Posted in Brillante Viernes

Brillante Viernes: September 14, 2018

Brillante Viernes: Sept 14

Happy Friday!  For us, this was the first week back in the full swing of things.  Everything is getting back into a routine, but I am glad so many teachers on Twitter could identify that planning takes SO much longer.  It is literally like I have no clue what I did last year.  OR if I did meticulously write it down (ahem Spanish level 1 first unit!) some of the resources have disappeared and I have to redo some plans anyway.  But, at this point, we are well on our way into acquiring more and more language.  I hope that this weekend, you can check out some of the following posts:

  • If you don’t read any other posts, read THIS ONE by Justin!  (And know that it is the truth)
  • Check out how Señor Fernie is using El Mundo en Tus Manos and Newsela in his classes!
  • As a big fan of professional development and conferences, I hope that many big conferences can take Sara-Elizabeth’s crowdsourced tips into consideration.
  • Ink and Volt is fast becoming one of my favorite non teaching blogs!  Check out this post on daily goals and how to get more done in one day.

Flashback to previous posts:

  • I still love PearDeck vocabulary (and it is one of my students’ favorite activities!)
  • I continue to use this template at the beginning of the unit to help guide my class since we don’t use a textbook.
  • Ideas to check for reading comprehension
Posted in Brillante Viernes

Brillante Viernes: September 7, 2018

My Post (71)

Happy Friday!  Now, everyone is back in school!  My week was super busy, and I felt like it took a day to get back in the swing of teaching.  The second day was wonderful, and our experiential education trip went well on Thursday (and hopefully today too!)  At least, we all have this weekend to relax before it all starts up again.  Here were some of my favorite posts from this week:

  • I like these quick quiz rubrics! While my interpersonal listening/reading assessments are a bit more through, these will be great to prepare students.
  • These weekend chat placemats are perfect for all levels- and in Spanish and French!
  • You can check vocabulary by using these printed post-it notes.
  • I just started to use write and discuss, so I like Mike Peto’s cartoon idea for post write and discuss!
  • Also, many teachers are talking about self-care recently.  Check out this post on how to carve it into your daily life.
Posted in Brillante Viernes

Brillante Viernes: August 31, 2018

Brillante Viernes August 31

Happy Friday!  Whew!  I am so exhausted!  I ALWAYS forget how exhausting the first week is.  My room is *almost* ready and my websites are *almost* ready.  I am grateful that I have the full weekend to finalize everything.  Plus, I have all of the new school excitement.  I am also excited that my interview with Erin Whelchel about the ACTFL initiative Lead with Languages on the We Teach Languages podcast.  After you finalize plans, I hope that you curl up with a cup of coffee and check out these posts:

  • Brett’s post about getting started with CI is perfect for this time of the year.
  • Check out this road map for a proficiency based unit!  (Also a new to me blog- yay!)
  • Carrie’s post addresses how grammar is covered in a CI class.
  • And finally, consider drawing the story.

On the blog in the past years…

Posted in Brillante Viernes

Brillante Viernes: August 24, 2018

Brillante Viernes Aug 24

Happy Friday!  Next week, I am officially back in school and summer is over.  Luckily, I had time this week to finish up all of my last minute to do items.  I also started decorating my classroom because my first day back at school will mostly be me catching up and chatting with my friends.  Is anyone else the same?  As much as I love summer and the beach, I also get so excited to see my friends and new students again.

Here are some of my favorite posts to read this week:

  • Check out this post on how to organize a classroom!  My favorite is #7.
  • On CI Peek, Arianne has been blogging about many of the sessions from iFLT.  Check out this one in particular about using music in the classroom!
  • I love this authentic resource that Zachary Jones uses for a beginning of the year activity.
  • This activity to recreate an Instagram story within Google Slides is perfect after a novel or story.
  • Also, I was nodding along vigorously listening to the most recent We Teach Languages podcast!  If you want to learn more about proficiency, make sure to listen.

Flashback to previous posts on my blog:

Posted in Brillante Viernes

Brillante Viernes: August 17, 2018

Brillante Viernes August 17

Congratulations to everyone who made it through their first week of school!  I still have one more week of break, but my son is headed off to start preschool next week.  I told him that I would miss our time in the summer together and he told me “you need to just remember how much fun I will be having.”  I guess almost five-years-old is a good age to outsmart your mother.

Here are some of my favorite posts from this past week:

Previous posts from me:

Posted in Brillante Viernes

Brillante Viernes: August 10, 2018

BV August 10

Happy Friday!  I have two more weeks of summer, and so I am in the surprisingly efficient and motivated time of my summer.  This is the time that I realize if I haven’t gotten it done by the end of two weeks, it probably won’t get done until on my longer winter break.  I am also trying to squeeze the last few days in with my son and our summer field trips to balance out my productive early mornings and nap times!  I have also started an Instagram page for my blog.  Instagram has become one of my newest favorite platforms to use, so I wanted to start using it!  August means that blogging has started ramping back up for everyone.  Check out some of my favorite posts:

  • I LOVE reading reviews including Yelp and using them in class.  The idea to use Trip Advisor reviews by Sara-Elizabeth is as always on point.
  • Gary DiBianca’s post on how he assesses with socratic circles is extremely detailed and helpful.  I plan on trying this for my students this year.
  • This post on flexible seating is coming at the perfect time for me!  I am not going completely deskless, but Emily explains how to strike a happy medium.
  • Last year and this year, I continue to work on how I take care of myself.  Wendy’s suggestions in this post are so practical for anyone to start.

Flashback Friday to earlier August posts on this blog:

Posted in beginning of the year, Brillante Viernes

Back to School Bonanza!

Back to School Bonanza

I hope this past week has helped as teachers get ready for back to school!  If you missed any posts: I included my first day plans, curriculums and changes, how I ditched the review, and my favorite buys for each new school year.

We are all in the same boat during the beginning of the school year- overwhelmed and excited with new ideas, overwhelmed with everything you have to do in your classroom and with your curriculum, exhausted from changing from the more leisurely pace of summer, and just pretty much wanting to spend the time chatting and catching up with your teacher friends!

I wanted to share some of the other posts that I have seen from previous years and this year to help you prepare even more!  I have broken it down into topics as well:

General back to school:

  • If you haven’t downloaded this resource library for Secondary Spanish teachers, you should do it!  They also have one for elementary Spanish teachers.  (Although the raffle is over- don’t worry, I didn’t win either! 🙂
  • Also- for elementary school teachers, El Mundo de Pepita has already published a huuuuuge list to help you with back to school!
  • Kara discusses how to assess the community standard.
  • Some resources from Arianne for back to school
  • The beginning of the year is a perfect time to really focus on your classroom management.
  • Allison also compiled a huuuuge list of ideas for back to school!
  • And some more free back to school resources from Señora Chase.

Specific lesson plans/ideas:




Hope this list can get you started, so you are going back to school with a bang!

Posted in Brillante Viernes

July recap

july recap

And there goes July!  Weeks seem to past quickly in the summer!  My family took a trip down to the Keys in Florida, and it was gorgeous.  I have also been busy at home.  My son and I play tourist in our town (Maryland/DC) and go to all of the fun places/museums.  Next week, we are going back to Virginia Beach to spend some time, and I will be geeking out because I get to meet THE Matt Miller!  (I have also been watching a ton of his videos from the summer Ditch Summit!  You still have time to sign up.)

A big project that I have been thinking about for months is trying to get some professional development for teachers online.  I know that it can be difficult to get to a variety of conferences, and I wanted to make it feasible for everyone.  I put some of my videos online for teachers who can get a glimpse into how I teach.  Currently, I have:

I have a few ideas for other topics that I can do, but I would love to hear other topics that people need help with!

Also next week, I am planning my back to school week of posts.  Each day, I will share a post that will help you get ready for back to school.  My schedule is:

  • Monday: First day of school lesson plans
  • Tuesday: Curriculum changes and updates
  • Wednesday: How to start a year without a review
  • Thursday: Favorite back to school buys
  • Friday: Back to school round up resources on other blogs

In case you missed any of these posts from July, check them out!

  • Annabelle Allen’s post is ESSENTIAL back to school reading.
  • If you missed iFLT, make sure you don’t miss CI Peek’s blog posts to summarize parts of the conference.
  • Martina has been writing some great introduction to CI posts about MovieTalk and TPR.
  • These posts are a fascinating way to document student growth!
  • Also Allison’s post on how to rock your first year teaching is a great one!  (Even if you have been teaching for a few years 🙂
Posted in Brillante Viernes

June recap

June Recap

I am back from my vacation, and boy, did a lot of stuff happen!  My favorite PD- EdCampCIVa- just happened last Wednesday, and I am still feeling inspired!  I will be writing a recap of that event soon.  In the meantime, I wanted to share some of my favorite posts and news that happened these past few weeks.

First, did you see the announcement that Flipgrid is now free?!  Flipgrid was acquired by Microsoft, and so now ALL users can have all of the same features for free.  They are also rolling out some changes at their Flipgrid Live event later in the summer.  Next year, I plan on continuing the Flipgrids where all students can collaborate.

Stacey has kept producing amazing content with the We Teach Languages podcast.  If you haven’t listened to some of the most recent episodes, I encourage you to download some- especially before a long road trip!  Also, I have been helping Stacey make the mid week newsletter.  That has a lot of updates from previous guests and reactions from others.  Think of it as a modified Brillante Viernes post- but on Wednesday! 🙂

Also, if you didn’t see it, I wrote a post on Secondary Spanish Space about how to include authentic resources with novels this week!  When they contacted me to write it, I wanted to look around and say “who me?!”  But I guess if someone contacts you directly- they are talking to you.  As I start to find what my own voice sounds like in FL education, I know that I straddle both lines- using CI, authentic resources, and IPAs.  I feel that at times, they can be pitted against each other, but I don’t feel that has to be the case.  This post captures a lot of what I do in my classroom to manage both.

As far as other posts, make sure to check out:

Posted in Brillante Viernes

Brillante Viernes: June 8, 2018

june 8 2018

Happy Friday!  It has been a busy week filled with graduation, grading final IPAs and packing up my room.  We are also working on EdCampCIVa which is at the end of the month!  There is still plenty of space, so sign up soon!  We still have a few new twists that we are adding to improve the experience for everyone attending.

With that being said, I am going to take some time off posting AS regularly on the summer.  I still have some projects that I want to work on over the summer.  I want to dedicate some time to those.  I will still pop up here with some brillante posts and reflections and revelations about what I am doing… but don’t worry if you don’t see a post from me in awhile!  I will definitely still be tweeting and on Facebook as well.  Here are some of my favorite end of the year posts:

  • I love this post on how to plan for the summer to accomplish things and feel rejuvenated.
  • Check out Sara-Elizabeth’s post for the year of the podcast!
  • I love Señor Fernie’s reflection on micromanaging and his final projects.
  • If you are still going strong, check out Kara’s post on La Copa Mundial and Zachary Jones’ Billetes activity.

And from me…