In Spanish 2, we have been talking about emergency situations that happened in the past.  The students are currently very interested in the situation in Venezuela.  Well, that’s an emergency, right?! So, I’ve decided to use this opportunity for a presentational communication assessment.  There is another important situation taking place in the Ukraine right now. Even though the Ukraine has nothing to do with my students’ cultures, it is definitely a relevant part of American politics and current events.  And there you have it- a perfect opportunity for cultural comparison!

WAIT! Two big problems with this: 1. cultural comparison is very difficult for Novices. 2. my students are sick and tired of Venn Diagrams in every class!

Solution #1 Scaffolding

Comparisons require a lot of knowledge, and it isn’t always knowledge that novices can access without some guidance.  To help guide them, I created scaffolding documents based on their individual proficiency levels.  Here are some examples:

Cultural Comparison differentiation Cultural Comparison differentiationAL


Each document also requires students to self-assess and check to see if they have attempted meet the indicators of the next proficiency level.

This document also helps with problem #2 by eliminating the dreaded Venn Diagram; however, for the actual presentation students will put their information into a thinglink ( have you tried it?!) and supporting their ideas with articles, videos, and photos from the internet.

Click on the photo below to see some of the awesome final products! (remember, they are novices!)

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Profe C