Friday, February 2, 2018

¡A la cachi cachi porra!

A number of years ago when I still had satellite TV I recorded tons of shows onto DVDs. I still use these today in class for listening activities. One of the shows was a game show called ¡A la cachi cachi porra! It's a version of an academic decathlon or a quizbowl. While watching with the students I realized, hmmm I could totally make a game show like this in class! This past week was our state assessments so it was going to be perfect as we had a mixed up schedule. Our state AATSP also hosts a Spanish Quizbowl on a college campus so we were also practicing for some of that. Yeah, that's right, I sneak in learning when they think they're just playing. So this is what I have created for all of my classes.


Monday: TURISTA
This game on the game show was answering questions about different countries around the world. Since I teach Spanish, I focused on Hispanic countries. It was a team attempt and the I handed out an individual 12x12 marker board to each team. One person wrote as they collaborated on their answers. The first correct group with an answer won a point for their team.




Tuesday: MAPA
This was a fun game to watch as it is a life-size game board and the participants are the game pieces! I made a game in which the students are being sacrificed to the Aztec sun and moon gods. It included aspects of the actual game, such as a "de regreso" point in which they had to return to the beginning. There were also points on the board that they had to do physical activity, such as sit ups, jumping jacks, or push ups. There was also a giant, knee-high fabric die that was rolled. I solicited my PE department and they had one that was, well, a bit smaller, but it totally worked for what I was doing. The "game piece" rolled the die, moved that many spots on the board, and answered a question. They could go and conference with their team. If they got it correct, they got the number of points they rolled on the die. Here's the movie walk through of the game board in my classroom.



Above are the game pieces that I taped to the floor of the room and below are the questions that I asked in the notes section. Some were specific to what we have been studying in class and were able to be answered across Spanish II, III, IV, and V.






Wednesday: PALABRAS
This is was a very easy one to reproduce; one that I'm sure many of you have played in your classrooms in the past. Participants are given a list of vowels and consonants and they find as many words as possible. There was a point for each correct word. I also wanted to reward "wow" words so I doubled it to two points for any word they created that was 5-7 letters or tripled for any words using 8+ letters. I was so amazed what they were creating and the creativity they had to get more words. Even though I am a TPRS/CI teacher who doesn't directly teach conjugation, they had tons of conjugated words on their lists.





Thursday: GEMAS
Wow how exciting this game was! On the show there were two participants going head-to-head. They drew a colored "gem" out of a bag. The color determined the point value of the question. Yeah, this will be easy, too. Again I solicited the help from my PE department to get some wiffle balls. I put colored dots on them with a board marker so I could easily wash it off. I put them in a big box and shook them between each round. Students pulled out a ball and the dot determined the difficulty and point value of each question. Green signified a 5 point question; blue, a 10 point question; red, a 20 point question. Obviously I had a longer list of easier green questions than the shorter red list of more difficult questions. My ratio of green:blue:red was about 3:2:1. I used questions from an older version of Brainquest that I got at a local bookstore.





FRIDAY: CIERTO/FALSO
On the actual gameshow two opposing participants were sitting back to back and given a question. If it was correct, they would rotate one direction and if it was false, they would rotate the opposite direction. Again, another easy game to reproduce. I used the questions from the previous day, Gemas, and rewrote them as true/false questions.





Wednesday, January 18, 2017

Breakout syllabus and rules

This is one of those necessary evils in the classroom to set the tone of the class through rules and expectations. Or is it? What if the tone we want to set is different than that of other classes? I have played around with presenting the syllabus in many different ways in the past. This year I thought it would be fun to do a BreakoutEDU session of the syllabus.

When I do a Breakout, it is fun to have not just one, but TWO boxes that the students need to break out. They are on two different teams to "spread the love". This make sure that more students are on tasks and participating in helping with the teamwork. This is, after all, what a class is, right? a team?

In looking at the main topics that I want students to get from the syllabus, I used those to create the clues for the locks. This would also gives us a better discussion after during the debrief. I also like to have two boxes going at the same time to up the ante a bit and offer more competition.



Premise: Escapa de la oficina
  Javier es un estudiante español alto con pelo corto y flaco. A Javier le gusta mucho escuchar la música y jugar al baloncesto.
  Javier tiene unos problemas en la clase de español. Señora le da un pupitre diferente, tiene conferencia con Javier, llama a sus padres, le da una detención y le manda a la oficina.

  Javier está con el Sr Hutchinson y tu trabajo es buscar claves para ayudarle a escapar por identificar las reglas y organización de la clase.



Box 1
Clue #1: Using a QR code for the syllabus and also for a cultural aspect (bullfighting) the students will find that culture is worth 19.5% of their overall grade.
Lock Code: 0195
Debrief Discussion: What exactly is included in my grade? What percentages are each? What do I need to do in order to be successful in each?




Clue #2: Students will find the following grid posted by the rules in class. They need to find the words that go into the blanks and identify the red letters.
  _ - - - - - -

  - _ - - - %

  - -  - - - - _ - -

  - - - - _


  - _ - -

Lock Code: SIENT
Debrief Discussion: The clue was for each of the purple letters below. These are the abbreviated rules that are posted in my classroom. We will discuss in some detail each of these and why these are important rules for our team.
No English; only Spanish is used
        Listen with intent to understand – focus on the speaker. One person speaks; others listen.
        Stop the instructor when she is confusing you or not clear. Show her when you do understand and when you don’t understand.
        Be present: Sit up. Square your shoulders. Clear your hands, lap and desk, including cell phone.
        Do your 50% in the learning process.

spanish           S - - - - - -
50%                - I - - - %
be present     - -  - - - - E - -
listen               - - - - N
stop                 - T - -

Clue #3: Scrabble letters R E  .  . . . . [the . is a blank letter]
Lock Code: SPET-
Debrief Discussion: The number one rule in my classroom for the past 25 years has been RESPECT. I have always had lengthy discussions with students about how Hispanics are highly respectful within their culture, what it means to be respectful, why it's important in a learning environment, how our classroom rules reflect respect, and consequences to not being respectful in class.



Box 2
Clue #1:  bit.ly/2jiwu84  <<<< posted in the room somewhere. It will direct them to a document that has a listing of true/false statements about things that are posted on the syllabus. If these are answered correctly, the order reveals the code to the lock.

¿Verdad o falso?: V = 1; F = 2
1. Cuando señora dice “Clase clase”, la clase dice “Profe profe profe”
2. Recibimos un chicle por hablar español en la clase.
3. Vamos a usar Google Classroom por recibir tarea.
4. Si no estoy en la clase, me obligo buscar la información que me falta.
5. Vamos a leer La llorona
Lock Code: 12222 
Debrief Discussion: These topics are discussed to help the classroom function smoothly and the students to be successful.



Clue #2: Once students find this and go to the website, they will find a picture of a bubblegum machine. This will trigger the thought of our CAFÉ points.
Lock Code: CAFÉ
Debrief Discussion: This is a motivational strategy to help students take risks, develop their confidence, and simply have fun in a team setting. See this blog post that briefly explains it.



Clue #3:
Lock Code: STRLS
 Students will find the following grid posted by the rules in class. They need to find the words that go into the blanks and identify the red letters.
  - - - - - -

  - - - _ - %

  - -  - _ - - - - -

  _ - - - - 


  - - -

Debrief Discussion: The clue was for each of the purple letters below. These are the abbreviated rules that are posted in my classroom. We will discuss in some detail each of these and why these are important rules for our team.
No English; only Spanish is used
        Listen with intent to understand – focus on the speaker. One person speaks; others listen.
        Stop the instructor when she is confusing you or not clear. Show her when you do understand and when you don’t understand.
        Be present: Sit up. Square your shoulders. Clear your hands, lap and desk, including cell phone.
        Do your 50% in the learning process.

spanish           - - - - - S -
50%                - - - T - %
be present     - -  - R - - - - -
listen               L - - - -
stop                 S - - -