Tag Archives: langauge teaching spanish proficiency concepts context

Quick prep for a movie

19 Jan

This is a movie lesson that involves lots of discussion on part of the students, and very little prep on part of the teacher.  My AP class used this activity with the Argentinean film, Anita. https://youtu.be/wTKaDxn-IDA

The students copy six questions from the board before the movie, leaving space for answers.

Describe a prominent character in this segment of the movie.
Tell what a character is feeling at this moment.
Explain both sides of a conflict in this part of the movie.
Make a prediction.
Find a connection, something you have in common with the movie.
Express your opinion about something going on in this part of the movie.

The questions can be modified for lower levels and would be in the target language.

The students are arranged in groups. I pause the movie periodically, and each student rolls the die to determine which question to answer in their group.  They don’t write answers yet, just share responses. I listen to their discussions. After the movie, they write answers for each question, to include a 7th question about the overall theme of the movie.


¿Por o para? – concepts vs rules

22 May

I don’t know about you, but this has been one of my greatest struggles this year.  Every resource I find trying to teach this concept just seems like a huge list of rules to memorize and they are just not comprehending that way!  I taught it as it was in the book and online resources, and as we went over the practice from it, a student commented, “I understand what the sentence is saying just fine, but I can’t memorize which ones are for por and which are for para.”

I reflected a lot over these lessons this year as it was in my curriculum for both Spanish II and Spanish IV.  My goal was to present the information in a conceptual manner instead of as a list of rules.

I’m trying to present it in context, like when it has a verb coming after it, does it mean “in order to” or “because of”?  I am sharing my slides, but I I actually only used a couple each day, making sure that they mastered the idea of them before moving onto new ones. You may notice the visual I used with each preposition.  In order to, use, recipient, etc.. are indicated with an arrow moving forward.  Because of, sources, method, etc.. are indicated with an arrow moving back (to the source/motive/reason…)  I didn’t point anything out about that – it’s just a visual I hope indicates a point.

In both levels, I gave out “guided notes” – with the sentences on them so all they had to write was the por/para as they figured it out (I don’t like waiting for students to write out whole sentences…)  But there was also a blank after each concept so they could write in their own example once they understood that concept.

Feedback is much appreciated!  I really want to feel more prepared as I move into teaching this again next year so any input you can give is super valuable.

(NOTE: Google docs tends to skew the design of ppt files in the viewer – it must be downloaded before it “looks right”.)

Spanish II ppt – bilingual, with lower-level examples
Spanish IV ppt – in Spanish, with higher-level examples

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