With a total of 19 Tweets, Facebook tags, emails, text messages, and Facebook messages in 48 hours, I am just thrilled to know that I am the first person you think of when you hear a good poop story (thank you, Correcaca). Perhaps you saw on the news that there is a new caca-criminal in town--and this time, the perpetrator's identity might surprise you: These materials (click here or on the image above) are licensed CC BY-NC-SA 4.0, which means that you are free to adapt and share them however you'd like, provided that your adaptations carry the same license and are not part of a commercial (for-sale) product. When you use this story in class, use strategies to enrich the read-aloud-together experience. And after you have had a good scoff or laugh, spend some time to reflect on this story. First of all, this is a real story, and the man facing these charges is a real human. I remember reading this New York Times article several years ago, and it comes to mind often. This man exercised extremely, extremely poor judgement--seriously, what was he thinking??? His life and his career are ruined, and he is facing public and private embarrassment. And yet he is a person, just like you and me. And just like your students--who, if they are anything like I was as a teenager, do some pretty dumb things from time to time! This story is a great opportunity to launch into a conversation about:
- JEALOUSY. Who knows what his motives were, but one thing that came to mind was jealousy. Holmdel sounds like the kind of community that some people would just love to hate. Has your jealousy ever driven you to do something that you are ashamed of?
- FORGIVENESS. Who will need to consider forgiving this man? How will the people in his life act toward him? Should he be on paid leave--as he is--or should he be let go immediately? Should he get a second change?
- BULLYING AND GOSSIP. When does sharing a piece of information or a story cross the line from reporting to bullying or gossip? Is using this story in our classes and laughing about it a form of bullying?
- CONSEQUENCES. What seems like a silly or 'stick-it-to-the-man' action in one moment could turn out to have very serious consequences the next. Have you ever done something that could have had real consequences had you been caught? This brings to mind a group of kids from my high school that used to steal street signs just as one of those goofy dumb kid things. Well it stopped being funny when they got arrested! They never considered that being tricksters was really, truly, illegal and would be treated as such.
- WHAT ELSE??
Every story is an opportunity for growth, not just linguistically but also on a human level. And speaking of a human level: I cannot end this post without giving a MASSIVE SHOUT-OUT to my dear friend Nelly Hughes. Nelly revised this story for me, and she also revises all of the stories selected for LITERAL each month. She does this without ever asking for anything in return, and truly I could not connect you with high quality resources if it were not for Nelly. Nelly, who is from Mexico, teaches in Ohio and coaches and presents at workshops around the country. She has a facebook page on which she shares original activities, games, and content and shares inspiration for your language classes. Follow Comprendes Mendez on Facebook here! Nelly also has a TpT store with an ever-growing collection of materials for Spanish classes, primarily cultural in nature. Her store will be on sale during TpT's Teacher Appreciation sale this week, and I would invite YOU to send Nelly a virtual "THANK YOU" for all of her volunteer revisions by shopping her store this week. Here are some of my favorite products that she offers: