We are continuing our journey reading Billy y las botas! I am enjoying this change of pace, and my students seem to be enjoying it as well. Luckily, last week, I caught the #langchat discussion with Carrie Toth. (The summaries are posted here if you missed it!) This provided a reminder to me of a ton of activities (including some new ideas, too!) Here are some of our activities that we completed so far this week:
- We started with a list of events that I had cut up for students to put in order in small groups. Manipulatives can seem to take awhile to assemble, but they always seem to engage students. I will keep cutting!
- Since I had been doing a lot of the talking, I put together a reading guide for the next few pages. I used a lot of the questions from the circling guide (which I recommend that you buy!) I also included a few translations and a few comprehension questions in the reading guide. This allows me to point students in the right direction to the important parts of the book. In addition, I used the PowerPoint template to choose a few pictures and have students describe them in Spanish like we did in class. On the guide, I include the page numbers to help the students follow along. It is important when you create a reading guide to really think about the important takeaways that you want the students to understand from the book. This was also a good activity for my blended class as they were working independently online.
- After the reading guide, we did digital storytelling. I had students recreate some of the scenes from the book in Snapchat. (You can use Adobe Spark if they do not allow Snapchat at your school.) This took about 15-20 minutes for my students to complete 5 pictures. They also had to caption them in Spanish. They can download the pictures instead of posting them. I really loved the creativity that my students showed. Really, their Snapchats make me SO happy! I have shared some below that my students did (without their pictures):
- On the next day, we did an abbreviated form of Pecha Kucha from Señor Wooly’s video tutorials. We have done a lot of practice speaking after the book. In addition, the students can choose to work with a partner and speak for 40 seconds or speak by themselves for 20 seconds. I just started with volunteers, so some students could wait to start another time.
- We continued the story with me asking more questions this time using the circling guide. I have found that it is important how I vary how I ask the story or students get antsy. I also provided copies for the students from these sections to add notes.
- We stopped at the part where the dog tells you to close the book now. I was very dramatic about having kids close the book. I yell at them for reading on! They loved me “calling” kids out for reading ahead. One of my kids today told me that they couldn’t wait to get to class to find out what happened next.
- Then with small groups, students completed a graffiti activity with writing. They had to answer some deeper questions like are life and love cruel? They also had pictures to describe. Then the smaller groups would move around to respond to the questions or add more details to the description of the picture.
Overall, my students seem to enjoy the book! I believe that this is due to a few things. Señor Wooly really gets kids. They think his jokes are pretty funny- if not corny, but they like it! In addition, the pictures have some great details to talk about! It is fun to really look at pictures the way that you may not in a book. I highly encourage you to look at this graphic novel if you haven’t! Also, let me know how you are using this novel if you are!