Inside: 5 Comprehensible Input for Spanish class to engage students. Try one out this week to incorporate something new to spice up the end of the school year, with adaption for distance learning.
Hi friends! It is Allison and here are some ways I incorporate comprehensible input based activities in my deskless Spanish classes, as well as adaptations for distance learning during this crazy time. You can see all of my posts for distance learning here. We can make it to the end friends! It is the home stretch!
Special Person Interviews
The idea of interviewing students in class is from Bryce Hedstrom. I personally tried it out multiple times semi unsuccessfully until I hit my stride using special person interviews with high frequency verb units. Below is what I have found works best with my own secondary classes.
In all of my classes we typically start Mondays with a “Weekend Talk” or “Weekend Chat.” Spending a few minutes casually chatting in Spanish about the weekend makes class interesting and relevant. It shows you care about your students as people.
This check in also gives a teacher SO MUCH information of how to adapt class, personalize and make things relevant, and to build a positive classroom community. As an added bonus it is a sneaky way to get in repetitions of high frequency words in the preterite or completed past tense.
As with anything variety is the spice of life, so I like to mix up how we weekend chat. This Weekend Chat resource is my ready to go slide show of ideas to project and go Monday morning. I also have a Weekend Chat Find Someone Who that I like to have printed and ready to go for a no prep activity for any level any Monday.
For even more ideas check out the blog post 5 Ways to mix up Weekend Talk.
**Distance learning adaption – Use this slideshow on Monday to talk about the weekend in the past.
Use this slideshow on Friday to talk about what they WILL do using the future.
Movie Talk is a technique for language learning developed by Dr. Ashley Hastings. Basically, the quick summary is: Movie Talk is a activity involving playing a short, muted video clip. While it plays, teacher explains it in COMPREHENSIBLE language.
The teacher frequently pauses the video clip, asking questions, which circle and repeat the target structures. The goal is not to narrate everything happening, but instead focus on comprehensible language. This focused language narrows in on the structures that the teacher wishes to emphasize.
I personally prefer to use screenshots in a slide show to narrate the story in advance. I often to do not even tell students that what I am showing them is actually a music video, short film, movie or TV show. After discussing the story, personalizing it for students, then we watch the actual video with sound.
You can make an entire week or more unit just using one video if you include pre-watching input and post watching activities and extension.If you want to dig deeper, here are a few more resources on the Movie Talk technique my post on movie talk , Movie Talk – History, Movie Talk by Haiyun Lu & Movie Talk by Martina Bex.
**Distance learning adaption – Record video of yourself using this technique. Then upload it to Edpuzzle with comprehension checks included.
A core component of my comprehensible input focused classes is reading. We free read at least two times a week from my Class Library. For me, this time has very little accountability for us and is just about enjoying and reading comprehensible readers.
Sometimes we do a little chat with a partner after reading. Also, after finishing a book, there could be a short reflection. Overall, it is all to build enjoyment of books.
I also center my curriculum on Class Novels. This post on teaching a novel 101 gives a lot more information of how I do this. I also have over 80 posts with the label novels on Mis Clases Locas with specific in depth information on particular novels.
**Distance learning adaption – Get PDF readers from El Tuerto Guty to keep students reading, either as free reading, or a class novel.
Input Heavy Games
At this point in the school year, normally everyone is a little antsy, and this year with all the crazy is no exception. When we are together at the end of the year, I personally try to incorporate a lot Movement in my classes. This means Brain Breaks, Review Games and as many input heavy games for Spanish class as possible for maximum comprehensible input in Spanish class.
There are so many games out there, so I think the key is mixing it up to keep students on their toes. At the same time many games can be reused with new content to keep them fresh. Some games that I often come back about once per novel are running dictation, The Marker Game and GimKit.
A new one that I just tried as a part of game stations and my students loved was the meme game. You can also pretty much turn anything into a game by calling it one. Just getting out whiteboards or involving a ball, and it is a game!
**Distance learning adaption – For distance learning these games can still be played! Read this post for how to play virtual games with students over zoom.
Even More Ideas
Do you still want more ideas for comprehensible input in Spanish class? Here are other ways to incorporate more CI this year
– PQA (personalized question & answer) – basically talking about anything in the TL
– Tell/Ask a Story
– Shift to CI post
Here’s to a great end the school year friends! We can do it!