Ambassador Luis E. Arreaga’s Remarks in the sixth Teacher Training Sessions

6 de abril 2019

Señora Representante de la Junta Directiva de la Facultad de Humanidades, Licenciada Maria Elvira Orozco de García; Jefe de la Sección de Idiomas, Licenciado Francisco Puac; Señores presentadores y docentes del sexto Teacher Training Sessions de la Ciudad de Guatemala,

Buenos días.

What a great pleasure to be here with so many educators who are shaping the young minds that will help Guatemala construct a more prosperous future.

We support TTS because we believe that English language teaching is a model for innovation in education and that it drives economic prosperity and democratic values.

Just as life is not about giving the correct answer to pass an exam, language should not be taught as simply a memory exercise.

Learning a language should be an interactive experience that applies to the everyday life of students. As teachers, your challenge is to plan classes that teach students knowledge that become a life skill.

Recent studies from Deloitte, one of the biggest global consulting organizations, suggest that millennials get fired or are not hired because they don’t know how to collaborate they lack of confidence in themselves and they cannot make considered decisions.

Teachers must prioritize the learning of these essential life skills. For example, how can we use verb conjugations to teach students how to collaborate, instead of simply memorizing them to pass an exam?

The TTS aims to help you answer questions like these; TTS wants to transform traditional exam-based instruction into education for life.

The Embassy values our partnership with la Escuela de Idiomas de la Facultad de Humanidades de la USAC, our alumni association, AJEDE, and the other institutions responsible for today’s event.

I am confident that you will find these sessions productive and learn effective strategies from the presenters.

As you apply what you learn today in your classrooms, you will be preparing young Guatemalans to create economic opportunities in their communities with their families.

You are also forming the future leaders of Guatemala by teaching them to be active citizens in a democracy. Let me take this opportunity to urge all of you to exercise your right to choose your public leaders by voting in the upcoming elections.

I also ask you to encourage your students, your colleagues, your family members and your neighbors to vote.

To effect real change, Guatemala needs massive citizen participation, including by youth, and starting with the upcoming elections.

I congratulate you on choosing to be teachers, guiding youth in collaborative learning, life skills, and active citizenship to ensure a brighter future for Guatemala.

Thank you.