Hispanic Heritage Month began on September 15th and runs through October 15th. During this time, students have been expanding their knowledge on various topics, such as history, food & culture, and geography. In Upper School, students have dug deep in discussions concerning equality in ethnic groups prevalent in America. We have discussed the difference between “Hispanic” and “Latino/a” and the common misconceptions associated with each term. Each week, we have been watching a docu-series called Street Foods Latin America. This has opened up the floor to several debates, such as which Latin-American country has the best dish and overall street foods, and how different countries define success and how it compares to America’s definition of being successful. This highlights Target Language Tuesday, since each episode is completely in Spanish and gives students the exposure to different dialects, vocabulary and accents. We have also been using Nearpod in class, which was recently introduced to teachers during the full faculty meeting that was held on September’s late start day. It has been a great, beneficial tool to address several topics while also allowing 100% class participation.
We will wrap up our unit on Hispanic Heritage month on October 15th, then move on to our Todo Sobre Mi projects. Then, we will move on to a new unit: for 7th/8th, we will focus on Las Celebraciones y Tradiciones and for high school, Los Pasatiempos.
– Señora Raven
In Spanish class we’ve been talking about 3: ser, estar and tener are verbs that can all mean “to be”, depending on the context. Although most 7th and 8th graders have already had exposure to their conjugations and its proper applications, it has been valuable review material. One of the most important aspects of learning a foreign language is revisiting old topics and recycling through them as often as possible, especially when it comes to verbs that have their own set of rules and exceptions, like the ones mentioned above. Along with Target Language Tuesdays (where students hear very minimal English), students have several opportunities throughout the week to practice their language skills through self-paced activities, games and classroom discussions. This is often where the “Aha!” moments happen. Students grab a hold of the concepts that were discussed in lectures and they begin applying them correctly and effectively. Students will have the opportunity to apply everything that has been reviewed in class through an “All About Me” oral report that will be solely done in Spanish. This will take place the week after our one-month study on Hispanic Heritage Month, which begins September 15th and lasts through October 15th. Great and exciting things are happening within the Spanish classroom!
We made it through the first week… What a proud achievement that is! It seemed like we hardly skipped a beat and jumped right into all things Spanish! Although some students admitted they were feeling a little rusty, I have no doubts that we will get back up to speed as we continue to find a rhythm in our new “normal.”
Each week, High school and 7th/8th grade Spanish classes will follow themed days: Leer Lunes (Reading Monday), Target Language Tuesday, Música Miércoles (Music Wednesday), Juego Jueves (Game Day Thursday) and Cultura Viernes. This gives students the opportunity to be exposed to the language from all angles while also providing structure and consistency.
Next week, we will begin our themed units: ¡Todo sobre mi (All about me!) for 7th/8th grade and ¿Cómo eres? (What are you like?) for High School. Each unit will last about 6 weeks but may be extended or shortened depending on student interest or how quickly each unit’s concepts are mastered. I’m so excited to see how each student grows, achieves their own personal goals and becomes more fluent in Spanish this year! It’s going to be a great year!
Please don’t hesitate to reach out if you ever have any questions/concerns/comments!
– Señora Raven