One of the ways in which students learn language is by reading comprehensible input. Here are 6 suggestions for how to offer Spanish students a variety of reading materials!
Infographics provide short amounts of text and are supported by graphics. This scaffold really helps improve reading comprehension!
Teachers can create reading comprehension questions based on the information given in the infographic.
Another neat trick: You can use the same infographic in multiple levels of Spanish classes. Just change the questions to match the proficiency level of your students!
NewsEla Articles for Reading
This is a website you or your school can subscribe to. It has a lot of helpful features, including selecting the language you want your students to read in! There are a variety of current articles on all kinds of topics!
This website allows teachers to embed their own questions. Teachers can differentiate the difficulty of the reading by selecting a level. The software then modifies the article to meet the difficulty level that you selected! So cool! And it allows students to highlight and use other good reading strategies. You can use this on-line or print out the articles for students as well!
Another interesting way to provide reading material is to find blog posts written in Spanish that are related to a topic you are studying in class.
Blog post are current (meaning our students are familiar with this type of writing) and they often contain lots of pictures. Pictures help students to comprehend what they are reading! I use them a lot with my AP students! They can be provocative because they often contain one person’s opinion- and it can be a great conversation starter!
On-Line News Articles
In my advanced classes, I often search online newspapers from Spanish speaking countries. When I find an article that matches our topic, I will pint it or link it, and add my own comprehension questions. Sometimes I ask students to find their own article. In my AP Spanish class, each student chooses a “country of study”. They will search a topic related to our unit from the on-line newspapers in their country of study summarize the article to a small group. Students can compare and contrast the information they learn from country to country!
This can also be done with lower levels of Spanish. HERE is a mini-lesson about Youth Hostels that includes an on-line article written for native speakers. I have modified it to reduce its length, and I embedded questions that I knew my Year 3 students could answer.
Formative Reading Assignments
This is another great tool for teachers and students! I used it a lot last year when we were doing so much virtually during the pandemic, but I think I will continue to use it for these reasons:
This program is free to teachers!
It allows teachers to upload any document. Then, you can create questions and embed them right where you want them to appear. Therefore, students have a better idea about where to read and re-read to find the answer.
Teachers can write multiple choice questions, which can be auto-graded! A great time-saver! You can also write open-ended questions. Classes can be added so that your students’ work is saved and viewable for your review later. Teachers can schedule due dates as well!
HERE is an example of an article about Climate Change that I have used with Formative if you are interested!
Teachers Pay Teachers
Full disclosure: I sell resources on this website!!!
HOWEVER, for many years, I was a purchaser only! Our colleagues are FULL of wonderful ideas and experiences, and I have purchased many cultural readings from a variety of different TpT authors. I mention this because…. my goodness our job is hard! I have had many times where I had a great idea for what or how to teach, and not enough time to make the high-quality resource that I wanted to carry out my idea. TpT has saved me many times, and the quality of the resources is amazing! If you have never heard of Teachers Pay Teachers, check it out! You can find cultural readings that are specific to a level, a topic, that come with a variety of comprehension activities or vocabulary extensions, photos, and on and on!
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