Bullfighting Unit: Days 6/7/8 – Manolete and Acting out the fight

Man oh man is school winding down!  As of Day 6, there are two more days of this week, one full week after this, and then it’s semester test time!  Yikes!

Today I pulled out some of the Essential questions I told students we should be able to answer (did on Day 1).  Students were able to easily identify what we still needed to work on and this is how I’m guiding our last few days together.

Day 6: Manolete.  Here was the lesson plan: 

– Review our Essential Question – take inventory of them.

– Went over and corrected questions from yesterday’s Blood Brothers video.  I asked students what they thought was important enough to show up on a test, and surprisingly they did a phenomenal job!

– Read the Spanish Wikipedia article about Manolete on Wikipedia (this entire idea came from Carrie Toth!) and students chose to complete either the Peas in a Pod or Timeline activity from Martina Bex’s Reading Activities download.  Before beginning, I told students I chose a Wikipedia article because students are familiar with the format and where to find information.  I was very surprised at what students gathered from the side box and the first paragraph!  This is the first time any of my students saw the words “nacimiento” and fallecimiento” and actually understood them!  However, the rest of the article – the meat of the article – my level 1 and level 2 kiddos struggled with.  In the future, I want to make my own comprehensible input (hello, my weekend project!) so that students can actually understand just how important he is.

Day 7  & 8: Acting out the bullfight.  Here was the lesson plan: 

– We acted out and narrated a bullfight!  I prefaced this by telling students that one of their speaking finals will be to narrate a bullfight for me in Spanish.  To begin, I put up a “Plaza de Toros” sign outside my door and printed out tickets (de sombra y de sol) that I handed to students.  I had a lamp of by my whiteboard to represent “sol.”  I put my desks in a circle to imitate the circular arena feel, dressed my “toro” up with this hat I purchased from Amazon and a brown blanket, borrowed my red table cloth for the cape, and grabbed the super 24 pack of white wash clothes from my closet (one of the most bizarre yet desperately needed Christmas traditions that my husband’s family does!) to use for our white handkerchiefs.  My horse this time was a broom with a hand-drawn horse head attached to the bottom part, but next year I’m hoping to have one of those horses on a stick or possibly a rocking horse – not the most realistic looking, but adds some humor to the acting!  Some schools are strict about weapons, but I was fortunate enough to use some cardboard replicas of the sword and “banderillas” without it being a problem. I labeled these in sharpie to help students while doing PQA. While these worked perfectly for our current purposes, I definitely plan on adding to my prop box for bullfighting next year!

Students had SO much fun!  My grouchiest of grouches were smiling and laughing, other students were trying to find out what we were up to, and best of all I believe my level 1 students can actually describe a bullfight in the target language!  I am so proud of them – for acting as crazy as they did, for how well they participated orally, and for humoring me with this unit!

Here’s my disclaimer in here:  I am not a bullfighting expert! While creating this unit I am applying what I learned during my time abroad in Spain as well as learning along with my students.  If you notice an error in any of these works, please contact me so I can correct it!

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