On March 27,11 students and one teacher from the Belmopan Baptist High School travelled to London to participate in the World English Experience, an annual event held at one of the most prestigious boarding schools in London. For 15 days, students from 25 secondary schools all around the World participated in an intense English course; and even though the World English Experience is primarily an educational trip, the different teams also competed for first, second and third place. Overall, the Belmopan Baptist High school brought home the bronze. The Vice Principal of the Belmopan Baptist High School, Knuwani Martinez, headed the delegation.
“It was a competition, so everyone had to play a key role when it comes to team work. For two of the challenges, my team had to adjust to working together because everybody has different personalities and everybody has strenghts and weaknesses, so in order for us to have won, we have to work together and students kept reminding [each other] that we were on a mission and we were there to represent our school and our country.
Belize was the English speaking country represented, and while that gave the students from Belmopan Baptist High School a slight advantage, it did not guarantee them a win as there was a lot more work that went into assuring them a spot in the top three.
“Well the advantage was that the pronunciation and the understanding of the words. We under understood the words better than the Mexicans and the Brazilians, so in some of the competition where they asked questions to answer, like during the Spelling Bee, we spell the word that we know we heard when some of them spelt different words because they didn’t understand it correctly.”
Emmanuel Pech – Plus TV Reporter
“Despite being an English speaking country, it wasn’t just about knowing English. You had a lot of work to do. Tell me some of the things you had to do.”
“Study and pay attention when we go on tours. Most of the questions and things that they asked us was about information we got when we are on tours and stuff. It wasn’t anything to know about English it was to know about the history of the different buildings and things like that.”
“You guys were the only group that had a variety of color in your team. Tell me about that.”
” Yes that made it a little bit exciting because a lot of people thought that Belize is an English speaking country and so why participate in the World English Experience knowing that we speak English. So when we would be together and trying to strategize , we break down in kriol and everybody would want to know what are you guys speaking, so that was a plus for us. When it comes to the different ethnic groups, they wanted to know about the country and the culture and the diversity, so we promoted Belize on that light. “
“You were given a scholarship to return. Tell me how was the feeling like when you were told this.”
“Honestly,I felt great because I didn’t think that I would have gotten a scholarship to go and I was happy because I passed my oral test with speaking English with all A’s out of the twenty five different schools. So I was happy
This was the first time Belize was represented at the World English Experience.