Thank You/Leigh Thelmadatter

From the Wikimedia Foundation
Jump to: navigation, search

Leigh Thelmadatter

Everyone thinks they know exactly what mariachi is. I did, too. Until I wrote about it on Wikipedia... and learned things I’d never known before.

For instance, when mariachi first began — in Jalisco, Mexico, near Guadalajara — it was called Son Jaliscience. Since then, this musical style has traversed many regions and cultures, evolving all along the way. Now, in the United States, it's being reinvented once again.

I’m an English teacher in Mexico City. A few years ago, I found an easy way to improve my Spanish skills. When I toured a nearby landmark, I'd read about it in Spanish. Then, I'd write a Wikipedia article about it in English. It worked!

Suddenly, I had a revelation. What I was doing to improve my Spanish, my students could do to improve their English. So I talked to my boss — and a whole new curriculum was born.

Right now, my students and I are working with a regional arts organization. This organization represents hundreds of accomplished artists who are celebrated throughout Mexico, but virtually unknown on English Wikipedia.

But now my students can change that. Writing these articles is a tremendous opportunity to improve their English... and represent their culture to the world.

— Leigh Thelmadatter

Leigh Thelmadatter was born and raised in New Jersey. After studying linguistics in college, she returned to school to earn her master's degree in English as a Second Language. Since 2003, she's taught English at a college in Mexico. She and her husband — who is also a Wikipedia editor — travel frequently throughout Central Mexico. Together they've taken more than 10,000 photographs of Mexican villages, landmarks, festivals and more.

Image Attribution: Leigh Thelmadatter by Karen Sayre, under CC-BY-SA 3.0 Unported, from Wikimedia Commons.

Meet some of the editors of Wikipedia.

We would like to introduce you to some of the dedicated volunteers who you empower when you donate. It is our hope that after you read or hear a few of their stories, you'll want to join them in sharing your knowledge with the world by editing Wikipedia.

You can edit Wikipedia!

  • Icon-newpage-transparent.png Create and improve articles. Wikipedia is still missing articles on many topics. Thousands of articles need expanding, copy editing and additional references.
  • Icon-pictures.png Add photos and video. You can upload freely licensed images and other media.
  • Icon-people.png Become a part of the Wikipedia community. Logging in means all your contributions are attributed to your username, and lets you connect with other Wikipedia contributors.

It's free thanks to our donors

Wikipedia will never run ads. We're powered by small donations from our readers.

Images licensed under CC-BY-SA. Please see the individual autobiography page for attribution.