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Mrs. Giles from Rock Hill SC is requesting Technology through DonorsChoose, the #1 classroom funding site for teachers.

Eavesdropping on the Spanish World part 1

My students need a portable DVD player, headphones, splitters, and a storage rack for an in-class listening lab.

  • $519 goal

Hooray! This project is fully funded

Hooray! This project is fully funded

I teach high school Spanish levels 2 through 5 in South Carolina. Most of my students plan to attend college and many participate in the International Baccalaureate program. They have many questions for me and for the world around them, which is the most exciting part of my work. It is thrilling when they learn something new and realize that people in other parts of the world aren't so different from them after all.

There are great podcasts, songs, and other media available online, but because they are not edited like textbook materials, students need to hear/see things more than once to understand the material. We have textbooks and some authentic materials, but they don't address all of the topics that students are likely to encounter on IB exams or events that occur in the news. My students want and need to listen to authentic media that native Spanish- speakers use in order to build real communication skills for college and hopefully, for their careers. Currently, any listening activities are done as a whole class via my CD or MP3 player and a set of speakers. This is not the best situation because some students need more practice while others are ready to move on to the next task. I try to differentiate instruction with varied materials, according to student interest and skill level. This is easy if they are all reading, but difficult if they need to watch different video clips or listen to different media during the same class period.

I would like to set up an in-class listening lab where small groups could listen to or watch media that relates directly to our topics of study. The headphones and splitters can be connected to the DVD player, CD player, or MP3 player so that up to 4 students can watch video clips or listen to songs, podcasts, and even recordings of themselves on the same machine. Having two stations where a total of 8 students can listen to material and then talk about what they heard and what they understood will give students a new way to collaborate in Spanish. Students are more willing to discuss in smaller groups, rather than in front of the class and a lab would provide the opportunity to replay materials as needed for better comprehension. This is not always feasible if the entire class is listening to a selection. This will also be a tool to support speaking since students will be able to listen to their own speaking assignments (recorded with Audacity)to give or receive feedback from peers or from me. By allowing students to work on verbal tasks in small groups, I hope to help them build confidence in their listening comprehension, speaking, and general communication skills.

"I studied a language in school, but I don't know how to say anything now and I can't understand if someone speaks to me." I can't count the number of times I have heard this from adults who studied a language in the past, but did not learn to really use it. With the world shrinking, it is important for young people to be aware of issues all over the world and to have multiple ways to communicate and collaborate with others. Your support will help my students access Spanish-speaking media and build their competence and confidence in understanding Spanish, thus helping them to connect with the world around them.

Mrs. Giles
Grades 9-12
More than half of students from low‑income households

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2 donors2 donors have given to this project.

This project will reach 148 students.

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Where Your Donation Goes

Materials Cost Quantity Total
Toshiba 9" PORTABLE DVD PLAYER • Best Buy $179.99 1 $179.99
3060AV Multimedia Stereo Headphones with Volume Control • $9.99 8 $79.92
Headphone Storage Rack • $36.99 1 $36.99
Boostaroo Splitter & Amplifier • Best Buy $29.99 2 $59.98

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Suggested donation to help DonorsChoose reach more classrooms


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Project Activity

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