Thanks to a recent trip to Mexico, cultural immersion for teachers benefits their students as they discover more about the children and families that are entering their schools in Durham, North Carolina.

Soft SkillsA trip for seven teachers to Guanajuato, Mexico is part of Duke University’s Visions program. Guanajuato is in Central Mexico, approximately 224 miles northwest of Mexico City.

“I now understand how our parents feel when they come to America and do not speak the language,” said Cecily Boyd, a first grade teacher at Holt Elementary Language Academy who does not speak Spanish.

According to senior program coordinator for Visions Channa Pickett, the language barrier experienced by teachers is a valuable part of the trip, and enlightening as well.

“That’s part of the experience, to feel what it’s like be in another country and recognize how difficult it can be if you don’t speak the language,” Pickett said. “I think it’s really impactful.”

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