I hope to provide a few tutorials in the coming weeks to help you incorporate my favorite activities into your classroom during one of the toughest planning times of the year. If there is a certain activity that you want to learn more about, be sure to let me know in the comments! For now, keep reading to learn more about one of my original writing activities, La Lluvia.
Before we get started, examples can be found here: La Lluvia activities
This activity provides students with choice and also provides opportunity for creative thinking, writing, and hands-on review. This is one of the only writing activities where my students *don’t*complain*at*all*!!!!! They have PLENTY of choice when it comes to what they write about, and how they do so.
Students are given a game board/sheet with 30 options to choose from. They “shop” through the raindrops, and choose ten (# is teacher discretion!) to create an original sentences.
They are choosing raindrops based on the teacher prompt: perhaps completely by student choice, to identify vocabulary within a category, or to identify verbs within a designated tense, etc.
This is also an activity that has plenty of room for differentiation. I will give a few ideas in my more detailed explanation below!
What do you need?
If you plan to print copies for each student, your students will need something to write with. They may also enjoy using markers or colored pencils for the initial part of this activity.
If you are a 1:1 district and you’d rather work paper-free, you can provide students with a PDF copy of this activity via Google Classroom so they can complete it directly on their devices. My students use the app Notability on our school iPads. This app allows them to color and write directly on the PDF.
I always have a few paper copies ready, because many students prefer to use paper every once in awhile and that’s ok with me 🙂 … and they also tend to get excited whenever markers are involved. Yes even high schoolers like markers!
|Señora Kinneer’s Students working on iPad and paper!|
How do I prepare the activity?
|My Example Completed Sheet, being utilized in Señora Kinneer’s Classroom!|
How does it work?
Time needed in class: 15 minutes
Step 1) Once they have your prepared game board, students follow your instruction to identify raindrops. They read through the 30 options, and color in the designated raindrops as they go. (All of my blue colored pencils become coveted during this activity.) As the teacher, you decide how many you will require them to choose. I believe 10 is a good place to start, and you can go from there! I usually give students no more than 2-3 minutes to complete this step.
For open ended writing, you can instruct them to choose which raindrops they want to write about. If you are reviewing grammar, the directions may vary slightly. Instead of choosing which raindrops they’d like to write about, students may be searching for verbs that are conjugated in a specific tense, or identifying all vocabulary words within a certain category, etc.
Step 2) The teacher then decides if and how the students will complete the written extension activity, where they must use the discovered or chosen raindrops to create an original sentence.
After students color in their raindrops they then challenge themselves to use the raindrop contents in original sentences on the other side/second page. For 10 sentences, I usually provide about 10-12 minutes.
Student sentences can range from simple to complex depending on proficiency levels, but regardless students should find a way to exhibit their skills within the content while only using the target language 🙂 This activity provides a low-stress opportunity for students to succeed individually. Each student will complete this activity independently, so this is one where I like to observe and see who is moving quickly and who is relying on their group for assistance.
Students enjoy this activity because there is room for plenty of student choice.
Teachers enjoy this activity because students are on task, and writing completely original sentences within an activity that seems “easy.”
|My Example with support — being utilized in Señora Kinneer’s classroom!|
How can I differentiate?
You can purchase the editable version of this game to create your own versions!
One teacher’s review, and the game board she created for her students:
|A message I received on FB Messenger from the teacher below!|
|The example she created with my editable templates 🙂|