Students in St. James’ Spanish class are learning the Spanish word for certain farm animals, including goat, horse, cow, sheep, pig, and dog. They are also learning new sight words such as over there, here, on the top, etc. I am using different teaching methods to help students learn vocabulary and conversational Spanish. One method is to divide students in small groups and give them assignments to build vocabulary and have short conversations in Spanish. The conversations are designed to help them retain old vocabulary and learn new words. They are engaged and love working together.
Students in St. James’ Spanish class continue to expand their vocabulary, learning phrases such as ¡Feliz Navidad y Próspero Año Nuevo!, árbol de Navidad, and Niño Dios. The students love their holiday arts and crafts that they made in the class. They made pulseras nivideñas, árbolitos de navidad, and muñecos de nieve. We even learned some riddles in Spanish.
Students continue to learn how to ask questions in Spanish. For example, they learned how to ask a person what is their favorite book. To do this, they first had to learn words to start a questions, such as why, what, when, where, which, who, and how. Now students are learning how to write short sentences in Spanish by using vocabulary they learned in previous lessons.
Students in St. James’ Spanish class continue to expand their vocabulary and learn about Mexican culture. They learned why and how Mexicans celebrate the Day of the Dead and they learned how to ask questions in Spanish, such as how to ask a person what is their favorite color. To do this, they first had to learn words to start a question, such as why, what, when, where, which, who, and how. In addition to learning nouns, students are tackling the most difficult aspect of Spanish: memorizing how to conjugate important irregular verbs, such as “ser” (to be) and “ir” (to go). To consolidate what we learned, we reviewed material from past lessons.
St. James students in Spanish class continue to have fun in October as they learn new vocabulary. They learned the Spanish words for family members (grandmother, grandfather, mother, father, son, daughter, uncle, and aunt), and the Spanish words for parts of the body (head, shoulders, knees, feet, eyes, ears, mouth, and nose). They are also learning how to sound out words in Spanish and how to conjugate a few regular verbs. To consolidate what we learned, we review material from past lessons, such as how to count and write Spanish numbers.
During the month of September, St. James students learned how the people of Mexico celebrate their independence. They also learned some details about how Mexico achieved independence and the names of some of the leaders. Students expanded their Spanish vocabulary, learning colors, pronouns and some verbs. While learning Spanish, we are also learning about Mexican food and culture.
In Spanish class the students are delightful and eager to learn. We have done drawings, enjoyed singing songs, learned by listening, and a lot more is coming. We have learned how to introduce ourselves in Spanish and we are having a good time. Learning a foreign language should be fun, and so far it has been!
Pre-k and Kindergarten are learning the alphabet and words for places in our community. Pre-k is also practicing our songs for Grandparents' Day.
First and Second grade are studying classroom objects vocabulary.
3rd grade just finished a unit on classroom things.
Fourth graders are working on the days of the week in Spanish.
Fifth grade is learning professions vocabulary.
Sixth grade is learning infinitives which is the first step in learning the Spanish verb system.
In Pre-k through First Grade, we are singing, marching and doing jumping jacks with our vocabulary words and phrases. We are also tracing and drawing pictures of our vocabulary.
In Second through Sixth grades, we are playing games to learn our vocabulary. We have played Review-O-Rama ( a relay game) and bingo. We are also performing dialogs in Sixth Grade, and we are doing written work in all the classes.
Here are the points of emphasis for the various levels of Spanish in the new year. PreK will be studying the Spanish alphabet. They will learn to write and say each letter, as well as learning vocabulary to accompany each letter.
In kindergarten through second grade, the students will learn to spell and write vocabulary previously acquired orally. Third through sixth grade will learn new vocabulary as well as mastering points of grammar necessary for forming sentences.
Here is an update about what we will be doing between now and Christmas. In Pre-K through 2nd grade we will be learning Spanish shapes. Pre-k and Kindergarten will be doing total physical response activities, shapes videos, and drawing / tracing worksheets. First and Second Grade will be doing these activities as well as sentences using shapes with colors and other adjectives.
Third through sixth grade will be learning about definite and indefinite articles as well as adjective agreement. Our vocabulary focus will still be body parts. Activities will vary in difficulty for the different grade levels.
All classes will be learning about Christmas customs in Hispanic countries. We will be busy between now and La Navidad.
Spanish class is very busy this week. Our students are currently learning parts of the body in Spanish. This week we are learning head (la cabeza), hair (el pelo), eyes (los ojos), ears (las orejas), and hombros (shoulders). Pre-k and kindergarten are watching children's videos over parts of the body. They are also drawing faces, pasting labeled parts on paper, and tracing the words. First and second grade are drawing and labeling faces as well as writing the vocabulary.
Third through sixth grade are reviewing parts of the body by watching children's videos, drawing and labeling, doing a vowel puzzle as well as a crossword.
I am using TPR (total physical response), a method developed by James Asher, in all of the classes. It involves me giving commands and the students acting out the command. An example is toquese la cabeza (touch your head). The students act out the command in groups, pairs, and individually. This method is effective and keeps the students' affective filter low, which is important when learning a language.
I am very fortunate to have the opportunity to teach at St. James. I look forward to a successful school year.