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Brillante Viernes: April 19, 2019

Brillante Viernes: April 19

Happy Friday!  I hope you are enjoying Spring Break if you have the time off!  We are lucky to have today off as a nice break before the end of the school year.  Not only that, but it is the 100th episode of We Teach Languages!  I got to record the beginning and ending of it!  Yayyyy!!!  It was really moving for me to listen to teachers talking about what an impact the podcast has had on them.  I feel very lucky to help and work with Stacey.  She is amazing and has dedicated so much time to the podcast!

I have definitely caught the interview bug!  I have interviewed Erin with Lead with Languages (and go to ACTFL headquarters and geek out!!), Kara Jacobs and Luis Deocares.  It has been fun to take time out of my week to just have a conversation with some of my favorite people about language teaching.  I also have recorded an episode with Heidi Trude that will come out soon.  I encourage you to submit your own episode to the podcast!  I always like to emphasize that everyone has something to contribute to the world language teaching community!

As you are catching up on your favorite podcasts, check out these posts, too:

  • I LOVE PearDeck- SpanishPlans blogged a great tutorial if you haven’t jumped in yet!
  • Allison wrote a great post about the AAPPL test with reflections and how she wants to prepare students next year.  As the Seal of Biliteracy becomes more viable for more people, I know more teachers are using this test.
  • I am saving all of these Maravillas posts to use in class!  This week Arianne shares some more!
  • I am always looking for better questions to ask students with feedback- these 10 questions should be incorporated by everyone!

Flashback time:


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Brillante Viernes: April 12, 2019

brillante viernes: april 12

Happy Friday!  This weekend, I am headed south to FLAVA to present about interpersonal activities and assessments in the classroom, and I will post my presentation tomorrow!  In my classes, we have been reading Calaca Alegre.  This is my second year reading it, and I love that I have some resources already developed, and I can work on some more.  Zachary Jones did activities with this song which was a perfect tie-in!  Also, did you know that you can actually go into the National Museum of Mexican Art??  My students were able to walk around Pilsen on Friday in this Google Tour.  Check out some of these posts from the past week:

On my drive tonight, I know that I will be listening to the newest episode of We Teach Languages with Cult of Pedagogy and Ashley’s interview with Sarah Breckley!  Here are some of my older posts from this time:

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Brillante Viernes: April 5, 2019

Brillante Viernes April 5

Happy Friday!  WHEW!  This has been a long week that ended with a sick little boy on Thursday night.  Luckily I have an extremely supportive husband who stayed home with him today.  Speaking of my husband- he has started blogging!  I am SO excited!  If you are a runner (or just wonder what he thinks about marathon running)- check out his first blog post! ❤  In other exciting news, my colleague is publishing a book with Dave Burgess Publishing!  It is called Tech with Heart, and I can’t wait to buy it.

Here are some other posts to check out:

  • I can’t wait to try some of these tips for productivity from the Creative Language Classroom!
  • I know that many people struggle with the balance of grammar and CI.  AnneMarie has written a wonderful post about how to incorporate grammar into a CI class.
  • Allison has written an excellent post about how to use more CI (and I think it goes nicely with my post from earlier this month!)
  • Arianne created another wonderful unit– this time about the Mirabal sisters.
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Brillante Viernes: March 29, 2019

Brillante Viernes: March 29

Happy Friday from Virginia Beach!!!  I can’t believe it is already Friday of Spring Break!  This week always seems to fly by.  At least, I was able to do a little work, a long pedicure and dinner with a friend and a lot of relaxing and family time.  Next week is already APRIL!  I am hoping for some much warmer weather consistently.  In the meantime, check out these posts from this week:

Also, have you signed up for my newsletter?  I am going to send out my latest edition on Monday!


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Brillante Viernes: March 22, 2019

Brillante Viernes March 22

Happy Friday!  For us, we have made it to spring break!  Today, my students participated in a Goosechase and we played the Unfair Game with some of the news articles that I write with Martina.  I love that they are both active and engaging even on the last day before break.  My son and I are headed back to Virginia Beach- and I can’t wait!  In the meantime, check out these posts:

  • Check out this amazing SCOLT presentation with activities to do with novices and authentic resources!  (Don’t forget to check out the tweets with #scolt19 !)
  • I always bookmark anything that Allison shares about books!
  • As someone who spends a lot of time with professional development, I enjoyed Matt’s post on the changing face of PD.
  • Ashley has a great post on Plan B for storytelling.  I love the mix of listening and reading.

Looking for more posts?  Check out my older posts!

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Brillante Viernes: March 15, 2019

brillante viernes march 15

Happy Friday!!  I am headed to Virginia Beach to watch my husband run the Shamrock Marathon.  I love going home.  Then, we have one more week before Spring Break!  Did you catch any of the Spanish Teacher Success Academy?  I am still taking notes, and it is just what I need to give me new ideas to spice up March!  Here are some of my favorite posts from the week:

  • On my way to Virginia Beach, I will be tuning in to Ashley’s interview with Rebecca!  I LOVED the workshop on high leverage teaching practices, and I am looking forward to unpacking more ideas.
  • Speaking of podcasts on We Teach Languages, you can check out my interview with Luis Deocares, the president of GWATFL.
  • This post by AnneMarie is amazing.  I started password, but I didn’t continue it this year.  It has convinced me that I need to make it a priority.
  • Elicia’s post on how to make changes in your teaching is also amazing and helpful for everyone.


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Brillante Viernes: March 8, 2019


brillante viernes march 8Happy Friday!  Whew!  This week was long!  I know that so many teachers feel that they are dragging before spring break.  I think that Locura de Marzo has been helping us!  All of my Spanish classes are back into novels.  I think that helps provide structure to our weeks.  Check out some of these posts for more ideas to help you in March:

  • Laura is finally using PearDeck- YAAAAAS!
  • My NECTFL buddy Michelle has some great ideas about 50 Cosas Sobre Mi!  I am thinking about modifying this for our level 1 IPA this year.
  • This post is great about the music song Soy Yo, and I love the sentence starters for the socratic seminar!
  • I love stations!  They worked really well to motivate my students on Fridays!  I haven’t thought of including some of these– especially the collaborative smashdoodle!

Have you signed up for the FREE conference that starts on Monday?!  I will be explaining how I implement IPAs into my classes.  Check it out!

Some other posts from me:

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Brillante Viernes: March 1, 2019

Brillante Viernes March 1

Happy March!  We almost even had a snow day today- but I am ready for spring.  As is my son who said “The groundhog LITERALLY said that we would have spring soon!”  Looking at the forecast, it doesn’t look like it will come any time soon.  Today is the first day of Comprehensible Online!  What is your favorite take away so far?  If you aren’t make sure you take some time to read these posts from the past week:

  • My colleague Stacey posted about our recent collaboration to have students record videos for a news broadcast based on El Mundo en Tus Manos.
  • I love Write and Discuss!  Martina demos it here.
  • Kara has shared some great resources for this movie short!
  • If you haven’t watched Sarah’s reverse charades do it!  She has great ideas- and I love her energy every time I watch her vlog.

Finally, if you have missed it (I don’t want anyone to miss it- that is why I keep posting it!), I am presenting at another online conference for all language teachers even though it says Spanish teachers.  I will be talking about what an IPA (Integrated Performance Assessment) is and how I plan mine.STSA19 March 11 Session MARIS HAWKINS 1320x1040.png


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Brillante Viernes: February 22, 2019

Brillante Viernes: February 22

Happy Friday!  Hope you are having a great week!  We had a snow day on Wednesday and then it was 50 degrees on Thursday.  I was tweeting with friends who are on snow day 11 or higher!  WHOA!  Hopefully, it thaws out soon.  If you are still snowed in, make sure you check out these posts:

  • Sara-Elizabeth writes another thoughtful piece about TCI.
  • I love the idea of Cartoon Olympics!
  • Leslie does a great job of incorporating art in her post, and I want to use her scaffolds as well.
  • Don’t forget to check out the most recent We Teach Languages podcasts!  I loved last week’s episode on portfolios- and this week’s episode features some of my favorite teachers- Rebecca Blouwolff, Megan Smith and Kara Parker!


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Brillante Viernes: February 15, 2019

Brillante Viernes: February 15

Happy Friday!  We have two more days in the trimester, and I am up to my ears in grading!  Who else is with me??  Especially after being gone for two days for NECTFL- I always have more work facing me.  Luckily, we do not give traditional exams in foreign language- we give IPAs.  This allows us to assess both listening and speaking.  In the meantime, check out these posts from the past week:

  • We take the AAPPL, so I am excited that there are Flipgrid topics to use to practice!
  • I love this post for Yo sin ti– and am saving it for next Valentine’s Day!
  • Carrie has blogged about some more activities to do while you are reading novels.
  • Kara has done it again with a new song!  She creates the best resources!

Flashback to other posts…

  • My presentation at NECTFL from 2017: Tech tools for the proficiency classroom
  • If you haven’t taken a tour at an art museum in Spanish, you should!