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¡Luces, cámera, acción! Lights, camera, action!

May 18, 2022 | Tania Oro-Hahn

“We did it! “I was proud that I did it!” “I loved it!” 

“We didn’t stop.”I loved my roles!” “It was so much fun!”Fourth Grade

Thank you for coming to the the 4th grade Spanish play.  The kids really felt your support and you made the experience super special.   Thanks for helping to create a fun memory.

Spanish in our classroom is highly interactive and full of play.  Our drama, Juana: una mosca rara (Juana: a strange fly) began as a TPRS(Teaching Proficiency Through Storytelling and Reading) teaching tool.  It provides students with the opportunity to quickly engage in conversations surrounding an illustrated sentence, like the one below. 

My goal is to ask students at least 25 questions per 10 minutes.  Then assess them.  The slides help students develop proficiency and grow vocabulary through tons of comprehensible input.

They gain language when they use it in context and in a natural way.  They become familiar with grammar structures without focusing on grammar charts.  They develop excellent proficiency in oral fluency as we talk about the stories we read.  In all Spanish classes, we use TPRS slides and connect them to reading and writing, and speaking.

Fourth grade will finish Brandon Brown dice la verdad,

and Fifth grade will finish El Ekeko: un misterio boliviano.  

The Bolivian Ekeko pictured  here was gifted to us by Mr. Reynaldo Barrera.  ¡Gracias!

Students move from TPRS lessons to quick assessments, to acting, to reading, to writing.  Conversation in the Spanish classroom is emphasized, therefore collaborative and partner work is common and key. 

Students help each, correct each other, and grow with each other. 

Sometimes students don’t realize how much they can do, say, understand, and write because acquiring a language is uniquely human and natural to us.  A group of fifth grade students recently circled up to co-construct a funny story using the characters in our book.  Their ability to create funny content using the target language is impressive to me. 

The students may think it’s easy but it actually shows higher order thinking and excellent command of their developing language skills.  Can we write our own short story and act it out?  Perhaps!! Stay tuned for more

“¡Luces, cámara, acción!” 

El Ekeko:un misterio boliviano, is a challenging  read for our language learners yet it regularly misses the cultural sophistication mark.  That gives our class the opportunity to think critically and globally. We discuss not just the grammar and vocabulary but also the message of the book.  I encourage students to think critically about all the material they are given to read. I encourage students to ask:  what does this story presuppose about the main character? about being poor?  about being latino?  Is it true?  Why or why not?  (These are some of the themes in the book).

Students practice thinking critically. They grow together and it is a delight.

Tania Oro-Hahn

Spanish, Grades Two through Eight; Director of Diversity, Equity, Inclusion & Belonging

Señora Oro-Hahn was drawn to Mustard Seed School because of its mission to serve an economically and racially diverse community. Teaching students has been a part of Sr. Oro-Hahn’s life for the past 30 years. Prior to working at Mustard Seed School, she worked with college students through InterVarsity Christian Fellowship. She has a passion for helping students grow spiritually and linguistically. Sr. Oro-Hahn’s goals as a teacher are to create a loving classroom community so that students will understand the perspective of other cultures, be brave, and take a risk in speaking Spanish, realizing how fun it is to use language. As a language teacher, Sr. Oro-Hahn strives to make work seem more like play, and so she often uses games, skits, and group activity in the classroom. She loves to mentor students.

Sr. Oro-Hahn uses her art background to help students illustrate poetry, and develop creative dramatic ways to communicate in Spanish.

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