Volunteer at a school in Quito and assist in teaching English, sports, computers and art lessons. Students at these schools often come from poor families and the government does not always provide all of the materials these schools need. Teachers are extremely overworked and any help is always welcome. The exact grade and/or subject a volunteer will teach, depends on his or her experience and preferences.
The school ‘Reino de Quito’ is a traditional state-run school founded in 1942, located in the colonial center of Quito. The school receives about 500 children from 3 to 12 years old. As it is a public school, the Ecuadorian government provides for most of the resources such as infrastructure, equipment, teachers’ salaries, uniforms for the children between 3 and 4 years old (from 4 they have to buy their uniforms themselves), snacks and educational materials. In this school you will find all kinds of children who come from many different economic and social backgrounds, most of them from poor families, some live with both their parents, others come from single parent households or live with their grandparents. The families are mostly bricklayers, artisans, housemaids, street vendors (some children sell candy on the streets as well), or they are unemployed.
The school has about 500 pupils with approximately 25 to 30 children per class. Each class has one general classroom teacher who teaches all main subjects and then there are a few specialized teachers in English, Arts and Sports who do not have their own classrooms, but instead rotate around all the classrooms teaching their specialized subjects. A volunteer coordinator is assigned within the project, who only speaks Spanish.
Volunteers are needed to help in the following activities
- English classes, the English teacher always needs help with preparing lessons, finding new materials such as English songs as well as practicing conversational English with volunteers to help pronunciation. The presence of volunteers is highly important, apart from keeping the children’s interest and making the class more active, native English speaking volunteers are also a great support for the teacher, to improve vocabulary, pronunciation skills, and especially in sharing new ideas on how to make the class fun and interesting and change it from being a difficult class for the children to their favorite one!
- Classroom assistant, all of the teachers need help in their classrooms, preparing lessons, helping with activities, assisting children who are slower than others.
- Sport/Computer lessons - if you are very interested in these subjects you are more than welcome to help the teachers give these lessons and come up with new ideas.
- Help during break and playing times with keeping order and engage in recreational activities.
The more hard work you put into the project the more reward you get! Show initiative, work independently and don’t be afraid of working hard. They need all the help you can give them.