This year could not have been any busier for InItaliano. The delivery of one hundred illustrated, silent, poetry books, including pedagogical resources to the New York-based Italian bilingual schools marked the official beginning of the professional development program Valigie Narranti. The program – focussing on reading – has been financed by the Ministry of Foreign Affair and International Cooperation (MAECI) in Italy and promoted by the Consulate General of Italy in New York. It has attracted, so far, 37 teachers, 15 of whom are public school teachers or educators working in the five boroughs.
Although not all the public schools were able to participate in person in the subsequent spring showcases, they all were able to submit footage of their work carried out in the current school year. The first showcase – involving public and private schools – was held at the Consulate General of Italy in New York on May 26, in the presence of Consul General Fabrizio Di Michele. Consul Di Michele welcomed the classes and reiterated the support of the entire Consular team. He also interacted with the children as you can see in some of the images of the video, which InItaliano has produced and which can be watched here as well.
A few weeks later, on June 8, all public schools with a multilanguage program participated in the themed showcase “teachers’ appreciation”. The event was held via zoom only, and was hosted by multi-language leader at the Community Education Council of district, 3 Naveed Hasan. “It was good to see how the other schools are doing “ one Italian teacher said. We couldn’t agree more: all in all, Covid and post Covid considered, the Italian programs in public schools are thriving and we can now hope for a full recovery next year.
From now on, InItaliano will continue to accept and publish any kind of footage made by children who are in the public school system, speak Italian at home but who are not receiving any instruction or resources in Italian at school. Please send videos via WeTransfer and pdfs via email to Bilingualismany@gmail.com
While Valigie Narranti will likely transfer onto a more structured educational portal, we would like to remind all teachers (public, private and freelance) who have not yet completed the program that they are more than welcome to do so during the summer, and claim their attendance certificate. Those who have not yet started and need to register, should get in touch with Bilingualismany@gmail.com
Our latest news is about our participation in the Dowona initiative, which is driven by a truly diverse group of parents in New York City, mostly immigrants, who speak different languages at home and who want to continue to support multilingual education and strengthen educational opportunities for New York’s children within the New York City public school system. This would mean including Italian within the group of languages offered by a middle and high school of district 3, with an IB. We would encourage you to follow our initiative on our social media. Whether you are a teacher or a parent, if you are interested (or you know anyone who is interested) in this educational model please register http://register.dowona.org and help us spread the word
#passaparola e buona estate,