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Tuesday, September 27, 2022
HomeNewsArchives@ School: Maeven Parsil Wins Language Award

@ School: Maeven Parsil Wins Language Award

Maeven ParsilMaeven Parsil, a fifth grader at Guy Benjamin School in Coral Bay, enthusiastically explained how she created the Mexican pyramid that won her a second place finish at the recent Education Department’s Foreign Language Cultural Showcase.

Her award was in the Wonders of the Foreign Language World contest for elementary school students.

"It’s called the Pyramid of the Moon," the 11-year-old said.

She found out about the contest in the school’s Spanish class, went on the Internet to find a suitable topic and, while online, explored the Pyramid of the Moon’s history.

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"I knew I wanted to be in the contest, that’s when I came up with the pyramid," she said.

Using cardboard from boxes, sand and shells from various beaches, she built the pyramid.

"It has different levels. I put some rocks on the top and it’s like a staircase going down," she said, describing her pyramid.

She got her award through her efforts in her Spanish class but Maeven said that she’s not proficient in the language. Two years ago, she took Spanish classes at school, but said last year there was no Spanish language teacher. Since she forgot what she knew, she had to start all over this year.

While Maeven has an artistic inclination, she said she wants to be a marine biologist. Science and math are her favorite subjects, and she said she’s a straight-A student.

She frequently snorkels to explore the undersea world around St. John, and said she’ll soon start scuba-diving lessons to get her certification card.

Maeven is also a sports enthusiast, playing soccer and participating in St. John’s Kids and the Sea program.

"I like to mix it up," she said.

She’s also learning to play guitar, and when she and some friends are proficient enough to go public, they plan to start a band.

Born in Ohio, Maeven moved to St. John several years ago because her father, Thomas Parsil, accepted a job at Caneel Bay Resort. The family stayed although her father moved on to other positions.

Maeven has a half-sister, Victoria, 20, who lives in Ohio. Maeven often flies back to Ohio to visit family.

"We like to talk to each other," she said.

Her family is proud of her.

"She spent a lot of time on this," mother Kim Parsil said, referring to her daughter’s award-winning project.

Laughing, her mother said thank goodness she had a hot glue gun and access to lots of cardboard boxes.

Parsil called her daughter forthright and driven.

"She’s a really good well-rounded kid," Parsil said.

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