wcps – ¡Vámonos! The musings of Lisibo
 

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Just before we broke up for the summer, I asked the 2019 Language Leaders* team at my school for their thoughts on language learning. To help them, I posed some questions. I’ve already shared this on the school website but thought others might be interested in their responses.

Why did you volunteer to be a Language Leader?

I volunteered to be a Language Leader because I love learning languages; when I go on holiday I like showing off how I know how to speak the language. (RM)

I wanted to find out more about languages as they’re fun. (PS)

I volunteered as a Language Leader because I like learning how other people communicate. (AT)

I wanted to represent the school. (IH)

I thought it would be fun! (JS/SLG)

I volunteered because languages make me happy. (RS)

I wanted to explore the different languages and how to speak them (JJ)

I volunteered because I like to learn languages (AK)

I volunteered because I wanted to try something new (LD)

What do you like about languages?

I like speaking languages – it makes me feel proud! (GG)

It makes countries different (LD)

I like how other people talk and I don’t understand them. (AT)

I like that if you learn a language, you can communicate and understand people that speak other languages. (LE)

I like the sounds you make and how you spell words in other languages (JJ)

I like that different countries have different ways of communicating. (RM)

When I speak languages it makes me feel….. (RS)

It’s fun to learn! (IH/NH)

I like that everyone’s language is unique (PS)

I find them interesting, (JS/SLG)

When you go on holiday you can speak that language. (AK)

What do you find hard? What do you do when it’s hard?

When it’s hard, I practice what to say and find someone who already speaks that language to help. (JJ)

When it’s hard I just practice! (IH)

I find remembering the language hard. (LE)

Phonics and pronunciation can be tricky! (LD)

I sometimes find pronouncing words hard but I don’t give up as I have an open mindset. (GG)

When I find it hard I do some chants to help me remember (PS)

Sometimes I find writing hard so I ask for help. (SLG)

As a Language Leader I find it hard to choose the award winners! (AK)

I found writing my application letter for Language Leader hard! (NH)

Do you know any languages other than English? How did you learn them?

I know Arabic, Urdu Spanish and a bit of French! (IH)

I know Punjabi and Spanish – Punjabi from home and Spanish from school. (GG)

I know Hindi as my family speak it at home but I sometimes feel embarrassed speaking it in front of my friends. (RM)

I know how to introduce myself in French. (AT)

I know some Italian as we go on holiday there (LD)

My parents speak Tamil and I listen to them (JJ)

I know Urdu because I speak it at home (RS)

I know some Italian as my grandma was born in Italy (AK)

Do you enjoy learning Spanish?

A resounding yes!

I love Spanish – especially with Señora Stevens! I like that it has masculine and feminine! (RM)

I enjoy Spanish because my family go on holiday to Spain some years. (AT)

I like Spanish; I like how you have masculine and feminine and can explore how to decide which gender nouns have. (JJ)

I find learning Spanish with the great Señora Stevens really fun and interesting. (PS)

What would make language learning even better for you?

I could practice harder! (IH)

I’d like to learn some useful questions for the future; for example, how to ask for a cupcake in Italian. (AT)

I’d like to learn another language! (JS)

To do more mindmaps and diagrams to help me remember words (SLG)

I’d like to learn more languages and the differences between them. (LE)

Comparing more languages – for example hello is Vanakam in Tamil and Hola in Spanish (JJ)

I’d like to learn some gymnastics words as I love gymnastics (AK)

I think visiting the country would be a great idea! (LD)

If once a week we could read a story in a different language in assembly (PS)

I love the honesty of the answers they gave (I did tell them that I would be sharing their responses!) Having read their ideas, I’ve bought some new books and asked for more assemblies (I already do more than my share!), and will be experimenting with new ways of learning and recording vocabulary.

*Language Leaders at my school support and promote language learning of all sorts. Children write a letter of application and then the previous year’s team help me to choose. It’s normally a child per class but this year we went for a team across LKS2 and UKS2, predominantly formed of Y4 and 5s. The original team (four years ago) wrote their own “job description” which I’ve added for some context.

Seasonal poems

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A journey through seasons by Luiza Vizoli

A journey through seasons by Luiza Vizoli

Having worked on adapting a verse of La Primavera by Antonio Machado last week (see here and here for previous posts about this) , Year 5 were set a new poetic challenge this week.

Whilst I was out of action with my broken ankle, some students from BCU taught my Y5 classes using the QCA SoW unit Las cuatro estaciones as their starting point. They taught about the weather, the months of the year and the seasons, and judging by the recap lesson we had, they were successful in their aim!

This week we reviewed the seasons and thought about how we might write simple poems about them. I suggested we thought of colours as everyone was familiar with at least 5 colours that they could match to a season. I  introduced other adjectives, including reminding them of ones we had used in connection to music (Autumn term) and the planets (Spring term)

I modelled a simple structure, saying we were aiming for something like a Haiku not a sonnet; about half of them understood what I meant!

La primavera es verde y amarilla.

La primavera es bonito y alegre.

Me gusta la primavera.

Having given a sheet with some adjectives on it (including some unsuitable ones for this task like alto and bajo) and access to dictionaries, off they went.

And I was really pleased with some of the results.

Amelia has missed most Spanish lessons since Christmas as she has spent Tuesday afternoons at a local secondary school doing some G&T work.  Today she wrote the poem below in 10 minutes.

photo 5And these children impressed too, especially this one from Sam who finds Spanish tricky at times.
photo 3

photo 4

photo 1

They are simple, yes. But they demonstrate to varying extents that they can

  • write at varying length, for different purposes and audiences, using the variety of grammatical structure that they have learnt
  • broaden their vocabulary and develop their ability to understand new words that are introduced into familiar written material, including through using a dictionary
  • write phrases from memory, and adapt these to create new sentences, to express ideas clearly
  • describe people, places, things and actions … and in writing       (Languages Programmes of Study: Key Stage 2)

Looking forward to next week when we will continue in this vein and present our poems using technology!

My Money Week

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Money Money

Image bninette_luz

This week is My Money Week in many schools across the country including my own.

For the first time this year, I’ve been asked to contribute some ideas for Spanish activities. I’ve done them in the past but it’s a sign of the increasing willingness – and excitement – on the part of some of my colleagues that I was specifically asked this time.

So off I popped to do some research and found a site called MamutMatemáticas where I found some resources for all sorts of mathematics in Spanish!

There are free resources for each topic as a sample – there are five for Dinero (see below) and I could have just used those. However, for £2 I downloaded a 52 page PDF offering ideas and worksheets on recognising coins, adding up, giving change, c to € and vice versa, prices and solving word puzzles.

So, in conjunction with the euro coins that are lying in the Maths cupboard, year4 are next week going to do some Spanish maths. Again. (I need to tell you about my excursion into CLIL but that’s for another day…)

The instructions won’t make much sense without the PDF but I’ll share them if anyone buys it!

I also found a number of sites that might help with the week –

facts about currencies  – http://kids.yahoo.com/reference/world-factbook/currency
online activity on currencies – http://www.pitara.com/activities/quiz/online.asp?qname=currencies

making amounts of money in euros http://www.teachingmoney.co.uk/eurosite/wb/makemeEURO.html

a VERY challenging game that involves buying items to an exact amount of money http://www.teachingmoney.co.uk/eurosite/games/picknmixEURO.html

this one’s about giving change http://www.teachingmoney.co.uk/eurosite/games/changeEURO.html

I’m sure there are plenty of other sites too that offer similar activities. I’d be interested to know if you’d like to share some!

PS here are the sample sheets on money from Mamutmatematicas –

http://www.mamutmatematicas.com/muestras/Dinero_Europeo_Contar_monedas_uno_dos_cinco_centimos.pdf

http://www.mamutmatematicas.com/muestras/Dinero_Europeo_Practica_comprar.pdf

http://www.mamutmatematicas.com/muestras/Dinero_Europeo_Repaso_de_contar_monedas.pdf

http://www.mamutmatematicas.com/muestras/Dinero_Europeo_Euros_parte_2.pdf

http://www.mamutmatematicas.com/muestras/Dinero_Europeo_Problemas_dinero_matematicas_mental.pdf

 

Today see the second Website of the week in QR code – this one is still under construction but is looking great!

The colour was chosen especially to match the colour scheme of the site – and the school ;o)

(For those of you without a QR reader, click here)

Today, 5th May, marks the 5th birthday of eTwinning.

The birthday was celebrated across Europe with balloon releases, cake eating and national events.

In the UK we were encouraged to plant blue and yellow flowers – the colours of the European Union and also the eTwinning logo.

At Whitehouse Common, 1DS marked the event in several ways.

1. we watched the eTwinning videos below – the children (aged 5-6) completely understood the message of the first clip – ‘eTwinning makes lessons more fun.  The kids looked much happier when the eTwinning man arrived.’  And they were highly amused by all the ball throwing in the second!

2. we made paper doll chains to symbolise people holding hands as friends – surprisingly they all successfully cut out their dolls in a chain (although we had one set of decapitated dolls!)

3. we coloured in flowers in blue and yellow for a display

4. and best of all, we planted some marigolds and a blueish daisy in the dragon planter.

So – Happy Birthday eTwinning from WCPS!

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