Can you believe it? April vacation is almost over and we are already a few weeks into the last term of the school year! As advisor to this year’s senior class, I’m very aware of how close we are to graduation! As seniors get ready to flip their tassels and head on to the next step of their lives, the work that we are doing right now in 21st Century Skills related to goal setting and future career plans seems extremely relevant. Students started off the unit by making bucket lists and this term, I added a gallery walk of those Padlets, asking students to find others in the class with similar dreams as them and encouraging them to “steal” others’ ideas. I’m including a few examples in this post. We next created SMART goals from those bucket lists and most recently have written newspaper style articles visualizing ourselves as having completed one of those goals. I’ve posted them in the classroom as a daily reminder for both myself and the students of the great work they have ahead of them! And we all know that money plays a large role in our ability to reach our goals, so students have worked through 3 modules in the Everfi Financial Literacy Program, learning about different types of banks, various savings vehicles and beginning a conversation about credit cards and their impact on our spending habits.

In Spanish 1, we finished up Term 3 with our cara-a-cara (face-to-face) interviews and students impressed me with their efforts. The 20 questions for Term 3 are really more than that; most questions have a blank that can be filled in by one of the 30 regular verbs we have learned so far. That really opens up the possibilities that students need to be ready for as they are asked 10 of those questions. Students in Spanish 1 are solid in their verb conjugation skills and ready to move on to irregular verbs in Term 4. We will cover -zco, go-go and boot verbs as well as comparing the verbs saber and conocer, which both mean “to know.” Before vacation, we watched the classic movie, “Man of La Mancha” as a way for students to become familiar with the characters of Don Quixote and Sancho Panza, as well as the life of the author of the first novel written in the Spanish language, Miguel de Cervantes himself.  We will use the characters as topic of conversation as we continue our study of vocabulary and grammar in Term 4.

Our Hispanic Civilization class is finished with their study of Spain and right on time as several of the students in the class traveled to Spain with Ms. Reardon for April vacation. I have seen some of the pictures and can’t wait to hear their recap of the trip! After our study of the Arabic influence in Spain as well as importance of bullfighting to the Spanish culture, I hope that their visits to the Alhambra and the Plaza de las Ventas were even more thrilling! During Term 4, we will turn our focus to Latin America, starting with a survey of the Incas, Mayas and Aztecs and then moving to more current political and cultural topics. I hope to be able to share some of my experiences traveling to those countries with students as the year comes to a close.