By: Jelani Meyer
Ms. Aja Finger is one of the new Spanish teacher here to the Chavez community. She has a love not only for the
language of Spanish but also for the culture in Spanish speaking countries. She studied at the American University for college and through this college her love for hispanic culture developed. She got many opportunities at her college, one in particular living in Chile for six months teaching English.
“I became involved with Chavez by being referred by a friend to come work here.” Finger said “And I guess they liked or were impressed with me otherwise I wouldn’t be here right now.”
Ms. Finger learned Spanish in school and through personal studies. She was so interested in the culture she signed up for a program to teach English in Chile.
“When I studied in Chile I loved learning more about the culture through all of the people that I taught and my host family,” Finger said.
Ms. Finger was given the opportunity to teach in Chile through the college she was attending American University.
“I stayed in Chile for 6 months with a host family, I tried new foods, met lots of people, and had an unforgettable experience,” she said.
Ms. Finger brings the culture of Spanish speaking countries to her classroom. She has flags of these countries and maps of them everywhere.
“I feel like in order to learn Spanish you also have to experience the culture also.”
Finger wants to bring signature cuisines from those Spanish speaking countries so that the students can simulate being in that country.
“Students won’t care if you just teach the kids spanish words and phrases, but if you incorporate the culture of the language then I believe kids will be a little more interested in Spanish class.””
Even though Finger is a young teacher, she believes being young puts her at an advantage when teaching.
“The fact that I’m young puts me at an advantage because I can relate to the students.” Finger said “I know what trends that they are in and I know how they feel about school.”
Finger prides herself in her relationships with her students and feels like when the students and teachers are closer they will be more open to learning.
“I believe that being close to my students is a necessity.” Finger said “ The closer I am to my students the more they will trust me. Trust me with their education and be more willing to learn.”
h Finger’s dedication, patience, and loyalty to teaching students is something that is going to help improve the Chavez community.