My 20+ years of teaching included teaching high school French/Spanish, and K-12 ESL. These jobs took me to Nebraska, Texas, Iowa, and Minnesota. I am now retired from teaching but continue posting some of my favorite lesson plans on the Teachers Pay Teachers’ website.
Favorite Thing about Teaching Languages:
I enjoyed watching my students take “center stage” acting out sentences in the target language in a game of charades or doing little skits, such as ordering a meal in a restaurant or introducing oneself to a fellow traveler on a bus.
When teaching the familiar you command form in Spanish, I taught students a short musical phrase to help them remember the rule.
The phrase “Ay, ay, ay, ay, canta, no llores” (from "Cielito Lindo") helped my Spanish students remember that the affirmative “tú” command drops the “s” but the negative command retains the “s” and changes the ending from “–as” to“-es” on “–ar ending verbs”.
When we were correcting their worksheets, I had students read their answers and the class would remain silent if the answer was correct. If they heard a mistake, the class would sing the phrase, “Ay, ay, ay, ay, canta, no llores” (Oh dear, sing don’t cry.) The student in error would then try to correct the mistake. This kept the attention of the class and brought smiles to students’ faces even if they made mistakes. When test time came around, I told students they could hum the melody to remember the rule.
One Tip to WL Teachers:
Use visuals, actions, and music to keep your language presentations interesting and memorable.
Spanish –ER/IR Verb Game – La Maestra Dice
Challenge students to repeat sentences filling in the “blank” as they try to “match” the teacher response.
Examples: Mi padre bebe una taza de ____________. (a drink)
¡Qué lástima! No comprendo mi tarea de _____________. (a subject)
Featured Product:French End of Year Game – Parlez ou Pantomime
This fast-paced game makes a fun year end review for students who have just one minute to give oral clues or gestures, hoping their team can guess the six words in a category (verbs, clothing, foods, animals, professions, places, feelings, and more).
1st – 2nd yr. French, grades 6th-10th