Class Activities, Music in Spanish Class

#SCOLT18: #AuthRes for the Novice Language Learner

I am super excited to be headed to #SCOLT18 tomorrow! Here are the slides for my session, #AuthRes for the Novice Language Learner. I’m sharing tons of links to my favorite sources for finding beginner-appropriate authentic resources, as well as activities to go along with them. I’m also sharing three “ready to go” authres activities that I’ve used with my own students on leisure activities, school, and clothing. If you’ll be at SCOLT, I will be presenting Saturday at 9:00 – hope to see you there!

Sp 1 Unit 2: Who am I?

Authentic Audio: Physical Descriptions

Two of my favorite resources for audio are Audio Lingua and Spanish Proficiency Exercises. Each of these sites has audio organized by topic, so it is easy to find something that works with your unit. Since Spanish Proficiency Exercises includes transcripts with the videos, it is very easy to create cloze activities to go with the audio.

I’ve been using a simple cloze activity with this set of videos for years, but I changed the activity around bit this time and was quite pleased with the result.

Cloze, sequencing, and comprehension questions all in one.

Since my students each have a brand new laptop (we are finally 1:1! HOORAY!), I posted the audio on Schoology and let them complete the activities independently (both Audio Lingua and Spanish Proficiency Exercises include download links). We did a practice run as a whole class with the script for Deysibeth projected on the board, and then I set them loose to complete the rest of it on their own or with a partner. I haven’t tried doing audio activities independently very often in the past, so I was pleasantly surprised to notice that my students not only interacted with the audio more, playing it over and over again in an attempt to catch the deleted words, but were so much more engaged than they are when we do audio as a whole class. I also think adding the sequencing activity worked well, as it was easier than the cloze and gave students a sense of success. And, as always when using audio from native speakers, I love how this exposes students to different voices, different accents and rhythms of speech, as well as a wider variety of vocab (ojos pardos, bajito, peludo…the list goes on).

Here is the link to the activity if you would like to use it. The videos are linked above, as well as at the bottom of the activity.

Ideas by topic, Sp 1: Family

Family Unit Audio Resources

Here are two #authres activities I made for my family unit. The first one uses recordings from Audio Lingua, and features 5 different speakers from Spain. It was fun pointing out the accent to my students! The second is from the University of Texas at Austin’s Spanish Proficiency Exercises, and includes speakers from Ecuador, Mexico, Peru, and Chile.  Since the Spanish Proficiency Exercises provides a transcript, I just made clozes for those recordings. Audio Lingua does not provide transcripts, so I wrote some comprehension questions, some “circle the words you hear”, and one “list a few facts for each family member discussed.” Here are the links:

Audio lingua:

Spanish Proficiency Exercises:

Class Activities, Sp 1 Unit 4: En la escuela

Authentic audio: Mis clases

I’m in the midst of my school unit – Realidades 2a, since I’m using a textbook now (and by using a book, I mean that I’m following the topics, teaching the vocab, and integrating the grammar – day-to-day teaching is mostly my ideas and inspiration I find online).  I found some great audio clips that fit well with the topic and vocab – here are the links, as well as the activities I made to go with them.



For the activities, I started with a word cloud, and they just circled the words that they heard.  After that, I had them flip their papers over to the back. I found it worked best to have them read and match the Spanish and English first, then listen one or two more times and number the statements in the order they are said. You could also have them cut up the sentences, and physically put them in order as they listen. Here’s the word document: listening seiji cristina

Audio Lingua

There are a TON of recordings related to school on audio lingua.  These are the three that I used.

For the activities, I typed up transcripts and had them fill in the blank (there might be a few errors in the transcripts – check me before you make 800 copies!). My students were all jealous of Elvira and Edinson getting a recreo in the middle of the day! I really liked all the culture in Edinson’s recording, so I typed up a short embedded-reading style summary to make sure they understood the idea of his schedule. His passage is a great review of time, too! Here are the activities: listening audio lingua – mis clases

Have you taught a school unit yet? What are your favorite resources and activities?

Class Activities, Sp 1 Unit 3: What do you like to do?

Authentic Audio: Me gusta/No me gusta

Here are some links to Audio Lingua recordings of native Spanish speakers talking about their likes and dislikes:

1. Alejandra:

2. Edinson:

3. Paola:

4. María:

I had students set up a graphic organizer on their paper:

Screenshot 2014-10-01 09.47.29
Super low prep – no copies required!

I played them in the order listed above, as they get progressively more difficult. María speaks really fast, but my kids could still catch Me gusta fútbol! I played it multiple times and had them also listen for her age and the days of the week she practices.

Differentiation: I downloaded the files from Audio Lingua so I could save them in my dropbox and easily share with my department (and also still have them in case the internet went out). I used VLC media player to play them (a free download), and discovered that I could speed up and slow down the playback speed. So cool! So I played it once or twice at regular speed, slowed it down once, then played it again at the normal speed. Neat!

Screenshot 2014-10-01 09.47.14

Class Activities, Sp 1 Unit 1: Greetings/goodbyes/ numbers/calendar

Audio Resources for my Greetings Unit

Today I want to share two authentic-ish audio resources, as well as activities I’ve put together to go with them. I’m using them in the second week of Spanish 1, as part as the introductory unit covering greetings and leave takings, personal information, numbers, and dates.

The first listening activity is one I made last year, and found last week as I looked through my unit 1 files – hooray for files being organized enough to find things, and hooray for year three of proficiency-based teaching, and having teaching files worth reviewing! Anyway, here is the activity (updated link – PDF formatted 2 per page), and or you find it here in an editable format, with the direct audio links. The audio is from Audio Lingua, and features speakers from Mexico, Spain, and Paraguay. If the audio links don’t work, trying searching the speaker’s name on Audio Lingua, and you should find a “Me presento” file. Each recording includes different information, but it gives students a chance to hear native speakers introduce themselves, tell where they are from, tell their age, and their birthdays.

The second listening activity I have for you today is based on a video from Spanish Proficiency Exercises.   In it, a Mexican woman describes the rules on when cars are allowed to drive inside Mexico City – basically, due to high air pollution, everyone is banned from driving one day a week based on the last number of their license plate*. So I like this audio for reinforcing days of the week and number vocabulary, and again for exposing students to native accents and rhythm of language, but I LOVE the culture in it!  I made a cloze activity for it (there is a Spanish and English transcript for each video, so clozes are super-easy to make!). I will probably ask students to skim for cognates before we listen to it, and underline the days of the week, then afterwards discuss in Spanish (because Martina Bex taught me to do a pre- and post- activity for every authentic resource!) – ¿En Atlanta, hay problemas con el tráfico? ¿La solución de México es buena o mala? I’ll keep the discussion simple, because it’s the second week of Spanish 1but it will still be in the TL! Here is the activity, with a link to the audio at the top.  Irma C. is the last video at the bottom of the page. Enjoy! What authentic audio do you use with your novices?

*My Mexican friend told me the law has been tightened since Irma C. recorded this video – now cars that are more than ten years old are also prohibited from driving on Saturdays.