Russian language program a hit at local library | Local News

Thanks to an East Central University professor and her students, more local residents are now experiencing the beauty of Russian language and culture.

Dr Mara Sukholutskaya, longtime language teacher and Director of Global Education at ECU, and her advanced students have just completed teaching Russian to children aged 9 to 12 in the course of a six-month session at the Ada Public Library.

The free classes were held every Thursday evening at the library. Despite Covid-19, only two classes had to be canceled – and that was due to bad weather.

“My two daughters have been taking Russian lessons with Dr Sukholutskaya and his students since October 2020,” said Micah Reasoner, a local resident and parent. “They enjoyed learning the Russian language and culture. We are grateful to him for bringing and sharing his knowledge of this wonderful country in Oklahoma.

Local elementary school students weren’t the only ones learning something new. Sukholutskaya ECU students also discovered the joys of teaching a different language and culture.

“The project touched me more than I initially thought,” said Tyler Gifford, of Purcell, who recently graduated from ECU with a degree in computer science and a minor in Russian. “I already miss the students. I saw them make great strides, grow not only in the areas of language but also in cultural awareness. I have seen them develop new problem solving skills by learning to speak a different language.

Because the Russian language program has been so successful, Sukholutskaya said she hopes to relaunch it in the coming semesters.

“There are more things that unite people of different cultures than dividing or pulling them apart,” she said. “The children who came to these classes learned this, as well as a fascinating new culture and language. “

Sylvester L. Goldfarb

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