Cross-Cultural Cooperation in the Classroom

International House Gets Hands-On with “Hands On Schools”
October 2, 2013
From the Executive Director: Gala Gratitude
October 30, 2013

ventures 1 daytime class

When you walk into an Adult ESL class at International House, you might see people from seven or eight different countries and linguistic backgrounds, all learning together!  Our Adult ESL program attracts participants from around the globe, coming together to master English and to become more familiar with life in the Queen City.  The tangible objective of these ESL classes is to develop students’ verbal and written proficiency in English.  However, the less tangible result of these classes is the benefit that the students receive as their time together allows them to build a close-knit community.

Adult ESL students at International House meet together for a total of four hours per week from September to December, working together with an instructor.  These hours spent together build up, developing relationships that can last even after the course has finished.  Although the students come from different linguistic backgrounds, they all live the language of compassion—a language that does not always require words.

Kristen Schmitt, instructor for the daytime ESL course, shared that her favorite part of working with the class been witnessing this compassion and connection in action.  She loves the way that “the more advanced students are very willing to help the students who are struggling…even though most of the students do not speak the same language, they still enjoy working together!”

The students in our Adult ESL courses are building connections and friendships that will carry on outside the classroom, helping make Charlotte’s international community that much more vibrant and that much more connected.