Monday, February 16, 2015

Storyline with Gerunds and Prepositions of Place

Below is a storyline idea to review or introduce prepositions of place or gerunds. 

Most of my students have learned the basic prepositions of place in Spanish 1, so this story, that I use in Spanish 2, reviews those prepositions as well as allows for several repetitions of gerunds. 

The storyline is about a person that went to the movie theater.  It was crowded and there was only one empty seat. He sat down and started watching the movie, but there were many distractions throughout the movie.

Ask the students to give suggestions for what the people to the left of, to the right of, in front of, and behind the person were doing.  Some of the ideas from my students last week were:
- la persona detrás de él estaba pateando su silla  
     (was kicking his seat)
- la persona delante de él estaba tócandose su bigote largo
     (was touching his long moustache)
- la persona a la izquierda de él estaba llorando
     (was crying)
- la persona a la derecha de él estaba durmiendo (y estaba roncando)
     (was sleeping and was snoring)
After we worked with this story, we watched episode #3 of BBC's Mi Vida Loca which just happens to be the episode in which Merche gives directions. (When I use series such as that, my goal is always to do more than have the student simply watch it.  We have a limited number of hours with the students and we need to be good stewards of that time, always striving to follow best practices and most effectively use the time we have in class.) Also, because Friday was one day before Valentine's Day, we ended the class watching Sr. Wooly's song "Billy y las botas", a love story, of course, between Billy and las botas, which has the lyrics "estaba caminando" and "estaba nevando".  It's almost as if I planned that. 

In previous semesters I had students act out the actions, but I didn't do that this time.  I have to admit, there was something missing without the actors.  My suggestion, add the actors whenever possible!  

One last note:
Shout out to @nellyhug (Nelly Hughes) for feedback at a moment's notice. :-)

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