jueves, 2 de marzo de 2017

Spanish visitors come to Wales!

We have been delighted to welcome Maria and Manuela from Salamanca to our school at Ynystawe.  It has been great to show them around our school and for them to take an active part in our lessons.

Our children have loved learning their first Spanish words and making new friends.  They have enjoyed learning about ways in which Salamanca is different from Swansea.

jueves, 15 de septiembre de 2016

Spanish in the World.

Finally, the icing on the cake. The last day I visited the school with all my family to talk to the students about the importance of Spanish in the World. These are the topics we talked about:

1-Spanish Speaking Countries.

2. Celebrities who speak Spanish:

3. Spanish in the U.S.A.:

4. Spanish inventions:

(we also told them about the submarine and the helicopter ;-)

5. Everyday products that came from America:

We also sang and danced...

We all had a great time together. Once again, thank you very much!

Chess III

It is time to see 6 and 7 year-old students in action. First, they place the chess pieces on a magnetic board.

Then, the teacher poses a chess exercise in the magnetic board.

The teacher begins to ask, "what if I move the bishop to f 4," and students respond by saying if itis a good move or not because we put other pieces in danger.
Finally they propose the movements that they believe are most appropriate for the situation posed by the teacher on board.

Finally they practice the play on boards in pairs.

In the meanwhile, the teacher showed me some games and applications she uses on the computer to motivate children.

I like this one very much, just for fun!. You choose the level...

and the appearence of the chess pieces

I also liked FRITZ & CZESTAW very much.

This game include funny exercises to practice the different movements of each piece.

miércoles, 14 de septiembre de 2016

Chess II

The following lesson was for 4 and 5 year-old students. I was impressed by the potential of the activities carried out by the teacher. First, the teacher puts the chess figures in the correct position of the chess board. While doing so, she used coordenates and the names of the figures, of course. 

Then, she played many "games" with the children, very useful to concentrate and focus attention. For example, she told them to close their eyes and she then changed some figures on the board. Students opened their eyes and said what was wrong, using coordenates and the names of the figures the wanted to move to the correct position on the board.

They also played that game in pairs. Another game they played was placing all the pieces in the center of the board and then compete to see who was the first to place them correctly. 

Finally, they sang and danced a song with the names of the chess figures. Children danced making the movements or gestures associated to each figure. Wonderful lesson!
I could see students working spatial relationships, movements, coordenates, using thinking skills... Superb.

Chess I

First day of chess for 5 and 6 year-old students. They reviewed the names of the chess pieces and their position on the board. Then, they personalised the books that will be used during the course, making funny drawings of their favorite pieces. 

martes, 13 de septiembre de 2016

The Dalton Method

While observing  the lesson symmetry-using-lego-more-to-math-and mirrors
Nthe images I share with you below called my attention. Taasks, routines, etc.; are represented through images and clocks where students can clearly see the time require to carry them out.

This is the timer they use. I love this way of working with time, as I constantly use the stopwatch in class. However, I did not know this method.

This is another idea I liked very much. The red light means that students are not allow to ask any question; the yellow one allows them to ask questions to other students; and finally, the green light means that student can ask the teacher. To my surprise, when the light is green, very few questions are asked to the teacher. As a conclusion, I think students are working more autonomously and are less dependent on the teacher. 

In the following image you can find a summary of this way of working (taken from VISUALIZING DALTON). Hope you find it useful. I think I will try it with my young learners when I am back to Spain). 

lunes, 12 de septiembre de 2016


Today I had my first contact with teaching chess to young students. It was at Mali Mistrzowie academy. I felt welcome and I could see a great environment, with student fully engaged and motivated. The lesson I observed today made me concious of how chess help students to concentrate, to focus on something, to become aware of spatial concepts, coordenates... I am really impressed!
Thank you very much for such a wonderful expirence for a primary teacher.