THEME: Science and Technology
CONTEXT: Effects of Technology on Self and Society
This is a reading I developed this year after my students told me that they wouldn't know what to do without their phones - their phones are like an extension of themselves, which worried me. The article students read is entitled "Cómo la tecnología está distrayendo a los adolescentes" and delves into problems that can arise with over-dependence on technology.
I used this with my Spanish III and Spanish IV students; the questions are written in Spanish and English because when I initially gave it to my students with questions only in Spanish, they were overwhelmed and their affective filters went up (they had not done a lot of reading in their previous Spanish classes). I rewrote the assessment for the next day giving the questions in English, which helped, but next year I will scaffold it better.
El Ministerio del Tiempo is a fantastic telenovela that mixes past and present. I am considering using this show in AP Spanish but need to spend more time developing resources and collaborating with others. Anyone? Anyone? :)
I love this show for a variety of reasons. It provides listeners/viewers with a very distinct pattern and rhythm of Spanish...including the 'vos' form that used to be used in Spain, back in the day. Check out this article that I found very intriguing on that topic.
Thematically and culturally this show is a goldmine for Spanish teachers. The three patrol members go back in time to prevent history from changing...and along the way meet very influential historical figures. It hits on several AP Themes, especially across the episodes. Personal & Public Identities are addressed often throughout the show as the patrol members learn to cope with their new realities and as they work to preserve the rich Spanish patrimony. Beauty & Aesthetics comes up in many episodes as very famous artists play very significant roles, including Miguel Cervantes, Lope de Vega, Pablo Picasso and reoccurring Velazquez. Science & Technology and Contemporary Life are definitely touched upon as the patrol members go back and forth through time- obviously noting technological advancements in present day.
I hope to find more teachers willing to collaborate and spend time developing resources for this awesome program. For now, I bring you a synopsis, character profiles, a little bit of vocabulary and some beautiful screenshots and images mostly taken from www.rtve.es/television/ministerio-del-tiempo/.
Google Slides: El ministerio del tiempo; a conocer los personajes
THEME: Contemporary Life
I created this assessment for the end of our first unit using a video that was created by native speakers for learners of Spanish. There are lots of videos by SGEL ELE Español para extranjeros on their Youtube Channel that have a lot of value in the classroom that can be used in different units.
The narrator, Eva, interviews her family and friends about where they are from, how old they are, where they currently live, what their name is, etc. This video works as preparation for students to do interpersonal interviews with similar questions as well.
This is a new resource that I just discovered this summer and plan to use with my AP Spanish Language & Culture class. I wish I had known about this one sooner though... this web-series/movie is the first of its kind in a few ways! It can be found at: http://www.rtve.es/playz/sifuerastu
There are 8 total episodes, each ranging in length, that in the end have been combined to create a seamless movie. When it first streamed, it was interactive. After each episode/segment viewers could vote for what happened next in the story with a "what would you do" question being posed to the audience every time. It would have been very cool to be a part of that voting process!
Why does this appeal to me for AP Spanish? For a variety of reasons! First, like I said, the episodes vary in length, 9-20ish minutes if I remember correctly. That makes it so doable to show in class and develop meaningful resources. Second, the title itself and the "what would you do" scenarios offer a lot of repetition of this valuable phrase. Thematically I think this series will fit great in my Personal & Public Identities unit (Personal Beliefs & Values, Personal Interests, Self-Image/Self-Esteem) but it also ties into several other themes: Families & Communities (Educational Communities, Family Structure, Friendship & Love), Contemporary Life (Lifestyles, Personal Relationships), Global Challenges (Philosophical Thought & Religion). Maybe most importantly the episodes are highly engaging and with a little bit of prep work can be very comprehensible to students. Attached are the resources I've created so far for Chapter 1. Let us know if you have used this web-series before!
Google Slides Link: Picture Talk (No text)
Google Slides Link: Graphic Novel Chapter 1
Pre-viewing Questions for each chapter
All photos were taken as screenshots from http://www.rtve.es/playz/sifuerastu/.
THEME: Contemporary Life
CONTEXT: Travel & Leisure (Sports)
With the Winter Olympics that took place last year we had a unit on the Olympic Games and Olympic athletes. This was a great lead into our CI/Novel unit on Felipe Alou: Desde los valles a las montañas. It will be interesting to see how this unit is reworked for next year seeing that the Olympics won't be currently taking place. One thing for certain is that one can always talk about past Olympic games!
Attached is an infographic assessment we used in Level 2 this past year about the Olympic Games of Río in 2016. In class students used this infographic to converse in the past tense before truly knowing they were using the past tense. Including grammar in your lessons and assessments can be as simple as pointing it out, highlighting it and making students notice the forms that are repeatedly being used.
THEME: Contemporary Life
Our first non-review unit of Level 2 this year was Daily Life. This passage is taken from a website for English & Spanish language learners, so while not 100% authentic, it was just the reading I was looking for. It's important to remember it's okay to use a wide variety of resources. I don't think this article is super culturally engaging by any means but it was a good way to introduce and practice reflexive verbs, practice forming questions and getting students used to interpretive reading activities. In the beginning of the year I like to highlight or bold the inference words; I don't want them to spend their time trying to find these words in the text- I want them to think critically about how they are being used!
THEME: Beauty & Aesthetics
CONTEXT: Fashion & Design
If you haven't seen Velvet yet you need to stop reading this, binge-watch it, and come back to this later. SERIOUSLY. It is to die for. Love. Love. Looooove. And yes, it's on Netflix!
Okay- so I used this show as a carrot and as a reward for my Spanish 2 students this year at the end of our Fashion & Design Unit. See this post about how I've used Class Dojo in my class to establish community and create a healthy competition in my classes. The "reward" during the Fashion & Design unit was watching Velvet. I knew that I wanted them to watch it anyways but this way they thought they were earning something... :)
Velvet takes place in 1950's Spain, in a prestigious fashion house. While the main characters are so easy to love, the supporting characters are even more enchanting. While this year I only showed one episode- hoping they would continue to watch more of it on their own outside of class- I am considering showing several episodes next year during the duration of the unit...or throughout the semester? The good news is that for die-hard Velvet fans, they are still in the process of making/airing season 2 of the spin-off show Velvet Colección. Don't miss that one either!
Attached are the pre-viewing synopsis and character development work my students completed before viewing episode 1 this year. Here is the Google Slides that I used to show the trailer and accompany the worksheets. Stay tuned for chapter resources this year! Do you have any resources for Velvet you'd like to share? Let's collaborate!
THEME: Beauty & Aesthetics
Context: Fashion & Design
Okay, I did it! I took an AP Context and made it my unit of study...and I loved it! This past year in Level 2 I taught a unit called Fashion & Design. I knew that students already had a base knowledge of clothing vocabulary but I wanted them to take their language further and actually make it communicative and cultural for them.
Included below are a few different authentic resources I used throughout the unit:
1. ZARA- TIENDAS DE MODA ESPAÑOLA:
To make this resource more comprehensible to students I broke it up into 4 sections and we completed one section each day. This helped scaffold the reading, build anticipation for some, and provided an opportunity to not focus solely on this reading for an entire class period or more. I love completing several activities within one hour, and keeping my students guessing at what is coming next. Plus, several students had never heard of Zara before- what a cultural giant!
2. Diferencias del español. Ropa. #smart
I love this video! I love hearing the differences in the language across countries. I'm not convinced I love the activity I created to go along with it but we live and we learn! This wasn't a super TL filled-conversation with my students but it was engaging and culturally interesting nontheless. If you have an idea of how to use this video in class, please let me know!
3. Fashion & Design: Interpretive Listening (Audio-lingua)
These audio clips have been compiled as an interpretive listening assessment, mostly related to clothing vocabulary. We simply used these as in-class listening practice.
Lastly, I loved using the Zachary Jones LookBook activities as a way to engage my students with more relevant vocabulary during the unit: músculosa, crop top, joggers, zapatillas, botines, etc. Check out these Google Slides to see how I took screenshots of the worksheet, added them to the slides and made it viewable for the whole class. One thing about all of these resources to keep in mind is that it isn't just about passing out a worksheet to the students, it is about using the resources as a vehicle for communication in your class.
Also included in these Google Slides are many more resources, slides, infographics, photos and videos that could be used in this unit, depending on the level and background knowledge of your students. You can see examples of how I use Newspaper headlines to open class, "Who wore it better?" photos as communicative-attention grabbing photo-talk activities, and screenshots of authentic websites to engage students in reading/talking. These slides are a bit disorganized but maybe they will serve someone!
THEME: Personal and Public Identities
CONTEXT: Personal Interests
This year I taught in a new district. I had students in Spanish I (a semester in 8th Grade), Spanish III, IV, and AP. Since students had already had two and a half years of Spanish, I assumed that they knew how to read in Spanish, and I gave them articles and assessments that I had used and created in my previous position. I was wrong. The articles and what I expected students to be able to do with them at the beginning of the year were way beyond what they could actually do. I unfortunately forged ahead and didn't stop to actually teach them how to read in Spanish like I should have. While teaching my 8th graders who were in Spanish for the first time, I gave them many strategies and started with more basic authentic articles and what my expectations for what they did with the readings were much different - I taught them how to read and in doing so, built their confidence as readers of a second language.
For this year, I have developed a series of readings that I will do in the first unit "Getting to Know You" (Personal Identity) and review in which students will gradually build to the Interpretive Reading Guide (Paul Sandrock) - I created a template with each of the proficiency levels and the types of questions to write for each based on Paul Sandrock's model to help me when I am creating Interpretive Reading assessments. The articles are all from the same website and fit very well with the context of Personal Identity.
THEME: Global Challenges
CONTEXT: Environmental Issues
This year in Spanish 2, to accompany our CI unit on Mira Canion's Capibara con Botas, we studied Animals and Habitats of the World...and in particular animal extinction.
The article 5 especies en peligro de extinción was used as a formative interpretive reading assessment towards the beginning of the unit to introduce the issue, address new vocabulary words, and build background knowledge.
The second resource, Día mundial de los animales, is and infographic that was part of the summative assessment for the unit. To ensure this image was clear I also projected it onto my SmartBoard and students also had access to the image via their Chromebooks so they could magnify information if needed.
I love combining CI resources with Authentic Resources to really build student proficiency!
Find activities based on Authentic Resources. These activities are written for all proficiency levels, spiraling the AP themes throughout all levels of curriculum..