August is upon us, and you know what that means! SCHOOL! I am starting in a new district this year AND I'm movin' on up to high school Spanish (1 & 2). I am having pretty mixed feelings: pumped to go back, sad to leave summer. The constant struggle for teachers!
I hope your summer has been all kinds of fantastic. I know mine has! Between weddings, creating new TpT items, vacations, and church events, I have been all over the place. If I'm being honest, I am VERY ready for routine, schedules, and calendars again.
Every year as I begin a new school year, I think about what students want from teachers, no matter the subject. I think about what I wanted as a student and the teachers I admired most. What did those teachers have that others didn't? The answer for me was always PASSION. Sometimes, I hated a subject but loved a teacher because of their PASSION for the subject.
My main question is HOW teachers incorporate passion into their everyday, standards-based classrooms. How do we meet standards and still show our kids that we LOVE what we do? What can we incorporate into the daily mundane to give our kids a little umph, a little motivation, a little extra HOORAH?
The result of my questioning? This list. By no means is this a comprehensive list of ALL of the things you can incorporate into your classroom to add passion or fun. There are only THREE suggestions. However, it's a start! Feel free to comment below how YOU would incorporate passion into your classroom.
Here we go:
1. Cook up! If you like to cook at home, why not bring the joys and the yums of your kitchen to your classroom. I think one of the BEST ways to tie in culture is to let kids experience culture through taste. Everyone loves food! If you love to cook, cook for your students! Make the last Friday of every month Paella Day, make a Tortilla Tuesday (As in tortilla de patata, cebolla, etc.). Learning is as much about enjoying everyday life and culture as it is about how to conjugate ser. Show your kids that! And let them bring food too! (Though I may be wary of trying it...)
If you're not as big of a cook, you could just have the students watch cooking videos. Check out "La Receta de la Abuelita," on Youtube. She's pretty awesome and it makes for a good listening activity. I have a follow-along resource for videos on this Youtube Channel that you can purchase here.
Throw a party with food AND singing AND dancing as a fundraiser for new clothes for beautiful children living in Guatemala or Peru or right in your community who may need it. Charge $5 to get in, have the Spanish club (or your classes) make decorations, and go to town!
My main point is GET PASSIONATE about something relating to your subject and SHOW that passion off to your students. We have the unique opportunity to open our students' eyes to the world. Take advantage of it!