English Language Specialist Jesse Kiendl spent several months on a multi-phase project in Panama conducting teacher training workshops, providing English language teaching and learning resources to English Language Fellows and Specialists, and visiting and evaluating English Access Microscholarship classes.
Kiendl primarily worked in an outreach capacity by providing teacher-training workshops for Panamanian English educators across the country. The workshops provided local teachers with additional teaching skills to help them provide higher quality English instruction for their students. The workshops also addressed the need for improved English language learning outcomes in Panama in order to increase English-language capacity in the workforce.
In consort with the U.S. Embassy in Panama and local English Language Fellows, Kiendl helped to develop a competition to promote the Office of English Language Programs’ “Trace Effects” video game, and strengthen the collaboration between the U.S. Embassy and the Panamanian Secretariat of Science and Technology (SENACYT). Kiendl organized a pilot competition designed for Access students that would serve as a template for a larger competition open to the general public. The competition aimed not only to motivate teenagers studying the English language, but also to promote values like community service, international understanding, respect for the environment, and women’s leadership through exposure to U.S. culture that is embedded in the game. The competition asked for participants to explore/explain how they could then integrate these values in their own communities and implement projects for the betterment of Panama.
Finally, Kiendl worked with Access students, teachers, and administrators across the country to enhance Access program delivery which involved program monitoring and evaluation, teacher observation and feedback, teacher training workshops, and working with the local implementing partner to address program challenges and explore program enhancements. Kiendl also met and worked directly with Access students to strengthen their connection with the U.S. Embassy in Panama and enhance their English-language learning experiences.
Jesse Kiendl holds a BA from Columbia University and an MA TESOL from the School of International Training Graduate Institute, where he has also taught classes in language analysis and lesson planning. Throughout his 17-year career in TESOL, he has taught English and conducted teacher training around the world including in the USA, Spain, Indonesia, China, Costa Rica and Egypt. He has also been the director of studies at a private language school in China and was an English Language Fellow in Kyrgyzstan in 2013-2014.