April 2017

Happy April! Spring is finally here! Take a deep breath and hold on! The end of the year madness is almost upon us! It's a good thing we have summer vacation to look forward to with everything there is to do at the end of the school year!

In Kindergarten we have learned almost all of the "Intro" vocabulary! The "Intro" is a group of commonly used nouns, verbs, and expressions that we review and practice at the beginning of every class of every grade. Every word has an action and is shown with a picture. The "Intro" is like a song or a chant, it is geared towards all types of learners, and it is fun and engaging. Since we only see students once a week for 30 minutes repetition is really important. The "Intro" is the foundation that is used to enable students to begin communicating with each other. It is about 90 words and expressions in total! It's quite an accomplishment. Good job, Kindergarteners!

In April we are going to work on expressing preferences (Me gusta/No me gusta), feelings, food, and weather.

In first grade we are learning and practicing the days of the week. Lunes (Monday), martes (Tuesday), miércoles (Wednesday), jueves (Thursday), viernes (Friday), sábado (Saturday), and domingo (Sunday). A couple of trivia facts are...in Spanish speaking countries their calendars start the week with Mondays and finish with Sundays. Also they do not capitalize their days of the week or months.

We watched a funny video by Señor Jordan about the days of the week. We have also been singing a days of the week song by Rockalingua. We are just beginning the story of "La Oruga Muy Hambrienta" (The Very Hungry Caterpillar). In April we are going to focus on vocabulary from "The Very Hungry Caterpillar", on preferences (me gusta/no me gusta), and on weather vocabulary.

In the beginning of March second grade worked on some alphabet skits to celebrate the visit by author, Jerry Pallotta. Due to timing the students didn't have a lot of practice with the alphabet before they did the skits. They did a fantastic job. I am so proud of their videos (see below). A couple of trivia facts about the Spanish alphabet are... the letter "e" is the most common letter in both English and Spanish, the letter "w" is the least used letter in Spanish, and the Spanish alphabet has 27 letters. The extra letter is "ñ". In the past "ch" and "ll" were considered letters but were officially removed by the Royal Spanish Academy in 2010.

We have been continuing to practice the alphabet. We have been singing an alphabet song to review and we have been playing hangman to reinforce our practice of the alphabet. In April we are going to work on weather vocabulary, days of the week, months, preferences (me gusta/no me gusta), and food.

I plan every lesson with the goals of comprehensible input and communication. Comprehensible input means that when I am speaking in Spanish I use pauses, hand gestures, props, and pictures so that students are able to understand what I am communicating to them.  They may not understand every word but they understand the overall idea of what I am trying to communicate. In every lesson I ask myself am I keeping students active and engaged, am I staying in the target language 90% of the time, and am I giving students an opportunity to communicate in Spanish? I don't always reach those goals with as much success as I would like but I am always getting better (mostly because I am learning as much from my students as they are learning from me). I am so excited to see what students can do even with only 30 minutes once a week. It amazes me! I am so glad to have the opportunity to witness their growth. It is so rewarding!

One of my parents is a coordinator for CCI Greenheart, a program that hosts foreign exchange students.  She needs host families for French teens that are coming to stay this summer for 3-8 weeks.  Her name is Brittany Ortiz and her phone number is 205-617-4438.  If you are interested, feel free to contact her.  

If you have any concerns or questions please feel free to contact me.   Have a goodnspring and happy April!

2nd Grade
ABC Video Skits

Mrs. Riddle's Kindergarten Class
Practicing "Los Sentimientos"

First Grade Practicing "Los Días de la Semana"
Mrs. Blythe's Class

First Grade
Practicing "Los Días de la Semana"