Infografías para el día de amor y amistad

Infographics are a great way to present new concepts to students as well as a way to do authentic reading in the target language.  Here are a two of my favorites for el día de amor y amistad. Do you use infographics in class? How?

¿Qué regalar en el Día de Amor y Amistad?

Resultado de imagen para que regalar en el dia de amor y amistad infografia

¿Cómo celebran el amor en distintos países?

infografía del 14 de febrero

 

 

 

El día de San Valentín & Poemas de amor y amistad

Valentine’s Day is coming up!!!! and although the celebration varies throughout the Spanish-speaking world it is always nice to do something with your students on this day so they can learn and have fun with new vocabulary.

This is an idea I got from a colleague years ago and I have adapted it for my classroom.  For this activity, the students are to come up with things that just can’t be with out something else – so for example – peanut butter with out jelly or Spongebob without Patrick.  The students then  brainstorm a list of things in English and then write a poem in Spanish.  I don’t usually EVER do translating, but my students are novices, so their vocabulary is still very limited and I emphasize and teach how to use a dictionary, not a translator, which in the end is a great skill for language learners.

The students just love this activity and in the end learn a ton of vocabulary.  Their end product is a Valentine poem on a card.  This activity can be purchased on Teachers Pay Teachers in a word document format so you can adapt it as needed.

What is really cool about this activity as well is that all of the languages at our school do this at the same time.  They are all posted on a bulletin board and we do a follow up activity where the students see the similarities and differences between Latin, French and Spanish.

Do you have your students do anything special for El día de San Valentín?  Do you ever do cross-language activities?  Please share!

 

¡Febrero… el mes de amor, amistad… y vacaciones!

With El Día de San Valentín coming up in two short weeks, I’ll be posting a Valentine’s Day resource for you every day!  Since today I taught Zumba – what a better way to begin than with a fun, love inspired playlist 🙂

Here are some of my favorite love songs en español… ¡ojo! Listen to the songs before sharing with your students – not all the songs work with all age groups.

What are your favorite canciones de amor?  Do you do anything with your students for this day? This year, it is tricky for us since 2/14 is the Friday before our winter break – but it might just be what we need to get them hooked on that last Friday!

Share your thoughts below!

Here is my Día de San Valentín Playlist on Spotify:

 

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Slides, slides and more slides!

How do you set up your agenda and every day class activities? In our department we have found that the easiest way to go from activity to activity is to use a slideshow. Whether it is google slides (my fave), powerpoint or other slideshow format, it is a fantastic way to organize your agenda for the day!

Here is a sample of what I include in mine. Keep in mind that my students don’t come in and sit at desks but stand in a circle, so pretty much everything here is for them to do interpersonally, however at times they will use a clipboard or a whiteboard and write.

Here’s how I set it up, by lesson for each week.  I have each slideshow labeled by the week in the year and saved in folders that I can access and change up year after year.

The warm-up: súper importante because I need them to get into Spanish mode the second they walk into my space. This can be anything from a ¿Cómo estás? slide to a prompt that has them asking each other questions.

Here are two examples, both I have projected as the students walk in and they know they need to get into circle and start talking.  I then usually will have students share out. Depending on time and class size I might have them all share or just select some students to share out.

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The daily routine: While I try to spice things up every so often, this stays the same most days. And while it does get repetitive – that’s the point. And guess what? I now never need to formally teach numbers, weather, seasons, time or clothes!! Woot! Woot! Who doesn’t love more time????

The first few weeks of school I have a lot less language and as I see students get more comfortable with the vocabulary I add on more questions, vocab, etc.

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The bulk of the lesson:  The rest of my slides have all of my activities, vocabulary, games, circle transitions, brain breaks and videos labeled.  This not only helps them with visuals, seeing our daily goals and input but helps me stay on track! Here are some examples!

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Stay tuned! I will have a routines slide show available on TPT soon! How do you keep your classes organized? Do you have a set routine?

Anuncios de Navidad/Días Festivos

Have you jumped on the Navidad commercial wagon yet? As a way to incorporate more authentic listening to our students we began showing them commercials from Spanish-speaking countries as a way to introduce and practice new vocabulary and look at different aspects of culture.  With our transition to more culturally themed units and our discussion of holiday traditions in Latin America and Spain commercials are a perfect fit and the students LOVE them!

I teach Spanish 1 and you might be wondering how one might use an authentic commercial at this level if they are often very fast paced. The answer is to change the TASK not the resource! I now only use authentic audio (commercials, songs, shorts) in my lessons and the students vocabulary and listening comprehension has soared to new heights. The trick is to pick just one or two things to focus on during the listening and to keep it SIMPLE!

Some examples of tasks Spanish 1/novice students can do…

  • circling or checking off vocabulary words they hear
  • circling or checking off images of things they see
  • a cloze (fill in) activity
  • writing the words they recognize
  • circling or checking off the aspects of culture present in the video
  • answering comprehension questions in English
  • answering comprehension question using true/false statements

 

Need some inspiration for your holiday unit? Here is a listing of commercials from all over the Spanish-speaking world!

 

 

I’m back & Acción de Gracias!

It has been a long time since I’ve posted here! A lot has changed since I posted regularly and I can’t wait to share with you all of the things that have changed in my teaching practice since then.

Let’s talk about staying relevant and student buy in.  I don’t use a text book – why? well when I used the text book I always felt like my curriculum was a boring, rigid with little wiggle room for creativity and authenticity. For me, culture should be the means by which we teach the language because those two can’t and shouldn’t be disconnected. I also have strong feelings about English being used more than the Target Language in classroom. So, about 5 years ago tired of trying to find balance with the book I said GOODBYE and began my own journey in creating a culturally relevant thematic curriculum. It has been challenging, but I am so lucky that I have the support of my department and my PLC and no one telling me I shouldn’t! And… the results have been pretty amazing!

I am excited to teach.

No more front loading of boring topics and grammar terms – culture and authentic resources first!

The students are HAPPY and EAGER to learn.

I will share more on how I started this journey in future posts – but now let’s talk Acción de Gracias or Thanksgiving.  It is coming up quick! Do you talk about this in your classes? Why or why not?

In my 1A classes, we will be soon starting a unit on Celebrations – this includes Thanksgiving, Christmas, Posadas, New Year and many, many more as we have a very diverse population and are always cognizant of including everyone so they can have something to talk about too!  We started this unit a few years ago and felt it was a perfect fit for us because it is the time of year where many holidays are celebrated and there is holiday decor, signs and commercials everywhere so it is hard not to talk about celebrations.  Students enjoy talking about things that are current and apply to them AND we connect it with how holiday time is celebrated in Spanish-speaking countries. There are SO many resources out there that talk about Thanksgiving in Spanish, how Thanksgiving is celebrated in places like Puerto Rico and how Latinos in the US celebrate Thanksgiving here with their own toque latino!

If you’re looking into incorporating Acción de Gracias here are some authentic resources to get you started.  Here is a vocabulary reference sheet (yes, I still give these – more on why later) if you’re interested. Stay tuned on how I use these!

El Pavochón, una variante puertorriqueña para Acción de Gracias | Noticiero | Telemundo

Hispano ayuda por años a su comunidad en “Acción de Gracias” | Noticiero | Noticias Telemundo

Molegiving 1

Tamalegiving

 

 

El Pan de Muerto

What did I do without Pinterest before it existed???  I found this great visual to spark a conversation about El Pan de Muerto and the celebration of el Día de Los Muertos.  I didn’t make a handout for it as I think its a great warm-up and we do those digitally.

Here is the image

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Here are some questions:

1.  ¿Te gusta el pan?

2.  ¿El pan que tú comes tiene alguna forma?

3.  ¿Qué significa la forma circular del pan de muertos?

4.  ¿Qué significa la cruz de lágrimas?

Have you taught the Day of the Dead? What resources do you use?  I’d love to actually make the bread with the students but we are no longer allowed to have food in the classroom 😦  This has been difficult because breaking bread with our students was a great way to spark cultural conversations.  Is this a policy at your school? How have you dealt with it?

¡Instagram en español!

I’m always trying to incorporate social media and pop culture into the classroom.  I think the students learn best and are definitely more engaged when I do this.  My only issue is that I teach middle school and some students still don’t have phones or they do but not smartphones.  Another issue is that the students aren’t allowed to have their phones in class and I definitely don’t want to go against school policy.  So how do I incorporate social media without making anyone feel left our or breaking the rules?

I have a few ways…  One- Zachary Jones has some GREAT twitter activities on his site.  There is one for about every topic and the kids think it’s súper chévere to read real tweets and apply what they’ve learned in class to the activity.  Another is well, I simply improvise!  I saw on Pinterest a teacher had used instagram templates to create a really neat bulletin board.  I started to look for templates online, in Spanish, but was unsuccessful, so I made my own!  You can use this many different ways- in class, for homework, assessment, etc…  I used this assessment for my review unit with my 1B’s.

How do you incorporate social media?  Are your students allowed to use their phones in class? Share your ideas 🙂

Here is the assessment rubric I am using and below is the link to the template (TPT).

Enjoy 🙂

8grado_Unidad1_Repaso_Instagram_Writing_Assessment

Instagram template (on TPT)

Spanish-Speaking Countries Project and Passport

One of the goals for this first unit is for the students to begin to learn about the Spanish-speaking countries.  Specifically, to know which countries in the world speak Spanish.

At the end of the unit, I assign the students a country and their task is to research the country and prepare a visual presentation of it.  This project has changed tremendously over the years and it has moved more towards the students becoming experts on their country and learning about what they would do if they visited that country.  A big element of this project is that their visual has to represent something from their country of study.  For example, a student studying Costa Rica might choose to make their visual into a turtle, monkey or volcano or a student studying Argentina could make their visual into grapes or a tango dancer.  The students get so creative with this project and every year they surprise me with their choice of visuals!

Here is the assignment packet and rubric I give to the students for this project.  You will see that the project is set up so the students have something specific to research every night, this way they are not overwhelmed with not knowing where to start.  It is a work in progress, I update it every year with new ideas and edits- please let me know if you have any ideas on how I should update it!

Here is the assignment (on TPT)

And here is the passport I made for the students to “travel” to their classmates countries!  It takes a bit of playing with on the copier- but in the end it’s really cool!  I have the students make their own stamps!

7grado_pasaporte

 

Links for Country Project Research- Here are the links I give the students.

www.lonelyplanet.com   site on all countries, places to see, things to do, food, etc…

www.worldatlas.com   maps

https://www.cia.gov/library/publications/the-world-factbook/   Country facts

www.iexplore.com  Country facts

www.fodors.com  Country facts

www.goya.com   Recipes and typical dishes

http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/latinmusicusa/   Music from the Spanish-speaking world

http://www.donquijote.org/tourist/profiles/  Profiles of Spanish-speaking countries

http://www.travelocity.com/TravelForGood/voluntourism.html   Voluntourism site

www.earthwatch.org  Voluntourism site

http://www.turismo.gov.ar/eng/menu.htm  Site about Argentina

http://boliviatravelguide.net/site_flash/index.html   Site about Bolivia

http://www.chile.travel/en.html 
 Site about Chile

http://www.colombia.travel/en/   Site all about Colombia

http://www.gocuba.ca/client/home/index.php  Site about Cuba

http://www.visitcostarica.com/ict/paginas/home.asp?ididioma=2   Site all about Costa Rica

www.godominicanrepublic.com Site all about the DR

http://ecuador.travel/
  Site about Ecuador

http://www.elsalvador.travel/?lang=en  Site all about El Salvador

http://www.visitguatemala.com/web/index.php?lang=english   Site all about Guatemala

www.letsgohonduras.com  Site about Honduras

http://www.visitanicaragua.com/ingles/  Site all about Nicaragua

http://www.visitpanama.com/ 
 Site about Panama

www.visitperu.com  Site about Peru

www.senatur.gov.py    Site about Paraguay

http://www.topuertorico.org/tinfo.shtml Site all about Puerto Rico

http://www.spain.info/   Site all about Spain

http://www.welcomeuruguay.com/index_i.html  Site about Uruguay

http://www.venezuelatuya.com/indexeng.htm  Site about Venezuela

Remind 101

Hello all!  So, I don’t know about you, but with everything going on in my life I need a way to help me remember what I need to do.  I’m sure that our students do too with all of the stuff they have going on as well- sports, school (many different classes), family, friends, etc.  A few years ago I discovered Remind 101 through one of my son’s high school teachers.  It’s a site where teachers can sign up for FREE and set up text messages for their students. Like I said it’s totally FREE and the students don’t have your number and you don’t have theirs.  Remind 101 gives you a special phone number in your area code that the students send an initial text to and then you set up reminders for them that they receive on their phones!  Parents can sign up too of course and it’s great because it keeps them in the loop.  As a parent myself I thought it was fantastic because I always knew what was going on!  I know, I know… students should write down their homework in their planner but let’s face it – we’re human and we forget things!  This is just a great way to keep the lines of communication open with students and parents.

Have you used Remind 101 or any similar site?  Comment below!!!!