Monday, August 31, 2015

Punch Cards in the WL Classroom

If you've been a World Language teacher for a while you're probably like me and tried using Euros as an incentive for classroom participation, winning games in class, or going above and beyond what was expected. You've probably even spent more than a few hours perforating the really colorful set from Teacher's Discovery, laminating them, and then cutting them out to provide to students. And, you've probably found several a few of them in the washing machine soaking wet when you forgot to remove them from your pockets. There is a new strategy to promote target language use and classroom participation and it's called PUNCH CARDS. Now, this doesn't mean you have an opportunity to knock a kid out when s/he isn't speaking the language you teach! All joking aside, punch cards are definitely rocking my classroom this school year.

What are punch cards?
Punch cards are cards that you create for your students.  They are usually rectangular or square shaped and they have holes or other images that can be removed with a hole puncher along the outer edges.

How to implement them in class?
This school year I created a version that has J'ai parlé en français.  Trois points de plus in the center of the card.  Along the outside I added 24 hexagons.  I specifically chose hexagons because this symbol refers to France and often times one can hear it being used in listening activities to refer to the country.  Once I liked the visual look of the card, I copied it and pasted as many as I could fit on one page and then printed several off on card stock.  The next thing I did was to go to Michael's to purchase a hole puncher that would create a specific design.  I chose one that cuts out heart shapes and it was a minimal expense at $5.99 (If you go online to their website they often have 40% off coupons).  PlEASE NOTE:  If you plan to use a regular hole puncher that creates circles, there's no way to gauge whether the student punched the hole or you did.  I was certain to choose something that would be almost impossible to replicate for this reason.

On the first day of class I included a punch card with each student's packet.  I then explained that as they are caught speaking French they would receive a punch on the card.  After a student receives 24 punches and all of the hexagons are gone they can then turn in the card to receive 3 extra points on an assignment.  The students were very excited and immediately wrote their names on the back of the card.  During partner and group activities I pull out my hole puncher and randomly create little hearts on students' cards.  Consequently, I'm finding myself saying "pas d'anglais" less and less and I'm hearing my students speaking the language more and more.

When to punch cards?
I have punched cards for the following reasons:
1.  Using the target language with a partner and with small group work exclusively
2.  Volunteering
3.  Rewarding the winners in a class game
I've also taken away current punch cards and replaced them with a brand new card if a student consistently uses English.

So far I really enjoy this method so much more than the Euros I spent so many hours preparing.  The plus side, too, is that I doubt I will find my heart hole puncher in the washing machine anytime soon!  Ha!

Have you used punch cards in your classroom?  Please feel free to share your experience in the comment section below.

This was a guest post by Madame H.  You can visit her Teacher's Pay Teacher's Store by clicking here to view other creative ways to share the French language with students.

Tuesday, August 18, 2015

Decorating your Spanish Classroom

Looking for ways to spice up the look of your classroom? Don't have the budget to order $20+ posters? Check out these affordable ways to make your classroom a bit more special!

-Flags of Spanish speaking Countries
-Spanish Speaking Countries Flags and Coloring Pages
-Flags of Spanish Speaking Countries Classroom Decor
-Aqui sehabla espanol 21 circle posters of countries/capitals

Bulletin Board Set:
-Autumn Fast Finishers Bulletin Board Set
-Spanish Speaking Countries Photos Facts Classroom Decorations
-Spanish Phrase of the Week Posters (36 pages)
-Verb Word Wall Bulletin
-Top 120 Common Spanish Verbs

-Superheroes Calendar Set
-Classroom Calendar Newsletter Templates 
-Calendar Set in Spanish
-Calendar Bulletin Board Kit Printable
-Posters/Cards of the Months and seasons
-Decorative Posters of the Days

-Letreros para centros con superheroes
-Spanish Pennant Banners Bundle
-Class Helpers Monitors Ayudantes (editable)
-Quien Soy Pennants

-Superheroes Teach Classroom Rules and Passwords
-Foreign Language Learning Goal Posters Level 1
-Spanish Snappy Sayings or Chants For the Spanish Classroom
-Spanish bulletin board circumlocution
-Spanish Question Words Visuals
-Spanish Interrogativos Question Words Interrogatives Classroom Signs Posters
-Motivational Posters SPANISH
-Subject Pronoun Posters 1
-Subject Pronoun Posters 2
-Subject Pronoun Strips
-20 Chistes/Jokes in Spanish
-Present Tense Verb Posters

-Two Bienvenidos Pennants
-Flower Clock Kit in Spanish 
-Spanish Speaking Countries Flags Letters
-Illustrated Instruction Cards Printable
-Top 50 Survival Expressions

-Spanish Classroom Labels (55 Rainbow labels)
-Hispanic Countries Info Labels

Classroom Themes:

Sunday, August 2, 2015

Back to School Stock Up

Well, with back to school looming and the TeachersPayTeachers Back to School Sale scheduled for August 3rd and 4th, we thought we would highlight some items that you are going to want to put in your wishlist and check out on Monday or Tuesday.

250 × 120
Here they are: