Students get taste of culture in Peru
Palmdale School District hosts a dozen visitors from Lima
PALMDALE — For the past couple weeks, Palmdale School District has played host to international visitors, as a dozen students from two schools in Lima, Peru, have visited, attending classes, staying with local families and sharing their traditions and culture.
“It’s not every day when we have kids from other countries visiting,” Superintendent Raul Maldonado said.
The visiting students have been at the District’s two dual immersion schools, Los Amigos and Dos Caminos. These are schools where students learn in English and Spanish.
A major reason for the visit is for the Peruvian students to practice their English with native speakers.
“They were very generous and very kind,” Ana Paula Medina, 14, said of the students they have met in Palmdale.
“From the moment we arrived, every person received us with love,” Laura Cuya, 13, said. “They were all kind people.”
The school experience has been different than what they are accustomed to at home, and preferable for some. The schools themselves are bigger, they feature solar panels and the start time is later in the morning, they said.
In addition, they said the teachers are funny and the classes more interactive.
“We think that this is an incredible experience. We’re learning a lot, and have new friends,” Juan Diego, 12, said.
He said they are also learning more about this country and how people here learn, so that they may take home information to improve their schools.
On Tuesday, the visi
tors at Tamarisk joined third Elementary graders School, where they performed traditional dances and provided a brief lesson on their homeland.
The international visit coincided with Hispanic Heritage Month at the campus.
“This is the icing on top of the cake,” Principal Gina Tillman said.
The partnership between the Peruvian schools and the Palmdale School District has been ongoing for about five years, he said, and while the District has not organized reciprocal visits to South America, a number of the faculty and staff have traveled there.
“There’s a lot to learn from them also,” said Maldonado, who is among those to have made the trip. ed Eight from Maria students Alvarado visitSchool, itself a dual immersion program, while another four students came from Innova Schools. Both are in Lima, the capital city.
The visitors took in more than Palmdale on their California trip, visiting such iconic sites as Disneyland, Hollywood and Universal Studios.
The Hollywood Walk of Fame and the roller coasters of the theme parks ranked high on students’ list of favorite things from those visits.
Students visiting Palmdale School District from Maria Alvarado School in Lima, Peru, performed traditional dances for third-graders at Tamarisk Elementary School this week.
Students visiting Palmdale School District from Lima, Peru, this week pose for a selfie with teachers and administrators at Tamarisk Elementary School. The guests performed traditional dances and provided a lesson about their homeland.