Hueneme High held its fourth annual Literacy Fair on May 28, and young boys and girls weren’t the only ones who had a fun time; you can also count the 160 or so members of Hueneme High’s Spanish for Native Speakers classes who put on the show.
The Literacy Fair is the brainchild English instructor Carina Casillas-Guerrero, who has been teaching Spanish for Native Speakers at Hueneme High for nine years.
The classes, Casillas-Guerrero explained, are for College Prep and Advanced Placement students, “therefore, reading, writing, studying cultures, languages and literature is among our priorities.”
Casillas-Guerrero added: “I love short stories and a teacher here at the school, Erik Johansen, used to have his English Language Learners write story books. I learned about Ventura High’s Literacy Fair, did an observation and decided to use both ideas.”
Reading to young boys and girls, according to Casillas-Guerrero, benefits students because it requires them to use a specific vocabulary and syntax, while also calling for them to read with intonation and clarity, she added.
“Promoting bilingualism – literacy in Spanish and English – is the main purpose of the fair,” Casillas-Guerrero said.
Students who are enrolled in Spanish for Native Speaker 3 classes created their own stories and read them to the children under a tent or canopy decorated according to their theme. Those taking Spanish NS 4P and 5AP classes presented plays, while those in Spanish NS 2 served as guides, leading the children to the different tents.
“It’s a lot of fun,” said senior Ashley Salazar, who performed a gypsy dance with junior Selene Barcenas in one of the Literacy Fair’s more popular tents, “El Circo Morrocoltuad,” that also feature clowns and mimes. “The kids are really attentive.”
Kindergarten through third-grade students from nearby Haycox, Richard Bard, Hueneme, Larsen and Parview elementary schools walked to Hueneme High, while those from Williams and Kamala elementary schools were provided transportation to the Literacy Fair, Casillas-Guerrero said.
Helping Casillas-Guerrero to organize the event included English Language Development teachers Maria Reveles, Maria Duran, Vanessa Calderon and Julio Cabral as Principal Adrian Palazuelos and Assistant Principal Stefan Cvijanovich.