Meet Teacher Elba
Specialized teacher for the integrated classroom.
December 5, 2017 - Guatemala
Since 2009, Miss Elba has been the specialized teacher for the integrated classroom that serves children and youth with disabilities at NPH Guatemala.
Teacher Elba had her first experience with children with disabilities at an organization called ANINI, where she worked for more than 14 years before coming to the Educational Center of NPH Guatemala.
During this experience, she felt something extraordinary; a calling to this meaningful life of great purpose and satisfaction.
Elba quotes: “It is something that I feel, that I see in their eyes, they are just happy, they are representatives of God, they are innocent, pure and real. They don’t tell lies, they are spontaneous and they don’t feel awkward for any reason. They have beautiful spirits.”
So when Elba came to NPH Guatemala in 2009, she began to work with the children and youth with disabilities at NPH. In the integrated classroom, there were not many didactic materials, tables nor chairs. She began to build a nice learning environment for them where they could feel comfortable and ready to learn.
Teacher Elba brought them to the 'civic acts', held every Monday at the school, where they sing the national anthem and the hymn of Nuestros Pequeños Hermanos. Now they do not only participate proudly at the ceremonies, they stand right alongside other students in the front row. In church they have first row seats, so they can listen, understand and pay better attention to the priest. They enjoy excursions like the civic march to Itzapa, trips to amusement parks and spending time with the other students outside of the classroom.
NPH believes that all our youth with disabilities are part of the family, and our staff tries to create an environment that helps them feel that way, and that also helps them reach their full potential.
To improve her knowledge and skills, Teacher Elba participates in educational workshops and specialized teaching courses for children with disabilities. The methods she uses in the integrated class are based on listening and comprehension, as well as visual and sensory work. All children learn not only about the human values, nature, plants, nutrition, animals, the seasons of the year, urban and rural life, but also the basics like colors, numbers and geometric forms.