Ana Rita Romero Rodríguez is from San Juan, Puerto Rico. "I love working with HUGS because it gives me the opportunity to be part of a team committed to the intellectual development of children. I love seeing how children enjoy and learn from this program. It is an inspiration to me to see the moms investing on their children's future". Annie
HUGS' mission is to encourage early childhood Spanish learning through language immersion, music, play, socialization, and movement.
Our goal is to use music and Spanish immersion to unlock babies' heightened capacity for full bilingualism from a young age. Our focus is engagement, socialization, and exploration.
HUGS strives to provide infants and young children with the opportunity for continuous exposure to the Spanish language in a completely immersive environment. Each class allows babies and toddlers to engage in spontaneous and purposeful activities that enhance the child’s musical, communicative, and social development.
HUGS Music is a fundraising program for ISLA, Immersion for Spanish Language Acquisition. All our proceeds go directly to support this nonprofit organization.
Jenice specializes in Special Education. She has more than seven years of experience in the public school system and the nonprofit sector. Her passion for education and facilitating change began in high school with her job as a tutor for children with autism. She followed that passion to the University of North Carolina at Greensboro, where she worked with various organizations to develop a list of resources for Latino families with children with a variety of disabilities. She continued this project in the high school where she worked as a special education teacher from 2010 to 2013. Jenice drew on her passion for education and the Spanish language to create North Carolina’s only infant Spanish immersion class.
Koralis Mary Ayala Lopez is from San Juan, Puerto Rico. She holds a degree on Health Sciences and Speech Therapy. She has great experience working with young children. Koralis is very enthusiastic and creative. She enjoys teaching young children and uses her talents such as singing, dancing and acting to make learning experience fun and enjoyable.
Giovannka Loten is from Panama. She holds a Master degree on Early Childhood Education. She has more than 10 years of experience working with young children. Giovanka loves working with parents and children. She makes sure the little ones learn Spanish in a fun and natural way.
Mariella is from Mexico City. She has a passion for early education and multiculturalism. She is a Kindergarten teacher at ISLA, Immersion Spanish Language Acquisition, at Chapel Hill. She is a firm believer of the benefits that bilingualism brings to children. She loves being a part of a unique program like HUGS that gives little ones the opportunity to be exposed to the Hispanic language and culture at a very young age.
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