This month, Señora Dacey’s AP Spanish Language and Culture class has been studying the curricular theme, contemporary life (la vida contemporánea en español). One particular area of study is music and dance pertaining to various Spanish speaking countries. At the start of the unit, students read an article that highlighted the origins of Latin American music, including the famous tango, salsa, and cumbia. In order to gain a more in-depth understanding of Latin American cultures, students researched a style of latin dance/music and gave a formal presentation on the topic in class last week.
During the formal presentation, each pair of students explained the origin of the dance, presented two or more music artists that represent the dance/music, and, lastly, taught their peers some basic dance steps. To expand the audience during the presentations, Señora Sweeney’s Spanish II class was invited to watch the presentations and learn about the various Latin American dance styles.
Both the AP Spanish students and Spanish II students benefited greatly from the blended classes. AP Spanish students were given the opportunity to present content in Spanish that they mastered as well as teach a large audience how dance an authentic latin rhythm while giving instructions entirely in the target language. As a result, Spanish II students learned the origin of dances from Latin American cultures while they increased their listening comprehension skills as they followed instructions entirely in the target language.