Telling People What to Do! (A lesson on Informal Spanish Commands)
Christine Misoni, SDSU, EDTEC 572, Spring 2012
One of the primary focuses of second semester 3rd year Spanish is the ability to to give both formal and informal commands. Formal commands are pretty straight forward and share the same conjugations in both the affirmative and negative forms. There are also only a handful of irregular verbs. Most students master formal commands fairly easily. Informal commands are a lot more complex in that they have different conjugations for the affirmative and negative forms. They also have quite a few more irregular verbs to remember. In addition to that ,there are also commands with single and double object pronouns that need to be mastered which also affect the spelling of the informal commands. This is my first year of teaching 3rd year Spanish and I struggled through teaching my students informal commands. I’d like to design this instructional unit so that when I do it again next year, it will be a success instead of a disaster!
Who are the learners? What do they already know about this content? What special interests or preferences do they have?
The learners are 3rd year Spanish students. Mostly 10th and 11th graders with a few 9th and 12th graders as well. These students are typically motivated to do well in school and most of them have plans to attend a 4 year university upon their completion of high school. They will have already had a unit on Formal commands which are much simpler and straight forward than informal commands. They prefer to learn using a variety of modalities and learning activities.
Goal & Objectives
What you believe is the main instructional goal? To the extent that you can tell at this point, what will the learning objectives of this lesson be?
The main instructional goal of this lesson is to teach informal positive and negative commands with object pronouns. The lesson objective is as follows:
After completing the unit on informal commands students will correctly form affirmative and negative informal commands using object pronouns when necessary with at least 70% accuracy on their unit test.
Where will this lesson be delivered? How many people in a class? How often does it meet? What kind of computer access is available? What comes before and after this lesson?
This lesson will be delivered in a traditional classroom that meets Monday-Friday for approximately 50 minutes each day. There are anywhere from 32-36 students in each class. Computers are only available if a reservation is made to visit the computer lab at school. Prior to this lesson students will have learned formal commands and after this lesson students will study a unit on the conditional tense.
To the extent that you can at this point, describe how you'll be using technology to support this lesson.
I will be using technology mostly for the delivery of this lesson, but will probably reserve at least one day in the school's computer lab so that students can access websites that will help support their understanding and facilitate their practice with mastering informal commands. Technology that I use in the classroom will include but not be limited to: computer, LCD projector, DVD player, iPad, Internet, whiteboard, textbooks, worksheets, etc.
How will this lesson be chunked up/modularized? Where are the natural divisions of content?
This lesson will be divided into 5 sections:
1. Affirmative informal commands
2. Irregular informal commands
3. Negative informal commands
4. Informal commands with one object pronoun
5. Informal commands with two object pronouns
I estimate that this lesson and it's practice and assessment activities will take approximately 2 and a half to 3 weeks. (Note: The two hours worth of instruction that I will be producing will be for section 5: Informal commands with two object pronouns.)
Describe your background in terms of familiarity with the content and the learners.
I am a single-subject credentialed teacher of Spanish. I have been teaching Spanish full-time for 3 years. I also hold a Bachelor's degree in Spanish.
Describe how this project passes the filters of the Final Project Parameters, as described on the website.
1. Is instruction required?
Instruction is required because speedy, smooth, and fluid performance is a priority in conversation. Even though these are beginners, and they will not be as smooth or fluent as native Spanish speakers, they need to be able to say and write commands with out the use of a job aid.
2. Is the scope right?
The scope is appropriate for me to handle as the sole person on this team. The two hours of instruction that I will be responsible for will cover the last of the 5 sections to the lesson which deals with Informal commands with double object pronouns. After learning and practicing steps 1 through 4, students should be able to master the addition of one extra pronoun and the subsequent accent changes and pronoun changes that happen because of it.
3. Is the content modular?
This content is modular in that each step needs to be completed before moving on to the next step. Once the students have mastered step one they will be ready for step two and so on. Each piece builds upon the knowledge gained in the previous steps.
4. Is the content plausible?
The content is perfectly suited for a classroom instruction environment.
5. Does the team have the experience base?
I am a team of one and i do have the subject matter expertise to create this lesson.
6. Is it in the cognitive domain?
Teaching informal commands in the Spanish language takes place entirely in the cognitive domain.
7. Is there an instructor in the house?
Yes, I will serve as the instructor.
8. Is there an actual need?
Yes, based on how my lessons on informal commands went this past month, there is definitely a need for re-doing/re-working this instructional piece for next year or even later this year as a review before the final exam.
123 Teach Me
- This website does a good job of explaining double object pronouns and gives lots of examples. It does not, however focus on commands.
Quia Affirmative Informal Spanish Commands
- This website will be a good review for students of steps 1-4 in our lesson. it has them practice with single object pronouns but not with double object pronouns.
Study Spanish.com, Double Object Pronounshttp://www.studyspanish.com/lessons/iodopro.htm
- This website shows how the indirect object changes to "se" when a direct object pronoun is added. This is an essential component to step 5, so it is important that students are familiar with it and can manipulate the object pronouns correctly.
Study Spanish.com, Commands with Object Pronounshttp://www.studyspanish.com/lessons/procomm.htm
- This website explains how to add the object pronouns onto the commands and how to add the accent if needed. It also has links to practice quizzes.