Spanish IV takes on Colombia

Señora Griffin takes her students out for tacos and the movies

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Katie Gomez, Staff Reporter

Señora Griffin took her Spanish IV class on a field trip to see the new Disney movie, Encanto, and to lunch at Los Chingones in Fort Collins on Dec.14. The field trip was sparked by the movie being released at the same time that the class was learning about Colombia. Currently, Spanish IV is studying the culture and historical figures of Colombia. Señora Griffin said, “Right when we were doing this unit it just so happens that the movie Encanto was coming out into theaters, which takes place in Colombia and it shows their culture in the movie and clothes and the people and the food, but also is the theme of magical realism, which is the literary style Spanish IV is studying at the moment. I thought it would be really cool for them to see an example in action of what we were studying.” Magical realism is a genre in literature where the real world is influenced by magic. In the movie, the Madrigals were gifted a miracle in the form of a forever burning candle. This candle created their house which possessed magical powers and personalities that interacted with and assisted the family. As the family lineage continued, each member of the family was granted a magical power when they came of age. The powers helped the family give back to the community they built and create a more powerful and tight-knit community. Thus, the miracle granted to them was each other and the wonderful haven they were able to create.

Going to see the movie was a great experience for Spanish IV students because the students were able to put everything they learned about Colombian culture and Spanish into use. The students were able to identify foods and words in the movie that they had learned in class. Señora Griffin said,“I feel like they have this appreciation for Colombian culture that they maybe wouldn’t have had otherwise because they get to experience it outside of the classroom.”

Taking the Spanish IV class has been extremely beneficial to the group of students taking it. Allyson Weichel (22) said,“ I feel like it’s good because you’re able to connect with other people and understand other cultures in the world.” Weichel isn’t the only student that has been positively influenced by taking the Spanish IV class. Scarlett Wray (22) said, “I work in an environment where you sometimes have to communicate with people whose first language is Spanish so it helps to understand those people and speak with them.” Taking Spanish has helped Wray and other students to not only understand and communicate in another language, but also understand another culture. Wray said, “It’s very important to learn about their culture because there isn’t only American culture. You can understand people as a whole a lot more by learning their culture and you can understand current events in Latin American countries.” Spanish IV students will be able to learn and use these valuable skills for the rest of their life. Señora Griffin said, “I feel like a lot of the students who take Spanish IV are students who go on to either minor or major in it because they recognize the value of being bilingual, and Spanish four is the best opportunity for them to expand their skills and take college-level Spanish classes.”

Lunch together at Los Chingones allowed students to bond with each other over Latin American food and Encanto helped students appreciate the culture of Colombia, and realize the importance of Spanish.