Aug 302010
 
Headscarves in Schools: A Gorgeous Perspective

The world’s relationship with Muslim culture is one of the most intense and important topics around these days.

And thus it is with joy and hope for all humanity that I bring you an absolutely beautiful story from last week in our multicultural ESL class.

Let us allow the story to unfold through the words and pictures of three women in our class: Mafer from Venezuela, Yuri from Japan, and Meaad from Saudi [...Read More!]

Aug 242010
 
The Sexiest Buildings in Boston: Part 3

Are you a diligent student seeking a place to study that doesn’t smell like your little brother’s socks?

Are you a tourist to Boston who enjoys lovely spaces which photograph well, but don’t charge a tiresome entrance fee?

Are you a hip 20-something questing for a quiet space to rock out the Internet?

Are you an economical human who is sick of spending money on music and books, or on that obligatory coffee which [...Read More!]

Aug 192010
 
YCC Ghana's Genius Reading Club Program

We have discussed where clothes you donate might end up, but what about the BOOKS you toss into the “Donation” bin?

Me, I only had a hazy idea of how my old tomes might be used.  Did they find a second life as firewood?  Toilet paper?  Food storage? Sometimes I worried about my cast-off literature’s fate.

And thus it was with absolute joy, during the three months I volunteered in Ghana, that I [...Read More!]

Aug 162010
 
A Hot Dog Eating Contest as an ESL Field Trip

Pop quiz:

You’re an ESL teacher at an accredited English language school in Boston’s posh Back Bay.

Where do you take your students for the final field trip of Session 8?

Obvious Answer:

First to bowling, then to a hot dog-eating contest, of course!

I’ve written a photo essay about Laos, but what follows is far classier: a photo essay documenting a hot dog-eating challenge!

To be frank (haha!) I think you’ll dig the tale’s shocking [...Read More!]

Aug 122010
 
The Sexiest Buildings in Boston: Part 2

Today is my ONE YEAR anniversary of taking that first flight out of Boston into the 9-month journey that would ultimately span Japan, Southeast Asia, Ghana, Iberia… and a whole heck of a lot of learning and fun!

How to celebrate?  By sharing with you my absolute FAVORITE building in Boston.  I am panting a little as I write this, I love this structure so much.  Please honor my love and read [...Read More!]

Aug 112010
 
Faleh's Article: Lost 3 Days in the Saudi Desert

Article #13 in the ESL Student Life Story Project, by Faleh from Saudi Arabia, age 23.

My mother was crying and we didn’t know what had happened.   I came to my mother, then she said, “I have been calling your father for two days, but his phone is off I don’t know why!  There must be something bad that occurred to him.”

Later on we received the news: he had [...Read More!]

Aug 102010
 
Mei’s Article: Life in Boston Versus Life in Taiwan

Article #12 in the ESL Student Life Stories Project, by Mei from Taiwan, age 35.

Pedestrians First!  The cars stop behind the white line whenever I cross the road here in Boston.

I am so surprised by the street action!  I come from Taiwan, where drivers and passengers always contest each other.

Sometimes in Taiwan, a driver will curse at you if you don’t let his car pass.  He will [...Read More!]

Aug 092010
 
Amanda's Article: My Mother's Stories

Article #11 in the ESL Student Life Stories Project, by Amanda from China, age 20

There is something that makes me more mature than before.  My mother is 48 years old, and in her life she has already had 3 operations in the hospital.

When I was 8 years old, my mother had her first operation, because she had an “Ectopic Pregnancy.”  In this operation, my mother stayed in [...Read More!]

Aug 062010
 
The Sexiest Buildings In Boston: Part 1

One reason Boston is so deep in my heart is because its buildings are so darn sexy. They’re sleek, tasteful, not overly huge… and a lot of them are nice and shiny!

This post is the start of a series of odes to Boston architecture, so it’s only right to start with the biggest and best: the Hancock Building.

The John Hancock Building, located right near the Copley stop on the Green Line and [...Read More!]