Wednesday, March 26, 2014

Are You Hitting Every Area?

As a language teacher, I think we all have our favorite when it comes to reading, writing, speaking, and listening. Have you noticed that maybe in class you are getting your students engaged in the area that YOU are best at? When having this discussion with a friend who also teaches Spanish, we came to the realization that WE (the teachers) are pushing the activities that WE are best at. I was a translator for an agriculture office in college and I was constantly reading and verbally translating for others. I think it's safe to say my kids do A LOT of reading. I also love to SPEAK in Spanish, so my kids are constantly speaking. 

I am not going to lie when I say my kids need MORE practice with writing and reading. It's hard sometimes to do writing activities in Spanish 1 because they know so little. But I created this MINI chart for a reminder that each lesson....every single component needs to be in there in someway. It's helped me out a ton but I am struggling to think of writing ideas: 

-I have my Spanish 3 & AP writing over notebook topics everyday for 10 minutes. Easy for Spanish 3 because they have the knowledge to write over these topics. 

-I let my Spanish 1 have quiet, free writing time where they can go anywhere in the room and then write for 10 minutes straight about whatever they like. Sometimes I even say "OK, here is your goal: Use your -AR verbs conjugated in this writing" 

-I have my Spanish 1 kids translate sentences but this is more guided writing than their production. We occasionally do essays but like I said, this is more guided. 

So.....Let's have a SHAREFEST!!! Post your ideas for writing below in the comments section!!!!

God Bless,

Thursday, March 20, 2014

Conjugation Activity - Great Introduction!

So I try to do as many on-hand activities with conjugating verbs right after the students are given the basic lesson of conjugating verbs. I personally HATE worksheets and you won't see alot of worksheet ideas from me. I like them for basic assessment checks, sub work, and a little quick practice activity but as far as checking knowledge, thorough practicing, and really diving into the material...worksheets OUT! This idea I'm getting ready to talk about is a super duper EASY activity AND the kids really enjoy it. :)

First of need to visit your teacher resource room and get about 5 to 7 large pieces of colorful paper (like the butcher paper). Stash them in your classroom for later use.

Next, make sure you TEACH the infinitives and the students are comfortable with the meaning of the infinitives. There are lots of activities for that (and I'll come back to that at a later time).
After you feel like your students understand the basic concept of conjugating, why it's important, and the whole PURPOSE of conjugating...then let's practice!

Tell the kids to form groups of 3 to 5 (or however many you feel comfortable with working together in a group).

Next, give each group a large piece of colorful butcher paper and some markers (you want to be able to display these later on).

Tell them to do basic conjugations such as "Ella habla" or "Nosotros pasamos" and you can even throw in some -er or -ir verbs. Tell them with each conjugation they need to draw a basic little picture that illustrates their conjugations.

I told my kids they could be creative and set up the conjugations anyway they like: bubbles, draw a picture and let the conjugations create the picture, little boxes, and more. I let their creativity come out.

Here are some examples of the ones that were created. Warning: there are a few mistakes. (They are practicing and that's okay). They are given a small little paper rubric so I don't mark on their creation where it's showing in the hallway with my pen markings all over it and the world to see their grade.

God Bless,

Wednesday, March 19, 2014

I'm Back and Ready To Blog!

First of all, I want to apologize for the huge leave of absence. As you can last entry was in August...before my baby! Now it's March (almost 5 months AFTER my baby). Life is starting to get back into motion and our new normal is well...just the normal. Shew, a new baby is ALOT of work but the BEST blessing in this world! With that being said...I am back and ready to pick up where I left off. Heck, maybe I can throw in a few posts involving being a mom and balancing the classroom (and life)...or maybe you guys can send ME some advice! Good to be back!

God Bless,