Tag Archives: party

Experiencing Dora Live

For those of you who might think that kids are getting a real glimse of Latin culture and Spanish language through the Dora the Explorer videos sold in the U.S., think again. 

We were recently at the birthday party held for the first birthday of a couple who work at the school.  The husband has been teaching the elementary Spanish classes for the past two years.  He and his wife and entire family are Ecuadorian.

They put together a huge party which included blow up bouce house, face painting and a cotton candy machine (all which their one year old couldn’t enjoy, but her elementary aged guests could).  After a couple hours of free play, the kids were brought together for the great “show.”  A very animated lady on a microphone greeted all the children.  Behind her it was hard to miss the “Dora the Explorer” theme in the decorations and the birthday cake. 

But we didn’t expect what came next.  Suddenly a live “Dora” came out from behind the bushes to dance and sing with the children.  Soon, a live “Boots”  (“Botas” in Spanish) who was actually taller than the Dora figure, also joined the circle of children.  The kids were going crazy trying to shake their hands or give them hugs.  Jared and Luke weren’t sure what to think about the people with the big plush heads. 

Luke does a double-take on Dora's large head.

Then Dora and Boots began to sing and dance and encourage all the children to join them.  However, I’ve never seen Dora shake her hips on the video as much as she did at this birthday party.  That girl had some real latin moves going on. 

At one point, the kids were sprayed with white foam during the singing and dancing.

Of course, all this activity was taking place completely in Spanish. The two characters led the children in some jumping and dancing games and then finished off by breaking a pinata over their laps so that everyone would have the same opportunity to get some birthday candy.

It was a birthday party that Jared and Luke will not forget for a while.

Ecuadorians Cast Their Vote

 Last fall, Ecuadorian citizens were required to come out and vote on a new Constitution that President Correa was trying to get implemented into the government.  This new constitution won the “yes” vote and was made the official constitution of Ecuador.  Some of the new laws were put into motion right away.

Others however took a while to be put into practical use.  One regulation was put into use this past April when all Ecuadorian citizens were once again required to come out and vote.  This time they were voting for the Ecuadorian president and other such leadership.  Under the new constitution, the voting age had been lowered to sixteen.  The only difference between the 16-17 age group and the 18-65 group was that the younger group could vote on a voluntary basis.  All older citizens are required to vote (or pay a fine). 

The election took place on April 26th and the current president, Correa was re-elected to his position.  The Ecuadorian people also voted for a vice-president, 124 members of the national legislative assembly, 221 mayors, 24 prefects and 1581 municipal officials.  All these choices were further complicated by the fact that there are over 20 different political parties to choose from when voting for different candidates.

The National Alliance party (PAIS) won 61 of 124 seats in the national legislative assembly or congress, becoming the majority party.  It was also recorded that slightly over half a million 16 and 17 year olds decided to come out and vote. Some of our students at the Alliance Academy also participated.  It was quite interesting to see the impact that this election had on our students who are nationals.