La Clase de la Sra. Moloney

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Level I – Toca Mini Juguetes! Toys!

Screen Shot 2017-06-06 at 1.18.02 PMWho didn’t love toys as kids?  How cool was it to receive a colorful, brand new toy that could do all sorts of things?  Real-life dolls or robots that could talk, sing, and even dance! Interactive sports figures that could play ball or even swim!

Ahhhh memories…  Level I Spanish students got a chance to remember what is was like to be a “kid” again and talk about their favorite types of TOYS inspired by the following creative scenario:

“You are a famous toy maker from a world-famous toy company and you have created the most amazing doll-robot that can do so many incredible things!  You can’t wait to get it on the international market and luckily, you speak Spanish, so you can market your new product to all of the Spanish-speaking countries around the globe.  Answer the following questions with as much detail and colorful, descriptive words as you can to help make your new creation a best seller!”

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Students first were given the task of designing and creating a virtual “doll” in the app “Toca Mini” on their Ipad.  Students could pick a theme (sports figure, robot, animal, etc.) or could just go where their imaginations took them.  They had had to make sure that their toy was extremely colorful, intricate, and detailed with many colors and patterns (stripes, dots, plaid, etc.).  

Students then had to answer the following questions in paragraph form (integrating transition words) in order to create the advertisement narrative for the unveiling of their new product.

1)      ¿Cómo se llama tu juguete nuevo? – What do you call your new toy?
2)      ¿De qué está hecho? (plástico, metal, madera, etc.?) – What is it made out of?
3)      Describe la cara (2 adjetivos) del juguete. – Describe the toy’s face with 2 adjectives.
4)      Describe el pelo (2 adjetivos) del juguete. – Describe the toy’s hair with 2 adjectives.
5)      Describe el cuerpo (2 adjetivos) del juguete. – Describe the toy’s body with 2 adjectives.
6)      Describe la ropa del juguete (3 oraciones – Incluye (4) colores. – Describe the toy’s clothing with 3 sentences including 4 colors.
7)      ¿Qué estampados hay en la ropa del juguete? (incluye 3+) – What 3+ patterns are on the toy’s clothing?
8)      Describe los zapatos del juguete. (2 adjetivos) – Describe the toy’s shoes with 2 adjectives.
9)      Comenta sobre un accesorio que lleva el juguete. (paraguas, sombrero, guantes, etc.) – Comment about an accessory that the toy is carrying/wearing.
10)   ¿Qué sabe hacer este juguete increíble? (2 cosas) – What does this incredible toy know how to do?
11)   ¿Qué puede hacer este juguete magnífico? (2 cosas) – What can this magnificent toy do?
12)   ¿Cómo va a estar un cliente cuando compre este juguete? (Use an Ud. sentence here). – How is a customer going to feel when he/she buys this toy?
13)   ¿Qué va a querer hacer un niño cuando reciba este juguete? (Use an Ud. sentence here). – What is a customer going to want to do when he/she receives this toy?
14) ¿Cuándo debe comprar este producto un cliente? – When should a customer buy this product?

Screen Shot 2017-06-06 at 1.18.50 PMFinally, students embedded their written narratives with a picture of the front/back of their toy in Notability and recorded themselves “selling” their new “toy” in their best Spanish accents.  Some savvy students were able to video their narration while utilizing the 360 rotation feature within the app.  So cool!

This activity is a great culminating assessment that gives all students the opportunity to integrate ALL of the knowledge and skills that they have gained during the year to:

  • Introduce /name items
  • Distinguish origin/material
  • Describe items in detail (sizes, colors, shapes, patterns, etc.)
  • Identify articles/clothing/body parts/basic items
  • Discuss/predict opinions and feelings/emotions
  • Articulate obligation and desire
  • Narrate action and knowledge/ability
  • Address near-future occurrences/deadlines/date/times

Refining these communication skills is crucial in helping students to grow in building their proficiency in the target language.  And just think…all of this was in only one year! We are so proud of all of our Level I students and can’t wait to see what they will achieve next year!

The last planned step, is to have students read a classmate’s descriptive narrative and attempt to “reproduce” all of the colors, details, and patterns they have read on a blank Cricut-generated doll-template.

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Level 1 International Buffet 3/17 – Parent Update

On Friday, March 17th, all first-year language students will be participating in an activity called the International Buffet. In celebration of World Language Week, each student has researched one of the countries/regions in his/her respective language of study and fabricated a t-shirt that creatively displays this information. Each student will wear his/her t-shirt during the International Buffet. In order to take part in this celebration, each student must find a recipe for and prepare a dish from his/her country/region. We will be setting up the buffet in the cafeteria at 1:00pm, so please feel free to come join us and sample some delicious dishes from all over the world!

In order to make this activity run smoothly, we ask for your assistance with the following:

1) Refrigerators and microwaves will NOT be available for student use, so students should choose recipes that can be served at room temperature and do not need to be refrigerated/heated.

2) Food should be brought in DISPOSABLE containers. Containers WILL NOT be returned at the end of the buffet in order to facilitate clean-up.

3) Because of the dangers of possible food allergies, students must have a PRINTED/WRITTEN COPY of their recipe to display next to their dish. For safety reasons, food without a recipe will not be put out as part of the buffet.

4) Please make sure the food chosen can serve approximately 15 and all utensils, serving utensils, and paper goods are also included (and disposable).

Students have been working diligently on their t-shirts and they look great!  

Thank you so much for your assistance!  Enjoy the snow tomorrow!

¡Muchas gracias, merci beaucoup and mille grazie!


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Student Spotlight – Camille G.


Here is another “Star Student” from our Spanish I class!

Nombre: Camille Gallagher

Clase: Spanish 1


How many years have you studied Spanish?:
2 years

(Hobbies) Pasatiempos:

  • Volleyball
  • Basketball
  • Peer leadership
  • DECA

(Favorite Food) Comida Favorita:
Chick-fil-A chicken

(What are you hoping to learn in class?) ¿Qué quieres aprender en la clase de Español?:
I hope to be able to talk Spanish to people in other countries.

(What I like most in this class) Lo que me gusta más en esta clase:
That we speak a lot of Spanish and we can talk to each other in Spanish.

(What are we currently doing in class?) ¿Qué hacemos ahora en la clase?:
We are learning about Ser and Estar and are doing an emoji poster.

(Dicho Favorito) Favorite Quote or Saying:
“Any pizza is a personal pizza if you believe in yourself”

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Estoy agradecido por…

meregusta-cuales-son-las-cosas-por-las-que-estas-agradecido-0-821576-previaThere is no better time of year than the present to reflect on all that we have and the many people that make such a positive impact on our lives.  My Spanish students at all levels participated in various activities today focusing on a theme of “gratefulness”.  Some students made booklets, others created themed lists and acrostic poems to identify what others were thankful for and to outline what they themselves were grateful for in their lives.  Here’s wishing you a wonderful time with family and friends!



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Sticky Sentences… We Need Your Help!

At all levels in language learning, we utilize what we call “sticky sentences” or scrambled sentences to reinforce grammar topics and aid in their integration in context.  In some instances, students cut out each sentence component and manipulate them on the carpet to facilitate collaboration and group input.  Other times, students use them as as a guide to create structured expressions and draw pictures that represent their meaning.


Some kids LOVE them; other kids DON’T, but they work and they are a great way to assess comprehension and application of abstract grammar topics.  So, why do we need YOUR help?

We are looking for a way (READ: NOT labor intensive) to transfer this type of activity to the IPads, so that students can manipulate the words/sentence fragments quickly and easily to both facilitate learning and to compare and contrast various language structures.  As an instructor, I would need to be able to “push” out a list/grid of words that all students could utilize to create their sentences.  Some IPad apps we have already thought of/tried without much success are:

Poetry Creator
Word Mover
Instant Poetry 2
Social Poetry
Sticky Words
Fridge Poems
Google Slides

Do you have any suggestions or ideas that could help us?  Are you a computer coder, engineer, or just all-around genius and would like to create an app for us?  Let us know and get in touch at:   Thanks!

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Student Spotlight – Riley Bryant


Here is a “Star Student” from our Spanish I Honors class!

Nombre: Riley Bryant

Clase: Spanish 1 Honors



How many years have you studied Spanish?:
In past environments and previous grade, taking the Spanish language was mandatory and a class that everybody took. I was in Spanish-speaking environments like this for years. I also took a full-year class of Spanish in middle school and am taking one now while planning to continue for my next four years and on.

(Hobbies) Pasatiempos:

  • Soccer
  • Student Council
  • COF (Circle of Friends)

(What are you hoping to learn in class?) ¿Qué quieres aprender en la clase de Español?:
In class, I am hoping to learn beyond the standard points and all the criteria that should be met. With that, I also hope to learn about my peers’ past encounters with this language, how they’ve used it, etc. and even how I can use it in not only the future, but the present.

(What I like most in this class) Lo que me gusta más en esta clase:
In this class, I like that it is composed of multiple grades, ages and experiences.  This truly helps me as bouncing ideas off of each other and seeing benefits from each one’s really helps my knowledge in the Spanish language flourish, which definitely would have to be what I like most about and in this class.

(What are we currently doing in class?) ¿Qué hacemos ahora en la clase?:
Currently in class we are learning about times and how they can be expressed differently in the Spanish language.

(Dicho Favorito) Favorite Quote or Saying:
My favorite quote/saying is “If you don’t like something, change it. If you can’t change it, change the way you think about it.”

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Oral Assessments – Your Turn, Spanish I!

interviewI have to tell you – I am incredibly impressed with my Spanish I class.  Today we had our first session of oral interviews and the students were amazing!  I simply can’t believe what they are able to do…and it is not even the end of Term I!  This is our second year of utilizing summative oral assessments instead of written exams to measure student achievement and learning, and I am absolutely thrilled at these results!  Finally – SKILLS that students can immediately apply outside of the classroom!

What can the Spanish I students do, you ask?

In Spanish I, all students can execute (ask, answer, and expand upon) the following (20) questions (and several variations of these questions) by the end of Term I.

  1. ¿Cómo te llamas?
  2. ¿Cómo escribes tu nombre en español?
  3. ¿Cómo escribes tu apellido en español?
  4. ¿Cuál es tu número de teléfono?
  5. ¿De dónde eres?
  6. ¿Cómo estás?
  7. ¿Cuántos años tienes?
  8. ¿Qué día es hoy?
  9. ¿Qué día fue ayer?
  10. ¿Qué día es mañana?
  11. ¿Cuál es la fecha hoy?
  12. ¿Cuándo es tu cumpleaños?
  13. ¿Cuántos días hay en una semana?
  14. ¿Cuántos meses hay en un año?
  15. ¿Cuántas estaciones hay en un año?
  16. ¿Cuántos estudiantes hay en esta clase?
  17. ¿Cuál es tu estación favorita?
  18. ¿Cómo escribes _________________ en español?
  19. ¿Qué hora es?
  20. ¿A qué hora es tu clase favorita hoy?

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Target Language Talk

What can you do in Spanish?  For many years, students were assessed on what they knew about the language, not what they could actually do in the target language.  The World Language department at Nipmuc recognizes that the goal of language acquisition is to facilitate communication.  Although accuracy and grammar are important factors in learning a language, the essential objective is to convey your thoughts, needs, ideas, and opinions to others.

So, how are we progressing towards this goal?

In Spanish II, students are creating “Chatterpix” talking photos, utilizing direct object pronouns and idiomatic expressions with infinitives.



In Spanish I, students are creating Spanish calendars and presenting their work entirely in the target language!  Students will be able to identify and describe each month’s season, related holidays, and classmates’ birthdays.  Additionally, students will be able to articulate the number of days and weeks on each month.

In Spanish IV, students are beginning their term projects.  Students will be running for president of a Latin American country and their task is to identify (3) social issues of importance and discuss how they might address these issues in their role as president. Students will be integrating the present, preterite, imperfect, future, and conditional tenses to create a fun, creative interactive poster in palet_150pxlino-it-app-logo, or other technology tool.  In addition students will embed a 60-second political commercial clearly articulating their campaign’s message of change.

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Communication is Key….


Our goal this year is to learn to open the lines of communication to promote understanding and tolerance in a multi-cultural world.  In an increasingly diverse society, global citizenship is no longer a luxury, but rather a necessity to compete in the international community.  Perhaps the most important aspect of global citizenship is to recognize that we all have a responsibility, to each other and to ourselves, to create a better world, to promote understanding among all peoples, and to break down the barriers that separate people of different backgrounds and beliefs.  In a world rife with negative political sound bites and messages of hate and division, communication is the key to progress and peace.

screen-shot-2016-09-21-at-6-15-05-pmscreen-shot-2016-09-21-at-6-14-53-pm                  screen-shot-2016-09-21-at-6-29-20-pm

Students in Spanish I created FlipGrid video shorts using the target language to introduce themselves and to tell a little background information about their lives.   Students also created talking photos in Notability to talk about themselves.

Spanish IV Honors is writing and practicing authentic phone messages.  Each student received a different fun fictional scenario and must “leave me a message”, explaining their situation.


touchcastSpanish II Honors is hard at work using TouchCast to create green screen “talking postcard” videos.  Students are creating fictional scenarios in which they are waiting for their friends abroad and must give detailed directions through the city to their “hotels”.


recapThe Latin American Experience classes have already ventured out on some site visits to reach out to the Latino community to get a first hand account of the challenges and triumphs of immigrating to the Unites States.  Students utilize the Recap app to check in with me via-video and to give me real-time status updates while they are on the road.


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Like We Never Left…

It is Day 7 and it feels like we never left.  In just 7 school days, we have gotten back into the swing of things and so much is happening!  This year it is all about SKILLS!  Our goal is for students to leave each class with a real-life skill that they can use at home, at their after school-job, or anywhere out in the community.

Spanish I already can say and spell their first and last names, tell where they are from and how they feel!  The can give and respond to greetings and know their alphabet in Spanish!

Spanish II Honors can easily use the present tense to narrate their lives and communicate details about their surroundings.  They also can describe and articulate their needs and opinions in the target language. (Oh, and they are quite talented singers as well…)

Spanish IV has mastered the present tense and are starting work on narrating in the past and describing their histories.  They also will begin learning about the origins of the Spanish language and the many cultures that have contributed to its development.

Latin American Experience is studying what it means to be Latino, Hispanic, and Spanish and how each are different.  They are just about ready to head out into the community to make some connections and to get a first-hand account of the vast challenges and obstacles immigrants face as they come to the Unites States.

It is going to be an AMAZING year!  Stay tuned…