This grant funded Spanish language books and supplies to create classroom libraries for each of the Spanish classrooms at Pollard Middle School, impacting over 500 students currently enrolled in Spanish classes. These libraries provide access to a variety of tiered, engaging, fiction and non-fiction texts in the target language. By providing students with choice and access to tiered and interesting texts, students will be motivated to read and gain confidence in reading in the target language. In addition, the texts will model grammar structures and vocabulary “in context,” increasing students’ language proficiency.
Once the books were received, one book was chosen for each course that would be an all-class read. The rest of the books were put on display in the classrooms and each class had time to browse through the collection. Once a week, class time was dedicated for students to read independently. In addition, students used reading logs to track their reading, including space for reflection, new high-frequency vocabulary, and chapter summaries. The goal for next year is to run literature circles.
According to Spanish teacher Jackie Edwards, “Students are impacted by having a choice on which books to read based on level of interest and abilities. Since the books are leveled, they can track their progress and see their language skills grow. We purposely chose books that focused on different aspects of cultures that represent people of all different races, ethnicities, ages, and experiences. The books are helping to broaden their global awareness – their ability to make comparisons between their lives and communities, and the lives of the communities of the characters in the different stories. For us as teachers, it is an opportunity to build connections between our content and the world beyond our classrooms. The books are told from different perspectives and contain a lot of topics that we may not touch upon in class but are of high interest for our students.”