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An English teacher from Coahuila, Mexico was invited to meet language learning experts in Cambridge to talk about her creative approach to teaching English.
Ana Maria Guemes won first prize in the Cambridge English Schools competition 2018 for a sports-themed classroom activity, which was designed to prepare students for the Cambridge English A2 Flyers exam. Her winning idea involved asking students to research their favourite sport and role model, focusing on health and family benefits.
Ana teaches at Instituto Oxford De Saltillo, in Coahuila. Speaking about her idea Anna explained:
‘Children really relate to sports and for this reason they found the activity engaging and motivating. I chose sports because it involves a lot of teamwork which can help children in the many challenges they face. The children I teach are really thinking about their future as English is a must in an international environment. I find teaching a really regarding job especially when students can communicate with each and express themselves in English. When they receive their Cambridge English certificates it also makes their parents happy!’
Ana has been teaching English for 25 years. She originally studied Tourist Administration and then went travelling and found herself as an exchange student in Michigan, USA. It was during this time that she learnt English and decided on a career change as an English teacher.
Ana’s school which is part of the Cambridge English Schools programme which she says has given them a real boost. She explains: ‘My school distinguishes itself because how seriously we take English teaching for the real world. The Cambridge English Schools programme means we receive a lot of help in professional development and support.’
The Cambridge English Schools competition is organised by Cambridge Assessment English and Cambridge University Press, two not for profit departments of the University of Cambridge. Ana was awarded a two-week residential course at the Bell Teacher Campus in Cambridge, UK. She took the course this summer which she says has taught her more interactive ways of teaching which she cannot wait to put into practise back at home.