EL PASO, Texas - ABC-7 Sports Director Paul Cicala volunteered his time to give a 2-hour lecture and discussion on football and the Superbowl's influence on North American society to dozens of ESL students in south El Paso.
The class is for English Language Learners at the San Jacinto Adult Education Learning Center. Most of the students are recent-arrivals from Mexico and are looking to make a difference as positive contributors to society in the United States.
Cicala's lesson plan for the students included Superbowl and football vocabulary, reading material, and discussion/conversation-creating. In addition, Cicala showed a sportscast from ABC that included his reporting on Super Bowl's of the past (in order to use more visuals and generate discussion on the game.)
"Right now we are explaining to the students how imporant the Superbowl is in the United States," said ESL instructor Yvette Espinoza. "It's really exciting. My students were very excited."
KVIA's Paul Cicala was excited as well. During his 3-year stint as a news reporter in his hometown of Tucson, Arizona, Cicala also held side-jobs as a teacher for English Language Learners from Sonora and Sinaloa, Mexico.
"I love being in the classroom," said Paul Cicala, who has also lived and taught in Mexico, Indio, CA & Las Vegas, NV, "If I didn't make it as a news and sports reporter, I would have certainly been a teacher. I have nothing but respect for educators and the impact they can have on society -young and old-. And I also have tremendous respect for students like the ones here taking classes in El Paso's Segundo Barrio, who come to this country with so many obstacles, yet are working diligently to learn the local language and truly make a positive contribution in the U.S."