Topic Thread

1.  Elementary CI Curriculum

Posted 3 days ago
Hello, We are expanding our language program to the elementary school in a FLES format (as a "special" twice a week). I am looking for guidance/recommendation/direction on creating CI/TPRS friendly curriculum. Any help is appreciated!

------------------------------
Amy Hubertus
amy_hubertus@ewg.k12.ri.us
------------------------------


2.  RE: Elementary CI Curriculum

Posted 2 days ago
Hi, Amy, 

I am at an IB school and in my 13th year here teaching Spanish to K-5th.  I started teaching in the specials rotation seeing my classes once a week for 50 minutes, but the school kept growing and growing until for the last several years I've been on a 7 day rotation.  Admin finally gave us another personal unit and now there are 2 of us here and we are on a 4 day rotation.  Much better!  The kids are so capable.

Because we are an IB school, one of my jobs is to connect in some relevant way to at least 2 of the units of inquiry for each grade level.  I and the other PYP Spanish teachers in the district have worked really hard to develop a curriculum that does a myriad of things:

First, we looked at all the resources we had, along with the units of inquiry for each grade level and designated a "Spanish-speaking area of the world" for each one.  Here is what we decided on:

K - gets an overview of how many Spanish-speaking countries there are, where Spanish originated, how it spread and where all the Spanish speaking countries are located.  

1st - South America

2nd - Spain

3rd - Mexico

4th - Central America

5th - the Spanish-speaking islands of the Caribbean (Cuba, Puerto Rico, Dominican Republic)

We then chose at least 2 unis of inquiry for each grade level that we thought we could authentically connect to.  For example, 2nd grade has a unit with the central idea "Living things share natural resources."  We decided to focus on the Iberian lynx and why they are endangered.  To prepare them for this, we used backward design, looking at what we wanted the students to be able to do and what language they needed in order to do it.  We use a lot of cognates as a basis for our scaffolding, so we started with all the big gatos we could think of - pantera, leon, tigre, leopardo, lince, puma, guepardo.  We taught the students describing words - El gato tiene rayas/manchas.  Es grande/pequeno.  We taught them how to use words like vive and come and hay/no hay.  We built in a ton of songs and activities for practicing these, including TPRS stories.  In the end, we showed a segment of the Jeff Corwin video when he is in Spain and goes to the Jerez zoo to show us the baby lynx.  He talks about it in English, but the segment is very short and then we talk about it in Spanish.  The students wrap up with a CLOZE activity and finally a lynx foldable to take home that has the paragraph in Spanish that we have been prepping for and working on.  This is just a part of the 2nd grade year.  They also memorize a poem after prepping for it with a lot more language learning.  At the end of the year, they will do a unit with the central idea "Discoveries change the way we live."  We have an awesome lesson about how the making of tortillas has changed over the year - from grinding the corn by hand, to using a hand press, to buying the masa already ground and cooking it in a stove, or buying already cooked tortillas that just need to be reheated.  We have some authentic video clips of people doing each one and talking about it.  Although this is actually a unit for Mexico, it is the end of the year and 2nd grade will be studying Mexico next year as 3rd graders.  It is such a perfect fit, that we decided to keep it and get the students excited about next year.  

We try to have a 'can-do' statement for every class so that we stay focused in what we are trying to do.  It might be "I can name the family members in Spanish."  or "I can use Spanish to invite someone to play with me." or "I can use Spanish ask and tell where someone is from."

In the end, we wanted to be able to talk about culture using the language (Spanish) rather than having a "break" from Spanish to teach a lesson in English about whatever connection we were trying  to make with their homeroom units.

So...I know this is a lot to take in and a lot not said, but I thought I'd give you an idea of how we designed our curriculum.  We use a ppt to guide pretty much every lesson.  These are saved to use next year.  Of course we are constantly tweaking and adding/taking away.  We come up with new ideas to take the place of those that didn't work as well as we thought they would.  And we still have a couple of lessons that are done primarily in English, but we are gradually changing those over.  We just implemented this new way of doing things last year, so we are still working on it but loving it so much!  The kids are happy and we review every classtime so that they are constantly being reminded of the can-do's they've already mastered.

If you have specific questions, don't hesitate to ask.  I love sharing and learning and collaborating with other Spanish teachers.

Best, 





--
Kim Teal
Spanish Teacher
Spicewood Elementary
Round Rock ISD
Austin, TX
512-428-3648





3.  RE: Elementary CI Curriculum

Posted 2 days ago
Thank you so much Kimberly! I love the way you guided your curriculum development and I have generated a list of questions for myself from your post to follow up on.

Amy

------------------------------
Amy Hubertus
amy_hubertus@ewg.k12.ri.us
------------------------------



4.  RE: Elementary CI Curriculum

Posted 2 days ago
Are you familiar with Carol Gaab's Cuéntame materials?  They are excellent, especially for programs transitioning to T/CI.  They allow teachers to practice the strategies while having a roadmap.  Some teachers use such CI-aligned curricula as training wheels, creating emergent stories, scenes, Movie Talk etc. after they feel confident; other teachers continue to use Cuéntame again and again.  I used Cuéntame in 3rd-4th, and could imagine usig some of the stories as early as the latter half of 2nd grade (oral, maybe not reading!)

------------------------------
Alisa Shapiro-Rosenberg
alisashapiro@winnetka36.org
------------------------------



5.  RE: Elementary CI Curriculum

Posted 2 days ago
Hi Alicia, Thank you for your input. Yes, I use Carol Gaab in the middle school but am not familiar with the elementary school set. It is good to have a recommendation. The teacher who will be in the elementary will probably be very new to TCI. 

Amy

------------------------------
Amy Hubertus
amy_hubertus@ewg.k12.ri.us
------------------------------