Meet Maxwell

“Books are the quietest and most constant of friends; they are the most accessible and wisest of counselors, and the most patient of teachers.”
― Charles William Eliot


In 2004, Maxwell was one of my English students. He is on the left in the front row of this photo. Throughout the years, I have continued to watch these young men grow and thrive.
Sergio, ( the one with the devil horns) is the manager of the Corner House Cafe. Smiling Luis, behind Sergio, is a very talented classical guitarist. Luis, ( front right) speaks very good English, works in our local grocery store and leads tours.

I am so proud of all of my students for they have beat the odds and are very successful in their chosen careers. When I was looking for a librarian to teach in our new La Paloma Elementary School, I encountered a serendipitous moment. Maxwell had returned to Ometepe Island to finish his degree in English. He spent three years in Managua on a full scholarship, but had to return to the island for medical reasons.


I hired him to work in our new library part-time and he has proven to be a natural teacher.

20150323_110744He’s patient with the little ones, quiet and soft-spoken. He understands English, so it was much easier for me to train him in reading and writing techniques.

20150323_110843Maxwell is motivated to learn new teaching methods. We developed a schedule for the library to meet the needs of the teachers. They requested an open reading time in the library and a time for tutoring small groups in reading and writing.

20150323_111225With the help of volunteers and donated materials, we have activities for the children to go with the books we read to them depending on their developmental levels.

20150323_111931_4This little five year-old is a fluent reader and she comes into the library during her recess time and reads to her friends.

20150323_095445Maxwell asked the third grade class what book they would be interested in reading. It was no surprise to us that they chose a book about sharks. Then, they reviewed the facts they learned about sharks and wrote a story about them.

IMG_5239Maxwell tutors a small group every day. Today he worked with a small group of second graders on vocabulary skills.

IMG_5241I am thrilled to introduce Maxwell to the world of teaching. He’s a natural and I know he will be an asset to our new library program. I just want to say a BIG thank you to everyone who donated books, supplies, and materials for our new elementary library. We’re on our way to establishing a culture of reading in our little elementary library…thanks to your generous support!

By the way…I still have big plans for our library. I’m looking for gently used e-readers and plan on adding a document reader and a projector in the library. We’re going high-tech! lol

13 thoughts on “Meet Maxwell

  1. How exciting, Deb, to have Maxwell in such a responsible position and him using his skills to engage these kids in reading. A win win situation for everyone. You have really moved mountains!!! 🙂

  2. I’ve paid for 9 children to learn English for over year now and monitor their grades in hopes they can succeed like your students have. One is now at the university in Rivas, two more will go in 3 years. With dedication and hard work they will change the path of future generations.

    Reading is still the biggest barrier with the apparent unavailability of children’s books. I have a hard time believing that no one has tapped into what surely must be a market for inexpensive kids’ books. I may have to look into properly importing a large batch in the near future and selling them to local pulperias, I’m sure there will be at least some interest.

    • Brian, that’s awesome. Poco a poco we can encourage and develop a culture of reading. I’ve noticed more children’s pleasure books lately. Maxi Pali has some and the airport kiosk has some. The mini-super even has a magazine rack. I am going to talk to Guillermo about getting some children’s books.

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