Saturday, February 9, 2013

La Casa Project

    What it turned out to be a two-week project helped the students to become familiar with several house part names as well as several  room names and house appliances. Many students felt curious about learning new vocabulary from objects they saw at their houses. After we finished building the house, which turned out to be a two-store house with a campo de golf (golf course) included, we had extra activities to review the spelling and pronunciation of the new vocabulary. I was so amazed to see how the children were able to connect the new vocabulary related to houses to their practical meaning.
     The idea was to introduce the vocabulary in a meaningful way rather than the traditional lecture with the white board. At then end, they knew what a silla was because they had made one out of clay. We finalized the week with a team activity where we connected the use of definite articles (un, uno, una, unos, & unas) to the vocabulary we had learned.

    Also, I wanted to share a personal reflection regarding this topic: I find it quite challenging to explain this concept of female and male objects, which is confusing, but it's also key for understanding Spanish. As one of my students pointed out how can the sun be female (la estrella) and male (el sol) at the same time? Sometimes, there are questions like this one that do not have a right answer. This is part of what we call culture. Learning the gender of each object  is something we, as native speakers, learned as part of the socialization process even though sometimes it does not make too much logical sense, but that's the beauty of learning a new language: being aware of other points of view different than ours.

Ok, here are some of the pictures from our Construyamos Una Casa Project:

Group discussion on what objects should go in our casa

One of the students labeling the wall as pared

This puerta's picture  was taken before the labeling assignment, but  it reflects the love of one of my students for his multicultural heritage .

Another group discussion on how to design the interior of the house while learning the different room's names in Spanish.

And the furniture started to take shape

Proudly, showing La cisterna (toilet), which she had made.

Besides building la casa, they also elaborated their own stories on who lived in the  house.

Very creative inner walls - paredes de adentro

La casa en la pared

The final product inside: habitacion con closet y todo!

Sports' fan pared

We also labeled the furniture or house appliances

Coming to an end. Checking what else is needed...

Campo  de golf made by our sports' fan of course.

El jardin - the garden

Everything creative is valid in this class: this is the random wall by Ken

At last, group picture showing how proud they are from their team work 

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