Project Code: STATE-GAB-2

Help English as a Second Language Students Learn About the U.S.A.

Project Title Help English as a Second Language Students Learn About the U.S.A.
Project Summary E-meet and speak with Gabonese and Sao Tome residents learning English. Participate in and possibly plan mini lessons for virtual ESL clubs. Offer students a native speaker "ear and accent" and help them improve their American English skills. Liaise with local English associations.
Country Gabon
Agency Department of State
DoS Office N/A
Section PAS
Number of Interns 2
Project Description

Post seeks native American English speakers (i.e., AE as a first language) motivated to help others learn English and learn more about the United States. Interns will participate in several online sessions (Via Zoom or WhatsApp-type platform) each week and may spend time outside of the sessions developing mini lesson plans or researching appropriate skill level materials to share with the group. Some one-on-one work may also be possible. Your work may include pronouncing words, engaging in conversation on defined topics, giving mini presentations, explaining slang, discussing differences in U.S. regional accents, explaining how or why Americans say things the way they do, and correcting learners' pronunciation. Group members range from high school age to adults. Prior ESL teaching experience or ESL education major preferred, but not required.

Required Skills or Interests
Cultural diplomacy
Educational design
Additional Information

Post began online ESL clubs to continue programming during the COVID pandemic that normally was done in-person at our American Corner. The online courses attracted new people to the group, including those who could not otherwise come in person to the Corner. We hope to continue these classes during and after the pandemic to reach a broader audience. You may work with a local teacher volunteer who will devise and lead the lessons, or you may create and lead the sessions, depending on how the situation develops in the fall. We currently do not have one-on-one opportunities for students, but would like to offer short sessions to experienced learners if possible. Depending on the level of the group, you may need to slow your rate of speech, ensure you use high-frequency words, and explain slang or sayings (e.g., "It's raining cats and dogs."). Sessions are held late afternoon to early evening Gabon and Sao Tome time.