Student Heritage Trip to Tikal – Part Two
(This is a translation of a letter from some of the students who participated in the trip to Tikal.)
Maya Jaguar Prívate Technical Institute San Juan La Ceiba, Barillas, Huehuetenango, Guatemala
On this beautiful day we are thankful for this opportunity to greet you. We hope that peace and happiness reign in your hearts and in your homes, wishing you success in all of your activities. We would like you to know that it is a great privilege for us to be a part of Maya Jaguar, as students we feel proud and thankful to you for providing us this opportunity to prepare ourselves academically in this distinguished school.
We wish to share the following about the field trip that we made to the city of Tikal in August. We traveled by bus to the Guatemalan state of Peten where we visited two beautiful places. The first location we visited was Yaxha. Yaxha is characterized as an archeological site and an ancient ceremonial center of the Maya civilization. Everything that one finds there contains a noteworthy story, a place where we could understand the greatness of the Maya civilization. We found the temples and the buildings of solid stone to be grand, we also appreciated Lake Peten Itza - this lake for many decades was a transport route for the Maya to transport their merchandise.
The second place that we visited was Tikal, this was the primary reason for our long trip from Maya Jaguar to Peten. Several weeks before in our Social Studies class we had studied everything related to Tikal. We looked at photographs of the temples and read about the archaeological site. When we learned that we would be taking this field trip we were brimming with excitement. We were almost in disbelief when we learned we were actually going, in person, to the exact place that we had spent so much time studying about, but only in books.
We arrived at Peten and were all left stupefied, the structures were enormous. With our classmates, weeks before, we had had a presentation about the ball game that the Mayans played - Pok Ta Pok - and it left us with the desire to go play awhile in the field where the Maya had played. We tried to make it authentic, so the teachers and the rest of the students sat at the altars as if they were Maya priests for a moment; of course we first asked permission of the local authorities.
We visited and toured around all of the temples; it was a beautiful experience. The most marvelous of all, was to visit all of the corners of Tikal, since we had had been filled with all the information which the guide had given us. Our experience in this place was unique because we know so much about Maya architecture and history.
Also, we had the opportunity to visit two Tikal museums, in one we could explore all of the artifacts than had been recovered, like work tools, amulets, and accessories that the priests used for the ceremonies. In the second, we found the full history of how Tikal was discovered.
Saying goodbye to you, thanking you for the support which you have given to us during this school year. This month of October concludes our classes, we feel very fortunate to have learned a great deal and gained a new appreciation of our heritage. During our school break we promise to share our knowledge with others.
Thank you for being so good to us and for the caring that you have shown us through your support.
The Students of Maya Jaguar