lunes, 30 de enero de 2017

Casa Dividida: Álbum de Recortes

Image result for casa dividida chris mercerI LOVE Chris Mercer's book Casa Dividida (click here to purchase)! There isn't a teacher's guide out yet, so I had my students make a scrapbook, or álbum de recortes... and I was amazed at what some of my students did with the Álbum de Recortes project (click here for doc)! Doing this unit during the last three weeks of my Cultura y Civilización was fantastic. It was definitely a student-centered unit and students were really interacting with the book, the historical content in it, the different perspectives, and the big ideas of la Revolución. I am sharing some examples of pages from the Álbum de Recortes in case anyone wants to do this in the future.

I have made some changes to the original assignment because this ended up being a tremendous amount of work for the students and correcting for me! Next time, I will have students do every other chapter, instead of every chapter.

Again, if you want to teach about Cuba in level 3+, I highly recommend Chris Mercer's book Casa Dividida from TPRS!

I am going to link some more examples, but here are some sample pages from on student's álbum de recortes:

Capítulo 7: El Che vino a cenar

  • Describe este capítulo con una oración.
  • Escribe tres oraciones claves de este capítulo.
  • Imagina que tú podrías tener un héroe nacional en tu casa para cenar. ¿Quién sería? ¿Por qué? ¿Cómo sería similar y/o diferente de la cena que la familia de José tuvo con Che Guevara?
  • En tu opinión, ¿es justo que el gobierno de Cuba nacionalice todas las compañías del país? ¿Por qué sí o no?
 Capítulo 9: La educación de Luisa

  • Describe este capítulo con una oración.
  • Escribe dos citas de Che Guevara y escribe tu opinión sobre cada una.
  • Haz una lista de las cosas importantes en la vida de Luisa.
  • El Ministerio de Cultura censuró la música de Rolando, ¿por qué? En tu opinión, ¿hay situaciones en que la música debe ser censurada? ¿Cuándo? ¿Dónde? ¿Por qué?

  Capítulo 11: Las dos muertes de Antony Santos

  • Describe este capítulo con una oración.
  • ¿Qué le pasó a Antony? ¿Cuál de las versiones piensas que sea real? ¿Por qué?
  • Explica el significado de la cita "Patria o muerte." ¿Suena familiar (New Hampshire)?

  Capítulo 12: Grandes noticias

  • Describe este capítulo con una oración.
  • Haz lo que quieras para explicar, resumir, reflejar, opinar, personalizar, hacer conexiones con la historia de nuestro país, y/o analizar este capítulo.


Click here to see 3 more pages. This is one of my top students and she put a lot of time and effort in to this!

I highly recommend this book if you want to teach a unit about Cuba!

sábado, 28 de enero de 2017

Pre-AP and/or AP Unit: Diamantes Negros

I am starting AP Spanish this week and our first unit is called "Diamantes Negros". It is based around the movie with the same name. It incorporates four of the AP themes and tons of the AP sub themes (see slide 3 in the slideshow below).

Here is a trailer of the movie:


I have 16 students with a very wide variety of proficiency levels:
  • 6 students who took Spanish 4 Honors (very traditional, with lots of grammar and vocabulary, but very little exposure to the AP themes and/or AP assessments) second semester last year (that is 7 months without Spanish!!)
  • 5 who just finished that same Spanish 4 Honors (very traditional, with lots of grammar and vocabulary, but very little exposure to the AP themes and/or AP assessments) 
  • 5 who took Spanish 4 Honors last year and have just completed Cultura y Civilización (lots of exposure to AP themes AP assessments)
So, with that in mind, and 11 weeks (we have a week of in February and one of in April) to get them ready for the AP exam (!!!), I (with lots of help from Arianne Dowd) developed this unit. I want the students to be talking a lot this first week and I also want to give them tons of comprehensible input. I also want them to do some AP type assessments. The super inspiring and helpful Karen Goering shared four assessments at ACTFL (amazing presentation about movies and social justice) that I will be using in this unit (click here to find them) and she is the one who inspired me to use this movie in class.

Arianne Dowd and I created a slideshow (with 170 slides!) that tells the "story" of the movie in comprehensible Spanish and with screen shots from the movie. This will help all students to feel comfortable and will especially help those students who haven't had Spanish since June. You can see a preview of the slideshow below and if you want access to the whole thing (170 slides total!), you can purchase it here.

So here is my plan for this unit:
  • Students will sit in groups of 3 (with one student from each of the groups I mentioned above) and everyday they will read (aloud) the slideshow and discuss the questions (in the slideshow). The images will help them to understand the story. After that, we will watch segments of the movie.
  • At the beginning, students will have to fill out some information on slides 3-17 in the "unit packet"(click here to see part of it and here if you want to purchase it). I have also created two Quizlets to review that information (here and here).
  • For homework, students will read the "story" again and fill in the blanks in the unit packet. The blanks are vocabulary and grammar related. I tried to include a lot of subjunctive and present perfect. These students have been exposed to a lot of grammar, so they will be comfortable doing that. Also, they need to be able to purposefully use some of that advanced grammar in order to do well on the AP exam.
  • Students will also do Karen Goering's activities throughout the unit, at home or in class. 


This type of unit is almost like teaching with a novel, but the writing (summaries) isn't as good... but there is audio and video too!

And, Arianne Dowd made the perfect movie talk and song to start the unit! Click here to make a copy. Thanks Arianne!

sábado, 14 de enero de 2017

Sharing back a resource... Chau for past tense

I love the "story" in this music video! I used it for the "school unit" in Spanish 1 and blogged about it here and here. And Elena López added to the unit and improved it here.

And now, another teacher, Catherine Laflin, recently sent me a message and shared two adaptations of the slideshow and unit packet. She changed everything to be in the past tense and used it with her Spanish 2 class. She has done a ton of work doing this, including creating online activities to use with the story. She has given me permission to share her two resources here in case anyone else wants to use them. Thanks so much Catherine!!

Here is her adapted slideshow (click here to make a copy and make changes):
And here is the link to her unit packet

I love it when teachers share back new, improved, and/or different takes on things that I share! So, if anyone else has done the same, let's keep helping each other and making our classrooms better places for students... share back and let me know if I can share it here!




lunes, 2 de enero de 2017

Puerto Rico: Echar Pa'lante

Image result for echar pa'lante puerto ricoI am currently taking a one credit course about Puerto Rico and I am learning a ton! Puerto Rico is part of the United States, but I only really mention Puerto Rico once in a while. I don't have a unit about it in any level, but I will now because as part of the course, I have to create a "lesson plan" to teach about one of the themes of the course. I decided to focus on the current economic crisis in Puerto Rico. If you want to become familiar with it, I recommend doing one (or all) of the following:


The slideshow below (click here if you want to make a copy and adapt) will help guide me through the unit. And this unit packet explains the objectives of the unit (in a format that I have to do for the course that I am taking) and has a variety of activities that students will be doing.


One of the essential parts of the unit is the song and video "Echar Pa'lante" (which is actually a remake of the song "No hago más na'"). Below the video is a screenshot of the embedded reading that I made so that students can understand the song. I also created some activities for students to do with those readings (see pages 9-15 of unit packet).

There are a variety of other activities in the unit packet, including: essential questions, possible evaluations, prefabricated notes for students to fill in as I explain things to them, two quizlet live links to review and learn about Puerto Rico, a list of professions shown in the video, four embedded reading activities, a cierto/falso activity about one of the embedded reading, questions related to the song and students' own daily lives and beliefs, and a rubric for the evaluación escrita at the end of the unit.