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.
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
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: 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!
AP THEME: Beauty & Aesthetics/Contemporary Life
CONTEXT: Visual & Performing Arts/Lifestyles
This past year I needed a fun, engaging unit to wrap up the year with my Spanish 2 students. I was inspired by the Creative Language Classroom to teach a unit on Street/Urban art. Here are some resources that accompanied this unit at the end of the school year:
1. ¿Qué es el arte urbano?- This was a formative interpretive reading assessment we read in class to get students comfortable with some new vocabulary and introduce the new unit to them. This article came from a significantly larger article but it was modified for length to be more manageable for my Spanish 2 students.
2. ¿Cómo elegir mi nombre artístico?- After introducing the unit, working with vocabulary a little bit and looking at several examples of street art, I wanted students to have the opportunity to get a little creative. We used this article to discuss graffiti 'tags' and artistic names. I modified this article so that it would print cleaner. Sometimes formatting can mean the world of difference when it comes to being comprehensible to students! I didn't want to spend a lot of time on this article so the accompanying questions were used as a quick whole-class comprehension check and then we spent the rest of the class seeing who could come up with the most artistic tag!
3. Arte Urbano- This was the summative interpretive reading assessment that I used with my students after about two weeks of thoroughly diving into street art around the world. Although long, this assessment left students feeling successful at the end of the year because vocabulary and content were scaffolded along the way to help them comprehend. It is pivotal that the language we provide students throughout our units be comprehensible to prepare them for the tasks/assessments we want them to complete- or that they 'have to' complete.
AP THEME: Families & Communities
CONTEXT: Educational Communities
These six interpretive reading assessments come to us from the website http://www.donquijote.org/. In a unit on School, it is extremely valuable and culturally rich practice to compare not only school schedules and classes but school systems as well. In order to make this segment on school systems in Spain more manageable and comprehensible to students we've divided it up into 6 sections. Use these 6 readings throughout a unit or assign each section to one student in a group and have them share out. Hope they are helpful!
The six readings/sections are as follows:
3. Primary School
4. ESO - Secondary School
5. Bachillerato- High School/Secondary School
6. Professional Training and University/Higher Ed
AP THEME: Beauty and Aesthetics
CONTEXT: Defining Beauty
Sometimes I think that we make more work for ourselves by searching for multiple resources to use in different levels. Instead, we can use the same resource and change the task to fit the level of out students. This helps us manage our time and once we have a great resource, why use it only once? Change the activity and reuse the same resource for the same class - the same resource could be the basis for in-class interpersonal conversation, and interpersonal writing activity using a backchat like TodaysMeet while watching a video. Create an interpretive listening task for the video.
I used Videonot.es to write comments and questions as I watched the video. I was thinking about multiple proficiency levels as I took notes because I wanted to maximize my time. Writing prompts and questions for the Novice level should be in English. Once students reach Intermediate levels, prompts and questions may be written in the target language, but we must specify the language of response for the assessment.
Angélica Dass, a Brazilian born photographer, has done several TEDx talks about her project, Humanae. Humanea is a project that addresses skin tone, art, personal identity, self-esteem, and perceptions of beauty. It is truly an amazing project. Using one of her TEDx talks, I developed two tasks - one for Novice learners and one for Intermediate learners. The theme of this video is more challenging, but with questions at a different level, I believe it is also accessible to lower level students as well. While viewing with students the teacher may need to pause at different times throughout the viewing to give students a chance to answer and ask questions.
AP THEME: Contemporary Life
CONTEXT: Travel and Leisure/Lifestyles
When traveling abroad, knowing what modes of transportation are available to you and which ones are the best to use is super helpful in getting from one place to another. During our unit on transportation, students have a summative interpretive reading. To help prepare for it, they first do formative reading practice with this activity. The article is from a travel website for Buenos Aires. The website has been updated since I initially made the activity in 2015 - this is one of the reasons we have opted to copy and paste the articles/readings into documents with the questions rather than having the students go to the websites to read. The current website has changed where the information is located (you have to open a different page) or has updated the information.
The format for the questions is based on Toni Theisen's Interpretive Reading Assessment Template.
AP THEME: Families & Communities, Contemporary Life
CONTEXT: Family Structure, Personal Relationships
Time to talk about LAITS-Liberal Arts ITS, The University of Texas at Austin. If you haven't yet seen, they have some amazing authentic Spanish videos/audios for students to practice their proficiency/performance- all organized by level and content. If you visit their site index they have vocabulary, grammar, transcripts and downloadable podcasts for each language task. These resources are so real, unscripted and original- aka AUTHENTIC. Although they are resources designed to help students studying Spanish, they are what I consider #authres gold. So valuable...formatively or sumatively.
To show you how we use these resources in class we've developed two different sets of activities/questions to accompany various videos related to Families and Communities. Both of these activities are from the 'Beginning' level on the LAITS website- #6 Parents' or Relatives' Work and #7 People's Physical Characteristics. These videos are great to complete with the entire class, in small groups or individually. I often do not show them the video of the speaker until the last time or until I'm through with the assessment. I want them to purely focus on what they're hearing not what they're seeing. The videos typically don't give anything away - and it's great because they use speakers from all around the world - but by waiting until the end it adds a little suspense to the task as well. It is teacher's discretion how many times to repeat the video - as a rule of thumb I usually repeat them three times, but sometimes my kids need less and sometimes they need more. Really what hurt is there by playing it one more time for them?
We'll definitely be developing more activities for this amazing website, but for now we hope you can use and enjoy these Novice Level, Families and Communities activities.
Find activities based on Authentic Resources. These activities are written for all proficiency levels, spiraling the AP themes throughout all levels of curriculum..