On Wednesday, August 30th, Claudia from Mi Segundo Hogar retirement home in Bogotá gave a virtual talk to my 12th grade English class. Claudia was accompanied by a resident of the home, Martha, who shared details of her very interesting life and was very open to questions about her experiences and the events that she lived through.
The objective of this talk was to raise awareness with respect to the elderly community and the challenges that they face as well as to hear their stories and learn about their interesting lives. Furthermore, the long-term goal is to establish a strong and lasting relationship with Mi Segundo Hogar and to connect the impactful work of Mi Segundo Hogar with our semester 2nd unit, Generations. I hope to take 12th grade students to the retirement home in February or March of next year, and it is hoped that this visit will allow students to share time with the residents of the home and learn about their life experiences.
Students will be invited to befriend a resident of the home and produce a biographical, audiovisual film celebrating their new friend’s life. But what will students learn from this experience? Well, they will develop communication and research skills through their interactions with residents of this very special retirement home.
They will produce a brilliant product that will be shared with their elderly friends and their families. We can all learn a lot from this project and discover that our elderly community has much to share with us and the intergenerational gap can be bridged for mutual learning experience. Here are some comments from the students: “We had an interesting class activity regarding a retirement home.
This retirement home is called “Mi Segundo Hogar”. I really enjoyed getting to know a resident and learning about her day-to-day experience. We talked with a nurse and a resident of the retirement home. Her name is Gloria and we had the privilege to talk to her and to listen to some life advice and her life story.
The thing I enjoyed the most and liked most about talking to Martha was her life advice. When she realised we were twelfth graders, she gave us some tips and advice to help us determine our life project, about what we should focus on when choosing our careers and dreaming about our future. It would be great to get to know more life stories from several members of the retirement home and relate this activity with a school project.
I think it is so cool that David proposed this activity because we’ve never done it before. I think that it’s important that we are conscious of the experiences and challenges of the elderly population, such as those living in retirement homes.”
– Juanita Escobar, 12th Grade
We recently had the opportunity to enjoy a virtual conversation with Claudia, a nurse and founding member of the retirement home, Mi Segundo Hogar, and with Martha, a most cherished resident of the home.
The interaction was nothing but exceptional. It highlighted the immense value of connecting with the older generation and the benefits it can offer to both young and older generations. Martha’s Her presence was truly inspiring as she shared her life’s experiences, reminding us of the wisdom and resilience that come with age.
This interaction not only deepened our understanding of the experiences and the older population, but also ignited a profound sense of empathy and appreciation for the residents.
The experience reinforced the idea that visits to retirement homes can be incredibly rewarding, offering opportunities for meaningful connections, knowledge exchange, and the cultivation of a more compassionate and inclusive society.
– Mariana, 12th Grade
David O’Donoghue English Teacher 12th Grade