Finally back home in Asturias I'm exhausted, but with a refreshed motivation to keep learning and to continue helping other teachers. After an intense weekend at #GEGValencia2019 my head is full of ideas pinging back and forth... ways to innovate, methods to improve my classes, and techniques to help my students and fellow teachers.
Los Tres Technores
 "Generosity + Talent = an enormous injection of enthusiasm that will help to revitalise methodologies and, consequently, improve teaching" @FlemusASI
It was a great opportunity to connect with like-minded educators from all parts of Spain and share our knowledge of the seemingly endless resources that Google for Education has to offer. I learnt several new tricks about apps I thought I knew perfectly and discovered a handful of apps and add-ons that I didn't even know existed.

Gonzalo Romero
Responsable Google for Education, Spain
The highlights of the event for me was the Fake News Breakout, the WeVideo workshop with Jaume Feliu and my Spark Camp, despite being completely different to what I had planned. 
The Fake News Breakout was exceptionally well put together and offered a fantastic variety of activities that were both entertaining and challenging. 
The WeVideo workshop was a great opportunity to see how students can work together to make videos and I was able to get an idea of the different ways it could be used. I'm already familiar with Adobe Premiere and Adobe After Effects, but WeVideo is a student-friendly tool that has an enormous scope for the students to learn and expose their creativity.
My Spark Camp proposal of "Theatre in English" wasn't as popular as I had hoped but I did get the opportunity to share some ideas and resources with some teachers that were interested in using theatre in their schools. It was a pleasure to be able to share my knowledge and experience in this subject, and hopefully it will have been of some benefit.

WeVideo workshop with Jaume Feliu

Despite our tiredness, the 8 hour journey home resulted in an extensive brainstorming session of the ideas that we could start working on... #GEGValencia2019 was a reminder to myself of why I love being a teacher!

Vector Portraits with Photoshop

I had never used Photoshop before, but since I've had it I've used it for so many different projects. I've used it to adjust photos, make posters for my show and most recently I've been experimenting with vector portraits.
I found this video on YouTube, and by following the simple instructions I was able to make my own vector portrait. 

And from there I decided to make portraits in the same style for my colleagues Usmel and Adri...




Art Mural Time-Lapse

One of the things I enjoy doing is creating Videos. Over the last few years I've created several different videos, both personally and professionally for my school. My most recent project was a Time-Lapse video that I was asked to do for my school.
During the celebration of STEAM week (Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts and Mathematics), the Art department and students from 3º & 4º ESO and 1º Bachillerato created a mural dedicated to the Women in Science. 
The mural was created over 3 days and completed in 10 hours, which I filmed from a fixed point. Then using Adobe Premiere, I edited the footage and condensed down to 2 minutes, 30 seconds.
Here is the result:

Credits for the music used in the video are Moby - "In My Heart"

Moby has created some beautiful tracks, great for using with videos as backing tracks, and he offers his extensive catalogue of music to independent and non-profit filmmakers, film students, and anyone in need of free music for their independent, non-profit film, video, or short here: mobygratis.com

Daily Routine Part 7: Spring

Just before the really long second term ended we welcomed in Spring, so I updated the style of the Daily Routine accordingly.

I also decided to make things a little more difficult for them as well by introducing more shapes on the multiple choice screens. This way they can practice using different vocabulary.

For example, in the screen above they can choose where the Daily Routine goes by selecting: 1, 2 or 3... blue green or pink... or triangle, rectangle or star.
In this Daily Routine we looked at shapes with a fun song by Barefoot Books and the phonic P.

How to Survive the Zombie Apocalypse

This school year I had the chance to teach Drama to a 2ºESO group, which was a new challenge for me. Previously, I had only taught Primary classes, and I usually stuck to more classic stories. However, with this group they were happy to try something different, so we began working on "How to Survive the Zombie Apocalypse".

The show is a parody comedy and is something my students had never done before. I had worked with them 2 years before on Peter Pan, but this show required much more practice and rehearsals to get the timing of the comedy right.

One of the interesting things with the show was the set. Making a post-apocalyptic stage design ending up being less difficult than I originally expected. Using old stuff that I managed to find around the school, and some Police tape from Amazon, we created a fairly convincing scene.

The students found the script challenging in parts but little by little, as they began to understand the dynamic of each scene they were able to bring it altogether into a fantastic show, which I think they really enjoyed.

Stone Soup // Sopa de Piedras

Last week at school I was asked to present a show for our infant students as part of our Día de los Idiomas, Languages Day. Apart from English and Spanish being the primary languages in our school, students also have the opportunity to learn French, German and Chinese. Therefore, every year we celebrate Languages Day, with the objective of demonstrating our students´ability to use each language.
Stone Soup
This year, I decided to adapt an old folk story, Stone Soup, into a bilingual version. The story follows two Americans, walking El Camino de Santiago, when they stop in a small village in Asturias. The Americans speak to some of the villagers in English, and they translate what is said to the other villagers in Spanish, therefore telling the story in both languages at the same time.
You can see a copy of the script by clicking here or on the image above.

The "Daily Routine" in Infants: parts five and six

Here are the last two versions of the Daily Routine that I've been using in the 2nd... in part five we continued to work with the words related to Toys but we moved onto the next phonic: I, i

In part six, we moved onto the different types of transport and the phonic: P

TESOL Spain Conference 2019

Last week I was given the opportunity to give a presentation at the annual TESOL Spain Convention 2019, in my home town Oviedo. I was also honoured to be awarded the Robin de Andrés Grant, which I decided to donate to clowns.org. My presentation was titled "Theatre in the Classroom", in which I talked about how theatre can help students learn and improve their English.

As part of my presentation I also invited 7 of my students from 6º primary, 1ºESO and 3ºESO to act out scenes from shows that they have performed over the last few years, including The Wizard of Oz, The Jungle Book and Charlie and the Chocolate Factory. I was thrilled to be able to present to a full room of about 60 people, who enjoyed watching these young students perform with such passion. 

I was able to share some of my experiences during my presentation, hopefully presenting a strong case for the presence of Drama as core subject in the school curriculum in Spain. Over the last few years I have seen my students gain invaluable experience performing in English. The shows have helped them gain confidence speaking English in front of an audience, given them responsibility, exposed them to a wider range of vocabulary and structures, and most importantly, given them a memorable experience that will stay with them forever. 

For me, it was a fantastic experience being a speaker at a TESOL Spain Convention for the first time and I hope to be able to contribute more to the TESOL community in the future.

The "Daily Routine" in Infants: part four

With the change of the season, I like to change the general look of my "Daily Routine". As winter has started, I gave it an ice blue look.
Much of the content remains the same from the previous one... I've changed some of the song options to keep things fresh, plus I've added a song for the new vocabulary section we've started looking at: Toys

Teaching Drama: Autumn lesson plan

Here's a new drama class that I really enjoyed doing with Year 1 and 2 of Primary; Autumn and Scarecrows. Most of the students have been learning English at school since they were 3 years old, so by this time they have a very good understanding and are starting to gain confidence speaking.

The lesson starts off with a quick discussion about the different things that happen in Autumn. I try and teach them as much new vocabulary as possible, and consolidate any words they already know. I like to talk about how they feel in autumn, what we see and how things change, and the typical things that we see and do during this time of year.
This leads my nicely onto the second part, where we look at scarecrows; what they are and what they do. I show them a short clip of the scarecrow from The Wizard of Oz, and then we sing and dance "Dingly-dangly Scarecrow". 
After that, I read them the story "Scarecrow's Wedding" by Julia Donaldson. It's a fantastic story and is beautifully illustrated and always seems to capture their attention.
To finish the class (if I have time), I like to teach them the song "Nut Tree", also by Julia Donaldson. It's a nice song which has simple actions and is the perfect to finish the class.

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TESOL Spain Conference 2019