Hola! My name is Claudia Figueroa; I am from Bogotá, Colombia in South America. In 1995 I graduated with a BA in Bilingual-Bicultural Elementary Education with a second major in Spanish from Kean University in New Jersey. I have been teaching Kindergarten for 19 years and the last 11 years I have been at Castro Elementary. The years of experience I have been teaching have proven to me how important it is for the students to learn in their native language and culture because this is conducive to a productive learning environment. I also believe that once the students experience that learning can be a positive experience, this also opens the door for them to eventually embrace the American language and culture. It is important that the students embrace both cultures and languages and it is my responsibility to teach them the benefits of both. I thank all the parents of my past and present students for working with me in the common goal of helping their child to progress in class. I thank my husband and family for the many years of encouragement and support. Some of my interests are reading, cooking and hiking, I try to encourage my students to pursue their interest.