A performance artist eats $120,000 banana!

A banana story for novices

Did you see the story about the man who decides to eat a banana that was part of an art exhibit in Miami?!  A performance artist ate a banana that was taped up to the wall that someone had already paid $120,000 for!  (FYI- I saw this reminder somewhere else, but you can pay .19 cents for a banana at Trader Joes!)  In all honesty, I could get into a lot of details about why this is all so fascinating to me as an art history major (and if I am also skeptical about this scene as nothing more than a publicity stunt), but I knew that I wanted to share it with my students.

It took me a bit to figure out where I could fit this story.  I knew that this would hook my fourth grade class knowing their personalities.  They are going to be SHOCKED!  Plus, on our last comprehension check, I could tell that they needed extra practice with the word quiere which is in the book Edi el elefante.  Thus my purpose was two fold, but important:

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Plus, quiere is a high frequency verb that is essential to communication.  My hook will be easy!  I am going to bring in a banana and tape it to the wall.  Then I can start asking my students what it is.  Once they describe it, I will tell them that it isn’t really a banana.  It is special.  I will give them all thumbs up and thumbs down hands to voice their opinion as we go through the slideshow.  These small papers also provide a quick brain break for my students.  Whenever I ask for their opinion, I will count their votes in the target language, write the number on the board and discuss which choice has more votes all in Spanish.  It is easy for them to comprehend because they can see what we are doing and the support is on the board.

In any chance that I have to really discuss something, I do!  This helps draw out what I am saying and provides more repetitions of what is going on.  Within the slideshow, I have provided links to videos that show both the man eating it and the artist reinstalling the banana.  I am going to mute the videos, pause them, and talk about them as we are watching.

The slideshow is available for you to use here.


Remember for us the purpose was to reinforce the word quiere, so I want to keep reviewing this story.

At the end, I am going to put my students in groups of three and have them write as many details as they can in Spanish.  To spice it up, we will play the Details game by AnneMarie Chase!  This group in particular is motivated by games, so this will push them to use the Spanish that they already know.  I will write the key words on the board to help them as they are brainstorming.

If you want to try an extension, but you have done a lot of writing, try the ping pong recall from Martina.  You could also have your students draw what is happening along with you to express meaning.  If they do that, I like to have them label their drawings in Spanish.  Then, we play the papelitos game for listening.


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