Development of Literacy in Panama

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As one of societies most powerful human tools, culture is a complex structure of shared goals and attitudes within a group of individuals. From the development of literacy in a Hispanic culture in the 1960s to a modernized American culture in the 2000s, there exist a considerable amount of similarities as well as cultural contrast. Although societies around the world emphasize and promote reading and writing proficiency, the ways and reason for education differ. Silence, nothing but the piercing sound of chalk on a board and the rustling of turning pages. The blackboard filled with the Spanish cursive alphabet, which proved to be more difficult than a young first grader had anticipated. As Amelia Moore, now 58 years-old, reminisces her earliest recollection of school, she frowns as she struggles to remember. As a first grader, Moore is overwhelmed by the rustic style of the old boarding school. The limited space in the classrooms only allowed for ten to twelve desks, while the teacher’s desk sits along the door. When asked about her educational experience in Panama, Moore states, “...education was meant as a way to close the communication gap with the United States.” Panamanian culture emphasises literacy and education for those privileged enough to attend school. Classes, she explains, were never a pleasant experience. The teachers were ruthless and the material was more bothersome than helpful. However, Moore exhibited a passion for literature. As a custom, her late father began purchasing the morning newspaper every day unfailingly. To include her in his outings, her father gave her comics from the newspaper to read. From these she still remembers how elated and accomplished she felt the moment she began to understand... ... middle of paper ... ... age. The best one can do is adapt to their surrounding intellect and make the best of it. Works Cited Amelia Moore. Personal interview. 6 Oct. 2011. "The "Millennials" Are Coming - CBS News." Breaking News Headlines: Business, Entertainment & World News - CBS News. 11 Nov. 2007. Web. 9 Oct. 2011. . Rich, Motoko. "The Future of Reading - Literacy Debate - Online, R U Really Reading? - Series - NYTimes.com." The New York Times - Breaking News, World News & Multimedia. The New York Times, 27 July 2008. Web. 14 Oct. 2011. . "State and County Literacy Estimates." National Center for Education Statistics (NCES) Home Page, a Part of the U.S. Department of Education. Web. 9 Oct. 2011. .

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