2016-2017 Opening Spanish Newsletter

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¡Hola a todos! Hello to all!

If you don’t know me yet, let me introduce myself. My name is Miss Taylor and, if you’re reading this, chances are I’m your child’s Spanish teacher. I have been teaching in the district for 7 years and have worked primarily in O’Hara and Hartwood for that time, though I have also taught some classes at Fairview. I love my job – I love working with kids and teaching them how to become better learners of language (and everything else). I have found a specific passion for teaching young students to love learning a foreign language, but also just to love learning.

There have been some changes to the program that will affect how many lessons each class will receive this year. Previously, there were two teachers for all four elementary schools. This year, I’m the only one. To accommodate this change and to allow me to teach in all four buildings, Spanish will run on a trimester system. Previously it was done in a semester system in which each class received Spanish once a week for half the year. In this new system, every class will get Spanish once a week, but for only a third of the year, or approximately 12 lessons. Some classes may get slightly less than that due to holidays, half days, assemblies, field trips, snow days, etc. In case multiple lessons are missed, I will try my best to work with the teachers to make up the lessons when we can.

Here’s the schedule for the trimesters:

  • 4th + 5th Grade = August 30th – November 23rd
  • 2nd + 3rd Grade = November 29th – March 3rd
  • Kindergarten + 1st Grade = March 6th – June 9th

Additionally, I will be spending 1 day a week at each building, with 2 days at O’Hara for its double size. Monday = Kerr, Tuesday = Fairview, Wednesday = Hartwood, Thursday + Friday = O’Hara.

To accommodate these changes, I’ll be making some modifications to my expectations for homework. The students and I are going to work as a team to figure out what works for us, but since I can’t say for sure how many lessons each group will get and how many should go to a particular unit, I’m not going to give weekly homework or label their pages by lesson number. Instead, I plan to design folder pages for each unit. This will hopefully bring more cohesion to the unit and will allow the students to work towards the end goal (at least the older kids) – which is a good thing, regardless of how many lessons they get.

I’m currently beginning the first trimester with 4th and 5th grade. Our first lesson has been dedicated to explaining the changes and reviewing my expectations for them in class. Next lesson, we will begin reviewing greetings in Spanish. I really value this unit because this is the first set of vocabulary we all use when we meet someone knew, even in English. We ask and tell about names, origin, age, likes, and feelings. These phrases and questions are mostly review to students. Perhaps they need to dust off the cobwebs, but overall they should not be a large challenge.

I will write another newsletter when I have more direction for the curriculum and move out of the greetings unit for the older kids.

If you have any questions, feel free to email me at: jessica_taylor@fcasd.edu. Also, if your child ever needs an extra copy of the unit paper (I have not distributed the first one yet), you can email me.

¡Qué tengan un lindo día! I hope you have a great day!

Sinceramente,

Señorita (Jessica) Taylor

 

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