Dinia

This Easter week was wonderful because my boyfriend and me had 1 week off. So we planning visit different parts of Costa Rica that didn’t know before. We coordinate all necessary for the trip many weeks before because we wanted  that it was cheap, so we had to planning all very well. First I rented a car 1 month before, them I looked basic information and advice about the places to visit, and I coordinate the travel route. The places that were in our plans were: Zoological Tempisque, Barra Honda Caves and National Park Tenorio. For visit our first place we preparing: A car, cash, back pack, comfortable shoes for long hiking, food and beverage, repellent, sunblock, hat and camera. Zoological Tempisque is located in Rosario downtown. The way is long and most of the street doesn´t has good conditions, only from Liberia to Nicoya  there is paved street. When we arrive the tourist guide brings us the welcome and the tour.

This place open daily from 9am to 4pm. In this place we can see variety of wild animals like: Tapir, Scarlet Macaws, Monkeys, Emus, Ocelots, Small mountain tiger, crocodiles, Green iguanas, capibaras, Boa constrictors, Guatuzas, Tepezcuintle, danta, White tail deer and others.

To visit Tempisque Safari is an unforgettable experience, not only because you can observe and photograph an impressive variety of wild animals in their natural hábitat, but you can also interact with many of them.

Next day we went to visit Barra Honda Caves, for visit this place we prepared confortable and fresh cloth, shoes for long hiking, sunblock, camera and a lot water. Barra Honda is unique among the National Parks of Costa Rica its main attraction is an intricate large system of limestone cavers wich has a multitude of forms and figures. Before that people believed that Barra Honda was a volcano because they misinterpreted the whirring of bat wings for volcanic activity, and the aroma of guano for sulfur. The calcareous formation of the limestone caverns at the park are the main visitor attraction, wich are only estimated to be 50% explored. This place its really magic.

After that our final stop will be Tenorio National Park were we can find Rios Celeste.

The main visitor attraction there is Rio Celeste. Tenorio Volcano National Park a trip here involves a moderately challenging, but for me, was a big challenging of 3hrs hike through parks secondary forest, an effort that is well worth the trip. Two rivers merge into one at borbollones, a confluence where the minerals from the river and volcano meet and create the famous blue color. (sulfur and calcium carbonate). In addition to the colorful attraction of the water the river also has several thermal hot springs and a large waterfall. All the places that visit were wonderful, I recommended go to visit.

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Dinia is the student standing up! This is her English class with Sharai from California at Instituto Estelar Bilingüe.

Club A


“I think the best way of doing good to the poor is not making them easy in poverty, but leading or driving them out of it.” -Benjamin Franklin

At Instituto Estelar Bilingüe, we believe that education can be the greatest fighter of poverty. For this reason, we are excited about an up-and-coming non-profit organization right here in Liberia! Instituto Estelar is proud to support the efforts of Club A, an organization dedicated to helping local underprivileged children continue in school and excel. Club A provides tutoring, English lessons, and a healthy snack to select groups of children from Nazareth Elementary School. In addition, Club A is raising funds to help pay for the expensive books, uniforms, and supplies that can make attending school difficult or impossible for many Costa Rican children. Instituto Estelar is getting involved by providing the space for these activities as well as English-speaking volunteers. We are delighted to be part of this amazing cause and excited to see the amazing work that Club A will do for the children of Liberia!

You can get involved! Donations and volunteers are needed to help the organization grow and to help as many students as possible. For more information, contact ClubALiberia@gmail.com or donate below.

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“Yo creo que la mejor manera de hacer el bien a los pobres no es ayudarles a seguir en la pobreza, sino impulsarles o motivarles a salir de ella.”-Benjamin Franklin

En el Instituto Estelar Bilingüe, creemos que la educación puede ser la mejor herramienta de la pobreza. Por esta razón, estamos entusiasmados con una organización sin fines de lucro emergente aquí en Liberia. Instituto Estelar está orgulloso de apoyar los esfuerzos del Club A, una organización dedicada a ayudarles a niños de escasos recursos locales a seguir en la escuela y sobresalir. Club A ofrece tutorías, clases de inglés y un refrigerio saludable para grupos de niños seleccionados de la escuela primaria de Nazareth. Además, el Club A está recaudando donaciones para ayudar a pagar los libros, uniformes y útiles escolares. Instituto Estelar se involucrará al proporcionar el espacio para estas actividades y también buscar voluntarios de habla inglesa. Estamos encantados de ser parte de esta increíble causa y emocionado de ver el increíble trabajo que hará Club A para los niños de Liberia.

Usted puede involucrarse. Donaciones y voluntarios son necesarios para ayudar que la organización crezca y ayude a tantos estudiantes como sea posible. Para obtener más información, póngase en contacto con ClubALiberia@gmail.com o done abajo.

https://www.paypal.com/cgi-bin/webscr?cmd=_s-xclick&hosted_button_id=JB75URVLBD7GW

An English Student’s Review / Una reseña de un estudiante de inglés


 

Felipe was the student of the month in September 2013. Here he is with his first English teacher at Estelar, Brittany!

Felipe was the student of the month in September 2013. Here he is with his first English teacher at Estelar, Brittany!

Felipe just finished our most advanced level in the basic English program. We are very proud of him!

Felipe’s Review of Instituto Estelar Bilingüe:

After my first class in the Institute, I had already started to feel a nice vibe with my classmates and also with Brittany, my first teacher. She was my teacher and also one of my best friends. I remember the time that I used to go earlier to the Institute just to practice Spanish with her before our class began…

Also every time that I went to Spanglish was terrific! My first Spanglish was in Bar Kasa, but they closed the bar, so Bethany decided to go to Baula’s… and that was the first time that I met Cara, who would be my teacher for a few weeks and during those few weeks she was so cool with us. We called for a pizza on the last day of having class with her and 3 months later I met my third teacher Sharai… she is a wonderful girl with so many qualities. During the class she had a lot of ideas and funny games, like Mafia, Hot Potato and I remember the time that we had the speed dating. In addition I met a lot of special people, like Stephanie, Nate, Hanna, Melody, Greta and Manuel (all English teachers at Estelar). In summary, I owe a lot to Bethany, the director of Estelar, because thanks to her I had this awesome experience.

***

Felipe acaba de terminar el nivel más avanzado en nuestro programa básico de inglés. ¡Estamos muy orgullosos de él!

La reseña de Felipe sobre Instituto Estelar Bilingüe

Desde mi primera clase en el Instituto,  comencé  a sentir un ambiente agradable con mis compañeros y también con Brittany mi primera profesora. Ella era mi profesora y también una de mis mejores amigas. Recuerdo que yo solía ir antes al Instituto para practicar español con ella antes de que comenzara nuestra clase…

También, ¡siempre fue fantástico ir Spanglish! Recuerdo que mi primer Spanglish fue en Bar Kasa, pero cerraron el bar y Bethany decidió ir a Baulas… y fue la primera vez que conocí a Cara. Ella sería mi profesora por unas semanas y durante esas semanas fue genial con nosotros. El último día de clases con ella pedimos una pizza y 3 meses después conocí a mi tercera profesora Sharai… es una chica maravillosa con muchas cualidades. Durante las clases siempre tenía un montón de ideas y juegos divertidos, como Mafia, patata caliente y recuerdo el tiempo que teníamos las citas rápidas. Además he conocido a mucha gente especial, como Stephanie, Hanna, Nate, Melody, Greta y Manuel (todos los profesores de inglés en Estelar). En resumen le debo mucho a Bethany, la directora de Estelar, porque gracias a ella tuve esta increíble experiencia.

Helping Kids in our Community / Ayudando a niños de la comunidad


Learning English can help improve a Costa Rican’s future. At Instituto Estelar, we want to help make English classes available to children who want to learn but need help paying for the materials to do so.

Vera is a single mother living in a low-income neighborhood, and she wants her children to learn English so that they can have better lives and improve their situation. Her six year-old daughter, Keiryn, and eight year-old son, Densel, are eager to study English and have been asking to take classes for some time.

We recently enrolled Keiryn and Densel into our kids program and gave them scholarships to cover their monthly tuition. An organization that gives shoes to needy children, Souls Helping Soles, will be giving them new shoes to wear to school and future English classes. However, we still need help paying for their books. The books cost 30.000 colones and we already have 10.000 in donations.

You can help send these stellar children to school with the materials they need!

If you are interested in donating, please contact the director, Bethany, at Info@estelarcr.com or 2665-6921. Thank you so much for helping us give this opportunity to local children!

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Vera, showed here with her two full-scholarship children in Instituto Estelar Bilingüe’s Kid’s English Program, works hard to keep our campus clean.

Aprender inglés puede mejorar el futuro de los costarricenses. En el Instituto Estelar, queremos que clases de inglés sean accesibles a los niños que quieren aprender, pero necesitamos ayuda en pagar los materiales de clase.

Vera es una madre soltera que vive en Nazareth de Liberia, y ella quiere que sus hijos aprendan inglés para que tengan un mejor nivel de vida y mejoren su situación. Su hija de seis años, Keiryn, e hijo de ocho años, Densel, han tenido ganas de estudiar inglés con nosotros.

Recientemente se matricularon Densel y Keiryn en nuestro programa para niños y les hemos dado becas completas para pagar sus mensualidades. Una organización que da zapatos a niños de recursos bajos que se llama Souls Helping Soles les va a dar zapatos nuevos para usar en las clases de inglés. Sin embargo, todavía necesitan ayuda para pagar sus libros. Los libros cuestan 30.000 colones y ya tenemos 10.000 en donaciones.

Usted puede ayudar a estos estudiantes estelares con los materiales que necesitan.

Si usted está interesado en colaborar, por favor comuníquese con la directora, Bethany, en Info@estelarcr.com o 2665-6921. ¡Muchas gracias por ayudarnos a dar la oportunidad a los niños de Liberia!