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Principal ‘Kindles’ love of native languages with eReaders

2014 January 16
by HISD Communications

School at St. George Place first-graders Mariah Gaitan, Ali Al-Aridhee, and Kaydee Amorosa (L-R) read a book in Arabic on their classroom’s Kindle.

Students at HISD’s School at St. George Place are reading books in more than three dozen different languages right now, thanks to a bright idea developed by Principal Adam Stephens.

Stephens was working with IB coordinator Lisa Hernandez one day discussing the diversity of the student body, and wondering how they could get books in their mother tongues into the classrooms in the quickest and most cost-effective way possible.

The solution he identified was to purchase a Kindle for every classroom, and load them with as many mother-tongue e-books as they could find. He worked with the Parent Teacher Organization to arrange the financing, and the rest, as they say, is history.

“One of the greatest things about the School at St. George Place is our diversity,” said Stephens. “We have over 36 different languages represented on campus.”

The Kindles have proven to be a great resource that allows students to nurture and develop their mother tongue languages while still perfecting their English.

“It is the best of both worlds,” Stephens said. “An as we work towards our authorization as an International Baccalaureate World School, we need to develop internationally minded students who have a broad world view. Exposing them to diverse texts allows us to do just that.”

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