Chopsticks and Candy
By Elizabeth Newkirk, Asian Learning Center of Indiana Intern
|Elizabeth and Allison, Asian Learning Center Interns|
On Day 1 of my internship at the International Center, I attended orientation. On Day 2, I was apparently oriented enough to represent the Asian Learning Center of Indiana (ALCI) at Sunnyside Elementary’s International Night.
|Sunnyside Elementary School International Night|
On May 17 (a.k.a. Day 2), Sunnyside Elementary hosted an event called International Night for its students and their families. My co-intern Allison and I arrived at the event laden with ALCI flyers, a camera, and activities for our table. Earlier that day we created flashcards of country names and their respective flags, which Allison used for matching games. I organized an activity in which kids used chopsticks to pick up M&Ms. The kids were naturally attracted to the prospect of free candy, and it was fun to see them practice using chopsticks, which many of them had never tried before. International Night was a great model of how to teach kids about cultures through food, music, and games. I believe hosting similar events is a great idea for all schools, as they provide students with a fun way to learn about cultures and require less planning and funding than implimenting a foreign language or social studies curriculum.
|Chopsticks and Candy!|
Participating directly in International Night was just one of the many reasons I have thoroughly enjoyed my internship so far. I’m not making coffee or running errands; my work is a direct contribution to the ALCI or the International Center, and my input is valued. The staff has been incredibly welcoming and is genuinely interested in helping the interns develop or enhance professional skills. In my three weeks here I’ve represented the ALCI at events, written articles for the newsletter, organized important data, and have been involved in various ongoing projects. I’m excited to learn more about my future roles and responsibilities in the remaining 13 weeks!