Traveling out of the country, for some, is a once in a lifetime experience. This summer a few Millard West
students are heading down to Peru for a service learning trip with Spanish teacher Samantha Ballard. They have been planning the project for over a year now. Ballard believes this trip will be an excellent learning experience.
Although Ballard has traveled out of the country before, her nerves are taking over. She is assigned the responsibility of all the girls. Her top priority is to “make sure they are safe at all times and that no parent has to worry.” Due to the lack of participants, students from Roanoke, Virginia are also joining them on their flight down. Ballard believes this is a great opportunity for the girls to bond with students from there as well. They will be staying overnight for eight days from June 12 to June 21.
This educational tour is full of exploring, volunteering, and sightseeing. The students are visiting The Sacred Valley of the Incas, Machu Picchu, Lake Titicaca and more. The tours will be led by expert guides. During the service projects, volunteers will be taking part in helping build chimneys, installing traditional kitchens in local homes and cleaning up the shoreline where trash has collected. The service hours will count towards academic credit.
“Going to see a culture in action is more powerful than a textbook,” Ballard said.
Junior Jamie Jensen agrees. Jensen is happy to get to engage in the culture first hand.
“I will learn how to immerse myself in a different culture even when it can be intimidating at times,” Jensen said.
In addition, students will be able to expand their knowledge on the Spanish language while they engage one on one with natives during their stay. Junior Maya Day is nervous about having to use her Spanish speaking skills, but hopes for it to help her speak more fluently.