Monday, November 12, 2012

Creativity in a Spanish Classroom

            In the Spanish I class we let the students work on culminating projects were they can build a poster, make a movie, or Power Point Presentation. The students also have the ability to describe themselves. Each class we have students do warm-up activities. Within these warm-up activities we have students write sentences. The students have to make sure that they are properly conjugating verbs and describing nouns with gender appropriate adjectives as well as possessive adjectives. The students say their sentences and I write them down. As a class we correct the sentences and I have them give an explanation why the sentence is written that way. During the warm-up the students are allowed to work with a partner or group to help them answer the warm-up questions. In the classroom we also have students work on communicative activities which have both oral and written parts.
            Technology is very present on our classroom. We try to use videos that will supplement our lesson to help the students visualize certain concepts. This last week I did a lesson on Día de los Muertos. I gave the students examples on other cultures that remembered those who have died. As of right now we haven’t done much with media literacy. My cooperating teacher and I have discussed creating some assignments online that will allow them to correct their answers before they turn it in.  We encourage the students to look up podcast in Spanish that will help them build their vocabulary. We also encourage them to watch cartoons or maybe movies that they might be able to follow along because of characters features are being displayed.
            In order to help students work independently and help them to become self-directed learners we set up gallery walks at the beginning of each unit. In the gallery walks have no more than four people in a group. Each student has a job to fulfill: monitor, processor, recorder and presenter. At the end of the gallery walk I have each student fill out a questionnaire where they answer questions such as: What did you think about the gallery walk? What was your job? Did everyone participate? If so, what did each group member do? The students are given the task and as a group they have to meet the tasks and evaluate themselves. In the next class we talk about their comments and how the gallery walk could be more efficient and what they can do to make it better.
            In the Spanish speakers I class we had the class split into pairs or groups of 3, and each group had to research a topic on an ancient Latin American culture and present it to the class in Spanish. The class was able to choose the people in their group. The topics were chosen by picking the group names out of a bag and those groups would have the opportunity to pick a civilization from the names on the board, a total of 14 civilizations. The students were given time to work on the projects in class, there are 12 computers available in class. At my school site each student has a Google Apps accounts and we encouraged the students, if they were making a PowerPoint, to make it using their accounts so they would be able to collaborate with each other outside of class. This project helped students understand different cultures and they were able to interact with their peers to achieve a common goal. Since this project would involve time after school the students had to prioritize and manage their time well to complete the presentations on time. The second part to their project was presentations; we discussed the language they should be using and reminded them not to turn their backs to the audience. The students learned to present themselves professionally and be accountable for the work they each were presenting. The audience also had the responsibility to demonstrate ethical behavior; if they were being disrespectful points would be taken off from their presentation. At the end of the presentation we discussed what they could have improved on for future presentations. For example, use a background that will make the words legible, not reading off the slide, making eye contact and not using English.

TPE4: To meet student academic learning needs, candidates explain content clearly and reinforce content in multiple ways, such as the use of written and oral presentation, manipulatives, physical models, visual and performing arts, diagrams, non-verbal communication, and computer technology.  They model active listening in the classroom. 

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