HCC'S HAIRSTON MAKES TRIP TO
|HCC's Math Instructor Chuckie Hairston taught
a three-day workshop to private school teachers in Honduras
during the summer. Pictured above are the workshop participants.
Community College Math Instructor Chuckie Hairston made a trip to the
country of Honduras over the summer break. During the trip, she stayed
in the town of Catacamas.
Her journey started five years ago when she visited a small village in
the country on a mission trip. Hairston toured a public school, since
she had taken school supplies for the children. While at the school, the
class' teacher worked through a math problem, but Hairston observed that
she did it incorrectly. This incident bothered her and she decided that
she had to do something about it.
One of the poorest countries in Central America, Honduran public schools
are viewed as less than exemplary and often are not open to outsiders
trying to provide instructional help. As an alternative, some private
schools have been established to provide a better education for
Last fall, Hairston approached a representative from Houghton Mifflin
and asked for donated math manipulative kits and a few other supplies to
take with her to help the people in the valley. She received the
donation and knew that she was again bound for Honduras.
Hairston had contact with a young man that she had known at N.C. State
University, who now lives in Honduras. He made connections for her to
visit with private school teachers from two schools. The Center for
Bilingual Learning, one of the schools, hosted her while she was in the
country. She taught nine teachers during the workshop, which lasted for
three days and was conducted in the mornings. She used the donated
materials, and incorporated hands-on activities and group work.
“I wanted to show them some other teaching techniques,” said Hairston.
All total, she took 30 different activities. After the workshop, she was
asked to return next summer. “I am planning to go back,” she said. Her
hope is to teach a group of teachers who can then instruct other
teachers, reaching those in private and public schools.
“They wanted all of the activities in English,” she added. “It was a
wonderful trip and I was well taken care of. The Hondurans are extremely
nice people.” Hairston and her husband are also sponsoring a child who
lives in that area.