About sraslb

I'm a high school Spanish teacher who remains, after 37 years, fascinated by all things Spanish and who was reincarnated 10 years ago by the web 2.0 movement.

Noche de Oro, the beginning

It’s been a long time since I last shared anything! This is year 40 for me, and in all probability, my last year teaching full time in high school. I have struggled with a myriad of emotions, ranging from “I can’t wait” to “Am I sure?” to “Do I have anything of value left to contribute?”

In Spanish III this year, I’m working with 2 new books this year: Noche de Oro by Kristy Placido and, in the spring, Vector by Carrie Toth.  The teacher’s guides are great and I will be using them extensively.  In the event that perhaps some additional material might be useful to others, I’m sharing what I’ve done so far (we are only getting ready to start chapter 2).

Day 1

I opened with the adorable video from Costa Rica about saving the Americans/Canadians. We briefly discussed what we remembered from having read Robo en la noche last year and what we learned about Costa Rica.  (Noche de Oro follows the story of Makenna and her family as well as introduces new characters and new problems.) Next, we did map work (review); some videos and accompanying “worksheet” and a gimkit that I created for the opening of Costa Rica with a very basic review of Robo en la noche by Kristy Placido.  I wanted to activate their prior knowledge!  During our pre-discussion, they were able to give me so many of the details from the Robo story AND they definitely remembered that the last two words in “Robo” were “Pura Vida!”  If you have a gimkit subscription, I’d be happy to share my link with you.  Map of Central America and videos REVISED is the opening map and video work (the videos are linked in the document). We worked with the map and the first video and talked about the animals.

Day 2

FVR (free reading); Baila Viernes.  We then listened (they did NOT have the books) to the Prologue on the Audio CD.  I strongly recommend purchasing the audio CD as it gives students another voice to listen to.  I stopped frequently, assessing their understanding.  We then spent about 20 minutes doing various textivate (example activity here ) activities based on part of the text of the Prologue.  (I used the text from the Prologue because it is readily available from fluencymatters as a sample download.)

Day 3

Fin de semana (writing this week).  We then did page 2 of the packet from day 1,working with the animal video and the final video.  I also had a large SMART presentation (lots of pictures, infographics, etc) that we used periodically on the opening three days.  Following this, we played the game SEIS! (document: SEIS) You probably are familiar with it, I think that it was created by a Latin teacher a few years ago but I don’t remember the name 😦

  • small groups of 4-5 students, each with their own paper but only ONE pencil for the entire group;
  • each group has one die which is constantly being rolled
  • when someone rolls SEIS!, they yell SEIS! and grab the pencil and begin to fill in as much information as they can on their sheet of paper
  • when the next person rolls a six, they grab the pencil from the former student and they begin writing
  • game can be done with a time limit, or you can let each team try to get one person to complete their paper.  I prefer the time limit so that they don’t get bored.

Days 4 and 5, into day 6

We played quizlet with the vocabulary from chapter 1 and then read chapter 1.  I had a SMART presentation that pulled various sentences from the text that used subjunctive or conditional and they had to find the corresponding text with a partner.  We have been listening to music from two Costa Rican groups: Percance and Los Ajenos.  We did a cloze activity for Pura Vida! and of course sang the chorus multiple times! Pura Vida Percance   I made another gimkit for chapter 1 vocabulary and questions.  Again, if you have a subscription, I can share it with you.  We also did the following activities:

  • Picasso Plates (original idea from Kristy Placido or Cynthia Hitz?) Chap 1 Picasso Plates
  • The Marker Game.  I like to play with everyone standing up, partners facing each other with a marker between them.  I read a statement, if it is true they grab the marker; if it is false, they shouldn’t touch it. I keep track of the score by “inner circle” and “outer circle”.  I have them rotate partners after several questions. Chap 1 Marker Game
  • Slam it! Partner activity.  Each person has his own paper and pencil. I project a statement on the board and they quickly write the answer, slamming the paper down when done.  If the first “slammer” has the correct answer, he scores a point.  If he is incorrect, the partner gets the point.  SLAM it!

If you are interested in following our progress through the novel, my brief outline of activities with videos, etc. can be found at elmundodebirch.com  My pinterest board for Noche de Oro. My youtube playlist for Noche de Oro is here. 

 

 

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Fiesta by Kalimba

I took a month long break from most things “Spanish”.  I needed it! This week I started looking at the newest music that has come out in the past month, and found several songs of interest to me.  Rather than go with a favorite group (Morat) or singer (Sebastian Yatra), I decided to work with a singer that offered a different genre or style of music.  I am sharing what I have done freely, for the time being.  At some point in time, I may move it to TpT, but for now, I would just like to share and get some feedback.

fiesta 1

This very catchy song may be good for a variety of levels of Spanish, including Spanish I. However, there are a few lines that might be interpreted to be inappropriate. I have not done anything with these lines. They are not included in the activities. It has been my experience that with the proper focus, students will not notice this in the second language unless we bring their attention to it.  With the repeated, “Hay una fiesta, hay una fiesta en mi corazón” and use of many of the super 15 verbs, I believe that the song is a good one for many students.

fiesta 2

Suggested order of activities

  1. Begin with the slide presentation (slides 1 – 7) to introduce the readings and, eventually, the song. Use a variety of questions in the PQA framework to establish meaning, context and connection.
  2. Use any or all of the embedded readings. Do NOT play the song or watch the video yet.
  3. Use any or all of the activities for “Catchy Chorus”. Use ONLY the music, not the video yet. Sing it!
  4. Use any or all of the activities for “Primeros Versos”.
  5. Watch the first minute, 25 seconds of the video. Re-read an embedded reading. Listen and watch again. Talk about what they hear and comprehend.
  6. Watch the entire video. Sing parts of it!
  7. Read the brief introduction to the singer Kalimba.

Sample of Embedded readings:

Versión 1

Hay tres amigos. Están en un restaurante. Es viernes.  Quieren comer hamburguesas. Siempre comen hamburguesas los viernes.  La mesera llega. Ella dice, – Hola, ¿qué van a ordenar?

Un chico responde, – Hola, yo quiero el paquete 1.

La mesera le dice al otro chico, – ¿Y tú?

El chico dice, – Quiero una hamburguesa, mi amor.

La mesera responde, – ¿Algo más?

Y el chico dice, – Tu número.

Versión 3

Hay tres amigos que están en un restaurante del estilo de los años 50.

Isaac pregunta, – ¿Qué me voy a pedir?

Su amigo Mau responde, – Lo mismo de todos los viernes. No sé ni por qué vemos el menu.

Isaac dice, – No, pero mira las papitas calientes.

-Sí,- responde Ricardo, -Están subiendo por el dólar.

Isaac exclama, -¡Uush!

Enfrente de los tres amigos hay un hombre que se llama Kalimba.  Está hablando con la mesera y ella le pregunta, -¿Lo mismo de siempre? Y él responde que sí.  (see document for full text)

 

Since this song is quite a departure from what I typically would work with, I would really appreciate your feedback.  Is this something that you think you might be able to use? Do you like the song? Which activities do you think would work for you and your students?  Thanks in advance.

Name That Tune!

name that tuneIt’s the end of the year.  We’re still in school! The days seem endless and the students are not very motivated.  What to do? Fall back on the one thing that has connected us from the very beginning:  music! When I start thinking about how much music my Spanish IV students (who have had me for 2 years) have been exposed to, it’s a bit overwhelming.  They LOVE music.  There is no other way to put it.  Even the most hardened, most resistant, most determined to not like anything student has connected with some song.  I really don’t know how many of my students maintain Spanish playlists that they listen to on their own time, but it is a lot! They love being able to rush to me on Mondays and ask me if I have heard the latest from…. Sometimes they discover new songs before I do! So, I decided that I would try a version of a game that I loved a long time ago:  Name That Tune! Of course, I have modified it for my purposes and it probably doesn’t resemble the original very much.  Additionally, if I had more time (and more motivation), I could have made it a lot better and added categories for specific items (sports, individual artists, individual countries, individual genres, etc.).  However, I didn’t (and don’t), so I’m going to give this format a try. If you’d like to try it, I’d love to hear from you.  If you have the time/initiative and you add to it, please let me know.

Step 1

I created a master list of songs that my students should/may know.  I put them in three different categories: easily recognized, a little more difficult, and difficult.  It looks like this:

Name that tune 1Name that tune 2

Step 2

I decided that there would be four rounds.  I will have the students form teams (3 -4 students).  Each team will have a white board, markers and an eraser. (For my students, I have opted not to use paper, but that certainly could be done).  With the white board, I can instantly assess which teams are correct. Each round will be different. All of my information is on a SMART presentation.

I have placed each round on a separate page on my wikispace (Yes, I know, wikispaces are going away forever, but I still have this month before I figure out how I’m going to switch!!!).  In rounds one and two, the songs start near the beginning with the opening words.  In round three, the songs begin mid song. In round four, they start all over the place! The songs that I selected alternate between songs that were tremendously popular with almost everyone, songs that were popular with specific groups of students, songs that were “anchors” for our units and songs that will be recognized but they will need to really think.  Each round is progressively more difficult ( or so I think).  The students will NOT see the wikispace page as I play their selections.

Links to the page for each round:

Round ONE    Round TWO    Round THREE    Round FOUR

First round:  In this round, each team will have the opportunity to select 2 different songs (depending on how many teams are playing).  The selecting team has the opportunity to score more points than the other teams if their answer is correct.  All teams with correct answers will score 2- 3 points.  The selecting team may score an additional 7 points if they answered correctly in 1 second.  I will check their answer separately after the selected number of seconds.  If they are not correct, they will be able to listen to the remainder of the available seconds with the other teams to still be able to score 2 – 3 points. Name that tune 3

The red X has been cloned on my SMART board, so that I can easily mark each song as it is chosen.

Second round:  In this round, each team will have the opportunity to select 2 different songs (depending on how many teams are playing).  The selecting team has the opportunity to score more points than the other teams if their answer is correct. Any other team may “challenge” saying that they can name that tune in fewer seconds.  All teams with correct answers will score 2- 3 points.  The selecting team, or winning challenging team,  may score an additional 10 points if they answered correctly in 1 second.  I will check their answer separately after the selected number of seconds.  If they are not correct, they will be able to listen to the remainder of the available seconds with the other teams to still be able to score 2 – 3 points.  Wrong answers carry a two point penalty deduction.

Name that tune 4 1Name that tune 42

Third Round:  In this round, each team will be able to select two songs (depending on number of teams).  If the team that selected the song is correct, they are the only team to receive points.  If they are not correct, the other teams may receive the points.  In this round, there is a three point penalty deduction for incorrect answers.name that tune 7

Round 4:  Final Round ALL IN    All teams have the same amount of time to listen to each song. All teams may score points in this round.

Name that tune 6

Even more music for Vida/Muerte

I have blogged about the superb novel, Vida y muerte en la Mara Salvatrucha 13 from @fluencymatters four other times with the most recent post just from last month.  So how, you might ask, would I still have even more music to add to the novel?  Blame it on Sebastián Yatra…..

With his new song “No hay nadie más“, released on January 25, 2018 and already with 1 billion views, we have the perfect song for the relationship between our narrador and Analía.  When I heard it for the first time, three weeks ago, I literally said, out loud, “Oh my gosh! This song is incredible!” and I knew that I absolutely had to use it despite the fact that we already have SO much focus music with this unit (Casas de Cartón, Gangsta, Los Rakas, Así Crecí, Adentro, Nada Valgo sin tu amor and Princesa).

My only other decision came down to timing, and I admit I was a bit torn. Should I introduce the song after we have read about what happens to Analía or do I introduce it before, incorporating some foreshadowing?  I chose the latter.  Consider the opening verses of the song:

Recuerdo aquel día   ( I remember that day)  (the day he went to collect the payment from the viejita at the fruit stand)
Como si fuera hoy     (As if it were today)
No hay nada como ella  (There’s nothing like her)
Ni siquiera me encontró   ([she] didn’t even try to find me) (Analía arrived, strongly defending her grandmother and, unknowingly, opening the closed heart of the narrator)

Recuerdo todavía   (I still remember)
La vez que la besé    (the time I kissed her)  (their hidden dates, the trip to the beach, the intense, revealing conversation they had)
Fue mi primer amor   (It/she was my first love)
Y ahora escribo su canción   (And now I write her song)

Once we had read Chapter 6 “Mi Trabajo”, without telling my students that we were working with a new song, we started some prework.  I went through the lyrics and selected what I thought were, a) key phrases and, b) words that might interfere with comprehension.  We started with the key phrases first, making sure everyone had 100% comprehension of them.  I gave them about 10 minutes to incorporate as many as they could into a poem, in the shape of a heart: the document Chap 6 and Chap 7 No hay nadie masno hay 2

El narrador tiene 16 años y asiste a un colegio. También tiene trabajo. Pero, más importante, hay una muchacha. ??

Escribe frases, en forma de poema, usando las palabras en el banco de palabras.  Puede cambiar la forma de las palabras si quieres.

 

Recuerdo               Primer amor                La besé                 Inexplicable                 Cuidarte

Mil razones         Te voy a extrañar              Soledad                 Terminar                 Nadie más

Surprisingly, all of the students in all three classes plunged right into the writing.  After 10 minutes, they shared with their pod groups (the groups of 4 in the room), and then volunteered with the whole class.  We listened, did some “pop up” grammar, and basically, really enjoyed what they had written.  There were serious poems, funny poems, love poems, and more.  They really wanted to keep going, but that was day one.
The second day, after reading chapter 7 “Mi novia”,  we worked with the words that I felt could prevent some comprehension. Those words were:

Ni siquiera: not even, didn’t even
Todavía: still
Inigualable: incomparable
Cela: watches over
Disimular: hide
Extrañar: miss
Tempestad: storm
Aunque: although, even though
Renunciar: give up
Melancolía: melancholy
Lágrimas: tears
Risas: laughter

We went through the list and I then asked them to categorize those words as verbs, nouns or adjectives/adverbs/other.  WHAT AN ACTIVITY! I was not prepared for the discussion that followed as they discovered that there were words that could potentially go in more than one category and even more, that it depended on how the word was being used in English.  Example: still….. was it “She stilled the class with a glance” or “still water” or “I still don’t get this”. We had heated discussions in each class about “melancholy”…several didn’t understand the word in English and many wanted to argue that it was only an adjective. We had great discussion over the many ways to say watch/look/see and hide, in Spanish, and we even had some more “pop up” grammar as we worked , such as with the word tempestad….why is it feminine (other than they felt it sounded better that way!).  I then had them create sentences that used more than one of the words at a time, and what sentences they created!!! They did not want to stop sharing! This was a wonderful activity for my students and I believe that working with the two sets of “lyric” words greatly enhanced their subsequent comprehension and reaction to the song.

Finally, on day three, I told them that the words were part of a new song.  I did NOT use the music video; I merely gave them a traditional cloze activity.  We no more got through the first two verses when I had students in each class commenting on the sweetness of the lyrics and groaning (remember, they do not know that Analía is going to die) that the overall sad tone of the music better not mean something bad! We worked our way through the song in stages, the first two verses, the chorus, the next two verses and then for the last round of the chorus (there were no cloze blanks), I asked them to find the 4 ways the song was lyrically different from the other choruses, and asked why that might be. Each class reacted identically:  they loved it, they couldn’t get enough of it, they had to sing it.  Also, they began to question what WAS going to happen to Analía (was it going to be Analía who would be “watching over” the narrator….from where?) and tying the lyrics about how the person in the song changes the life of the singer to what Analía is doing for the narrator. Finally, I let them watch the entire music video, which is quite simple, but much may be read into it.  To reinforce how strong their reaction to this song was: I introduced the song last Tuesday, the students proposed their “favorite” songs for March madness on Thursday, voted on them on Friday…….No hay nadie más was in the top tier of vote getters!

On the fourth page of the document for the song, is an activity that I will use to open class on Monday: matching pictures/drawings to specific text from Chapter 7 and lines from the song. no hay 1

This one song is a classic illustration of how music contains the power to connect…..text with music, text with culture, text with emotions, text with our own identities.  It literally is the perfect song for the pivotal events in Chapters 6 – 9.

Locura de marzo 2018

My students have been looking forward to March since we finished the December commercial madness from Dustin Williamson. Also, for many of my Spanish IV students, this is their 4th time with a “madness” activity (I taught many of them last year in Spanish III)!  And, for that reason, I promised them that I would allow them to produce half of our song entries.  While I already knew that I have many students who LOVE Latin music and maintain Spanish playlists on their devices, I was not prepared for the sheer volume of their suggestions. We had to vote from their  list to get it narrowed down to their top 10 choices….and it wasn’t easy!  For some of them, it was sheer agony!  I gave each student 8 votes…..they could vote for 8 songs and even then it was difficult as they tried to weigh which song they like better than another!  What was even more satisfying for me, in addition to their passionate pleas about what needed to be included, was the diversity of their selections.  Here is their original list that they submitted to me:

Vote for NO MORE than EIGHT (8). If you vote for more than 8, your votes will not count.
_____ 1. Me Soltaste (Jesse y Joy)
_____ 2. Desencuentro (Residente from Calle 13)
_____ 3. Gangsta (Kat Dahlia)
_____ 4. No hay nadie más (Sebastián Yatra)
_____ 5. Robarte un beso (Sebastián Yatra y Carlos Vives)
_____ 6. Súbeme la radio (Enrique Iglesias y Gente de Zona)
_____ 7. Dile que tú me quieres (Ozuna)
_____ 8. Mientes (Camila)
_____ 9. Vivir mi vida (Marc Anthony)
_____ 10. Sofía (Álvaro Soler)
_____ 11. Sigo extrañádote (J. Balvin)
_____ 12. Mi gente (J. Balvin y Willy William)
_____ 13. Cómo yo (Silvestre Dangond y San Luis)
_____ 14. Livin’ la vida loca (Ricky Martin)
_____ 15. Corazón Espinado (Maná y Santana)
_____ 16. La Bamba (Richie Valens)
_____ 17. Me Equivoqué (CD9)
_____ 18. El Ganador (Nicky Jam)
_____ 19. El Amante (Nicky Jam)
_____ 20. La Bicicleta (Shakira y Carlos Vives)
_____ 21. Cásate conmigo (Nicky Jam y Silvestre Dangond)
_____ 22. Échame la culpa (Luis Fonsi y Demi Lovato)
_____ 23. El Perdón (Enrique Iglesias y Nicky Jam)
_____ 24. Lumbra (Cali y El Dandee)
_____ 25. Animal (Álvaro Soler)
_____ 26. El Mismo Sol (Álvaro Soler)
_____ 27. Como la flor (Selena)
_____ 28. Bailando (Enrique Iglesias, Gente de Zona, y December Bueno)
_____ 29. Soy yo (Bomba Estereo)
_____ 30. Caótica Belleza (Esteman)
_____ 31. Me enamoré (Shakira)
_____ 32. Chantaje (Shakira y Maluma)
_____ 33. La Cucaracha (traditional)
_____ 34. Black Magic Woman/Gypsy Queen (Santana)
_____ 35. Reggaetón Lento (CNCO)
_____ 36. Hey DJ (CNCO y Yandel)
_____ 37. La Gozadera (Marc Anthony y Gente de Zona)
_____ 38. Cuando me enamoro (Juan Luis Guerra y Enrique Iglesias)
_____ 39. A Dios le pido (Juanes)
_____ 40. La La La (Shakira)
_____ 41. La luz (Juanes)
_____ 42. Despacito (Luis Fonsi/Daddy Yankee)
_____ 43. Odio (Romeo Santos/Drake)
_____ 44. Fruta Fresca (Carlos Vives)
_____ 45. Se preparó (Ozuna)
_____ 46. El Farsante (Ozuna/Romeo Santos)
_____ 47. Dura (Daddy Yankee)
_____ 48. Odio por Amor (Juanes)

Many of the songs were songs that we had been introduced to in class, either as the “entry to class music” or accompaniments to our units; however, several others are songs that they have discovered themselves…..because they really like Latin music.  The only artist that I told them was off limits for ANY song was Bad Bunny, and I refused to include any of his music on their list.  I’m happy to say that I didn’t have to make that choice with Despacito because even though it was wildly popular last year, it didn’t make the cut for their top music!!

The top 10 songs, according to their votes, make up one half of the bracket and my own 10 choices complete the brackets.  I put all of their choices on one side (the left side below), and mine on the other (the right side).  I had just as tough a time choosing as they did.  I’m still not completely happy with my 10 choices and really wish I could add at least 4 more.  However, there are not enough days in March to cover more than the 20 songs.  Here are the brackets as they stand today:

Locura de marzo 2018 brackets

Still in the running for me, and maybe replacing Tu foto (Ozuna) and one of the HA-ASH songs are:

CNCO – Mamita
Nuestro Secreto – Carlos Vives
La Estrategia Cali y el Dandee
Princesa – Río Roma/CNCO
Esperándote – MTZ Manuel Turizo
Un poco loco/Recuérdame from Coco
Danza de Gardenias – Natalia Lafourcade

This year I will follow basically the same plan as last year:

  1.  Introduce 2 songs at the beginning of the period.  I use just a minute or minute thirty seconds of the song, making sure I include the chorus.  I do use the music video (unless it is entirely inappropriate), so for some songs, I have to be selective in which parts I choose.
  2. I give them a brief intro to the artists, where they are from, etc. and we look at the meaning of the chorus.
  3. Then we vote.  The whole process does not take more than 5 minutes initially.
  4. This year, I will do 2 songs from “their selections” one day and the next day I will do 2 songs from “my selections”.
  5. When we are ready for round two, I will use lyric videos for the songs moving on.  We will establish more meaning for those songs. For this stage, we probably spend about 7 – 8 minutes with the songs.
  6. When we are ready for round three, I will use the original music video and we will sing the choruses.  (This is NOT to say that we haven’t been singing all along….)  For this stage, we will be spending close to 10 minutes with the songs.
  7. For the final round, we will look at the lyrics again and watch the entire official video (as may be appropriate).

As Carrie Toth posted a few days ago, I don’t do anything fancy with the brackets.  I print the song titles/artists on card stock and devote an entire board to posting them.  Each day I put the final vote tally beside the card stock, and move the winning song over to the next bracket.

I’m looking forward to looking at the brackets of many of your classes!  A huge, grateful THANK YOU to @spanishplans for creating this hugely popular activity!

Adding to the wealth of resources for Felipe Alou

Although the fluencymatters novel, Felipe Alou by Carol Gaab, has been available for years, this is my first time using it. Fortunately, there are many, many generous bloggers who have shared their resources, supplementing the useful teacher’s guide that is available from fluencymatters.   I am particularly indebted to Dustin Williamson, Cindy Hitz , Martina Bex , Wesley Hilliard, Nelly Hughes and Allison Weinhold. To share the wealth, and to pay it back or forward, I’m going to quickly list a few things that I’ve adapted or created to go with the novel to date.

  1.  As suggested by several teachers, after working with the Mirabal Sisters and In the Time of the Butterflies, we moved into baseball, and made our own gloves.  First we did this reading Guantes de Cartón rev. 2018 rev, which I adapted from Wesley Hilliard, and then we made our gloves and played.  FUN!
  2. Chapter 1:  A “guante” wordle with qualities that may or not be reflected in a leader.  Students have 2 different colored markers and highlight positive/negative qualities. guante leader wordle guante
  3.  Chapter 3:  Story cups tower (an idea that I got somewhere….I’m sorry, I don’t remember from whom!!! Now I know…..Nelly Hughes via Arianne Dowd!!!) Story cups tower    Morir soñando, idea from Cindy Hitz. Most liked it, but as you can see, not all! 

    Reread chap 3 and find the false statements, based on a Martina Bex original idea. Reread chap 3 find the false statements     

  4. Repaso of 1 -3 Dictation, prior to moving to chapter 4.  I read each of the sentences several times as they wrote.  I then projected the sentences for them to correct.  Homework could be illustrating a few of them.  Believe it or not, most of the students really enjoyed this activity.  Dictation repaso of chapters 1 – 3 before beginning chap 4
  5. Chapter 4:  Had students illustrate ONLY 3 important scenes for them from the chapter.  The next day that shared their drawings with a partner and described the scene.  Partner did the same.  They next found a new partner and described what they saw on THE PARTNER’S paper.  Partner did the same.  They found another partner, and this time, they wrote what the partner had drawn. Capítulo 4 Felipe llama la atención internacional
  6. Pre chapter 5   I decided before we even began the book that in addition to adding much material for Trujillo and the Mirabal sisters, we would focus on Civil Rights during the time that Felipe arrived in the U.S. and the subsequent decade.  I knew that my students were going to need that background.  I used this slide (cropped from my SMART presentation) to get them to guess the decade and what the pictures represented. civil rights intro slide I followed it with this slide: civil rights intro what do we knowWe then did some brainstorming as a class, using this slide: civil rights brainstorming The next day I put them in groups of three and gave each group a large baggie that contained the three time periods (antes de, en el medio de and después de) and many events for each category.  Their task was to sort the events into the time period they thought they belonged.  I will not lie, this was difficult for them, and after about 7 minutes we regrouped and talked about what we had for before or after.  Several days later, we tried it again with more success.  I strongly feel that it was beneficial, but that, of course, is just my opinion.  Post reading timeline and prep for Chap 5 (small version for teacher) and Post reading timeline strips BIG large version for students.  It was a LOT of work to run them on cardstock, then cut all the strips and then bag them for each group.  But, now I have them!
  7. Chapter 5   To reinforce the main points of chapter 5, I decided on 7 principal sentences and created a rebus for each one.  With one class, they had all of them at one time on their individual papers; with another class I projected them one at a time.  I think I preferred that way. Chap 5 post reading rebus rebus 1 and 2
  8. Chapter 6   Dictogloss for review that I created based on the description on classroomtapas.com 
  9. Chapter 7  Based on a GREAT idea from Cindy Hitz, I made what she called “Game Smashing”.  Here is my description, with cloze sentences and word clouds to choose from.  Chap 7 game smashing I’ve always used wordles, or word clouds for partner work, and this one uses two steps:  identifying of words with their partner, and then finding the appropriate word to finish a sentence that is projected.  I can’t upload the powerpoint, but here is what the first slide looks like after projecting the answer: word smashing example

I hope there is something here that might be useful for you and your students.  And, as always, feel free to correct or comment…..and to suggest!!

Some of you who have followed my blog for a while might be wondering where is all of the music?????  I have used SO MUCH music with this novel, and created so many activities with it that it will have a separate post…..sometime………

Introducing Vida y Muerte with Voces Inocentes y Casas de Cartón…..again

coverThis makes my 4th year with the superb novel Vida y Muerte en la MS 13 from Fluency Matters.  The novel is the anchor in my largest unit of Spanish IV that encompasses goals and dreams, El Salvador, Voces Inocentes, the novel and Immigration. For the past 3 years, it has been the “favorite” unit of my Spanish IV classes in the end of the year evaluation.  Each year, as is the case with any unit, I have added new materials, deleted others and revised many.  After an introduction to El Salvador and it’s troubled history of the past 80 years or so (thanks to a spectacular presentation from Kara Jacobs), I have used the movie Voces Inocentes.  Focusing on a featured song from that movie, Casas de Cartón, the comprehension of the lyrics of the song significantly increase the emotional connection of the students as well as their awareness of what the Civil War in El Salvador really meant.  Two years ago, I discovered Mike Peto’s brilliant post and activities for the song.  This year due to snow and mandated state testing, the introduction to the novel has been extended.  Therefore, I have had the opportunity to create a very simple introduction to the song and an equally simple, but powerful addition to the study of the song. Below I have detailed how I began the El Salvador/Voces Inocentes part of the unit this year.

Day 1

  1.  Brief talk/discovery of what students know about El Salvador
  2. Kara Jacob’s presentation for El Salvador (I stopped on the slide for Casas de Cartón) with some additional information that I created
  3. I created this presentation to introduce the song Casas de Cartón
  4. Watched/listened to the first 1:42 seconds 
  5. Completed a simple cloze Casas de cartón 2018 (Spanish and English)

Day 2

  1.  Class started with FVR. Students read novels of their choice for 10 – 14 minutes twice a week in Spanish IV.
  2. Grouped students (2-3) with questions on cardstock related to the El Salvador presentation from day 1 (Essential Question #1).  Students answered the questions in the small groups, and then the whole class quickly reviewed/clarified together.
  3. In groups of two with a laptop, used Mike Peto’s matching activity for about 5 minutes.
  4. I created an extended visual presentation of El Mozote, based on Kristy Placido’s La Mascare de El Mozote. (Please do not ask me to share, Kristy’s work is worth the money! I can share what I added, but not the original work.)  Students worked in groups of two to read through the presentation and explore the visual presentation.  They spent about 10 minutes doing this. At the end, we reviewed as a class what they considered to be the most important facts that they learned.
  5. Based on an idea from Martina Bex, the groups of two students created a 25 word summary in Spanish of what they considered to be the most important details.

Day 3

  1.  I used 2 parts of a study guide from Rachel Hawkes to introduce the movie, Voces Inocentes.  However, when I looked for that guide again online, it did not contain the 2 parts that I used! I suppose it has been updated? The parts that I had are a cloze for the trailer of the movie and an additional cloze that focused on preterit verbs from the trailer. We did both of these prior to watching the actual trailer, and then confirmed our answers when we watched.
  2. Working in groups of two, I gave each group lyric strips (on cardstock) to Casas de Cartón in English and Spanish.  With the music playing softly in the background, they matched the Spanish to the English…..they were not putting them in order. The strips were all randomly ordered. Casas de carton matching
  3. Students then removed the English lyric strips and then put the Spanish lyrics in order as best as they could remember them.
  4. I played the song for them (first 1:42 seconds) and they revised the order as necessary.
  5. With the strips now in the correct order, they looked at the Spanish strips and read through them in English.  Hopefully, this additional background work will make the song even more powerful when we hear it for the first time in the movie.
  6. We briefly went through an introduction (on SMART) to the movie, using these slides (the vocabulary slide is from a larger group of words on quizlet) : Voces 1

Voces 2.PNGVoces 3

7.  We watched the first 20 minutes of Voces Inocentes (in Spanish)

Day 4 (this coming week)

  1.  We will use Mike Peto’s concentration game for Voces Inocentes
  2. We will complete a post viewing review of day 1, using some of the slides from the day 3 presentation and additional comprehension questions.  This will be done in small groups.
  3. We will watch an additional 20 – 25 minutes of the movie.

More to come…….