First day of intermediate Spanish

Inspired by Sra. Spanglish, I decided to start our intermediate class today with stations.  I had several ideas that I wanted to use, and though we often use stations, this is the first time that I’ve kicked off the year with them.  My school disbanded the native speakers classes, so this year’s intermediate class is about 50% hispanohablantes, 50% anglosajones.  I need to get a feel for where my students are–some took the novice classes with me, some took them online, some have never taken a Spanish class before–so stations were a good, low stress way of doing some informal assessment and relationship building.  Students rotated as they finished each station, and I walked around coaching and troubleshooting–a nice change of pace!  We will add a few more stations tomorrow before launching into our first unit.


instructions for stations ready to go in frames from IKEA.  (Thanks Pinterest!

You can download a complete copy of the station instructions for students here.

By skills/modes, the stations were:

  • Listening:  lyrics training
  • Writing:  Top 10 reasons to take Spanish (gracias, Sra. Birch!), Shelfies (gracias, Sra. Spanglish)
  • Reading:  Shelfies
  • Speaking/interpersonal:  From a list of basic interview questions, select several and rehearse them with a partner.  Finish by recording the conversation in Sock Puppets or Puppet Pals.
  • Technology time saver:  Make/update all the accounts that we will need for the year now.  Record usernames and passwords on reminder sheet.
  • Las Pequeñitas:  I used a frequency list of the most-used words (the little words like a, por, después, etc.) in Spanish and turned them into a game based on CandyLand that was upcycled from a friend’s basement.  I created a set of cards for the game that had the little words on them in Spanish to replace the cards that came with the game; students needed to be able to explain them in English.  Though this is not a type of activity that I use often in class, it had the desired effect:  the anglosajones jotted down the Spanish words that they didn’t know, and the hispanohablantes had several questions about the differences between words that they knew, but couldn’t explain, like the difference between me & mi–some students didn’t realize that they were different words.  One of my core values for the class is that everyone can learn, and this was an activity that supported that value.  The cards are available for download here; the first four pages are color cards with no writing so that they can be adapted for other word sets.

All in all, it went pretty well.  We had some quirks with technology that were good to work out early on; I also got to work with some kids to calm their nerves about the class as a whole–key to building a program.  Last year’s class had 13 students in it; this year’s has 25!  I am looking forward to an amazing adventure!




2 thoughts on “First day of intermediate Spanish

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