Archive for the 'Spanish' Category

Students Paired Oral Testing Better Than With Examiner Modern Language

Based on Brooks, L. (2009). “Interacting in pairs in a test of oral proficiency; co-constructing a better performance”. Language Testing 26(3): 341-366.

Brooks’  research shows that students who are tested in pairs outperform students who are tested one-on-one with the examiner.  In addition, the students’ interactions were more complex and revealed that students co-constructed a more linguistically demanding performance. In addition, when students worked in pairs, they more closely resembled the oral interactions typical of a real conversation.  In paired testing students demonstrated a wider range of interactions (17) to the individual format (10).   The paired students mostly commonly had these interactions: seeking confirmation, asking a question, asking for agreement, clarification requests, and prompting elaboration, finishing sentences, and referring to partner’s ideas.  Over half of all interactions in the one-on-one with the examiner was asking a question.

As Modern Language teachers, we will want to encourage oral communication in the classroom.  We can have our students do more oral work in pairs.  We can structure students speaking  from very basic conversations up to free-flowing spontaneous conversations about common topics. Our scaffolding will allow our Second Language students to have more complex and personally meaningful conversations.

Most of the  Spanish activities I have developed are for pairs. A few of them are

Spanish Tell Me About Yourself Substitution Sentences    (Partners substitute in their own answers to tell about themselves

Spanish Conversation Questions Spontaneous Speaking Partners  (Partners ask basic questions and then variations on those questions)
Spanish Friend /Family Member Detailed Description – Partner Talk   (Each partner talks about a family member using possible words)

My Spanish spontaneous speaking activities (20+) includes Modified Speed Dating (Students ask  a question from a card-whole class), Structured Speaking (Students substitute in or select words to communicate in pairs),  Role Playing (Students talk as people in pictures or drawing from 2-4 people) and Speaking Mats (Can talk using a wide variety of nouns, verbs and adjectives to express their ideas- pairs or small group),  Spontaneous Speaking (based on visuals or topics in pairs),  and Grammar speaking games (pairs or small group). Available for a nominal fee at Teacherspayteachers:  http://bit.ly/tpthtuttle

My three formative assessment books:   http://is.gd/tbook

 

World Language Students’ Scaffolded Speaking Output With Substitutions

We teach world languages so that our students can speak it yet we do not teach them  how to speak.   Students identify  speaking in the foreign language as creating the most anxiety in language learning.    Young, D. (1990). “An Investigation of Students’ Perspective on Anxiety and Speaking.” Foreign Language Annals. 23:539-553

Krashen explained the importance of input, students listening to us as we speak the target language; however, he stressed that comprehensible output is the goal of language acquisition.  Krashen, S. (2003). Explorations in Language Acquisition and Use. Portsmouth: Heinemann.

The world language teachers’ overemphasis on input, their talking in the classroom, creates a myth of promoting  student speaking.

I watched many Olympic swimming events. I watched for many hours. Can I swim any better now than  before watching them? No!
I watch musicals on TV, go to musicals in theaters,  and listen to choral groups.  Can I sing any better now with all that input? No!
Every day I  watch marathon runners go past my house early in the morning.  Can I run faster and do a marathon from all their input?  No!

Input provides the initial sounds, sentence patterns, etc.  for students.  However, students have to move to guided  or scaffolded output so they can produce the sounds and,  more importantly, the sentences to converse with one another.  Students do not  magically go from hearing our speaking to their conversing in the target language.  We need to give them some assistance as they begin to put together sentences.

One technique is to provide the students with  modern language sentences which contain choices. They select what they want to say from the available words/phrases. They say what is meaningful to them through the selection of words/phrases. They do create sentences on their own.

Scaffolded sentences provide a starting point for narrating and conversing.  In one substitution  exercise, the students change an underlined word to be true for them  such as  “I live in Syracuse.”   For example, I have for Spanish students a “Tell Me about Yourself Activity” in which students say 13 changes, 22 or 34 changes to tell about themselves (Spanish Tell Me About Yourself Substitution Sentences).  In another variation, the students change a word in over 30  questions such as  “¿Te gustar jugar al béisbol?” in Spanish Conversation Questions Spontaneous Speaking Partners .   Once  students do these scaffolded sentences, they better understand how they can recombine sentences and questions to converse with one another. They move toward spontaneous speaking.

My Spanish spontaneous speaking activities (20+) includes Modified Speed Dating (Students ask  a question from a card), Structured Speaking (Students substitute in or select words to communicate),  Role Playing (Students talk as people in pictures or drawing) and Speaking Mats (Can talk using a wide variety of nouns, verbs and adjectives to express their ideas),  Spontaneous Speaking (based on visuals or topics),  and Grammar speaking games. Available for a nominal fee at Teacherspayteachers:  http://bit.ly/tpthtuttle

My three formative assessment books:   http://is.gd/tbook

Spontaneous Speaking in Modern Languages – Not Just Saying Grammar Exercises

I recently heard a modern language teacher brag about how much speaking her students did in the classroom. She said that her students orally did every book grammar exercise. She was amazed at how much they were speaking.  Yes, the students were orally saying the grammar exercises but they were not spontaneous speaking.  They could do the exercises perfectly but they could not use those  grammar concepts in their own conversation about a topic.  I asked her how closely the exercises resembled a real world conversation and she countered that the students  had to know every grammatical form to be able to communicate.

To change grammar exercises to real speaking, we have to ask ourselves, “How would a target language person  use this grammar point in an authentic conversation?” and try to duplicate that in the classroom.  We can start our students off with just responding to their partners. For example, in teaching the Spanish preterite tense, students can start on their path to  spontaneous speaking by seeing a long list of common verbs, selecting 10 verbs that describe what they did do in the past and then saying a past time word like yesterday or the past week  and the verb in   the “I” form.  I always have my students  do at least a three part sentence (Past time word +subject/verb +what or where or how such as “Yesterday I ate at McDonalds.”  As a student says the sentence to his/her partner , the partner agrees or disagrees by repeating it or modifying it; a modification may be “Yesterday I ate at Burger King.”,  “Last week I ate at McDonalds.”, or “Yesterday I ate two hamburgers and French Fries at McDonalds.”  Once students realize that their partners are listening and responding to what they say, they begin to make more realistic sentences.  Then the partners say a sentence and the listening students respond. They alternate until they each have said eight sentences. By saying their sentences and having their partners respond, they find out more about their partners. They start to use  language in an interactive manner where they have to listen carefully to their partner and respond accordingly.

Harry Tuttle has  over 15 Spanish spontaneous speaking activities at Teacherspayteachers: http://bit.ly/tpthtuttle

Tuttle’s formative assessment books:   http://is.gd/tbook

Flickr Vocabulary Pictures Based on Real Objects For Your Class

I have been having my Spanish students take  real life pictures of vocabulary items  that are in our textbook and  put those pictures in my class Flickr  account. The textbook’s drawings lack realism (what is that?).  Most students used their Smartphones. When students can see a real object such as a plate, they can  better learn the word.

Elementary teachers, special education teachers, modern language  / foreign language teachers, ESL teachers, and   people working with refugees can use these pictures.   The pictures usually have no words.  They can be used in any language.

There are about 600 pictures ; some categories such as comida (food) are very large with subcategories while others have about  ten pictures.   I will update this blog as the students add more categories.

To use these free pictures in your class   1) go to flickr.com, 2) click on the word Search,  3) Click on Tags Only at the far right,   4) Then in the search box, type in spancon + one of the following category names such as spancon +hora  (for clocks showing various times). spancon is the name for my class so you only see my students’ pictures of the category.

To show the pictures in a slideshow,  1) click on the slideshow icon (a screen)  in the upper right, 2) Click on Options in the upper right, 3) Adjust the time from slow  to medium to fast; slow  is about seven seconds between slides and  4) click on the X in the upper right corner to close the  Option window.  When the left  bottom side displays a triangle, the slide show is paused.  Click on the triangle and two bars appear, the slideshow is running. The first  slide will not change for a few seconds since it is on a time delay; just wait.)  You can also just click on the pictures at the bottom of the slide show to show select pictures.  Students can identify the vocabulary and even say very short sentences before the slide changes.

The category names are in Spanish (without accent marks)
actividad (common actions)
aparato (electrical devices – phone, headphone..)
casa  (house)  with cuarto (rooms), bano (bathroom), and cocina (kitchen)
ciudad (city -mainly traffic things)
clase  (classroom objects)
clima (weather)
color (color)
comida (food) with subcategories of fruta (fruit) , verduras (vegetables), bebida (drink),
cubierto (tableware)
cuerpo (body)
deporte (sports)
hora (clock time- digital)
joyas (jewelry)
naturaleza (nature)
numero (numbers)
oficina (office things)
ocupacion (occupation, jobs=
reflexivo (reflexive actions such as to brush one’s teeth)
ropa (clothing)
salud (health related)
quehaceres (household chores

I have over 15 Spanish spontaneous speaking activities  are at Teacherspayteachers:  http://bit.ly/tpthtuttle

My formative assessment books, Formative Assessment: Responding to Your Students ; Successful Student Writing   Through Formative Assessment ; and Improving Foreign Language Speaking Through Formative Assessment , can be purchased at  http://is.gd/tbook

Intensity of Learning

People enjoy  intensity such as the intensity of a ski run, an amusement ride, diving into a lake, a round of Jeopardy, or a Soduku puzzle.

Students enjoy and benefit from class when we provide them with intensity of learning  We can give them short  activities that  are highly focused on critical learning.  As we move our students from talking about learning to  using what they are learning, many opportunities exist for intense learning.

In my Spanish class, I have my students do many one to two minute speaking activities. Each activity focuses on a specific language function such as asking for information or  persuading.   For example, in groups of two, one student looks at a picture such as a people in a mall and asks his/her partner questions while the partner answers the questions.  They do not prepare for this activity, they just dive into it. They have to combine their already learned vocabulary and grammar from previous lessons to do this activity. After this intense activity, they debrief by going over what they could do better next time and then practicing to show that they can improve. This formative assessment activity provides a intense experience for students.

In my English comp0sition class, my student write essays but they write them intense part by intense  part.  After my students have selected a topic, narrowed it down, written a thesis, and generated ideas, they spend a few minutes in organizing the ideas into a graphic organizer.  They complete the graphic organizer if any parts are missing.  One student described this as putting together a giant puzzle with a clock ticking.  He also commented that sometimes he has to create a missing puzzle piece.  When the students finish, they feel a sense of satisfaction.  A writing partner looks over their graphic organizer for the logical flow of ideas and the support of those ideas in this formative writing activity.

These intense activities require the students to use higher level thinking and to perform on the spot. Students like a challenge and that   students can climb higher academically if we give  them the opportunity.

How do you provide intense higher level learning for your students?

I have Spanish spontaneous speaking activities at Teacherspayteachers:  http://bit.ly/tpthtuttle

My formative assessment books:   http://is.gd/tbook

Spontaneous Speaking in Foreign Language/Modern Language: Contrasting Spontaneous Speaking to Structured Speaking

There are two very different types of speaking in the modern language  or foreign language classroom.

Very structured speaking- mechanical speaking

…. Focuses more on the correctness of vocabulary and grammar than on the actual content. “What did you buy on Monday? I bought shoes. What did you buy on Tuesday? I bought a blouse.”

…. Uses the same vocabulary and grammar of the question in the answer. “Does she go to the store? Yes, she goes to the store.”

… Uses convergent questions (When? Where? Who?) which only have a few limited answers. Each answer is highly predictable.

… Often has different forms of the same verb in subsequent statements/questions. “I go to the store. My father goes to the store. My brothers go to the store.”

… Limits the questions/ statements to one topic such as places such as in the following fill-in-the-blank exercise. “I go to the store. I go to the mall. I go to the park.”

… Does not follow the logical order of a conversation in subsequent sentences/ questions but these sentences/ questions exist only to practice the indicated grammar or vocabulary. “Where is the bed? It is in the bedroom. Where is the stove. It is in the kitchen.”
… Is not interactive except in that the partner asks a predetermined question which the person answers.

… Is not personal. Usually a student does not express his/ her own opinion but follows the prescribed format.

… Most like a textbook/ workbook exercise

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Spontaneous speaking / free speaking

… Focuses on the actual meaning/content of the answer, not on the form (grammar or vocabulary). “Do you like winter? No, I hate it.”

… Uses different words in the answer or subsequent statements. “How was class? I took a test.”

…Uses divergent questions (Why? How? which leads to a huge array of possible answers. The answers probably are unpredictable. “Why do you think the team will win”?
… Moves the conversation/ monologue forward through subsequent statements/questions “After I left school, I went to my favorite restaurant. I had two hamburgers with fries.”

… Guides the conversation /monologue through many related topics. Students may start talking about school, then talk about sports, and then talk about things they will do this weekend.

… Requires the partner to react with the conversation. There is give and take during the conversation. “I thinking of going to a horror movie. How does that sound to you?”

… Is very personal. The speaker offers his/her opinions and views and tells how he/she does something. “ I never order onions on my pizza. I do have double cheese.”

… Most like a real conversation.

Do your  modern language/ foreign language students do more spontaneous speaking or structured speaking?

I have Spanish activities that lead to spontaneous speaking at Teacherspayteachers:  http://bit.ly/tpthtuttle

My formative assessment books:   http://is.gd/tbook

Mobile Learning and pictures What’s the real story?

A friend used to listen to a presentation of a new technique, a new program, or a new textbook and say “What’s the real story?” His question implied that when we hear the “wonders and amazements” of a new thing, we need to become aware of  what else is involved.  He disliked “All you have to do is…” because he knew that much else was really  involved.

Unfortunately when a new technology such as mobile learning hits, we hear the “it’s amazing” stories. The educators of the amazing stories do not tell  the reality of what did not work or the difficulties along the way.  I heard someone talk about how the students took pictures as part of a project. So, I built an assignment around my Modern Language  Spanish students taking personal pictures of current vocabulary of daily activities.  For example, students took pictures of their friends, family or children getting dressed, brushing teeth, combing their hair, etc.   My students found it easy to take the pictures on their cell phone.  They took the ten required pictures.   However, the difficult was getting the pictures from their cell phone to a central location. Most students could only send one picture at a time.  One student downloaded his pictures to his computer and then burned them onto a CD.  Another question was where do the students send the pictures so that others can look at the pictures? The simple solution seemed to be for students to keep their pictures on their own cellphone and let other students look at their cell phones. We learned to trade cell phones for a few minutes while we did this activity.

Let’s share the realities, the fixes, the this-is-the-easy-way-to-do-it, and the lessons learned  with others as we begin this new adventure with mobile learning.

My book, Formative Assessment: Responding to Your Students, is available through Eye on Education.

Also, my  book,  Successful Student Writing Through Formative Assessment, is available through Eye on Education.

Class increase of 12 points over last semester

I give a pre-test and a post test in my Spanish course.  From the pre-test I can measure the students incoming knowledge.  From the post-test I measure their departing knowledge.   More importantly, I analyze the results of each unit test by the various categories on the test. If many students do poorly on a certain section, I reteach it.  The next semester I start out that particular point with  the reteaching material.  I also do many formative assessments so that I can give students new strategies to do better.  This semester my students did an average of 12 points better than last semester’s students.  I have analyzed the final to see the area in which they lost the most points – writing mini-compositions and have begun to figure out ways to help them. We will do more writing in class and on our class wiki. I will focus on the verb forms to tell a story such  as what I did last weekend. I will have them write out their weekend in a chronological order and make sure that they use a different verb in each sentence. We will do mini-writings over several class periods. For the final they do not need complicated sentences; they just need simple sentences that communicate different ideas.  My goal is to increase this coming semester’s average by 10 points over last semester.

By how much will you increase your class average  this coming year?

My book, Formative Assessment: Responding to Your Students, is available through Eye on Education.

Also, my  book,  Successful Student Writing Through Formative Assessment, is available through Eye on Education.

Using Modern Language (FL) Apps Even When …

I have written a blog about identifying and categorizing Spanish apps. As I’ve been thinking about the present state of modern language /foreign language apps, I’ve realized that the inadequacies of these language apps present great learning opportunities for our students.

Students can look at and do a vocabulary or phrase modern language app /foreign language app such as Learn Spanish ((Droid) or Hola (Droid)

Then

– Students can analyze what important vocabulary is missing from the topic and make a supplementary list. For example, the housing category may have tableware but not bed or chair.

– If the app only presents individual words, the students can create a meaningful target language sentence or question for each word. For example, for the word “lake”, the students may ask “What is your favorite lake?”

– Students can analyze what important phrases or questions are missing and can create those lists. They may see look at a “time”category but they find that the question “When?” is missing. They make up a question using that question word.

– They can analyze what important topics are missing from the app. Perhaps the app has housing and animals but does not have occupations and city places.

– They can see how many meaningful sentences they can create from the present vocabulary list.

– They can answer any questions given in the app. For example, they can answer “How much does this cost?” with the price of a shirt.

– They can rearrange the questions or statements to create a logical conversation about the topic.

– They can think of a typical language task for a topic such as having a dirty spoon on the restaurant table and use the existing sentences and add others to be able to get a clean spoon.

In this way, students go from consumers to producers. They analyze what they are doing to see what is missing. They think about critical vocabulary, phrases, and topics instead of simply doing a drill program. They do not just repeat but they answer or comment on. They build on. The students become language users!

How do your students deal with modern language apps that do not do everything  well?

My book, Formative Assessment: Responding to Your Students, is available through Eye on Education.

Also, my  book,  Successful Student Writing Through Formative Assessment, is available through Eye on Education.

Android Apps for Spanish – categorized for your use

Many wonderful learning apps exist for the Android devices.  However, neither the Android Market or AppBrain list the apps within any categories. For example, a search for Spanish reveals a random listing such as a vocabulary app, then a grammar app, then another vocabulary app.

Therefore, I have created  a categorized and alphabetical within that category listing of Spanish Android Apps at http://spanishandroidapps.pbworks.com.  I have the categories of dictionaries, vocabulary, grammar, culture, and lessons. So far I have gone through all of the Android Market and am half through AppBrain.  I have not listed every app;  for example, I limited the dictionary apps to about 15.

I am amazed at the number of droid apps that exist for the learning of Spanish.  I am hopeful that newer apps will be context based and develop communication skills.

What are your favorite Android learning apps?

My book, Formative Assessment: Responding to Your Students, is available through Eye on Education.

Also, my  book,  Successful Student Writing Through Formative Assessment, is available through Eye on Education.

Smartphones (Mobile Learning) Apps as Textbook Alternatives

In a previous blog, I mentioned that physical textbooks seem so “yesterday” and suggested using online resources.

I would like to enlarge on that concept through the use of Smartphone or Mobile Learning Apps.  Let’s use a Spanish class as an example.  Spanish students need to go from mere memorization to high level language use.

Students can use apps for basic memorization of words.  For example, they could use a program such as

Spanish Flashcards Free  (http://freeapk.com/app/1093_android+app+Spanish+Flashcards_1.6.html).  Likewise, they could use an   app such as 1001 Spanish Verb Android App  Free (http://androidappsgames.com/android_app_1691.html)   to learn basic verb forms and to see the various conjugations of a verb

A step up from mere memorization on individual words  is learning language phrases. The free Hola Spain Tourism HandAPP (http://www.appbrain.com/app/hola-spanish-handapp/com.movinapp.hola) has Expressions organized into categories such as Greetings, Phone, shopping (22 expressions), directions, etc..Since these are grouped into categories, the student sees both the essential questions and answers. These cover many of the common vocabulary topics presently in the school curriculum.

With these apps, students can practice on their own anytime and anyplace.The classroom time can be spent in creating conversations based on the learned words and phrases. If the student has done a practice conversation such as about health and has not remembered a certain phrase, the student can quickly review the phrases using app on the mobile device.

These few apps show that a language teacher can certainly replace a physical textbook. In a future blog, I show how students can use apps at a high language level.   Students can become more engaged and more active in their learning as they use apps

Are you app to use apps in your classroom?

My book, Formative Assessment: Responding to Your Students, is available through Eye on Education.

Also, my  book,  Successful Student Writing Through Formative Assessment, is available through Eye on Education.

21st Century Skills Critical Thinking- Fact? Inference? Judgment?

Many students need help in developing critical thinking skills as part of  the 21st century skills.  A technique that I have used both when I taught Critical Thinking courses at the college level and when I have taught higher level thinking  in my own Spanish or English  classes is Fact-Inference- Judgment.

Look at this picture taken by me  in Costa Rica:

Fact – something that is obviously (physically)  in the picture, text, movie, etc.  Everyone will agree to this fact.  For example, there are four people in the picture.  There are pigeons.

Inference- based on noticing  things in the picture, text, movie, etc., a person  makes an assumption. This assumption is only a short logical  step from the observation.   A person can state what he/she observed and what inference this lead to.  Others can easily understand the logic of going  directly from the observation to the inference.  Inference making people use statements like “Based on observing… I notice … I see and therefore …).  For example, I notice that they have on short sleeves so I infer it is warm.   It looks like there are young children, a young adult and an older adult, I assume that this is a grandmother, a daughter and her children.

A judgment is a value statement or emotional statement. Although something in the picture or text may be a springboard, there is no logical leap.  Judgments take a strong value or emotional stand on the media.  Judgments usually express their viewpoint through  opinion-based adjectives (“handsome”,  “unsafe”) , adverbs  (“dangerously”,   “peacefully”), verbs (“kill”, “love”) and nouns (“murderer”, “saint” ).  A judgment can be easily challenged by others.  Some judgments for this picture are “The family is happy”  (Not really, the little boy began to cry as the mother moved the pigeon closer to her son.” A fact is that the two older women are smiling. ) and  “Costa Rica is overrun by pigeons.” (Fact: Pigeons are in some city parks.)

As we help students to give only  facts and inferences about media, we develop their critical thinking.  As we help students to see that some statements are judgments (pure opinion not based on  facts  or inferences), we develop more critical thinkers.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

My book, Formative Assessment: Responding to Your Students, is available through Eye on Education.

Also, my  book,  Successful Student Writing Through Formative Assessment, is available through Eye on Education.

What Did I Learn From Giving the Final? What do I Do Differently?

I recently gave my Spanish final. After correcting each part, I put the grades for each part onto the final sheet and totaled up the score to get their final exam score.  However, the process for me was far from done. I then opened a spreadsheet, created a column for each category of the test and a column of student names.  I then entered the students’ grades for each part of the final and had the computer calculated the class average and the percent of that average out of a perfect score such as (class average of 22.4 out of a perfect score of 25 for a 90%).  I found out that   my students achieved a class average of  85% for speaking, 90% for listening, 76% for reading,  and 77% for culture, and a 62% for writing.  I instantly thought of  what I could do differently next semester to help the students do better. I focused in on their writing which was their lowest score.  I have decided that each week that they will write at least five sentences. I will correct their sentences more frequently (at least once a week). I realized that I have to help them understand the critical difference between the preterite and the imperfect tense since most students mixed up the two tenses in the each tense specific writing on the final.   I also thought of several strategies to improve their reading such as writing more questions for them to answer about the book “conversations”; have them practice answering questions words in class so that they are sure of the type answer. For example, the Spanish question word,  Donde,  has to be answered with a place; and have them find similar words in the question and the answer.  My goal is to increase each  of these two lowest scores so that they both are in the 85% for the next time.   I realize that I have to give my students different strategies than I gave this semester’s students. I will give formative assessments frequently to measure their growth. I look forward to the challenge and their success.

So what does your final tell you about the different strategies you might need to give your students of next year?

My  book,  Successful Student Writing Through Formative Assessment, is available through Eye on Education.

Successful Student Writing Through Formative Assessment

My book,  Formative Assessment: Responding to Your Students, is available through Eye on Education.

Reponding to Your Students

Creating Formative Feedback “I can” sheets

One way to help students and to help ourselves is to create “I Can” sheets which also list the formative feedback strategies so that we do not have to list them each time. We can use a student’s “I can” sheet and circle which formative feedback we feel will be most appropriate or have the student select. We have to verify that each activity will lead to improved learning.

For example, this partial “I can” list can be expanded to include formative feedback

___I can identify items in a topic/situation.

–I can make statements about a topic/situation.

___I can ask questions about a topic/situation

For a Spanish student who has trouble with talking and particularly talking about a topic with a visual, the “I can” statement can be expanded:

–I can make statements about a topic/situation from a visual
by describing
each person by clothing (shirt, shoes) and/or by personal description (tall, thin…),
each object by its description (color- red, shape-round) and what it is used for (There is water in the glass).
what actions are in the picture (shop, buy, sell, walk)
the nature (tree, bird) and the weather (sunny)
by saying as much as I can about any object or person before I go to the next person or object.
by listening to other students as they describe a visual and them imitating them or listening to sample speaking podcast.
by watching the “Spanish speaking” YouTube video where the instructor shows how to speak about a visual as you “read” it

By creating formative assessment “I can” sheets, we already have numerous possible formative feedback from which to select.

Do you do “I can” sheets with formative assessments so your students “Can”?

Escuela- Hispanic School Pictures from Flickr

Share these with your Spanish teachers so they can promote language use through talking and writing about hispanic schools through flickr images.

Ninos a la salida de la escuela Punta Cana. Republica Dominicana
http://www.flickr.com/photos/burtonez/273321085/

la Escuela de Lenguaje en Las Palmas
http://www.flickr.com/photos/hortensia/186009195/

Escuela de Flamenco, Cordoba, Espana
http://www.flickr.com/photos/barthelomaus/129380157/

escuela de uros, Lake Titicaca ,Peru
http://www.flickr.com/photos/28148072@N00/73302011/

Escuela Rural, Republica Dominicana
http://www.flickr.com/photos/daquellamanera/74820634/

Estudiantes en la calle, San fermines, Espana
http://www.flickr.com/photos/daquellamanera/888581808/

escuela lic. “francisco aranda” Avenida Cedeño. San Juan de los Morros. Estado Guárico. Venezuela.
http://www.flickr.com/photos/xolkan/1294975980/

Escuela D190 12/2004, La Florida, Santiago, Chile
http://www.flickr.com/photos/monky/353105663/

Escuela D190 12/2004 La Florida, Santiago, Chile
http://www.flickr.com/photos/monky/353768937/

Educación autónoma y popular! Muro de la Escuela Autónoma Rebelde Zapatista en la comunidad de San Juan de la Libertad. Chiapas, Mexico
http://www.flickr.com/photos/joserevueltas/576088432/

Revista de Gimnasia Escuela N.o 3, Ovallito, Chile
http://www.flickr.com/photos/ovallito/45500626/

 

Spanish Street (calle)Scenes Photos from Flickr

Here are a variety of hispanic streets. Please share with your Spanish teacher so that he/she can help the students to improve their speaking and writing through visuals.

CALLE

Calle de las flores, Andalucia, Espana
http://www.flickr.com/photos/guijarro85/1172646698/

Calle Zamora decorada para la navidad, Salmanca, Espana
http://www.flickr.com/photos/marioquartz/311952341/

Calle feliz, Iquitos Loreto Peru
http://www.flickr.com/photos/pierre_pouliquin/267491002/

Calle que lleva nuestro nombre, Montevideo, Uruguay
http://www.flickr.com/photos/car_tav/342443115/

Calle Obispo with the Hotel Ambos Mundos (Hemingway’s haunt), Havana, Cuba
http://www.flickr.com/photos/paulmannix/314096627/

Calle Santa Isabel, Madrid, Espana
http://www.flickr.com/photos/photocapy/399184789/

Calle del leon (hisortia, Madrid, Espana
http://www.flickr.com/photos/nafria/411676144/

Fútbol en la Calle 26 de Marzo #8, Montevideo, Uruguay
http://www.flickr.com/photos/cuducos/1633470952/

Calle del diamante, Xalapa, Mexico
http://www.flickr.com/photos/63095335@N00/361694634/

Frutería. Calle San Esteban. Sevilla, Espana
http://www.flickr.com/photos/gonzalez-alba/1458921303/

A stall in Calle Heredia, Santiago de Cuba, Cuba
http://www.flickr.com/photos/barrycornelius/802221898/

Pinturas en la Calle El Conde, Santo Domingo, República Dominicana.
http://www.flickr.com/photos/tecnorrante/99238955/

Other Spanish (Hispanic) images:

 

Spanish streets – Calle
https://eduwithtechn.wordpress.com/2007/10/30/spanish-street-callescenes-photos-from-flickr/

Spanish sports –Deporte
https://eduwithtechn.wordpress.com/2007/10/19/spanish-sport-deporte-pictures-from-flickr-for-student-conversations/

Spanish transportation Transportes
https://eduwithtechn.wordpress.com/2007/09/26/spanish-language-transportes-transportations-from-various-hispanic-countries/

Spanish restaurant Restaurante
https://eduwithtechn.wordpress.com/2007/09/16/restaurant-pictures-from-flickr-for-spanish-and-other-language-conversations/

If you have ideas you would like to share about the problems that students have in being fluent speakers and, if possible, the possible solutions, please add as a comment.  For example,  some students can not keep a conversation focused on the topic – a solution is to start them with a series of pictures about the topic or for them to focus on a specific problem such as an ordering problem in a restaurant.

Formative Assessment for Asking Questions in World Languages and ESL

Speaker and Listener with Formative Feedback

World Language teachers (Spanish, French, Germany, Chinese, Italian, etc.) and ESL teachers want their students to become fluent in the language. However, often they have no easy way to measure the students’ fluency nor the time to listen to each student. A solution is to have students practice in groups of two with their partner providing some formative feedback according to a checklist or collection form.

1. A student is to ask ten questions about a picture in a minute while her/his partner counts the questions. At the end of a minute, the partner gives feedback to the speaker such as “You asked nine questions. What else could you ask about …..? The partner points to a place, object or person that the speaker did not ask a question about.

2. A student is to ask all the question words about the picture. Her/his partner checks off each question word on the list as the partner says it. At the end of a minute, the partner gives the feedback such as “You used all the question words.” or “You used all the question words except Why? What is a Why question for this picture?”

3. A student is to ask and answer all the question words for a picture. His /her partner checks off each question word on the question column and checks off the answer-the-question column. At the end of the minute, the partner gives the feedback such as ” You asked and answered 4 questions. You did answer the question “When..” but what other answers are possible for that question?”

4. A student is to ask complex questions about a picture such as “What color is the table that is next to the door?” or “How many people who are standing have red shirts?” within a minute. Her/his partner checks off the question word column and the complex sentence column and gives feedback such as “You said four complex sentences about the picture. One question ‘Where is the girl?’ was not a complex question. How could you make it one? or “I did not understand your question about the food, could you please say it again?”

5. A student and his/her partner have a conversation about a visual. The first student is a reporter and the second student is a person in the visual. The second student jots down a slash for each question that the reporter asks and one for each answer he/she responds to. At the end of the minute, the non-reporter reports back on how many questions were asked and answered. The two students brainstorm how they could generate more meaningful questions about the visual. Then they do the same activities, after switching roles, for another visual.

How else can students give each other formative feedback on their speaking? Please share your additional ideas on how students give each other formative feedback in your subject area. I’m writing a book and would like more examples than the ones I generate.

(My 365th blog)

Harry Grover Tuttle©2007

Spanish Sport (Deporte) Pictures from Flickr for Student Conversations

Deportes – Please share with your Spanish teacher so he/she can have a source of pictures for classroom conversations about sports. Can the students ask 10 questions about the picture? Pretend to be someone in the picture describing what she/he is doing? Have two people in the picture having a discussion about what they are doing. Tell what was, is and will happen.

How will the teacher assess the students? How will the teacher give formative feedback to the students so that they can improve?

Marathon -Barcelona, Espana
http://www.flickr.com/photos/fibercool/410396747/

Volibol – Buenos Aires, Argentina
http://www.flickr.com/photos/_alby2_/250976891/

Boats – puerto madero, Argentina
http://www.flickr.com/photos/johannrela/678281616/

ejercicio por bicicleta – Sevilla, Espana
http://www.flickr.com/photos/jom_tijola/536943658/

futbol – Pamplona, Espana
http://www.flickr.com/photos/hireen/400098788/

ciclismo, bicicletas – Espana
http://www.flickr.com/photos/soschilds/392414303/

Palacio de los deportes de Madrid, Espana
http://www.flickr.com/photos/legumvra/1561180229/

Saltar del puente – Venezuela
http://www.flickr.com/photos/jmaldona/1105674787/

Correr – Nike10K
http://www.flickr.com/photos/rmundaca/295897139/

Un ganador -sign Nogales, Mexico
http://www.flickr.com/photos/daquellamanera/557232735/

Tienda de futbol -Madrid, Espana
http://www.flickr.com/photos/villamota/52203130/

Kayak Race – Sevilla, Espana
http://www.flickr.com/photos/z1on0110/846962635/

baloncesto – Madrid, Espana
http://www.flickr.com/photos/vedia/103118224/

patinaje agresivo -Madrid, Espana
http://www.flickr.com/photos/herzeleyd/1332655046/

 

Other Spanish (Hispanic images) for conversations or writing

Spanish streets – Calle
https://eduwithtechn.wordpress.com/2007/10/30/spanish-street-callescenes-photos-from-flickr/

Spanish sports –Deporte
https://eduwithtechn.wordpress.com/2007/10/19/spanish-sport-deporte-pictures-from-flickr-for-student-conversations/

Spanish transportation Transportes
https://eduwithtechn.wordpress.com/2007/09/26/spanish-language-transportes-transportations-from-various-hispanic-countries/

Spanish restaurant Restaurante
https://eduwithtechn.wordpress.com/2007/09/16/restaurant-pictures-from-flickr-for-spanish-and-other-language-conversations/

 

Spanish Language Menu
https://eduwithtechn.wordpress.com/2007/08/30/learning-hispanic-culture-through-spanish-language-menus/

If you have other flickr Spanish sports images to add, please put them in a comment.

If you have ideas you would like to share about the problems that students have in being fluent speakers and, if possible, the possible solutions, please add as a comment.  For example,  some students can not keep a conversation focused on the topic – a solution is to start them with a series of pictures about the topic or for them to focus on a specific problem such as an ordering problem in a restaurant.

 

 

Checking for Understanding: Coupons for More Than Participation in the Classroom

Standards-based formative student participation coupons

A world language (Spanish/French) teacher was telling me that she gives a coupon to a student when he/she participates (Thanks, Kitty). The students turn the coupons in at the end of the month.

I would suggest a variation that reflects more of standards-based assessment of language learning.

A coupon of 1 point represents identifying a vocabulary item (“window”) or doing a grammar item (I form of to sing)
A coupon of 2 points represents asking or answering a basic question such as “Where do you live?” through speaking or writing.
A coupon of 5 points indicates that the student has read, listened, or watched to some information, then responded by speaking or writing in five different sentences or five different questions about the one topic.

The student are told that by the end of the month they are to have at least 120 points.

Each week they can count up their 1 point, 2 point, and 5 point coupons. They could make a graph to see where they are and to analyze their progress. They will quickly realize that by only answering with vocabulary or grammar or by only answering basic questions, they will not get them their needed total points. A look at their weekly score provides a formative assessment of how they use language in the classroom. As teachers we have to provide them with the opportunity to use their language in extended ways and to scaffold their writing and speaking so that they can speak or write in extended ways. We can share techniques for saying or writing five different sentences or questions about a topic. We can help them to make the transition from minimal language use to expressing ideas in the language.

How do you use participation coupons as formative assessment?

—–

Spanish Language Transportes (Transportations) From Various Hispanic Countries

As a Spanish teacher you can use the following Flickr images to show your students the variety of transportation in Spanish speaking countries. These images also provide great speaking and writing opportunities. If you do not teach Spanish, please share with your Spanish teacher. Gracias.

bus
El tranvia -Buenos Aires, Argentina
http://www.flickr.com/photos/91324818@N00/802535625

Transporte popular – Santiago Atitlan, Guatemala
http://www.flickr.com/photos/hectorgarcia/512839552/

Transporte publico 2 Tijuana, Mexico
http://www.flickr.com/photos/rupertrocks/298421839/

Transporte ecologista-Malecón, Centro Habana, Cuba
http://www.flickr.com/photos/43732446@N00/119137013/

Transporte – aeropuerto, Madrid, Espana
http://www.flickr.com/photos/daquellamanera/517876985/

Transporte – Parque Tezozomoc, Azcapotzalco. Mexico
http://www.flickr.com/photos/subzonica/170853679/

Transporte publico taxco-Mexico
http://www.flickr.com/photos/reinitamateur/74845493/

Transporte publico -Monterrey, Mexico
http://www.flickr.com/photos/renguerra/4805782/

Servicio de bicicletas – Sevilla, Espana
http://www.flickr.com/photos/torchondo/876183183/

El transporte -Habana, Cuba
http://www.flickr.com/photos/renguerra/4805782/

Medio de transporte-izabal, Guatemala
http://www.flickr.com/photos/cvander/8661198/

Imagen -transporte Valparaiso, Chile
http://www.flickr.com/photos/rjohnsonh/354884357/

What other flickr images have you found for Hispanic transportation?

Other Spanish (Hispanic images) for conversations or writing

Spanish streets – Calle
https://eduwithtechn.wordpress.com/2007/10/30/spanish-street-callescenes-photos-from-flickr/

Spanish sports –Deporte
https://eduwithtechn.wordpress.com/2007/10/19/spanish-sport-deporte-pictures-from-flickr-for-student-conversations/

Spanish restaurant Restaurante
https://eduwithtechn.wordpress.com/2007/09/16/restaurant-pictures-from-flickr-for-spanish-and-other-language-conversations/

 

Spanish Language Menu
https://eduwithtechn.wordpress.com/2007/08/30/learning-hispanic-culture-through-spanish-language-menus/

 

 

 

Restaurant Pictures From Flickr For Spanish and Other Language Conversations

Here are a few restaurant pictures from various Hispanic countries so that your Spanish students (and other students) can practice their conversation skills. If you are not a Spanish teacher, please share them with your Spanish teacher or other language teacher.

Restaurante rojo, Mexico
http://www.flickr.com/photos/daquellamanera/557236325/

La Vita e Bella (Italian Restaurant en Madrid Espana
http://www.flickr.com/photos/97445131@N00/611503369/

El rico pulpo en Carballo, Espana
http://www.flickr.com/photos/comcinco/218469076/

Arte Vida en Espana (beach restaurant)
http://www.flickr.com/photos/gaspars/442433335/

Desayuno 1 de enero,Colonia, Uruguay
http://www.flickr.com/photos/luisjoujr/86609684/

 

Calderitas, Mexico Restaurante
http://www.flickr.com/photos/seanlloyd/44106692/

Restaurante, Acapulco, Mexico
http://www.flickr.com/photos/bambino/225597017/

Restaurante , Buenos Aires, Argentina
http://www.flickr.com/photos/aldoalexandre/47880808/

If you know of online pictures of Hispanic restaurantes, please share.

Other Spanish (Hispanic images) for conversations or writing

Spanish streets – Calle
https://eduwithtechn.wordpress.com/2007/10/30/spanish-street-callescenes-photos-from-flickr/

Spanish sports –Deporte
https://eduwithtechn.wordpress.com/2007/10/19/spanish-sport-deporte-pictures-from-flickr-for-student-conversations/

Spanish transportation Transportes
https://eduwithtechn.wordpress.com/2007/09/26/spanish-language-transportes-transportations-from-various-hispanic-countries/

 

Spanish Language Menu
https://eduwithtechn.wordpress.com/2007/08/30/learning-hispanic-culture-through-spanish-language-menus/

 

 

 

Spanish-Language Restaurant Menus For Culture and Conversation

menu

The following is a list of Collective Commons (free to use in the classroom) pictures from Flickr that show various menus from Hispanic countries or locations that have Hispanic food. Students studying Spanish can come to understand the many different types of foods as well as the varieties within each type such as tacos. They can practice their ordering skills with real food and figure out their bill with real prices! Each web address is followed by a brief description.

http://www.flickr.com/photos/robennals/499187153/
Menu with Spanish and poor English translation +++

 

http://www.flickr.com/photos/shyamh/148106511/
Menu Mexican divided by entrada, sopa, ensalada +++

 

http://www.flickr.com/photos/flooznyc/430646028/
Mexican Food Deli Menu

http://www.flickr.com/photos/melaniewong/1155561698/
Yucatan Menu

http://www.flickr.com/photos/esotheos/208495024/
Taco restaurant menu

http://www.flickr.com/photos/rgabriel/514239426/
Menu with ceviche

http://www.flickr.com/photos/seyd/10746077/
Menu from Caribbean

http://www.flickr.com/photos/anjum/368254807/
Puerto Rican Menu (general info)

How do you help students to learn about the variety of Hispanic foods through menus? How do you bring the Hispanic world into your classroom through technology?

Other Spanish (Hispanic images) for conversations or writing

Spanish streets – Calle
https://eduwithtechn.wordpress.com/2007/10/30/spanish-street-callescenes-photos-from-flickr/

Spanish sports –Deporte
https://eduwithtechn.wordpress.com/2007/10/19/spanish-sport-deporte-pictures-from-flickr-for-student-conversations/

Spanish transportation Transportes
https://eduwithtechn.wordpress.com/2007/09/26/spanish-language-transportes-transportations-from-various-hispanic-countries/

 

Spanish Language Menu
https://eduwithtechn.wordpress.com/2007/08/30/learning-hispanic-culture-through-spanish-language-menus/

 

 

Nov. 2009 – If you are interested in trying out in your classroom some mini-speaking assessments (2-5) minutes that correspond to various parts of the ACTFL guidelines, please email me (harry.g.tuttle  at gmail) These short assessments  give you instant data/facts on your students’  present progress in speaking and you can re-administer these assessments  to see progress.  I have various assessments from vocabulary, asking and answering questions, asking critical questions about a topic, etc.  Let me know your level such as (Spanish 1- first year of Spanish).    Harry

© Harry Grover Tuttle, 2007

 

—-

 

 

Speaking World Languages Through Technology

Does technology contribute to conversations?

I am trying to help my son get ready for his first year of teaching Spanish. He’ll have three preps. I am amazed that there are not more online resources to help him in a conversational manner. There are plenty of grammar and of vocabulary sites. I have not found any that promote communication. (I’m counting basic restaurant dialogues as vocabulary since students memorize the conversation.) I do not see collections of pictures that students can ask questions about, pretend to be the people in the situation, explain what is happening, etc. A picture of a statue of Don Quixote does not promote communication. A street scene with a store and people doing things encourages real language use. Likewise, I do not find many real conversations that he can play/download for his class. Sure commercial companies have teaser ones but I could not easily find real conversations (a great use for podcasting). So much technology and so little real life language use. So much technology being used for lower level skills but not for the actual purpose of language which is to being able to converse with another person.

How do you promote real conversations using technology in your World Language classroom?

© Harry Grover Tuttle, 2007

Being Global Communicators -NECC

Globe
Many years ago, I started my teaching career as a Spanish teacher. Communication was my focus as was the culture of the Hispanic world.

Alan November at NECC on Wed advocated that our students communicate and work with people in other locations. In addition, he stressed that our students have to develop global perspectives on issues. I was amazed that although he talked about helping our students to develop other perspectives, he used English only resources. If we are going to be global, then we have to begin to use another language.

My students used email to correspond in Spanish and to develop projects with students in Hispanic countries. They learned the views of Spanish speaking people (from Spain and Latin America) as well as the cultural values of these people. Were I teaching Spanish today, I would have my students interact through multiple technologies with Spanish speaking people.

How do your students become global citizens through technology?

 

© Harry Grover Tuttle, 2007

 

Why is there bad Spanish translation on packages? Let’s learn to communicate globally

EnglishSpanishWorld

My son and I read Spanish on packages to see how skillful the translation is. We are always shocked by gross grammar errors, spectular spelling mistakes, and wrong word use. Sometimes the meaning is completely different.

I wonder how there can be so many errors in just one product description. A few sample errors from one product: “Soporta caidas y abolla duras”, “Cpuede trabajar” and “de alta o bajas temperraturas” Google’s Translator and AltaVista Babel Fish are two of the many translation programs on the Net. Itried some phrases using BabelFish and they came out much better than the product description.

How can we claim to be preparing students for a global world when our USA students have such a low degree of fluency in even one language?

How can other nations expect to compete in the global market if these nations cannot translate English into Spanish for bilingual packaging?

Let’s teach Spanish the way that people speak it so our students can use their new language. Let’s use technology such as videoconferencing to have our students have real conversations with Spanish speaking people so that they can be fluent in Spanish! Or we can Skype people in Spanish speaking countries so students interact and speak globally!

Can your students communicate in another language to be more global?

© Harry Grover Tuttle, 2007

—————————————–

Successful Student Learning through Technology Scaffolding

Yesterday I received a postcard reminding me of my yearly hearing check up. I was glad that they did not call 🙂 I thought about students in the classroom.  How many of them are getting messages in a form that is hard for them to “hear” ?

Are teachers scaffolding the learning in  step by step increments so that each student can climb to success?  Those students who do not need every step can quickly climb.
Does the scaffolding allow students to see, hear and physically experience the learning?

Madeline Hunter felt that teachers should provide input (the prerequisite knowledge) for the students before teaching the new concept.

A male Spanish teacher who is going to teach  shopping words for clothing will want to review basic vocabulary such as colors and purchasing words such as to buy, price before he teaches the clothing. He can go to Google and quickly find a color wheel so the students can identify the colors. He find pictures of people buying clothing to review or teach buy, sell, and price by using the technology of  Google or flickr and Power Point.

When he moves to the main part of the lesson, he can show students the clothing with the Spanish word next to it and then ask the students to point to that clothing that someone is wearing. The Power Point scaffolds the students’ learning so that they can see the item, see the Spanish word, hear the word as the teacher says it, and then use it as a basis for  pointing to it in the classroom. If the teacher wanted, he could go to a website that says the words so the students can hear another person say the same word.

As the teacher has the students have conversations about the clothing, he can have them role play based on clothing situation visuals taken from Google or Flickr. The students can use the visual prompts from the visuals to assist them in their speaking. Those students who need scaffolding can constantly refer to the visual while those who do not need such scaffolding use the visual as a jumping off point.

By using technology to scaffold the learning, all students can learn and use Spanish clothing shopping words.


RSS Education with Technology

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    Once teachers have selected what learning and what digital badges (individual or category badges; see previous blog), the teachers encounter another decision. What will they name each badge? Will they use the full name of the Common Core Standard or the national proficiency? For English, under “Speaking and Listening,”will they write out SL.2 “Integrate and […]
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    Teachers understand that the grade in a course consists of many different factors such as homework, participation , projects, tests, etc. Blodget observes that sometimes grades reflect attitude, effort, ability and behavior (http://www.academia.edu/9074119/Grading_and_Whether_or_not_Grades_Accurately_Reflect_Student_Achievement). Equally important, a letter […]
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  • World Language Students Use of Mobile Devices in the Classroom October 5, 2015
    Do world language students use technology n the classroom? Do their  teachers go beyond having their students use technology simply for the drill and practice in vocabulary and grammar? Students can use laptops and mobile devices to hear authentic language, read authentic texts, read tweets about famous performers, see up-to-the-moment culture,  watch video […]
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    The idea of digital badges sounds appealing for the digital children in classes. As teachers start thinking about digital badges, they have to figure out what badges will be awarded. The teachers can award social or academic badges. If teachers decide to use academic badges, then the teachers may base their badges on the Common […]
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  • English +Common Core +Mobile = Success (ISTE2014 Poster -details) June 30, 2014
    Here are the ten examples I showed at my English + Common Core  + Mobile ISTE 2014 Poster Session: Based on CCSS Anchor Statements: L.2 Take a Conventions Mobile Online Quiz  to pick the  incorrect sentence from four choices (capitalization) SL.2  Evaluate audio recording of a  book chapter on mobile and predict for next chapter. […]
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