Bethany Wood

Bethany graduated with high distinction from the University of Nebraska-Lincoln in 2013 with a degree in elementary education and special education. During college she was a member of several academic and volunteer organizations, in which she grew as a student, a leader, and an educator. She spent the last two years surrounded by spunky and innovative 10 year olds teaching 4th grade at a low-income school. Her interest in Honduras started the summer after college when she took a trip through The Children’s Home Project to spend time with youth living in children’s homes. That is when she met the child that would bring her back to Honduras time after time. She is excited to broaden her knowledge of Honduran culture, the Spanish language, and bilingual education while utilizing and adapting her teaching skills!

Posted on Sunday, December 18, 2016, 6:39 pm EST

Growing up in Nebraska, the Christmas season is always cold….very cold! So, in Honduras, I usually forget that it is even December, let alone Christmastime. Yesterday it was 89 degrees—not very wintery! However, the families that we work with go above and beyond to make us feel loved during this season (and always). Many families invited teachers over to share their decorated homes and feed us delicious baleadas, grilled chicken, or tamales.

One of the events that really brings out the holiday spirit is the Christmas Dinner and Program, Cena Navideña. The parents helped us decorate the school, and all of the teachers prepared a song or dance with their classes. On Saturday everyone came to school to watch the kids sing and dance on stage. There is nothing better than a bunch of tiny humans singing “Jingle Bells” in Santa hats! Then we shared a dinner of grilled chicken and rice and a traditional Honduran drink called horchata (ground rice, spices, ground nuts, sugar, and milk).

Oh, and the door competition, how I could I forget the doors? There is always a reason for a competition, and in December, teachers compete to see which door will win “most spirited,” and it is one tough competition. This year, the first and second graders worked together to create a tree out of hands and even used recycled materials! Their teamwork won them a cake and the pride of the whole school.

So even though it is HOT and there definitely isn’t any snow, the Christmas spirit is very much alive in Cofradia, and I am so thankful for the families that share their holiday traditions with us!