Wednesday, December 8, 2010
First buyer finished shopping
Buyer who most accurately fills their shopping list
Buyer who spends the least
Identifica los muebles y cosas indicadas (identify the indicated furniture and objects), usando el artículo definido correcto (using the correct definite article). (1 × 8 = 8 puntos)
Rellena los espacios (Fill in the blanks) del siguiente párrafo (of the following paragraph) con la forma apropiada (with the appropriate form) de los verbos reflexivos. Incluye el pronombre apropiado (include the appropriate pronoun) (1 × 6 = 6 puntos)
Vestirse Levantarse Afeitarse
Peinarse Cepillarse Ducharse
Rellena los espacios (Fill in the blanks) del siguiente párrafo (of the following paragraph) con la forma apropiada (with the appropriate form) de los verbos. (6 × 1 = 6 puntos)
empezar jugar perder
almorzar pedir volver
Estas vacaciones son fabulosas. Yo 1 el día con un
desayuno ligero en un café y después voy a las canchas de tenis. Como sabes,
yo 2 al tenis bien y casi nunca .3 Mi hermano Roberto prefiere jugar al golf, pero viene al café y 4 conmigo todos los días. Roberto siempre 5 un sándwich y una ensalada. Después de las vacaciones,
nosotros 6 a casa. ¡Nos vemos entonces!
I know everyone’s getting nervous about the midterm and all the new material they need has been both presented and reviewed to some extent, so I wanted to mainly focus on their questions today. While I have some idea on where they could use some help, I want to give them the opportunity to give me feedback on where they believe they need help. I gave them back their quizzes (on which they generally did quite well) and asked if they had any questions about those, then wrote up a quick “study guide” and asked what they wanted to review from it. In case they didn’t have questions (always a danger), I also had some review activities planned, such as Pedro Pistolas to practice vocab and verb conjugation competitions – games they are already familiar with so they didn’t take a lot of time on setup.
Results on September 29, 2010: Thankfully, both classes had a lot of good questions and we were able to review just about everything I think they need to know for the midterm. I feel as though they left class satisfied and confident today or, at the very least, more confident than when they came in. I feel as though I used a bit too much English today, though – I’ll have to be more careful about that.
Specific objectives: Students should
Work together to organize sentences with possessives and adjectives
Understand and use correctly the verb Deber in both verbal and written form
Since we’re gearing up for the midterm at this point in the semester, there’s not a whole lot of new material right here. Thus, we can really focus on some fundamental concepts and engrain well the new material. The idea that “should” functions as a verb can be a tough one for native English speakers, so I really wanted to dedicate a good portion of today’s lesson to it.
Results on September 28, 2010: Interestingly, the first class, which went somewhat poorly yesterday, was far more “on the ball” today. They knew their possessives and were able to use them well and had obviously studied up on their adjectives. Working in their teams, I had them come up with lists of things that they should and should not do in given situations, then gave teams points for having unique answers, allowing the students to work communicatively and talk about things that interested them. They had some fun with this one, stating such things as “We should not dance in our Spanish class.” I feel like today got everyone on the same page and that the day was effective.
Specific Objectives: Students should. . .
Learn some basic verbs
Correctly conjugate basic -er and -ir verbs
Recognize and begin to use possessive pronouns verbally.
After introducing some new verbs and their conjugation patterns (using pictures on a powerpoint rather than simply putting the English word with the Spanish word), I gave them a bit of culture in the form of a poem, Borges y yo but with many of the verbs unconjugated. My main objective in doing this, beyond giving them some cultural flavor, was to give the students confidence by showing them tgat they now had the basic tools needed to conjugate A LOT of verbs, even if they were unfamiliar with the verb itself.
I then used a photo album from my time in Guatemala to demonstrate some possessive pronouns and planned to have the students talk about some objects they were carrying in pairs or small groups.
Results September 27, 2010: Things didn’t quite work out as hoped in my first class – the students got a bit frustrated with the poem (while it uses comparatively simple vocabulary, they got caught up in the existentialism) and ended up taking longer than hoped with it. As a result, I didn’t quite get to all that I had planned. Since the students were already a bit frustrated, my brief presentation on possessives using my photo album from my time in Guatemala kinda fell flat. I reorganized things for the second class, placing the students in pairs to work out the poem together and worked a little more on the presentation of the poem itself, so the second class went a bit more smoothly.
Specific objectives: Students should . . .
Identify family-related terms and expressions
Express (both verbally and orthographically) age with numbers up to 100
Demonstrate some fundamental cultural knowledge
Prepare for Quiz
Results on September 22, 2010: I feel that today went exceptionally well. I set up a jeopardy-based powerpoint to review the major concepts, including a column for culture (some reading for which was assigned as homework). I had the teams working together but, instead of a race to state the answer first, I had each time write the correct answer to the question. This gave an opportunity for all of the students to participate (as they discussed the answers among themselves) and allowed everyone an opportunity to succeed. Thus, I think the class was both useful/informative and enjoyable, as well as a good confidence booster for the quiz.
1. One of Jamie's ancestors was David.
2. John's sister gave birth to Tina.
3. Mary baked flan with her nephew last Saturday.
4. Alex visited one of his primas at Christmas and shot off fireworks.
5. Justin married Mary.
6. Jessica is not an ancestor, nor cousin of Tina.
7. Lincoln's brother played soccer with Justin's son.
Specific objectives: Students should
Understand basic information about family members
Be able to express information about their own family members
Today, to make sure they could work with family terms in a written context, I gave them a family-based logic puzzle in which they had to fill in a blank family tree based on clues. Having organized the students into teams, the new teams set to work to be the first group finished. After each team finished, I assigned the students to each write a brief description of their family, using the new nationality vocabulary and other adjectives.
Results on September 21, 2010: While some of the students were mildly frustrated by the end of the logic puzzle (I recognize it’s not everyone’s cup of tea but every student has a different learning style), even that frustration may help them to lock in the vocab. Their comprehension was good as were their writing samples. In general, I think it went fairly well, in spite of a small mistake I made in my directions for the logic puzzle (I took 5 points off from myself, turning the situation into one of humor rather than frustration).
Specific objectives: Students should. . .
Understand basic family vocabulary
Results on September 20, 2010: I feel as though today’s class went fairly well. I got every student to speak briefly about a member of their family, including telling their age and having them ask another student a similar question. While that particular activity might have taken a bit too long (maybe I should divide the class in halves next time), I think it really helped to engrain these new terms and concepts for them.
I help my students to enjoy the learning process and motivate them to succeed, both in the classroom and in the rest of their lives as life-long learners. This affects both the presentation of a class and its content. For students to really enjoy and profit from a class, I help them to be actively engaged with each other in realistic (or, ideally, genuinely real) situations and conversations. Planning communicative activities which incorporate culture is central to preparing my language courses.
At the same time, I’m not an entertainer, nor engaged in a popularity contest. While I do my best to be likable and games and humor have an important place in my classroom as teaching and review tools, I’m not afraid of doing what is necessary even when it will not be popular.
In evaluating students, I work to strike a balance between mercy and justice. I do my best to be neither rigid and unapproachable nor a pushover. I make class guidelines and requirements clear from the outset but each student's individual situation must be understood and taken into account in my evaluation. While I hope to be liked, I feel that I must be respected in order to be effective, as must the course guidelines.
Where possible, I frequently incorporate appropriate technology, be it film, the internet or other forms of telecommunication in my teaching. I have found them to be a vital part of engaging students' interest and that they can be a powerful teaching tool. While I don’t use technology as a crutch – I’m not, for example, addicted to Power Point – I always consider well my presentation options and use technology as appropriate and available. I’ve also discovered first-hand the importance of being flexible and having a back-up plan in case the technology fails.