Using Seesaw and other websites and apps

I wanted to share some Seesaw activities I created to provide my preschool students and their parents with different sources of input. My students and I love the episodes from Salsa by the GPB, and I assigned an episode related to Spring. To introduce the activity, I used MovieTalk, and then students added a response on Seesaw telling me what they had understood, their favorite parts of the story or their favorite character. It was so exciting to seeing how they used vocabulary in Spanish in their narrations and I think it was an activity their parents appreciated.

My students are using Epic Books with their homeroom teachers and one of the parents asked me if I could recommend books for her child to listen to in Spanish. I had used Epic Books in the classroom but it did not occur to me to assign a book until now because my students did not use to get any homework in pre-school. There are very interesting titles and I was lucky to find one to review expressions that we use often in class and included Sign Language. Although this book is not one from the “Read to me” collection, I am loving to see my kindergarteners’ videos being my Sign Language teachers while reviewing our Spanish class’ expressions and phrases.

In Epic Books, I also found two titles that related to my unit on life cycles and the Seesaw activity and poem “La Oruguita Pequeñita”. The response of my Jr. Kindergarteners has been really great.

My pre-schoolers have also enjoyed recording videos and posting them on Seesaw selecting, singing, and dancing to the songs we have learned and that are available in our Webmixes.

I hope you are enjoying your remote teaching as much as it is possible under this circumstances and that my activities and ideas help you somehow lessen your work load. If they are, please subscribe to my blog to receive notifications on my new posts.

Greta Thunberg No hay activista pequeño.

I cannot believe it has been a year I just read about this amazing girl and all she has done for all of us in such a short time. I was so lucky to see her when she came to talk to the UN and I could see for myself what a big responsibility and sacrifice she has been putting on her shoulders.

30 de agosto de 2019

I created a story last year to introduce her to my students and I am happy many more students got to meet her because of this story. Because of teachers of other languages were interested in having a version they could use, two teachers translated it for me in French and German, and I translated it into English. You can find all the versions available in my Youtube channel and the ebooks in Spanish and English in the links below.

Along with the book came an “Action Drive” we ran at my school last year. Our school community was invited to collect actions for the Earth taking selfies/photos based on a series of small actions we could and needed to do more of, and label them in as many World Languages as they could. The response from everybody was amazing, and encouraged a lot of writing in different languages. You can see pictures from students, faculty, and our community in general below.

I transformed the Action Drive into a Seesaw activity I hope can help us think of the Earth on Earth Day and on. Click on the picture to add the activity to your library.

All my admiration and gratitude to Greta Thunberg💗💗💗💗💗💗💗💗💗💗

La granja – The farm

We have been teaching remotely for two weeks already and I have not seen any of my classes Live yet. I have been communicating with my students and their families through Seesaw and I have been creating videos of me demonstrating how to do the activities or just running the routines my kids were used to. Many of my older students have been completing their assignments or have been asking me questions but I have not heard from many yet especially many of the younger ones.

When I see the posts from my Pre-K, Jr. K and Kindergarten classes, I cannot feel any other thing than gratitude. I acknowledge the time and the effort the parents are putting into completing the activities and I wish they could tell me if they are finding them too much to handle or how I could help them better to carry on their children’s Spanish learning at home.

I am alternating a Seesaw activity and a video with our routines. Last week, I created for the first time a video of me teaching online and it was the most difficult thing I have done so far. I really hope it gets easier. If you knew me just a little, you would know one thing about me and that is that I do not like to be on a video. This is how far I have come for my students and when I am recording the videos I just think I am doing them for them.

So my first video was for my Pre-kindergarteners and it was about the farm. I love songs and especially those that can easily be adapted into a game and I used the song “La Vaca Lola” by ToyCantando as my main source of input.

Explaining the game I would play in the classroom was a little tough and I hope the parents had given it a try. In the classroom, we start by making a line that I lead, we listen to the song and sing along, and when we hear/say the sound “muuu”, we turned around. That way, I would be the last person in the line, and the “caboose” would be the leader. I had to explain it using a picture of a cow and I still do not know how it went for the parents who decided to do it. I hope they had fun.

This is the week I assign a Seesaw activity and I wanted to focus on another farm animal. This activity mixes new vocabulary with topics my kids were familiar with. I put together a video demonstrating how to do the activities in Spanish and added questions I would ask while describing an animal. My goal is for the parents to play the video for my kids to watch and listen to me providing them with input that is still comprehensible despite the circumstances.

Here is the link to the activity for you to add it to your Seesaw library before it is available in the community area. Seesaw has been receiving lots of contributions and many of mine are not showing in the community section yet.

Please let me know if you try this activity and how it works for you and your students. Subscribe to receive notifications of my future posts.

Check out how I created this activity on this video

Los Tres Cerditos y el Lobo Feroz

My Spanish program is called “Puentes” because it connects to the topics the homeroom teachers present to their classes. In first grade, I connect to the unit on fairy tales and STEM through the story “The Three Little Pigs and the Big Bad Wolf”. We have studied different versions of the story and I love how easily my students learn the expressions and enjoy acting it out.

Before our Spring Break, when we were still in the classroom, we learned about different materials people use for building homes, and I introduced the story of the Three Little Pigs using the video below narrated by Traposo from Guia Infantil.

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I used MovieTalk to describe what I saw on each section and asked questions about what my students could see. We used a lot of repetition and used TPR to refer to the building materials. We focused mainly on colors, animals, and rooms of the house.

For my remote learning activities, I illustrated the story, narrated it to my students in a video I recorded using Zoom along with actions and questions, and asked them to draw and name the characters as an independent activity that would not represent a problem for their parents. I might start my first Live class this week.

The goal for my next lesson is to check their comprehension so I needed to provide my kids with enough support they might need since they are not having me at their side to work on the activities. I created a video that they could stop, rewind, and repeat as many times as they want or need. I love drawing and I illustrated the story, narrated it, and created two Seesaw activities for them to demonstrate their comprehension. My expectation is that at the time they are doing the activities, they are also reviewing the story and seeing it in context. I also provided audio support for those of my kids that are still working on their reading.

You can find my TPT product here. Please let me know if you have any questions.



I am now trying to figure out how to teach my favorite game and song to use with this unit:

Abril, lluvias mil

Hopefully, we start getting just the perfect weather to say “¡Adiós, Coronavirus! . In the meantime, let’s enjoy every day and the opportunity to work together to help our kids succeed in our Spanish class.

I just contributed this Seesaw activity for my kids to review the calendar and numbers. Click on the picture below to add the activity to your classes.

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¿Cómo estás, Paco?

Before entering my classroom, I used to check on each one of my students and they usually replied with one or the same words. To add more variety, I listed some expressions they could use instead of the ones they had been using and assigned one to each student. Then, I took a picture of them, recorded a clip of them using and acting out the expression. With their photos, I added the expressions in big letters to turn them into small posters I used to decorate the entrance of my classroom. With their videos, I created a slideshow and post it on Seesaw so that they could practice the expressions at home and teach them to their families.

Now, my kids will be reviewing the expressions with their parents using this Seesaw activity. They will check on Paco first to get some oral input before I get to see them Live at some point in the next weeks.

Tap on the picture for the link

Since I won’t be there to clarify what the expressions mean, I translated the expressions for the parents to guide their kids and you can find the link to the video and the PDF file with the images below.

Video

PDF

Los Koalas, animales en peligro de extinción

My second graders had finished studying about Koalas before our Spring break and that would be the first thing I would like them to review on our first week back right after they get to see me greeting them in a video and wishing I could also see them all.

We will start Distance Learning next week and we will see how our plan works and the modifications we would need to incorporate. I am planning a Seesaw activity for each one of my classes for them to access asynchronously. I teach Pre-K to fifth grade and I am a little nervous but excited at the same time to be back and figure out what our new adventure brings. One thing I know is that once the Seesaw activities are ready in my account and in the library, I can decide when I want to use them and that gives me some peace of mind.

Click on the link to access the activity and add it to your classes. Please let me know how it works for you.

Súper Siete: Hay

I will continue adding the story I created for each Súper Siete along with activities. For “Hay”, you will find two Seesaw activities. The first one contains a listening and a reading comprehension exercise. Please forgive my silly voices that only my students were to hear in my classroom : ( but circumstances demanded another approach.

The second activity needs to be shared once the first activity has been completed since they are connected. The second Seesaw activity has the answers to the first one and consist of the comic strip, acting/narrating, and drawing.

Please leave me a comment and let me know if you get to use the activities I am creating and what your experience with them was.

Video and activities about the Súper Siete

My third to fifth grade classes were reading a different novel each before we went on our Spring Break and I would need to make progressive adaptations to my curriculum. Two areas we focus on on a regular basis are question words and the Super Seven to check for comprehension. I had created comic strips to review the Súper Siete in context and I am planning to use the one about “Está” the week we go back to school (virtual classes).

I added my voice to the video so that my kids can still hear me and created two Seesaw activities to check for comprehension. I like to include information about my students in my plans to relate to their lives and establish connections and I had to create a separate Seesaw account to share a more standard plan with you. These two activities are part of a continuum and should not be assigned at the same time. The second one has the answers students would need to include on their own in the first part.

Hope you and your kids can benefit from these activities! I would love to hear your feedback to know you would be interested in the other comic strips and their activities.

A cold story

Not long ago, it used to be just normal to catch a cold over the winter or during this time of the year. A while ago, I created this story thinking of a way to address the causes, the symptoms, and the consequences of a cold in my class. Unfortunately, I never thought that what I thought could be a funny way to talk about a cold, now could be considered something sad and scary. Balancing the pros and cons of sharing it, I thought of the topic and the vocabulary we could address in our classes. The video can be used in any language and you can add the narration that you find more convenient for your classes. Maybe, just maybe, this can convince anyone who still needs convincing that it is better to be home at the moment.

Video