January has been CRAZY, am I right?! Wait, doesn’t it seems like I am always saying that every month is crazy?
Cochran’s kids have worked really hard this month, and they’ve made a ton of progress. I’m super excited to share with you the great units we have been working on in some of my classes, but that will have to wait.
Right now, I want to share a little post-unit celebration/ Valentine’s mini unit of which we are in the midst.
On Thursday, I used Woodward Spanish’s Valentine’s Broken Hearts (a little steep on the price, but it saved me a lot of time so it was worth it) to get my kids on their feet, talking, and curious about what the heck their crazy teacher was up to now. That’s right, I didn’t tell them the goal of the lesson before we started — shame on me for capitalizing on curiosity?
Once students found the “other half of their heart,” I had them sit across from their partner forming two long rows. You guessed it, speed dating style. They used Speaking Latino’s Flirting in Spanish phrases to practice flirting via Tweet (thanks Sara-Elizabeth Cottrell for the great resource!).
After trading tweets back and forth with our partners, we took thinks a step further. We practiced asking someone out! This time we added this scheme that I created last year (the last page of the document). One row rotated every minute, which was just enough time to keep the conversations fresh (and still hilarious). Oh, I forgot to mention that I read the “Twitter” conversations aloud! OH HOW WE LAUGHED!
After the “speed-dating” we still had about fifteen minutes to switch to interpersonal writing. The students wrote love letters to whomever they wanted, be it their moms or Kim Kardashian. One student even wrote a love letter to himself.
I know this all sounds a bit risqué, but keep in mind that I introduced the phrases as “something I think you’ll find very useful” with lots of playful winking and head nodding, and maybe some elbowing… when the students looked at the flirting phrases they laughed and were very entertained. With the feeling that we were were doing this in jest and approaching it from a silly position, they were really open and talkative.
So, that was a great day, and then of course the next day I was out at a conference! I continued with the theme by having my students do some independent work while the sub was there. I used this Woodward Spanish Valentine Reading Activity (I crossed out the bit about past tense at the top, because who cares what the tense is?). I also left a crossword puzzle and word search for good measure — judge all you want, this is a celebration of a lot of hard work!
On Monday we will examine the wonderful song “Tengo tu Love” by Siete (I don’t think it ever gets old, and luckily my students have never studied it!). Speaking Latino has a lot of great activities to help students interact with the song.
After that, we are having a Lip Dub competition. Groups will draw from a list of songs that I have chosen ahead of time, and they will create a lip dub music video. I hope I have some great videos to share with you this time next week!
I may be crazy and we may be loosing valuable time from our curriculum, but I’m hoping I will make larger gains in the number of students who choose to continue to seek out opportunities to learn Spanish or other languages in the future. I can think of no greater accomplishment as a Spanish teacher.