Level 3 and 4 Spanish students had the opportunity to improve their language skills, while experiencing Puerto Rican culture and cuisine and learning about indigenous plants and animals, on an adventure-packed 5-day trip to Puerto Rico over the Memorial Day weekend. The tours and even a salsa lesson were conducted in Spanish, and in between activities Andrew and Vicki engaged students in conversation.
The first day the group headed to Loíza, a town rich in Afro-Caribbean history, where they visited Samuel Lind—an artist whom the students learned about in preparation for the trip. The second day began at the Finca Don Manuel, a working fruit farm growing avocados, papayas, mangos, pineapples, breadfruit, and plantains. They traveled to Ponce in the south for a walking tour, a salsa lesson, and a visit to the archeological site Tibes Indigenous Ceremonial Park, where students learned about the history of the Taíno and pre-Taíno peoples.
The next stop was Yauco, where students walked the streets taking in the colorful homes and beautiful murals, followed by a catered dinner on a local basketball court! The group traveled to the fishing village of La Parguera in Lajas and then on to the southwestern town of Cabo Rojo. This part of the trip included swimming and snorkeling, searching for sea creatures, bird watching, and sightseeing. The group spent the last day in Old San Juan, one of the oldest cities in the Americas, where they visited Fort San Cristobal and learned about the history and legends of the old town during a walking tour.
MMFS chaperones for the trip—Vicki Muñoz-Lepore (who conceived of and organized the trip), Andrew Fileta, Ana Cordero, Mike O’Neill, Beth Schneider, and DerRonica Collins—were truly impressed with how engaged the students were throughout the trip.
Enjoy photos from the trip.