Hola Pandemic Practitioner,
This semester our school is running a hybrid model with the option of 100% virtual. Well, we’re trying!
I don’t need to tell you how complicated, and sometimes humiliating, these last few weeks have been. It comes from the community, it comes from social media, and it comes from ourselves.
I was finally at a point in my career where I only cried over sucky lessons about once a week, but we have been set up to fail through no fault of our own.
If we believed that online learning had the same outcomes as our pre-COVID-19 classrooms, we would have been living in leggings and sleeping ’til 10 since AOL.
One of the many downfalls of pandemic education is the reduction of total hours in the target language. There is no way that my students can get the input that I’m used to providing in our limited communicative time while still finishing my mandated textbook curriculum. Before the pandemic, I could randomly cram the three required chapters while applying the practices I felt would increase SLA the majority of the time. Now we’re still expected to “teach” the three chapters, even though these lists and charts don’t deserve a single second. More than ever I am searching for the balance between ‘being willing to compromise’ and doing what is right for kids and learning.
I wish I could be as proud of myself as an educator as I have been in the past, but “to every thing there is a season”. – Eccl 3.
On the 2nd day of in-person school I put acquisition first by drawing a story for my new students. It felt a little glitchy as I attempted to be comprehensible, searched for cognates, tried to slow down, and pantomimed for meaning. We must remind ourselves that a bad day in a comprehensible classroom is better than all other options.
The video above explains the story process I used, and the Frida Kahlo events are at the bottom of the page. Feel free to message me if you find errors.
There are unlimited complimentary activities for story-listening and story-drawing. I have listed some here:
- Act the Story
- Walk Talk to places and things you can relate to Frida’s life
- Reverse Charades using related events
- Read Frida Kahlo by Kristy Placido
- 2 Truths & a Lie
- The Last Word
- Circumlocution Game with story-related vocabulary
- One Word Image with one of Frida’s animals
- Running Dictation
- Parachutes with T/F Questions
- Meaning Mixup
- Picture Talk her art
- Story Statues with her art
- Blind Retell
- Timed Writing
- Draw Pass Draw
- Turn & Talk
Happy Teaching, Profe!
Keep your head up.