Members of Wellspring’s English for Speakers of Other Languages (ESOL) program recently partnered with the Cape Ann Museum (CAM) to offer a structured family event of learning at the Cape Ann Museum. More than 40 local adults, teens and children whose primary language is not English participated together alongside staff and volunteers. During the event, parents and children were arranged in small groups led by Wellspring ESOL teachers and CAM staff to tour the museum.  

Pictured above is Wellspring ESOL Student Jayra and her children, who live in Gloucester and participated in the Wellspring ESOL and Cape Ann Museum Partner event.

To prepare for the event, the ESOL team curated special lesson plans and PowerPoint slides that focused on Museum-related vocabulary and dialogues. One of those lessons told the story of the Cape Ann Sea Serpent, which is featured prominently at the museum (a large sculpture of the Cape Ann Sea Serpent greets visitors outside as they enter the museum and a painting of the Sea Serpent guides visitors to highlighted art work.) Other lesson plans focused on vocabulary to describe art using pictures of CAM art work.  

“I like visiting the museum with my family. I learn a lot in my classes and this helped me to describe the art. Classes help me with get better with my English every day.” – Jayra, current Wellspring ESOL student

Thanks to the lesson plans and learning before the event, students and their families were very engaged and genuinely excited to see and interact with CAM’s artwork. They used the vocabulary and dialogues they learned in class to describe the lighting, colors, the type of art, and even the feeling the art evoked. One student created a musical video of the artwork he enjoyed, and other students shared they had never gone to a museum before.  

Thanks to that (ESOL program) I was able to improve my English and get a better job now. I feel free communicating with my co-workers. My son is also very happy and proud of me because as parents continuing to study is a good example for our children. Now I am preparing to go to university. – Marisela, current Wellspring ESOL student

In addition to the museum tour and Wellspring ESOL coursework and lessons, students learned first-hand about some of the free community events sponsored by CAM. We believe our students will now feel more at home attending CAM and other community events as they continue to work on their English skills. 


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