Tonight, I am sad for my country.

The events that transpired this past weekend in Charlottesville are not unique. As language teachers, we are about communication. We are about comprehension. We are about connection. We are about community.

Let’s also be about change.

I’ve been reading a lot of posts about what teachers are doing in their first week of classes–keep those posts coming!. (I have shared before how I always started off my year.) I am not in the classroom anymore, but I have spent much of the day today thinking about how I might begin my classes with a message of peace. I had several different, elaborate ideas (news summaries, starting a hashtag/selfie thing for Spanish students on Twitter, etc.), but since the first week is already SUPER full, I decided to keep it simple….and in the target language, of course 😉

Here is a short presentation that you can use in the first week of your Spanish class–on the first day, if you want–to draw a hard line for what Spanish class is about. Language teachers have historically tackled the alphabet in the first weeks of school–so I brought that into this presentation. You can work with the alphabet in the context of messages that are full of meaning–all in the target language.

Teach the Spanish alphabet in context and send a positive message of personal power in the first days of Spanish class

The presentation is licensed CC-BY-NC-SA 3.0, which means that you can use it, adapt it, and re-share it provided it is shared freely, with the same license, and with attribution to The Comprehensible Classroom.

I am sure that I am not the only language teacher considering if or how to address Charlottesville with their classes as we head back to school, and I would love to know what you are thinking!

26 replies on “Peace begins with you – PPT for Spanish classes

    1. What a magnificent resource! Mil gracias – lo aprecio.

      While at a Dance Recital for my daughter at a Fine Arts High School in Chicago, I saw the most beautiful sign. I have recreated it to hang at my classroom entrance, and it is the “theme” of our first day of school. I do not know if someone deserves credit for the original version as nothing was on the sign I viewed. I have a link to my creation here, which I hope works, as I would be thrilled to see it hanging in as many hallways and windows as possible!

  1. Dear Martina – I am writing to tell you that I think you are an amazing teacher and woman. I appreciate the products you create and your vision for a classroom.

    Thank you for being YOU!!

    🙂 Sara

  2. Thank you very much for this valuable resource. I have passed it on to my colleagues! Please note that EL paz written in smaller font still exists in one of the slides.

  3. Thank you so much, Martina! I agree that we teachers cannot afford to be silent. I really appreciate this and will definitely make use of it during the first week back.

  4. I just heard about the terrorist attack at Las Ramblas in Barcelona and I’m sitting here, heart breaking, trying to figure out how to discuss this in class tomorrow. :'(
    Thanks for giving me a place to start.

  5. I love how this transitions from a simple language task (what does your name start with) to a social emotional message. Thank you, Martina!

  6. Martina, Thanks so much for posting this on TPT this morning. “La paz” is now the theme for my classes for the first month or so of school, and we’ll talk about the need for these values no matter how old or young you are. I’ll also be using the Juanes song “Paz, paz, paz” as part of the theme, and our music teacher will use it as well. You’ve already created quite a ripple effect by sharing your ideas and talent so generously!

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