Movie Guide: In the Time of the Butterflies

My Spanish 3 class is off to an amazing start!

We began the year with Felipe Alou from TPRS Publishing, and I am SO proud of all my students have done in these short 10 days.  We’ve discussed what makes a good or bad leader using activities from the Teacher’s Guide, a basic Dominican Republic geography from Martina Bex, and read Chapter 1 already.  I started with these activities before a movie for a variety of reasons: I wanted to tap into their Spanish knowledge from day 1 and homecoming is this week and full of irregular schedules – which is perfect for a movie!

We watched In the Time of the Butterflies this week and completed this viewing guide (inspired by Kara Jacobs’ formatting of her El libro de la vida viewing guide).  Please feel free to use what is helpful to you and your students, but do not take it and sell it!  Additionally, if you have suggestions please make a comment on the Google Doc so that we can improve it for other teachers.  Questions are in Spanish for students to answer, but we did have to watch with English audio and Spanish subtitles as I could not find a Spanish version in time.

I highly recommend you use this film with the Felipe Alou novel or even on its own.  My students were rooting for Minerva throughout the entire film.  One boy shouted “Women power!” when Minerva beats General Trujillo with the dice.  Other students exclaimed that the sisters did not deserve to die – that no one deserves to die or be treated as those in the Dominican Republic.  One boy connected the thought and said not even General Trujillo deserves to be killed.  At the end of the day, a girl said that it was important to know about such historical events instead of sweeping them under the rug.

Before continuing to chapter 2, students will research General Trujillo’s dictatorship and create a timeline of his reign using Time Toast.

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