After my class finished reading the TPRS Publishing novel Esperanza and were working on their final projects, I spent some time playing around with an iPad and ended up making a video for chapter 1.
The most useful aid in comprehension for my own students had been the Audio Book that we listened to as students followed along in their books. This was my first time using the book and perhaps there were a few parts that I could have done a better job in making sure all students had full comprehension of the events in the chapter. One way to aid in comprehension is to make your own “movie” of the events of the book. You can also use this technique for ANY story you tell in class and we are going to tell you how. Continue reading
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What to do: Continue reading
While teaching the TPRS Publishing novel, Esperanza, we watched an interview with a Honduran coyote. The coyote talks about the business of human trafficking and bribing officials along the way as well as how much the coyotes charge. We watched this at the end of chapter 9 where the parents suddenly need to bring their children to the US
Then, we watched clips from a documentary that Mike Peto shared on his blog. While we didn’t watch the actual documentary, we did watch several clips available from the documentary’s website. It shows the Tapachula Detention Center in Chiapas. We watched a portion of about 4 clips. These clips show the faces and voices of children, who are in the same situation as Ricardito and Liliana.
We talked about how scared the kids looked and their only desire was to be with the family. It was a really eye-opening experience for my students. Seeing these kids showed them that the experiences from the book are real. Listening to “Jose’s best friend in El Salvador” nearly broke my heart when the kid said “Ya no juego mucho como jugaba antes con él” and when the interviewer asks him if he could have anything in the world that would make him happy and responds that it would be for his friend to be reunited with his mother.
I have been using the TPRS Publishing novel, Esperaza, with my 8th grade class and over halfway through the book, it has been a success.
My students have particularly enjoyed listening to the audio book as they read. I find it helps with the comprehension. And it has also inspired some students to go around the school chanting “Huelga… Justicia… Huelga… Justicia…”.
Speaking of justicia… Continue reading
I recently started using the App ClassDojo to track student participation/incentivize students to speak only Spanish. I know some teachers give participation points, some use a system where they hand out tickets/fake money, but this is novelty for students.
I have added the following ways to earn points: Continue reading
Something I wish I would have done at the beginning of the year: Put a sheet of common Spanish expression on the students’ desks. Having them on each students desk or table, as opposed to a poster, makes it very handy to students to reference. I include common questions that students ask, as well as a list of reactions. The reactions, such as “¿En serio?” and “Guácala” are a great way to students to express themselves to what is happening in class. It keeps students in the target language and slowly they will internalize these words and no longer need a reference sheet to be able to react appropriately in the target language. If they something something in Spanish, I can just discretely point to the phrase on the sheet in front of them.
They are a great way for students to give their opinion on what is happening in a class story or a class novel. You can get this expression sheet plus a poster sheet of the most important verbs for storytelling in our new Essential Spanish Words Posters and Handouts.
It also includes a Question Word poster plus Common Verbs poster.
I used our school’s poster maker to print the sheet to poster size to hang up in my classroom. I can easily reference when these words come up in a story
Our students just finished the first three chapters of the novel Esperanza by Carol Gaab, of TPRS Publishing. So far, so good. I’ve been using the Teacher’s Guide, which is very helpful. And the audio book is a great support for comprehension.
At the end of chapter 3 and the end of the week, it was a a good time to stop and digest what we’ve read so far. I had my first two classes write a summary of each of the first three chapters. I then realized that perhaps some students needed some support in writing a summary.
So we talked about “Los Eventos Importantes” from each chapter. I gave students a statement from each chapter and we decided “Es importante” o “No es (muy) importante”. You could prepare a list ahead of time and have students circle the “important events”, star the “super-important” events”, checkmark the “maybe important events” and cross out the “not important events”. This gives them a framework going forward of what type of information to include in a summary.
If you would like a blank template for students to write their own summaries, or for your to type in the events of any story or novel you are reading as a class, you can download our free template, click on the picture below:
Our March Music Madness was a huge success, so today we’d thought we’d offer an alternative that you may have seen from LA/LIT teachers or in your school library. This is a book tournament of novels, written about the Hispanic culture. These books are in English, but are a great way to open the perspectives of your students.
If you don’t have time to pull this off this year, considering using it during Hispanic Heritage Month (Sept 15-Oct 15).
For ideas on how to implement this in your classroom, keep reading… Continue reading
And the winner is….
I had the students fill out a survey as part of the voting process and here’s a few key notes: Continue reading