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New radio program for Spanish-speaking parents fills gaps in distance learning

The educational program allows parents to engage in their child's learning while still using their language and culture.

MANATEE COUNTY, Fla. — Distance learning during this pandemic has been a learning curve. It’s no secret it has comes with challenges as parents take on a new role as teachers.

A Suncoast radio station is helping parents adapt to distance learning with a new educational program for parents and students.

Solmart Media and Dreamers Academy teamed up to create “Nuestros Niños” or “Our Children.” It’s a new half-hour weekly program for Spanish-speaking parents. It covers educational topics focusing on the needs of parents who are now involved in distance learning with their children. 

It allows Spanish-speaking parents to engage in their child's education, while still using their language and upholding their culture.

Dreamer’s Academy founder, Geri Chaffee, says the program features educators from across ten counties.

The Spanish-language program can be heard on Solmart Media’s radio stations throughout southwest Florida, which includes the counties of Highlands, Hardee, DeSoto, Polk, Lee, Charlotte, Sarasota, Manatee, Pinellas and portions of Hillsborough, and nationwide on Univisión’s platform Uforia.

Manatee County parents will recognize two of their very own educators from the school district in a couple of upcoming episodes.

The Manatee District’s ESOL (English for Speakers of Other Languages) Specialists Maggie Connell and Brittany Hernández will guest star in episodes that cover how to maximize the reading experience with our children and creative online resources that can help parents at any level of literacy have fun with their students while modeling what teachers do in the classroom.

“Our pre-, during and post-reading strategies are simple things that parents can do to develop reading comprehension and critical thinking habits in their children,” said Connell. “These are skills that will be immensely helpful as they progress to higher grades.”

Sra. Connell and Srta. Hernández modeled these ESOL strategies by reading a book about a “cocodrilo” who is afraid of “agua."

“The chemistry between these two amazing educators was hard to resist,” said Nuestros Niños host Geri Chaffee.  “This is actionable information that parents can immediately put to use to prevent learning loss during the summer months,” she said.

You can listen in to these two episodes starring Sra. Connell and Srta. Hernández on Monday, June 1 and Monday, August 3.

“Over the past few months, we have implemented programs to support all our families and rely on our skillful and experienced educators to continue bringing us creative ways to engage with our students and their parents”, said Manatee District Superintendent Cynthia Saunders. “This radio program is informational but also entertaining and we are delighted that our bilingual educators can be a part of it.”

You can tune into the program each week, Mondays at 11:30 a.m. online at www.lazeta.fm or on-air at 105.3 FM, 99.1 FM, and 1280AM.

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