How can you support students in a subject you don’t really understand yourself? That was the main focus of our 4th annual Spanish parents' evening last night. The goal was to demonstrate to parents how Spanish “works” and how we teach it at Route 39 Academy.
We had a lively evening of phonics (if you can master them you can say any new word in Spanish), a running dictation to work on memory skills and plenty of games.
More than that, plenty of tapas were munched on, realisation dawned at how similar in many ways the language is to English, and a number of comments were made about how much more fun language learning is now compared to “when I was at school”.
Crucially we also discussed how parents can support learning from home. Memrise (www.memrise.com) is our most easily accessible tool, a free learning website which we use to create our own courses and send home. We wholeheartedly encourage parents to have a browse and challenge your learners. Equally, from time to time we send “fridge sheets” home- grids containing the core language which students will be learning and using during the unit. Simple games like “point at”... or “build a sentence using 5 boxes on the sheet” rapidly build up knowledge and confidence (and can be a useful way to protect the fridge!). Finally, if something’s causing a sticking point, or if you’d like to learn more about a topic, why not get on to www.quizlet.com and search for a topic. The games really help and can cause plenty of competitive fun.
The language guides produced by our students are still available from the office with some of the money from every purchase going to the RNLI. Just the thing if you're planning a holiday or even just dreaming about one! Gracias!