Culture, Cuisine, and Candy!

December presented Spanish students with various opportunities for practicing the language outside of the typical classroom set-up. Much of November was spent preparing for this week and it’s been so fun watching it all come together!

The Grade 4 students have been learning about restaurant vocabulary in Spanish and how to interact courteously with restaurant staff. We rehearsed scenarios in the classroom over the course of many lessons, with students role-playing as both clientele and servers. The culmination of this unit was a restaurant-visit to Spanglish, a Latin restaurant serving cuisine from Mexico, Colombia, and Honduras.

It was a fun outing in which each student was able to order for themselves while upholding excellent manners in Spanish. The waitstaff only addressed us in Spanish, making it a culturally rich and immersive experience for the Grade 4’s. They did great! MBTS Spanish students can look forward to more food-related field trips in the future!

Meanwhile, last month Grade 5 and 6 students began preparing a skit based on a story of Three Kings Day, and how it is celebrated in Spain. (El Día de los Reyes Magos). In Spain, and many other Spanish-speaking countries, children write letters to the Reyes Magos just as some children here write letters to Santa. The Reyes Magos come while the children are sleeping on the night of January 5th, and on January 6th, they wake up to presents!

Another tradition is for children to leave their shoes outside and in the morning they will find them filled with candy, thanks to the Reyes Magos.

Grade 5 and 6 students rehearsed the skit many times over the course of several weeks and this week they had the opportunity to read it and then perform it for the Casa 2nd years and Kindergarteners. There was even a bonus performance for the Grade 2s thanks to some Upper El volunteers. After the performance, the younger kids placed their shoe outside and then pretended to sleep on the carpet. Once we announced “buenos días,” they were able to go outside and look for their shoe. Much to their delight, the shoes were all filled with candy, thanks to our Grade 5 and 6 Reyes Magos!

It has been such a great term and I am really proud of the Spanish students for all they have learned and also for their confidence in speaking the language to their classmates, peers, and community members.

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