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Happy Fourth of July!

Today students started their day with a years worth of cultural celebrations packed into
half an hour, getting a glimpse of some cultural festivities that are celebrated in France 
and French speaking countries, including a count down to the New Year, masks for 

El cuatro de Julio

After enduring heat and thunderstorms for a few days, the weather finally cleared up for a beautiful cool day on the 4th of July here in Swarthmore. In the morning, we had a regular schedule of classes and activities. After normal classes, and our final day of cultural classes for the second week, students spent time exploring the town of Swarthmore, played frisbee and soccer, and went swimming. After eating a quick dinner, most of the Spanish academy loaded onto busses and travelled to a nearby high school for fireworks.

Can’t Stop the Beat: Spanish Academy Drums

While verbal language fills much of our time here at MMLA, another kind of communication has proven to be effective and fun for the students in the Spanish Academy: music. In addition to a Mariachi band, various chants and music videos, we welcomed music teacher Ray McNamara, the evening of July 2nd who led the students in a call-and-response style jam session. The students sat in a huge circle, each with a percussion instrument, as Ray shared the joy of making sound.

The Art of Language: Arabic Academy’s Studio Day

On Wednesday afternoon, Arabic Academy students allowed their creativity to blossom through avenues of colors and depictions! During cultural activity time, Arabic teacher Majida Hourani’s taught the class how to create and fashion unique pieces of art using themes and symbols from the Middle East. Bright colors exploded on paper as the students worked on their masterpieces.

Everybody Was Kung Fu Fighting!

In the Chinese Academy evening assembly yesterday, the ancient art of Kung Fu took center stage as students performed a series of different skits. After viewing a kung fu performance earlier in the day, students were itching to test out their own kung fu skills. Students wrote skits during the day and incorporated new vocabulary acquired in class as well as what they saw in the performance. The final product turned out to be a hilarious couple of minutes full of crowd-pleasing stunts and an impressive use of language.

-Colin Edwards, Program Assistant

Cultured: Reflections on Spanish Academy’s Field Trip

On Sunday June 29th the Spanish Academy boarded two buses at 8:30 AM and headed off to Long Beach for almost an entire day of excitement, fun andaprendizaje.

Smooth Sailing at Swarthmore

It’s Thursday of the second week, and all’s well here at Swarthmore. The students are definitely getting more and more accustomed to MMLA life by the day. Working hard in class and playing hard during activities is really helping to solidify friendships and language ability alike.

Heat, Thunderstorms and More Heat

The weather hasn’t been the greatest today, but that hasn’t stopped us from continuing to enjoy the Spanish immersion environment! At this morning’s assembly, students presented about dining in language. Although this topic was fairly broad, knowing how to say things that are part of daily life may suddenly become a bit more difficult; for example, how to order food, how to describe your food, or how to explain that you don’t like your food and might want to order something else. Needless to say, the students did a wonderful job and embraced the challenge with excitement.

Chinese Puppets and Noodles

Chinese cuisine is widely different in all parts of China, with different variations of taste and flavor for common ingredients. For today’s cultural exploration class, Ni Laoshi’s class learned about Xi Hongshi Ji Dan Mian (Noodles with Tomatoes and Eggs) and Cold Noodles. After tasting the noodles, the students got cool popsicles to balance out the heat. That afternoon, students, RAs, and teachers alike saw a performance from puppeteer, Zhang Laoshi. Zhang Laoshi gave students an exquisite look at both Chinese and Western story telling with the use of puppets. 

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