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US Basque language teachers met last weekend in Boise, Idaho for their annual workshop

01/22/2010

From left to right: Henar Chico, Goisalde Jausoro, Gloria Lejardi,Aitzol Azurtza, Anita Anacabe, Mikel Oteiza, Itxaso Kaiero, Bernadette Leonis, Izaskun Kortazar and Ibon Izurieta.
From left to right: Henar Chico, Goisalde Jausoro, Gloria Lejardi,Aitzol Azurtza, Anita Anacabe, Mikel Oteiza, Itxaso Kaiero, Bernadette Leonis, Izaskun Kortazar and Ibon Izurieta.

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The teachers in charge of the Basque language classes in the United States as a part of the agreement among NABO (the federation of Basque American organizations), HABE (European Basque educational institution focused on teaching the Basque language), US Basque clubs and the teachers themselves, met last weekend in Boise, Idaho for their annual workshop. Izaskun Kortazar NABO Euskera coordinator and Ibon Izurieta, Basque language teacher, sign the article, a report resuming the weekend.

By Izaskun Kortazar and Ibon Izurieta

As every year the Basque language teachers met for their annual workshop. This year the meeting was in Boise, Idaho. Out of the 18 instructors, 11 attended the workshop. Two teachers had family obligations, one was sick and one was in the Basque Country. 

The workshop started on Friday night with dinner and some games to get to know each other. On Saturday the teachers met at the Euskal Museoa (Basque Museum) which hosted the workshop all day. In the afternoon the teachers has a short break to get to know what the Basque block has to offer including shopping at the Basque Museum and the Basque Market and  a short visit to the fronton. This year the workshop focused on educational activities for the classroom in the morning with Izaskun Kortazar (the US Basque language coordinator) and in the afternoon Nere Lete presented differente methodologies that can help students remember Basque grammar easier.

2010 boise euskera workshop 02

[Working at the Boise asque Museum. Goisalde Jausoro, Henar Chico, Izaskun Kortazar and Gloria Garatea Lejardi]

A very productive day concluded with a final hands-on practice session at the Modern Languages and Cultures department computer lab at Boise State University (BSU). The teachers practiced the management of the Basque language on-line program called BOGA as an aid to learning Basque for 2 hours longer at the hands of Izaskun Kortazar. Finally, after a long day, the teachers were able to enjoy a little bit of fun at night, some of them attended the Basque Sheepherders festival in Caldwell and some stayed chatting after dinner.

2010 boise euskera workship 03

[Instructor victim of a language activity on the body parts.]

Sunday morning  afforded no break to the busy workshop participants who shared classroom activitities use in their current classes and took a look forward the future mapping and challenges for the present year 2010. The workshop was videotaped by Chris Murua, Oihana Andion and the teachers. Chris Murua volunteered to record the workshop for the teachers that were not able to attend and for the future new instructors.

We would like to thank the Basque Museum for providing us with coffee and refreshments and letting us use its conference room without charge. We would also like to extend our appreciation to the BSU Modern Languages  computer lab director for allowing us to use the computers to work on BOGA and Chris Murua for recording and editing the video, and all the teachers for sharing their ideas and make this workshop a big success and an invaluable experience.



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