Monday, December 31, 2012

Setting Goals for 2013

Usually before a new school year begins in August, I find a notebook and jot down 5 or 6 goals for the new school year.  From time to time I refer to them to see which ones I have reached and which I have completely pushed to the side.  Admittedly, that is the easy way out because if I don't accomplish those goals, nobody knows but me.  

However, for the new calendar year, I'm writing my list here, hoping it will be an extra incentive for me to work to accomplishing ALL the goals on my list.

Directly Related to the Classroom
1.  Continue to provide Comprehensible Input in the Target Language, with pockets of "pop-up grammar".

2. Provide more authentic listening resources to all levels and find a schedule that won't compromise that commitment.

3. Read, Read, Read.   I have a growing library of Spanish books at different levels.  Now I have to be consistent in providing time for students to choose a book that appeals to them and read during class. 

4. Rewrite Spanish 2 curriculum.  I've already made major changes to what I wrote last summer.  I have 3 Spanish 2 classes in the spring semester so I'm hoping to make adjustments and improvements as needed as I use it with my students. My highest priority are the High Frequency Words in the past tenses.

5. Have students in upper levels blog. I've done this in the past with Spanish 4 and Spanish 5, but I didn't have my Spanish 4 class blog this fall.  In the past I had them blog once a week, but then changed it to every other week.  I'll add this to the spring semester and weigh the pros and cons at the end of the semester.

6. Collaborate with other classes in the US and other countries.  Last year my students and I had success with students in several parts of the world through Skype and VoiceThread.  
- Postcard Project- Thanks to Amy Lenord for organizing this!
- Global Blog - My experiment with blogging with my students and students in other parts of the world. I'm still looking for classes of native Spanish speakers in other parts of the world that are studying English to participate with us and others in this project.
- Another VoiceThread?

7. Invite native Spanish speakers to the classroom to share their experiences and knowledge of Spanish countries and the hispanic community and culture.

Professional Development
8. Attend a minimum of one workshop or conference that is specifically aimed at TPRS instruction or has several sessions on TPRS and CI within the conference.  Several options high on my list are:
- NTPRS 2013 in Dallas, TX
- ACTFL 2013 in Miami, FL
- 2013 iFLT Conference in San Diego, CA - would love to go to this but it doesn't fit my schedule
- local workshops

9. Find a new blog by a TPRS teacher.  I have several that I read on a regular basis, but I know there are others that somehow I haven't found yet that would be helpful.  Here is my list I currently have.

10. Find new educators to follow on Twitter that share activities and technology that they use in the classroom.  My twitter name is @sonrisadelcampo.  If you tweet about ideas for teaching and professional development, please contact me so I can add your tweets to the stream.

11. Read in Spanish. I love to read in Spanish and I am convinced that this is the best thing I can do for maintaining and improving my abilities and knowledge of the Spanish language.  The challenge is to find time for reading.

Stepping out of my comfort zone
Admittedly, organization is not one of my strong points, which makes the following items more of a challenge for me than for some.

12. Offer an after-school Spanish program for elementary school students.  I've had this goal for several years now, but I've never moved past the idea stage.  Now is the time to get working on the specifics of the program and then share the plan with the school administrators.

13.  Organize a local group of TPRS teachers.  Michele Whaley writes about a group of TPRS teachers in Alaska that meet monthly.  I can't think of a better way to support each other and share ideas, but the idea of organizing something similar is overwhelming to me. My best bet is to team up with like-minded individuals to make this a reality.

14.  Write a proposal to share some of my classroom activities (in other words: present) at a conference.  This is way beyond my comfort zone. 

There is my list, online and out in the open.  It will keep me a little more accountable to work toward achieving those goals.  



  1. I can't thank you enough for all of your wonderful ideas! I was wondering if you would be will to share your Spanish 2 curriculum guide with me? I am in the process of rethinking what I teach in Spanish 2 and would LOVE to see what you all teach.

    With warm regards,

    1. Josh, if you give me your email, I can mail to you information on the Spanish 2 curriculum.

  2. Hi! your blog is great, plenty of wonderful ideas. Thank you so much for sharing all this. I am very interested in the Postcard Project and the Global Blog you mentioned... Could you provide me with more information?

    Thanks again.

    Best regards,


    1. Hi Laura,
      The post card project was organized by Amy Lenord. I don't think she continued this for more than one year. You can contact her on Twitter at @alenord to find out if this project is still in place.
      The Global Blog project I did was a project for one of my senior classes in 2012. It didn't work out exactly how I had planned but we were able to contact a few schools in Argentina, Spain, and Mexico. Unfortunately, I have not communicated with 2 out of the 3 of those schools since the blog/project ended in 2012.