Thursday, January 7, 2016

Another Spontaneous Output experience

So one of the things that I allow my students to do from day one is:

they are allowed to insult the teacher and only the teacher (and no one else in class).

This way, they get to practice all of those negative words (ugly, stupid/dumb, smelly, big loser, etc).

While it not be your style, I have found it to make class so much more lighthearted. And I get to constantly remind them of my stupidity when i make mistakes (intentionally or unintentionally).  It has turned ME into the class buffoon so that they can relax a little more and have more fun.

Something I miss this year since I don't have any Spanish 2 classes anymore is that Spanish 2 is able to talk more and can carry on conversations a little better (due to more input).  So class is more lighthearted and laid back because they are a little older and it's a good time.

Spanish 1 is a little harder because I have to keep them going going going with different activities (in the block) and we're constantly doing something (in CI as much as possible) and lots of brain breaks (still in Spanish though: songs, TPR, movement, quick transition, joke, etc).

And so I have missed having conversations with my Spanish 2s and also letting them run the class sometimes by building off of each other's ideas.

Nevertheless, this year I have been fortunate to have some very talented individuals in some of my classes and they have really been able to figure out the first person and second person forms of the verbs better than any previous year. So the insults, as you can imagine, have been even richer. And they are getting way more creative WITH the language.

Today in one of my classes, the students refused to ask me "¿y tú?" after I asked volunteers how they were doing today because I am not important. And they did a really good job of staying in the language. I couldn't believe some of the things they were saying (and being HILARIOUS in the language).  We were all laughing.

In the following class (last class of the day), I think we were similarly just talking about how people were doing for 20 minutes because of the hilarity that ensued from my students. I accidentally gave the student the impression that he was next to be called on, but I had said "ladies first" before that and as I asked a girl how she was doing, he responded with (in spanish) "you are playing with my head". (Something I tell them sometimes, but he said it perfectly in the second person and all).

When I later asked him how he was doing, he responded with "I am annoyed". And whenever they are mad or annoyed I prod them to tell me if they are mad at a person, mineral, plant or animal. And when they say person I ask silly questions with description words (that they know or don't). And it usually is that they are annoyed with me for some reason.
But the funniest thing all day was one of the cleverer students asked (in perfect Spanish), "Is his hair falling out?"

And I lost it. I went on to joke that there was a line (which I drew) and then I explained "and you are located over here" to which he walked over to that line and then said, "no, my line is here".

I wish I could remember some of the other things from that class, but as you might guess, I was laughing with them most of class.

It was nice to see how much they have been learning this year and to see them speaking (because they want to and because the context and environment allows it).  No one is forcing them and they are the stars of the show!

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