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!



Links for Country Project Research- Here are the links I give the students.   site on all countries, places to see, things to do, food, etc…   maps   Country facts  Country facts  Country facts   Recipes and typical dishes   Music from the Spanish-speaking world  Profiles of Spanish-speaking countries   Voluntourism site  Voluntourism site  Site about Argentina   Site about Bolivia 
 Site about Chile   Site all about Colombia  Site about Cuba   Site all about Costa Rica Site all about the DR
  Site about Ecuador  Site all about El Salvador   Site all about Guatemala  Site about Honduras  Site all about Nicaragua 
 Site about Panama  Site about Peru    Site about Paraguay Site all about Puerto Rico   Site all about Spain  Site about Uruguay  Site about Venezuela



Hi all! I’m so sorry I haven’t been posting as often as I have in past years.  It’s been a very busy two years for me as I had a baby last year in 2013 and I just had baby #4 in June! So I’m definitely busy, busy, busy! I’m trying to keep up with posting but it’s so hard! I have NO time!  So my plan is to back track and pull some of my best posts and edit and share those ideas.  Keep following though! I’ll begin to post again soon 🙂

6 day old gabriela - 21a

¡Se Habla Español!

You or your students can look super chéveres in this “Se habla español” tee.  Perfect for teachers who like to wear tees in Spanish or for prizes for your students!!!!

These will be available for pre-order soon! Follow me on Instagram @chevere_apparel or on this blog for updates on when this tee will be available!


My store site is chevere_apparel.storeenvy.comSeHabla_Centered


Teaching students about cognates is one of the very first lessons that I do.  It’s so, so important that students learn strategies to become good language learners and utilizing cognates is one of them!  This year I dedicated two lessons to this topic. Here’s what I did!


Lesson 1 (thank you Creative Language class!)

I used the creative language class powerpoint for Spanish 1 learners about Cognates (on their TPT)

I then found pictures of signs from around the Spanish-speaking world and had them work in pairs to pick out the cognates they found

Lesson 2

Thanks again to CLC because I used their magazine cognate search activity.  The only thing I modified was that the students were assigned a letter or two to work with.

How do you teach cognates?



With many of us doing review, games really come in handy.  This year, we really don’t want to do a review unit but instead we are creating a unit that teaches new material but at the same time recycles the main concepts of last year.  Games are so great for this.

One of our department goals this year is to create an environment for more cooperative learning.  We have a new RTI initiative and one of our beliefs is that through more group work we will have the opportunity to have more one on one time with the students.  We’ve spent a lot of department time discussing this and sharing ideas for cooperative learning games and activities.

One activity that came up is one I now call “relámpago” or lightning.  For this game I create a set of cards with questions, prompts or scenarios.  On the card I have the question/prompt/scenario as well as the possible answer(s).  I give each group (usually 4-5 students) the set of cards and pick a leader.  In the first round, the leader is charged with the task of picking a card from the deck and asking the question to one student.  If the student gets the answer correct, they keep the card, if not, the card goes into the lightning round pile.  The leader does this with the rest of the students in the group until they have gone through all the cards.  In the relámpago, or lightning round, the leader then takes the cards that were left from the previous round and one at a time asks each question. The students in the group have to try to answer the question quickly – if they get it right they keep the card.  The student with the most cards at the end wins!  You can then choose another leader and play again or not.  I also use these cards for ask, ask, switch speaking activity.

I’ve made a few sets of relámpago for different topics and recently uploaded a restaurant themed one to TPT. Check it out 🙂

This particular unit is vocab heavy – what strategies do you use with your students to help them learn key words and phrases?  What cooperative games do you play?

Let’s support one another!

Hi all!  So as I mentioned in a previous post I decided a few weeks back to open up a little side business.  It’s called Chévere Apparel and it’s a little shop that will focus on cool tees for children and adults inspired by pop and Latino culture.  I’ve finalized two designs and have attached them below.  The shop is on Instagram for the time being and I won’t be doing pre-orders for them until I get 1000 followers.  So please show me some support and if you’re on instagram go follow and share @chevere_apparel so I can release the tees!  You know you want one!!!


SeHabla_CenteredScreen Shot 2014-08-19 at 4.17.59 PM

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!!!!

Class Syllabus

¡Tanto tiempo!  It’s been a LONG time since my last post and so many exciting things have happened over the past few months.  I had a baby in June and this past month I decided I’m going to open up a little side business selling t-shirts inspired by pop and Latin culture!  More of that to come later…

I start school after Labor day, so I have a little bit of time left to enjoy my little ones and get prepared and pumped for the new school year.  The start of school can be overwhelming for everyone – especially since I’ve been checked out and in baby mode for so long.  A BIG thank you so much to the Creative Language Class blog for helping get motivated with their BTS teacher stamp sheet.  It’s great!  Today I decided I’m going to get my “stamp” for my class syllabus.  Last year CLC did a post on this topic and really motivated me to upgrade my syllabus.  Here is a link for my syllabus in my TPT store if you’re interested – it’s at a super low BTS price and in a word doc so all you need to do is edit!

Do you normally give students a syllabus?  What other documents do you give them?  Do you hold them accountable for it?  Do they sign it? Their parents?  Share below!  Thanks!

Fruterías Patty

I’m currently teaching a restaurant unit and have been on the search for authentic resources.  This is an easy unit to find resources for as I have a ton of menus from my travels and there are many online.  I’ve been looking specifically for restaurants that had not only an online menu, but authentic dishes too.  In a previous post I mentioned – a restaurant from Colombia that serves authentic dishes.  Today I found Fruterías Patty – a restaurant that focuses on serving dishes full of fresh fruits and veggies!  Their site doesn’t have too much information – but their menu is in PDF format (  and I was able to take some nice screen shots and make a activity with it.  I like using lingtlanguage because I can have the students do listening, reading and writing and it saves paper!  I also found a commercial for their restaurant!  Their facebook site does have a lot of info and daily specials!  Check it out!

What restaurants would you recommend using in this unit???