Spanish 2 Week 1 Plans to Build a Community

I have to confess that I’ve never been a fan of teaching Spanish 2.  In my experience, this is where I see the biggest  gaps between the high-performing and low-performing students and it’s when those that are seeking their 2 year minimum rear their distaste for Spanish and try to just get by.  Up until this semester, it was also the class when I began stressing past tenses (both preterite and imperfect).  I found myself dreading my Spanish 2 class last semester because they frequently complained about how boring class was (!), they would sneak their phones in even after I gave warnings (one girl even answered a non-important phone call in class!), and I found myself speaking more and more English in an attempt just to make it through.  In my six years of teaching only two different sections of Spanish 2 stick out as enjoyable for me.  You probably now understand why I don’t have very many posts with a “Spanish 2” tag and you might be surprised to find out that the majority of my current teaching assignment is… yes, you guess it!…. Spanish 2!

This semester I am dedicating myself to Spanish 2 because (A) it’s the only prep I have this semester and (B) because I want to conquer this mysterious beast.  I have had many chats with my colleague about how I want to change this course.  The “meat” of the course, so to speak, will be Robo en la noche and Los Baker van a Perú.  However, I’m still toying with how I am going to change this all up to better fit what I am looking for.  Although, I am very pleased with how the first week of getting to know one another has gone!

Here is what we did our first week together to build up our class community:

Day 1 – Block period of 60 minutes

  • Shake hands at door a la Capturing Kids Hearts
  • Attendance – worked on estoy presente and prefiero
  • Circle name game – expanded a few times
  • Fill in our Sapos Verdes.  I took this from Bryce Hedstrom and my Sapos Verdes are clipart frogs and beneath them students complete the sentences beaneath: (1) Me llamo… (2) Mi cumpleaños es el __ de _____.
  • Goodbye saying – borrowed and adapted from Bryce Hedstrom’s

Day 2 – Block period of 70 minutes

  • Shake hands at door a la Capturing Kids Hearts
  • Attendance – asked students who their Spanish 1 profe was using tenía and era
  • Beginning Routine – days, date, spell, chant, weather, cumpleaños (we’re using these songs/rhymes that I borrowed and adapted from this song), events in school (games, practices, competitions), announcements (good news)
  • Jeopardy with famous people using numbered head style.  Students got into groups, each student in the group received a number 1-5, and they gave themselves a Spanish nickname.  I handed each student a whiteboard and marker.  I then displayed a picture of a celebrity.  Students had 5 seconds or so to confer with their group and everyone was expected to write down they answer (preceded by se llama).  At the end of the time, I called out a number and those students in the group showed me their answers.  So if I called out tres there was one student in each group with the number 3 (for a total of 5 students in class) who held up their board.  The typical assigning of points went on.
  • Todo sobre mí – I borrowed a Todo sobre mí template from Carolina at Fun For Spanish Teachers and wrote up a Todo sobre mí about myself to share with my students.  I love how colorful her template and I also liked how limited her example was so I wouldn’t scare off my students.  I then provided them with Carolina’s template in Google Slides and Spanish texts for them to fill in.
  • Time to make their own.  Students had around 20 minutes to work on it.
  • Goodbye saying – borrowed and adapted from Bryce Hedstrom’s

Day 3 – Block period of 70 minutes

  • Shake hands at door a la Capturing Kids Hearts
  • Attendance
  • Beginning Routine – days, date, spell, chant, weather, cumpleaños, events, announcements (good news)
  • Presentation about our singer of the week (or first two weeks!) Aldrey.  This was modeled after Karac Jacobs version created for Alvaro Solar.
  • Activity 1 (Cloze listening) out of La Lista Song Packet
  • Presentations – Half of the class gave their Todo sobre mí presentations.  I asked some questions here and there.
  • Goodbye saying – borrowed and adapted from Bryce Hedstrom’s

Day 4 – Block period of 70 minutes

  • Shake hands at door a la Capturing Kids Hearts
  • Attendance
  • Beginning Routine – days, date, spell, chant, weather, cumpleaños, events, announcements (good news)
  • Activity 2 (match 5 phrases from song to an image) out of La Lista Song Packet
  • Presentations – second half
  • El Juego Injusto/The Unfair Game – I played El Juego Injusto (found here on Martina Bex’s blog).  Students answer questions.  If they are correct they find out how many points it’s worth but they do not know if those points are negative or positive.  The group than tells me if they want the points or if another team receives them… and then I reveal if they’re negative or positive points.  I stressed asking students what number they wanted (quieres/quiero) and the questions they had to answer in the game were questions about their peers.  I tried to have a good mixture of questions – who, what, where, and when – and there was one question for each student.
  • Goodbye saying – borrowed and adapted from Bryce Hedstrom’s

So there you go – my first week with Spanish 2!

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8 thoughts on “Spanish 2 Week 1 Plans to Build a Community

  1. I agree with the challenge of Spanish 2. I work in a small school and I always have two periods of Spanish 2 students. One period is almost always a high achieving class because they are all in honors courses, so therefore they all have similar schedules since there is only one period of each honors class offered. Almost every student as an A in the class. My other class is all over the place as far as proficiency. Many students should still be in Spanish 1, while others are as high achieving as my other period. While I am learning better ever year how to adapt/differentiate my curriculum for my students, I find that the attitude, the indifference is my biggest obstacle. No matter what I do, it falls flat. I love them, but it is like pulling teeth to get any positive energy from them. I find myself making them write more than my other class, since they won’t speak. And I am their Spanish 1 teacher! My failure! But when they just plain don’t care it is so hard to reach them. In other words, the struggle is real for me and I look forward to your reflections. I have been following your blog and ideas for awhile.

  2. Suzanne – please know you are not alone! You are describing my situation at my old school and while my new situation is a little different there are similarities! Last semester I found myself resorting to too much English in Spanish 2 because I was tired of combating their negativity. I truly hope by focusing on each other and having fun in the target language that I can eliminate the negativity of semesters past. I hope I’m able to provide something useful for you this semester! Thanks for reading =)

  3. Pingback: Canción de la semana: La Lista por Aldrey | La Clase de la Señora Dentlinger

  4. Can you elaborate a little more on your beginning routine of good news and spell? I understand the other ones and do most of them but I am intrigued to see what you spell and how the good news celebrating goes! Thanks for sharing!

  5. Pingback: My Beginning of Class Routine | La Clase de la Señora Dentlinger

  6. Pingback: Spanish 2 Week 2 Plans to Build a Community | La Clase de la Señora Dentlinger

  7. Pingback: Spanish 2 Week 3 Plans | La Clase de la Señora Dentlinger

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