Project Olas

Project Olas offers immersive Spanish practice and cross-cultural connection via WhatsApp, taught by moms in vulnerable Central Americans communities.

Spanish Guatemala


Word USED Frequently BY local Guatemalans

Commonly refers to non-indigenous Guatemalans as well as those with both Spanish and indigenous ancestry (interchangeable with “mestizos”). The word was thought to be derived from a mix of Latino and ladrón, the Spanish word for “thief” but it is not popularly used as an offensive term.

“La mayoría de la población en centroamérica es ladina.”

“The majority of the population in Central America is of mixed race.”

Spanish Various countries


Word USED On Occasion BY Most People

(casserole ) • Comes from the word “cacerola” meaning "pan". It’s a form of peaceful protest in which protestors create noise by banging together pots and pans. The tradition began in medieval times to shame men who’d marry young girls. It was then taken on by French revolutionaries, and now protestors in Latin America.

“El descontento de la gente ha provocado cacerolazos en Argentina.”

“The people’s discontent has led to the banging on pots and pans in Argentina.”

Spanish Guatemala


Expression USED On Occasion BY Everyone

(Waters! ) • A warning for when danger is approaching.

“¡Aguas! ¡Las rocas están cayendo!”

“Waters! The rocks are falling!”

Spanish Guatemala


Slang USED On Occasion BY Everyone

(adj.) • Describing something that is cool or exceeds one's expectations

“¡Esa artista es tan calidá!”

“This artist is so cool!”


Spanish Guatemala


Slang USED Frequently BY Everyone

(n.) • A Guatemalan man or woman.

“El dueño es un chapín de Puerto Barrios.”

“The owner is a chapín from Puerto Barrios.”