Student's Google-Translate Friendship Letter Goes Viral

by Myla Cruz
A Temecula, California schoolgirl has found a way to cleverly bridge the social gap often times created by language barriers. 10-year-old Amanda Moore befriended a new student at her school by using Google Translate to create a letter of friendship. "Look for me and I will show you where I sit,” the letter said. "We can color or simply tell scary stories. Thank you for your time, signed Amanda."
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The boy, 10-year-old Rafael Anaya, had just moved from Mexico with his family and at the time, was only fluent in Spanish. After observing Rafael often sitting alone during lunch and struggling to make friends, Amanda got the idea to write a letter to him using the Google Translate app, a free online translation service available via your smartphone.
Amanda’s mother Kimber Kinard posted a video to Facebook of her daughter reading the letter aloud. Soon after, it was picked up by the Love What Matters page, where it has been viewed more than 300,000 times. The two students began eating lunch together every day following the compassionate interlanguage invitation, and just recently, Rafael and Amanda spent Halloween together trick-or-treating with her family.
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The story is a testament not only to the power of reaching out, but also to the importance of teaching children to be open minded and compassionate. It’s also a heartwarming tale of youthful mindfulness produced by technology—another area for contemporary parents to focus on. Ms. Kinard said she has been overwhelmed by the response to her daughter’s story and expressed pride in her ability to show warmth and humanity to a new student at school
CBS reports that Amanda and Rafael mainly communicate through drawings at the moment, but are currently working on learning each other’s languages.
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