El Chaltén is a remote village in the high mountains of The Andes in Patagonia, southern Argentina. The town was established in 1980 to settle the border dispute between Argentina and Chile. It now serves largely as a tourist centre for hikers heading into the mountains. It is useful for the local people to speak English for international relations and communication for work: English is taught to children in primary school onwards.
The area is one of international outstanding beauty and protection of the natural environment is a high priority of local and national importance.
Mrs Bridges (Señora Puentes) is friendly with Señora Mónica Zapiola who teaches English at the primary school, 'Los Notros'. We have established a link between our classes so that we have pen friends for our pupils to write to. We have to be very patient because it takes such a long time for the post to arrive, up to THREE months! However, it is worth the wait because it is so motivating for the children.