Friday, March 13, 2015

World Language Week: Talent Showcase Project

World Language Week was nationally celebrated this past week (March 9-15).  However, our school corporation will be celebrating this coming week (March 16-20) and I could not be more excited! Every year it seems this celebration gets bigger and bigger within our World Language Department (high school and middle school teachers).  I will be posting our schedule, events, and reflections eventually, but today I just wanted to share with you the project my students have been doing in preparation for WLW.

Thanks to one of my awesome colleagues, we started our World Language Talent Showcase project back in February.  The main objectives of this project are...

  1. Students demonstrate their talents and interests.
  2. Students teach classmates about another language or culture.
  3. Student work and projects will advertise World Language Week and the World Language Department in future years.
It began with students choosing a talent of theirs.  Some chose writing, playing an instrument, painting, creating a website or making a 3-D model.  We had a wide variety!

Then students brainstormed ways of using that talent to teach their classmates about another language or culture.  For example, students wrote a letter to a family member in Spanish, played the national anthem of Mexico, painted a Frida Kahlo/Diego Rivera tribute mural in our Media Center, collected helpful links regarding sports' stars from Argentina and created a replica of a terraced farm from Peru.

Once that was decided, student chose whether their project would be in the form of a product or a presentation.  Products are going to be displayed in our Media Center all next week for others to enjoy, and presentations will be in front of our class on Thursday and Friday.

On the day we introduced the project, I handed students these guidelines.  We spent just one day researching information in the computer lab, and the remainder of the project was completed on their own time.  They created their own due dates along the way and monitored what materials they would need and when.  Two weeks before presentations were do, they submitted a one page "Content Connection" paper which justified their choice in project as vital to a language or culture in some way.  

This coming week products will be displayed in our Media Center for other teachers and classes to learn from and check out.  We will have contributions from at least 6 different Spanish classes and one Latin class.  The French and Chinese classes may contribute as well.  Late in the week, those not submitting a product will verbally present to their classmates.

I hope to learn a lot from my students, get to know them a little more in the process, and create lots of resources for future open houses and publicity of the program.  Stay tuned for more details throughout the week!

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