"Si al comienzo no muestras quién eres, nunca podrás después, cuando quisieres."  "If at first you do not show who you are, you will never be able to afterwards when you want to." From El Conde Lucanor, Cuento XXXV, by Don Juan Manuel (Medieval Castilian writer, 1282-1348). The first week of school is a magical and vitally important time. This is the honeymoon period, those brief few days when it seems like every single one of your students like you, like the class and like each other. Almost every year the honeymoon phase will trick you into thinking you don't [...]


Participants in seminars and workshops often ask how beginning students can begin to read independently. Baby steps like this are what works for me. This was an activity that was done as a follow-up to a short story from week 3 of a Spanish 1 class. The bell ringer assignment, called Repasito (little review), was to write five sentences in Spanish about the drawing. All of these sentences were generated by students in four level 1 classes. Most of the sentences were similar in each class. We had told a short story with a similar theme as the drawing:  LA [...]

By |2018-04-13T15:19:18-06:00April 14th, 2018|Categories: High Frequency Vocabulary, Reading, Repasitos|0 Comments


Angie writes: Would you send me a quick description of your "repasito" bellringer? Is it an oral or a written task? I was doing a bellringer that involved translating short sentences, but I found that going over it was a drag on the beginning of class. What is your experience? The repasito is a short written review that students do as a bell ringer activity at the beginning of class every day.  For me, it is an important classroom management tool.  The purpose is to have something for students to do when they walk in to class; they have their job [...]