Preparing for Back to School in Spanish Class - Island Teacher

Preparing for Back to School in Spanish Class

The time has arrived! You know what I'm talking about! It's officially back to school time. This past week was spent organizing my classroom, attending all the fun meetings, and beginning to wrap my head around the school year. First on the check list was to un-hurricane proof my classroom. Yes, this is an island teacher problem. Every year when school ends in June everything must be wrapped or boxed and moved (as much a possible) towards interior walls. Luckily, we haven't had any first hand hurricane experience since living here, but we still prepare every year. 

Here's a before and after classroom collage!

The interesting thing about my school campus is that it was previously a small apartment complex. It has a pool, which is really cool, but it also has really small classrooms for some of the grades/subjects. I'm thinking my classroom was probably someone's living room at one! It is definitely small and can fit about 10 desks comfortably. Our maximum class size is 14! Yes, a shocker coming from the US for sure! For my classes that have more than 10 students, I just travel to their class to teach my Spanish lesson.

After getting my room put together and in between meetings I started to overview my year. I have to be super organized as I am teaching 9 different classes this year. I decided to make a "Year at a Glance" planning template to attempt an overview of each course before I began to plan the first week. You can download that for free here if you'd like. 

Since I teach at a small, private school I have classes from 2nd Grade all the way to 10th Grade, so being super organized is a must for me. After I wrap my head around my year, then I can begin planning the first week. Here are a few things I am looking forward to this week:

1. Setting up Interactive Notebooks. I've decided to give these a try with my middle and high school classes at first. I've research a lot this summer and I'm really excited to implement this. I will not necessarily follow the left side/right side, output/input on specific pages format at first. Right now that just overwhelms me a bit. The reason why I'm giving these a try is to help my students organize and create for themselves a study tool outside of the textbook. I love the input/output concept and this is what I'm striving for, but won't worry about if it's on the left or right pages. Also, I will definitely be incorporating lots of color and cool interactive elements like foldables and flipables. I hope that their notebooks will document their journey this year in Spanish. I really enjoyed reading Cherin's Blog about interactive notebooks in her class. She points out that lots of good ideas are to be gained from Pinterest...SO true! You can check out my brand new Foreign Language Interactive Notebook Pinterest board here. I definitely look forward to filling up that board this year with great ideas. I've begun creating a few items to go in them like a couple of flip books and some Spanish speaking countries and capitals activities. Those are available in my TpT store.

2. Also on the list for the first week is to add to my classroom decor by having several of my classes create ¿Quién soy yo? pennant banners . It's a spin on the traditional "All about me" sheets and serves a dual purpose as it provides some fun classroom decoration as well. 

3. Seeing all of the smiling faces of my students for the first time since we were in Peru in June. 

So, Monday...bring it on!!


  1. Hi Emilie,

    Is there a template for the banner?

    1. Hi! Yep, it's in my TpT store, here's the link! Thanks for reading!


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