4 Learning Site tools for remote teaching

By Elena Giudice 
@SraGiudice

With all of us inevitably turning over to online teaching, EntreCulturas offers an array of diverse activities. Now is the time to further explore the Learning Site and all of its capabilities. Since I enjoy writing my own assessments and communicative tasks, I had forgotten about some of the resources available. I was recently reminded by my colleague about the Recursos and Sólo para profesores folders which provide some awesome resources. Below, I’ll take you through the top four features that I intend to use in the upcoming weeks.

Rúbricas – Organizadores gráficos  

The Learning Site offers a variety of general graphic organizers that in the past we had to look for elsewhere or that we ended up recreating. I remember how appealing this feature was when we first learned about EntreCulturas, but I have to admit I have used some more than others. Assigning these graphic organizers will be helpful for students as they work more independently and take on more responsibilities for their own learning. Additionally, they help students learn how to learn and that is an area we can all work on as we move forward in this time of remote learning.  

Más recursos –  Música 

Although not an original Wayside resource, Lyricstraining.com is linked on the Learning Site. I had read about this app in a blog article a while ago, but I had totally forgotten it existed. I recently rediscovered this website linked under Más recursos and the Música tab. I will be using this site with my older students. I am sure they will get a kick out of listening to the songs and catching the missing words in the lyrics.  It is a very interactive activity and it scores your skills as you go. It will help students hone their listening skills, learn new vocabulary, and expose them to some new Latin artists and music.  It’s time to do the things you always wished you had time to do with your students! This activity can easily be added to a weekly grid activity chart if you intend to go that way. EntreCulturas offers an array of online links for sites relevant to each unit and all levels.  

Sólo para profesores –  Midterm and final exam materials  

Even if you don’t use these assessments regularly, they are very practical for practice, homework, or as an activity. Every unit has a set for each language mode. They are similar but not the same as the IPA’s at the end of each unit under Vive entre Culturas and are unseen to students until you share them. It provides additional practice they need if you make up your own assessments. If not, they could be used as an assessment or alternative assessment as they are very up to date and very well laid out. They are also great to use as practice tasks without tying them to an assessment. 

FlexText 

My school has requested we use Google Meet for video conferences. Whatever tool has been chosen for you, the Flextext is very handy! You can share the page on your screen, just as you might on your big classroom screen and guide students through some activities as if you were there in-person. Although it won’t be the same for the students, it will be familiar and comforting to some extent.  

Now more than ever, collaboration is key. It’s been amazing to read all the shared information on social media. It’s also important to keep things simple and familiar for our students and ourselves until we get the hang of this new, but hopefully very temporary “normal”.  

Editor’s note:

French teachers using EntreCultures will find similar resources available.

  • Graphic organizers are in the Ressources folder in Explorer. 
  • Midterm and final exam materials are in the Ressources pour les enseignants folder; however, they are designed as Integrated Performance Assessments, with 1-2 tasks for each mode of communication. Teachers can adapt them for use as activities.
  • Culture Notes are available for each unit in the Ressources pour les enseignants folder. They allow students to record and reflect on cultural information and their growing interculturality.  

If you are already using EntreCulturas or EntreCultures, you can find all of these tools on the Learning Site. If you are not a user, you can get access for 30 days to all of the tools mentioned in this article and more!

Elena Giudice is an IBO trained Spanish and French teacher, with nearly 28 years of teaching experience. She has had the opportunity to work at all levels in independent and international schools in the US, France, The Bahamas, Malta, and Puerto Rico, her native country. Elena has a Bachelor’s degree in Combined Foreign Languages from Ripon College, WI, and a Master of Arts degree in Intercultural Communications from the University of Maryland. She enjoys developing workshops for teachers and conferences, and writing curriculum, materials, and lesson plans that are based on real life tasks that lead to creating “a buzz” amongst her students.

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