"We transmit the love for the country where we go": the story of a woman from Corrientes who teaches in the United States

Magalí Cristaldo is 30 years old and has been living in Rantoul, in the state of Champaign, for more than a year. His idea of ​​transmitting Argentine culture motivated his students, who cook northern recipes and remake classics of folklore.

The initiative began in September to celebrate National Hispanic Heritage Month at the school, where the children represented Argentina and presented their typical foods and heroes. “They loved learning about my country and it was an honor for me. On that occasion they cooked alfajorcitos and empanadas, in addition to learning the history of our country,” she explained.

Magalí told Radio Dos: “Two weeks ago we decided to come to Corrientes, after a year of being away from our families, and we arrived as a surprise.”

In turn, the young woman from Corrientes commented: “since I was 10 years old I study English, with a lot of effort we were able to raise the necessary money to go to the US, I went with a program called “Teach in the USA”, I fulfilled the dream to teach kids who have Latino parents, but they are American.

Likewise, Magalí said: “since there is a Latino community where we live, a month of “Hispanic Heritage” is celebrated, so that they learn what their parents’ roots are, each classroom that is bilingual chose a country, to study, to know the culture, the music, the typical foods, I chose Argentina”.

At the same time, the young woman from Corrientes related: “I talked about the history, geography, national dates, the gaucho, the countrywoman, everything that characterizes us as Argentines, what most caught her attention was the cuisine and the music, we made empanadas, cornstarch alfajorcitos, which they really liked the dulce de leche above all”.

And he added to Radio Dos: “I made them listen to chamamé and dance, and they liked it a lot, they were very enthusiastic, I brought them all rosettes, and they dressed in light blue and white.”

In the same sense, Magalí mentioned: “Andrés brought his mate, he left dressed as a country man, and everyone liked the mate, they already asked us to take them because it is not available there.”

“After this project we began to learn about other countries, to share all the knowledge with all the students,” he said.

For his part, Andrés told Radio Dos: “She left with a job, the dream had always been hers, and I accompanied her, we were going to travel before the pandemic, but we couldn’t, we waited for everything to calm down, for the US government to change, and we were able to travel there”.

At the same time, the young man from Corrientes expressed: “I had two years of experience working here, and everything was recognized there, the knowledge I had in the UNNE, is the same that they have there, the truth is that everything I learned in the Faculty of Agronomy.

In turn, Andrés mentioned: “I am in a company focused on research in genetic improvement of soybeans, and making the process to be able to commercialize it, I am in a support team, of people who do internships, the truth was everything very fast” .

About what life is like where they live, Magalí described: “the place where I am is very small, we live in the state of Illinois, in Rantoul, in the state of Champaign, the people are very warm, we also find an Argentine community, and we They helped us get everything we need.”

Likewise, the young woman from Corrientes told Radio Dos: “the boys are in school for 8 hours and then they do extracurricular hours, after that there are small dance, art, and music clubs.”

“The boys speak Spanish, but they don’t know how to write, they don’t know what an accent is, the letter ñ, it’s very difficult for them to tell the truth because their parents are immigrants and they don’t know how to write, so I’m teaching all of that,” he mentioned.

About what they miss from Argentina, Magalí explained: “I miss that spontaneity that exists here, having a snack with mom, going out with friends, they are not like that there, everything is planned, very structured, and everything is calmer, more flexible here.”

And Andrés told Radio Dos: “I miss my family, my friends, soccer.”

Finally, the young woman from Corrientes remarked: “We transmit our love for the country, where we go, and he is with mate all day, we talk by video call with the family, but technology does not replace hugs.”

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