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"Carefully sequenced lessons help students develop a deep understanding of content and capability with skills and practices. Teachers design lessons to provide opportunities for student inquiry and discovery as well as for practice with foundational concepts and skills. Effectively designed lessons maintain a coherent focus while keeping students engaged."

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(December 2023)

The presentation to the right shows an example of tasks and new literacies adapted for the learning goal of the lesson for the Advance Placement Spanish Language class. For the theme of aging (Envejecer), I designed a lesson where the students were exposed to the idea of how getting old is often associated with loneliness, illness, and isolation. After they explored how the elderly are treated differently in Hispanic countries compared to the United States, I invited them to reflect if the initial idea is something normal to be expected or if it needs to be changed in our country.

Task and New Literacies Selection

I presented to my students a collection of seven TV commercials referencing older person issues and general perspectives about that stage of life, which were aired in Hispanic countries. The objective of the lesson was to reflect on elderly people and to compare and contrast, in a Venn Diagram, stereotypes and treatment of the elderly in the US, Hispanic and other countries.

During the lesson, four videos were shown to the students with clear instructions to look for topics related to aging, such as loneliness, illness, and isolation (Slide 1). These videos are considered "new literacies" as they help the students visually understand and interpret the dialogues in Spanish. By looking at the images, the students can easily make connections between the topics we were discussing and the vocabulary words they may not be familiar with. 

Next, a series of images were discussed in pairs to reflect on how being old is considered a bad thing (Slides 2-4). This discussion and writing activity introduced the stereotypes that we often use when referring to the elderly. After, the Venn Diagram was filled out in groups to hear all the different ways in which old people are referred to and treated (Slides 5-7). 

Lastly, I showed them four TV commercials about elderly people challenging stereotypes so they could reflect and modify their thinking if needed (Slide 8,9). These tasks were designed to ensure that the activities would result in student engagement and thoughtful reflection about aging to achieve the lesson objectives.

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Task and New Literacies Selection Strengths

  • I designed a wrap-up task to showcase the achievement of the learning objective of my lesson, which was focused on comparing the United States with other countries, particularly those with Hispanic cultures and also the ones represented by some students in the classroom. During the activity, we created a Venn diagram to identify the similarities and differences between these cultures. encouraged students to reflect on their interactions with elderly individuals and changes. The task was aligned with the standards for communication and cultural comparisons (ACFTL).

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  • I offered various forms of practicing the concepts learned in the lesson to support students' engagement with the tasks. From the traditional handouts and peer discussion to the use of TV commercials, the students were engaged by having different approaches to reflect on the concepts and achieve the lesson's learning objective. The activities in the classroom are, most of the time, the favorite part of the lesson for the students. Therefore, I ensured I had a different approach to make them look for stereotypes and topics about being an older adult. Their engagement was real; they were active collaborators when making comments or comparisons.

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"Buen Trato"

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Set of images to reflect on getting old: ¿Por qué no queremos envejecer?

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