Spanish: Fruits of the Americas
Connect to Your Teaching
Reflect on Your Practice
As you reflect on these questions, write down your responses or discuss them as a group.
- How do you find out what content your students are studying in other classes, so that you can incorporate it into your language lessons?
- What kinds of hands-on experiences do you provide for students? How do you incorporate culture into these experiences?
Watch Other Videos
Watch other videos in the Teaching Foreign Languages K-12 library for more examples of teaching methodologies like those you've just seen. Note: All videos in this series are subtitled in English.
Sports Stats (German) has students using new vocabulary to express likes and dislikes, and Happy New Year! (Japanese) shows students experiencing cultural products.
Put It Into Practice
Try these ideas in your classroom.
- When planning units, think about including artifacts or experiences that help students learn through their senses of touch, taste, and smell. Because much of language teaching appeals to the senses of sight and sound, when it is possible to use the other three senses, the activities are more likely to be remembered and the vocabulary retained. If your school policy permits, bring in food from a local market or take students to an ethnic restaurant. The experience will be not only enjoyable for students but helpful in their vocabulary study. It can also prepare them for future trips to ethnic restaurants with their family and friends or even for travel abroad.
- Review a lesson you recently presented, to see if it would be useful and appropriate to incorporate a hands-on activity like Total Physical Response (TPR). When students use gestures to pantomime real actions, they learn the associated vocabulary words and phrases faster and retain them better. Ms. Rodriguez's students learned the Spanish words for peel, cut, and mix while reading a recipe for fruit salad and then performing those actions in making the salad. Other examples of hands-on activities include creating a board game, making a craft project such as a mask for the holidays Mardi Gras or Fasching, or even conducting a science experiment. Age-appropriate projects for older students can also involve concrete, hands-on activities.