St. Mary's Catholic School
218 W. Washington Street
Hagerstown, Maryland 21740-4765
301-733-1184 | email

Challenging the Mind - Living the Faith

Spanish with Señora Renken

Welcome to Spanish

 

Why is it important to learn a second language?

There are so many great reasons to learn a new language. Believe it or not learning a second language boosts your brain power! It improves your ability to multi-task and also improves your memory. Learning a second language can actually improve your first language! It enhances your performance in other areas of academics. It helps to build your self confidence. It makes you open to other cultures and gives you the ability to connect to the people from those cultures.


Middle School Spanish

Middle school students will meet twice a week this year for Spanish.  The beginning of the year will focus on reviewing basic things students learned last year.  We will increase our Spanish vocabulary using a variety of methods.  Students will be making flash cards throughout the entire year which they will add to a key ring.  They will also be compiling an interactive notebook to help them keep track of all of our lessons. We will practice each day using a variety of games. In addition to increasing our vocabulary, students will learn about different countries each month that speak Spanish. By the middle of the year I would like to have students beginning to read a compilation of short stories in Spanish. The goal of this is to teach them how to use the vocabulary they know to comprehend text written in Spanish.

Student participation is extremely important in class.  Students will be given homework each day that they come into class. The purpose of this homework is to reinforce what we are learning that week. It is important to practice, practice, practice!! I encourage students to practice their flash cards 2-3 times a week in order to help them to increase their vocabulary. It will also help them in class when we play games and do interactive activities with the vocabulary. We will be doing several projects this year as well as learning about and participating in different Spanish festivities like Cinco de Mayo.

This Month in Middle School Spanish

During the first month of school we have spent time doing several things.  First, we are trying to settle into a class routine.  Each time class meets we have a lesson and then play a game to help with learning their vocabulary.  We have utilized IPads playing competitive games of Kahoot and students seem to really like a new game called I Carumba!  Using a simple can of large popsicle sticks that have current vocabulary words written on them, students (in groups of 4) take turns pulling a stick.  They must say the Spanish word to their group, and then give its English translation. The idea is to collect the most sticks. If they pull the stick that says I Carumba! they must put all of their sticks back and begin again.  It gets quite loud but I think it is good for them so far.

Second, we are trying to settle into a homework routine.  Homework is just as important as class participation.  Unless students are regularly speaking in Spanish with other people (which most are not) they are not going to learn as much. That is where homework comes in.   Whatever we focus on in class, students will review through their homework. It is not meant to be difficult but rather a reinforcement of the language.  Homework can be in the form of a review worksheet or making vocab flash cards.  Homework will be given 2 times a week when we meet and it will always be posed on this page.

In October we will continue to review basic vocabulary like colors and numbers.  Midway through the month we will start using a textbook and working on learning Spanish verbs and how to conjugate them. I also hope to spend a class period each month talking about a different county whose first language is Spanish.

Elementary Spanish Classes

Elementary school students will have Spanish once a week.  We will be learning lots of vocabulary through singing and a variety of games! Students will continually be creating a set of flash cards that they will add to a key ring as well as creating their own interactive notebook that includes all of our lessons.  In their Spanish folder, they will keep a signature sheet that allows them (and you) to keep track of how many times a week they practice. I encourage them (and ask you to encourage them) to practice at least 2-3 times a week .  We only have class for 30 minutes a week.  The better prepared they are for class, the more fun they will have. 5th graders will have homework from time to time to reinforce what we are learning.  It will also help prepare them for 6th grade when they go from 1 to 2 classes a week.  For all elementary classes, I will typically send some form of worksheet activity home with them each week.  The purpose again being to practice, practice, practice! You can’t learn a language if you only engage in it once a week.  We will learn about different countries that use Spanish as their language as well as holidays and customs.

This Month in Elementary School

We have spent the last 3 weeks singing songs and learning Spanish greeting.  Students began working on flash card for their 1st set of vocabulary words. Once we get through our greetings, we will move on to learning Spanish numbers.  3rd graders will learn 0-20 and 4th and 5th graders will learn 0-100. We will begin this month playing games and hopefully utilizing IPads.  Please encourage you children to study their vocabulary 2- 3x a week. 30 minutes a week is really not a lot of time to be in a language classroom.  Anything extra they can do will be beneficial to them!!

Middle School Class Assignments

6th Grade

Wednesday October 4th – Homework – Question sheet on Spanish colors.  Wednesday October 11 we will have our first Spanish test. This test will include all Spanish vocab words that students have learned/reviewed to date.  This includes Spanish days, months, seasons, colors and any words associated with these groups that students have put in their copybooks.

Friday September 29th – no class or homework.

Wednesday September 27 – Students have a Spanish days of the week, months and seasons of the year crossword puzzle to complete as a review.  They also need to make flash cards for the Spanish seasons and months of the year.  This list is in their copybook. We also added extra words to our list on Wednesday. There are 25 words total. This is also due next Wednesday October 4th.

 

 

 

7th Grade

Wednesday October 4th – Homework – Question sheet on Spanish colors.  Wednesday October 11 we will have our first Spanish test. This test will include all Spanish vocab words that students have learned/reviewed to date.  This includes Spanish days, months, seasons, colors and any words associated with these groups that students have put in their copybooks.

Friday September 29th – no class or homework.

Wednesday September 27 – Students have a Spanish days of the week, months and seasons of the year crossword puzzle to complete as a review.  They also need to make flash cards for the Spanish seasons and months of the year.  This list is in their copybook. We also added extra words to our list on Wednesday. There are 25 words total. This is also due next Wednesday October 4th.

 

8th Grade

Wednesday October 4th – Homework – Question sheet on Spanish colors.  Wednesday October 11 we will have our first Spanish test. This test will include all Spanish vocab words that students have learned/reviewed to date.  This includes Spanish days, months, seasons, colors and any words associated with these groups that students have put in their copybooks.

Friday September 29th – no class or homework.

Wednesday September 27 – Students have a Spanish days of the week, months and seasons of the year crossword puzzle to complete as a review.  They also need to make flash cards for the Spanish seasons and months of the year.  This list is in their copybook. We also added extra words to our list on Wednesday. There are 25 words total. This is also due next Wednesday October 4th.

Elementary Class Assignments

3rd and 4th Grade

September 26th – practice your  “Spanish Greetings” vocabulary list in your copybooks or your flash cards.  Try to practice 2-3 times by next week.  Have your parents sign off on your practice sheet in your folder.

3rd graders also be sure to have a copy book for Spanish class this week. Many of you did not have one last week.

5th Grade

Tuesday October 3rd – students have a practice worksheet (#3) on greetings.  It is double sided.  On page 2 under “Hola y adios” students were asked to circle the greetings and farewells before finding them in the puzzle.  I also asked them to give me the English translation beside each Spanish greeting or farewell.  These can be written right above or below the Spanish word or phrase.

 

Tuesday September 26th – Students need to make vocab flash cards for their new Spanish greetings list. This is the second list in their copybooks. There are 11 words. Students should put the Spanish word or phrase on one side and the English translation on the other side.  This week we punched holes in their existing vocab cards and put them on a ring.  These should be in their folder.  If you have a hole punch at home they may punch the holes in the new cards and add them to the ring. Students are also to finish a greetings worksheet that was sent home.

About Me

This is my 4th year teaching at St. Mary Catholic School. I have been the art teacher here for the past 3 years and I am excited to add Spanish to my teaching schedule. I have been married for 19 years and have 2 children who attend St. Mary.  My daughter will be in 5th grade this year and my son will start PreK. I have lived in Hagerstown and now Clear Spring for most of my life … although I was born in Kansas and lived for a year in Maine. I am an alumni of St. Mary and attended from K-8th grade. I have a bachelors degree in Education from Shepherd University. I love animals, camping and the beach. I am very artist and love creating things! I enjoy teaching at St. Mary and seeing all of the wonderful things our students can do.

Mrs. Renken

Spanish and Art teacher,

St. Mary Catholic School