Earth Day

Earth Day 2018

A few points of departure for discussion in class today:

(1) Start with this maravilla about the Ka’apor people who live in the Amazon. Una maravilla is a marvelous thing, and so that is how I refer to this series which I use to introduce the people and cultures of Latin America to my students. The Ka’apor people struggle to prevent deforestation from destroying their way of life. This download contains a picture talk, a subtitled video, a short highly comprehensible reading followed by space for a Write & Discuss activity. This should be able to be completed within 15-20 minutes.

(2) Ska de la Tierra (song)

(a) we did NOT listen first, we just looked at the lyrics and translated/discussed with the audio off. While the song goes fast, this first look at the lyrics is pretty easy.

zoom(b) This matching game is Spanish audio to Spanish text so that students get to hear her voice before actually viewing the video. After matching I chose a student to translate all of the lyrics. We do this several times to acquaint ourselves further with the song.

(c) We watch this version of the video, which has excellent images matching the principal lyrics.

(3) Video “Man”. A bit disturbing, but really gets to the idea that we should be thoughtful about how we use natural resources.

Now let´s focus on why we love the natural world:
(4) Los 30 lugares más bonitos del mundo
We sat in quiet awe as we watched this video.


  1. Hey, I am thinking of launching a new unit with this; but would love to flesh out the unit to be longer than just one class ( I teach 90 min classes). Typically I’ll do a unit/theme in between 4-7 classes or so. Do you tuck this in to a larger unit at all, and if so, would you be willing to share any other resources/story scripts/etc? Thanks for considering!! Either way, I’ll definitely enjoy using this great resource. 🙂

      1. Yes! I saw this and was thinking of pulling some pieces together and simplifying. Do you have specific structures that you focused on for reps, or was it more general?

      2. I don’t focus for reps anymore… the closest I come is using the Sweet 16 verb posters in the moment to recycle those verbs. I DO remain comprehensible at all times, but I try to keep my language limited but natural. When I used to focus for reps, I realize that on some level my goal was to get them to be able to speak or write faster using the target words. Nowadays I think that not focusing for reps (while remaining comprehensible at all times) eventually leads to stronger and more authentic student output… but you have to have a department with faith in the process. In any case, you can have an occasional non-targeted lesson.

  2. This is such a wonderful sequence to discuss Earth Day. You inspired me to do something similar for my German students. I was looking for the site you used to create the matching activity, but could not find anything under “spellmaster”. Which program did you use for that? TIA!!!

  3. I love these maravilla latinoamerica, but unfortunately, I teach French. So here’s my stupid question: How do you find these resources? I’d love to start this with my French classes but am not sure where to start!

    1. I search youtube for inspiring stories, add the subtitles myself. If you find an inspiring story in English about the French speaking world, do a google search about it in French. Chances are someone has already covered it in French.

  4. Wow. Just wow. This arrived in my inbox at the most perfect moment for the unit I’m teaching. Thank you for sharing these wonderful resources. Did you do a movie talk with Man? It is very disturbing, but so powerful.

    1. I did when I used it in 2016, but now that I have another extended movie talk in the line up I might consider making a Venn Diagram or some other graphic organizer to process the video.

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