This post is about students using vocabulary booklets in the Spanish classroom. The purpose of these booklets is to create a resource of vocabulary and useful phrases which are easily accessible, and which can be added on to at any time or place. The book is completely personalised, which allows for differentiation and individual student needs.
The Language Department at OC agreed to supply these booklets to each student after I had done a practice run in Semester 2 in 2015. The booklets are cheap and very portable as they are small. Most students have them permanently in their backpack or pencil case, ready for use at any time.
Here is the link to the questionnaire and online results:
Analysis of data and implications for the classroom:
Included in this post are:
- Link to Education Perfect task list for both semester 1 and semester 2.
- Brief reflection on EP tasks and my summary.
- Student results semester 2 (results for semester 1 are included in a previous post).
1. Education Perfect task list and reflection: https://docs.google.com/a/orewa.ac.nz/document/d/1-jEmPOAuIMDrP4U-3VX0aoCUC-lM6dGebN9oyBPCwio/edit?usp=sharing
2. Reflection on EP tasks:
After giving students plenty of freedom to choose which tasks they do on EP during semester 1, and this resulting in very little done by most students, I decided to take a more structured approach. Semester 2 I have given homework assignments right from the first week, and have also given the students at least 30 minutes in class time to get started on this homework. I noticed that once they got going, and got into a rhythm, most found it easy to carry on working on the tasks at home. The completion percentage dropped off in term 4 around the time the students were revising and doing their year 9 exams. This is understandable and after a short class discussion about this, I decided to carry on with the routine of starting a new homework topic each week, and encouraging them to catch up on anything they had missed.
I created a test in term 4 – the first time I’d done that. Most students completed the test in class time, and scored well. A few complained that their answers were approximately correct, but that EP marked them wrong. I have learnt from this that I should give more possible answers, or set the test up in a different way, to ensure students get maximum possibility of getting the translations correct. The students who did not do the test online, did a print out of the vocabulary instead. They did not score better than the ones who did their test online.
Later posts about two questionnaires I gave the students of the semester 2 class, include detailed analyses and reflections on the Languages Department TAI this year.
To sum up: Students clearly need some regular, structured vocabulary practice in order to learn the words they need for specific purposes (the tasks and topics). Students have not yet learnt how to do this themselves, and need guidance to some degree. It is my belief that a combination of EP tasks, and keeping a vocabulary booklet, contributes effectively to students’ learning/acquiring and retaining vocabulary.
3. Student results (kamar markbook) Semester 2 (terms 3 and 4).
Here is a link to the questionnaire:
Here is a link to the results:
Analysis of results in pie chart form:
Here is a link to the questionnaire itself:
Here is a link to the spreadsheet with results:
Kahoot quizzes – the concept and the websites – were introduced to me earlier this year. Since that time I have used other people’s, created my own, and had my year 9 English class and Level 1 External class create Kahoots as well.
Below are some links to my Kahoots, and also some student examples.
Reasons why Kahoots work for me in the classroom:
- If you create your own, you are testing the students, in a playful way, on the knowledge they have gained from your classes. This can be used to find out weak and strong areas of a certain task, and help you taylor (sic) your class tasks to narrow in on items which still need to be addressed and practised.
- You can search for ready made Kahoots if you don’t have much time. There are thousands! Also, you can check the Kahoot is suitable for your class by testing it yourself before giving it to the class.
- It gets really interesting when you ask the students themselves to create their own Kahoot based on the current topic of learning. I have included links to examples below.
- You can save the results from a Kahoot. The students all log in independently, so after a quiz has finished, you can save the results and check each student’s result. This can be used as specific and ongoing data for students, and also you can give feedback to specific students according to their results. I just noted briefly the results in my markbook.
- You can reward the top 5 students – who are known to everyone as these change after every question. This has an interesting advantage: Students are 100% on task and engaged, and also it brings out their competitive spirit. It really makes them do their best. I also reward the top 5 with lollies!
- Even when they are creating their own, they are collaborating, researching and applying their knowledge, and therefore, also 100% on task and enthusiastic.
My Kahoots. I have 20. 5 have been created by me, the rest have been shared by other teachers, and my own students.
Here are two I have made for Year 9 Spanish:
Here is one I made for Level 1 English:
This is one I made for a playful revision class for Level 1:
Here is one made by a Year 9 English group of 3 boys:
Here is one made by a Level 1 student: