Programmatic Goals: For students to feel comfortable in understanding, speaking, and writing in Spanish. This is done using the following grammatical content: El Sustantivo (The Nouns), El Adjectivo (The Adjectives), El Articulo (The Articles), El Pronombre (The Subject Pronouns), El Verbo (The Verbs), El Adverbio (The Adverbs), La Preposicion (The Prepositions), La Conjuncion (The Conjunction), and La Interjeccion (The Interjections). This is introduced in a fun, interactive, and relaxed environment in order for the amount of information to "stick" and stay with students.
In our "Pretend Trip to Mexico," a three-week activity, First and Second Graders learn the basic greetings and introductions in Spanish and vocabulary that is commonly used at any airport.
While reading the Spanish version of popular children's books, we introduce phonemic awareness and recognizing sound-letter correspondence with the vowels. Fun, interactive activities using visual and performing arts are used to help students read, write, and learn the subject pronouns, days of the week, months, colors, and the alphabet in Spanish. The Mood Meter in Spanish is introduced throughout the lessons with questions such as, "Como estas?" Responses vary: "Feliz," "Triste," "Enojado(a)," "Cansado(a)," and "Mas o menos."
Students participate in a more advanced version of the "Pretend Trip to Mexico," a four-week lesson where greetings, farewells, and introductions are learned in a more interactive way. They design their "passports" from scratch and learn the vocabulary for a tourist and an immigration officer. A Design Team is formed to come up with a tourist brochure and a Logistics and Flow Team is created to design the flow in the classroom while going through all the checkpoints. This activity culminates at a table with real Mexican artifacts and a short movie about Mexico.
Throughout the year, students review subject pronouns in Spanish, do writing activities, and practice reading and pronunciation. Verbs are re-introduced with interactive activities, supervised online research, and on-screen presentations. Use of the Mood Meter in Spanish continues and builds upon knowledge gained in Lower Elementary.