Wednesday, November 28, 2012

"El Nuevo Houdini" activity

Today I did an activity with my Spanish 2 class that I learned when I attended Carol Gaab's session at ACTFL12. She shared several ideas for activities to accompany reading the book "El Nuevo Houdini".  One of her ideas was to   write adverbs on index cards before class, then choose a line from the chapter that you are reading.  Distribute the adverb cards to the students, and they have to stand up and read a sentence from the chapter in the manner that is written on their card.  Some examples are, "sadly, angrily, impatiently, etc."   Then the students have to guess what word (adverb) the student is trying to portray as they read the sentence.

I read Chapter 4 to the class today.  Then we went back to the first page of the chapter and I told them to find words that ended in -mente (adverbs - which are -ly words in English).  After we finished going through the chapter, we had 10 adverbs on the list.  I then asked the class to tell me a full sentence in Spanish.  One student chose, "Me llamo (and his name)."  Ok, simple enough, but it would still work.

I distributed the index cards to the students that had the following adverbs from the chapter:  
  entusiasmadamente (enthusiastically)        nerviosamente (nerviously)
  románticamente  (romantically)                 felizmente (happily)
  sarcásticamente (sarcastically)                  rápidamente (rapidly)

The students took turns saying the sentence in the way that was written on their cards.  They had fun with this activity, especially when the person with the "románticamente" card said the sentence "romantically".  They asked to do it again so they chose another sentence and I redistributed the cards.  

When Carol demonstrated the activity at the conference, I thought it was a cute idea, but wasn't convinced that my high school students would agree.  After their reactions today, I see that I shouldn't have been skeptical.  It was a fun activity and it gave repetitions of words ending in -mente, which should help them with comprehension of that structure the next time they read or hear a word with that ending.  Thanks for the idea Carol!

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