Students in Ms. Ruth Pascual’s Spanish 3 class are currently finishing a group project that involved interviewing employees and customers at various Spanish-speaking grocery stores around Louisville. Ms. Pascual said that this project, which she has assigned for 15 years, will allow her students to experience the Hispanic world outside an artificial classroom setting.
According to Ms. Pascual, the goal of the exercise was to develop the ability to communicate in an unfamiliar setting. “They develop the skills to explain and ask for information,” she said.
The project also served as a “cultural eye-opener” by experiencing the feeling of being in a language minority. “It makes them more empathetic,” Ms. Pascual said.
Despite the language barrier and the lack of a classroom environment, students found the interviews to be informative. “It was kind of interesting to speak Spanish outside of the classroom environment,” said Jacob Linde (10), who went with his group to La Rosita Grocery. “I learned a bit about [Hispanic] culture just being there and talking to them for 15 minutes.”