I had so much fun creating active hooks for Felipe Alou with Spanish 2 last semester that I am challenging myself to think of out-of-seat hooks for Piratas (Spanish 1).
I launched the book today by talking about the ancient search for the fountain of youth (I gave them "joven" and "juventud" and had them guess what "fuente de la juventud" meant). I asked students if people were still looking for it. Young things that they are, they said no. Then I showed ads for products promising to restore or preserve youth, pointing out word "rejuvenecer". Then we did a gallery walk. They each wrote tags for "mentiras," (lies) "ridiculo" and "creo que funciona" (I believe it works) and walked around the room tagging ads. Afterward, I discussed their opinions and removed the negative tags. We looked at which ad had won the most believers.
If your classroom doesn´t have access to a field, scale down this activity to be room-sized. It was nice weather and running on the field seemed like a good Hook/Brain Break. All the visuals made it easy to keep this in comprehensible Spanish.
I projected this map and asked students to guess the distance from Veracruz to La Habana and from La Habana to Sevilla. Guesses were way off, like 80 miles/17,000 miles. https://images.app.goo.gl/PJ9fEPwNQR9oVAeK6
Then we looked at this site that calculates distances and also how long it would take (I should have had students guess the travel time first). I found a site that suggested 5 knots was average speed in the 1600´s, so I went with that. https://sea-distances.org/
Next we scaled the distance to meters (100 miles per meter), found which student could pace 1 meter: 8 paces from Veracruz to La Habana and 40 paces to Sevilla. Students who didn´t want to run held signs for each location.
Now the fun! We made two groups--piratas and españoles. Teams represented being in the boat by holding onto a rope, and student on the end of the boat held a pirate or Spanish flag. They raced from Veracruz, did a loop around student holding La Habana sign, ran to Sevilla and then back to Veracruz. They definitely got the idea that it is a long way to Sevilla!
Scale it down by making it 1,000 miles/1meter and have them travel the distance with paper boats in the classroom.
This chapter makes abundant use of the phrase "tener que" (to have to), so I wanted to front load the language.
I asked students what they had to do after school and put up posters with possible answers (I have to make supper, I have to take care of my little bro/sis, I have to study for a test, etc). They cut up a sticky note to make 4 tags and wrote their names on them. Then they walked around the room, putting their names on things they had to do. One poster said just "Tengo que..." so they could write a verb on their tag for tasks not on a poster.
When they were done, we talked about things they had to do. I was surprised by how many of them had to make supper that night. This gave us a good opportunity to chat about real things, besides lots of "tener que" reps before diving into ch. 3.
(Yes, I skipped ch. 4. It was a short class period and we didn't have time for an active hook.)
This is one of the best hooks I have created, in my opinion! It was easy to stay in Spanish, had a tie-in to the book and to history, students were out of their seats and engaged and it was memorable.
Students made paper boats, as I demonstrated and explained in simple Spanish. I discovered earlier this year, when we made boats for a Cristóbal Colón story, that my students don´t know how to make paper hats or boats. What are they teaching in second grade these days?
I was missing quite a few students today, but if I had a full class, I would have had them make a boat with a partner (I planned to have one partner make a little Spanish flag for the boat). We had 15 boats, which seemed like an outer limit for attention span.
The challenge was to see how much "silver" (nickles) the boat could hold before sinking to the bottom of the "Atlantic Ocean" (a big bucket of water). The student put his/her boat in the water and then I dropped nickles in one by one, as we counted by hundreds (100´s of kilos, but ends up I really under-represented the silver transported. Nuestra Señora de Atocha carried 47 TONS of silver, plus tons of gold, gems, etc. So I guess I would count tons next time, but I did like all the 100´s practice.)
We used phrases like "¡es un nuevo récord!" "lo siento, tu barco está en el fondo del océano Atlántico," as well as lots of reps of "plata."
It was fun to see the differences: most short-lived boat went down with 3 nickles, best boat handled 26. A student kept track of each student´s payload and we celebrated the student whose boat held the most before sinking.
I didn´t have time today, but I hope to talk a little about all the treasure that was lost at sea over the centuries. Here is an article in Spanish about Atocha. https://www.nationalgeographic.com.es/…/el-tesoro-hundido…/1
I love the camaraderie and class culture that having a password at the door provides. I really love finding phrases from the book that make great passwords. I usually use a password for a couple of weeks (we meet just 3x/week), so I wouldn´t use one from each chapter. You could introduce these prior to reading the chapter, so that seeing them there is finding a familiar friend.
Teacher at door: ¡Vamos al mercado!
Student: ¡Perfecto! Necesito____________ (fill in the blank)
Teacher at door: ¿Quién eres?
Student: Me llamo ____________________
Teacher at door: ¡Vamos a buscar a los piratas!
Student: No quiero buscar a los piratas.