Wednesday, November 2, 2016

3 Ways to use authentic resources in teaching/ learning subjunctive


Aunque Tú No Lo Sepas: Getting a Visceral - Subjunctive Triggering- Response from Students 

This is a very weird short film, but it is so weird that students are talking for days about it! The short film features the story of a guy who is so impacted by a girl's smile that he decides to "do" nice things for her, but she is a little weirded-out by some of his good deeds- since to her, he is still a stranger.


Aunque Tú No Lo Sepas does not have  not have subtitles, but I created a short background cloze-text passage with vocabulary (Quizlet set) from our current relationship unit. Additional activities surrounding vocabulary are linked toward the end of this post.

Me molesta que... Es raro que... No es buen que- subjunctive provoking reactions 

One of the hallmarks of using input such as this is that it provides a natural vehicle for students to use subjunctive expressions as emotional reactions to situation or statements of an impersonal nature. This year, instead of having them respond to questions regarding the conflicting motives and desires of onscreen characters, I have them process the visual content, react first and then get to the nitty-gritty subjunctive use. Here is how I used this film. Free resources are included in this link:

Free activity: Questions, readings, creative writing and speaking activities

Viewing protocol (This film is connected to my Relationships unit).

1. Pre-viewing questions about the nature of relationships- included in resource packet. I divided students into groups and have them one question each. Some groups had the same question, which deepened the conversations.

2. Project a picture of the flim. You can google the pic our use the one in the resource packet. Then I ask students questions:

-¿Quiénes son las personas en la foto?
-¿Se conocen?
-¿Tienen una amistad?
-¿Son una pareja?
-¿Dónde están?
-¿Cómo  se siente la chica?
-¿Cómo se siente el chico?
-¿Qué puede ser el enlace entre ellos dos?

3. Read and complete the cloze-text passage about the background of the film. Again, this vocabualry is connected to my Quizlet set for the unit.

4. View the movie. I stopped every two minutes to ask questions. For example, Adriana gets into a cab and her fare is paid for. I asked :

 ¿Ella pagó por el taxi?
¿Quién pagó?
¿Cómo se siente Adriana?
¿ Cómo te sentirías tú?

5. Students get into groups to discuss the first set of post-reading questions.
6. I give them the second set as a visual comprehension/ writing assessments.

Resources for the Aunque Tú Lo No Sepas Short Film: 

Video link: Aunque Tú No Lo Sepas 

Vocabulary set:  Quizlet set

Free activity: Questions, readings, creative writing and speaking activities


Use Short Series Trailers as a Catalyst for Speaking 

Mar de Plástico 
To get students excited about the unit in addition to providing them with resources they could view on their own beyond the four walls of the class,  I featured a few trailers of Spanish-speaking series. Most of the series are from Spain (I have A3series- a new channel offered on DirectTV).  However, it also highlights Spain's dominance in this particular market. Series such as Gran Hotel and El Internado are also popularly viewed by both Spanish-Speaking and non-Spanish-Speaking audiences. Since we had been working on the subjunctive in this particular unit, I organized activities to include that grammatical point. This activity Hoja de actividad worked the vocabulary and grammar.

Trailers o Avances to the series. 
El principe 

Quiero- Jorge Bucay- Seeing the Subjunctive in Action! 


Inject the class with a little bit of poetry!  I loved this activity! It was very fun and the students really got into this poem. We worked with the present subjunctive, but next week, I will have them rework the poem to practice the past subjunctive for both parts- how exciting.

Here is what I did:
  • I had a student read the biographical blurb about Benedetti. The poem features aspects of the Uruguayan dialect, especially in the last verse, so touching on his heritage gave students some insight into the language usage. 
  • I modeled the first few verses with adding the present subjunctive, to give them a sense of the activity.  
  • They worked in pairs or individually to finish the poem.
  • I did a round robin on this one, we went around and shared our one verse. 
  • We talked about the meaning of the poem, I ask students the questions bulleted below: 

  1. Inference- Who is this poem written to?  How do you know? Choose one verse to support your answer.
  2. Explain- What is your favorite verse of the poem and why? 
  3. Create - Students added three verses in the spirit of the poem (another segement of Round Robin).


The coolest thing about this was that students recreated some of the same nuances in the poem such as " Quiero que me abraces sin asfixiarme." I had one student who said " Quiero que salgas sin dejarme.- That is deep!

Some orginal versus by my students: 

Quiero que me ames sin romper mi corazón 
Quiero que me preguntes sin interrogarme 
Quiero que me escuches sin destrurime 




The information above is listed in this resource: Click here for resource 

Check out the previous post of short story for teens: El Muerto en el Armario: Amistad, Traición y Venganza. This story uses mostly subjunctive and features literacy and grammar-focused has pre, during and post reading activites.

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