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¡Hola a todos! Me llamo Señora Kennedy.
I'm so excited to spend another year with all of you. This is my fourth year at UDA and my tenth year teaching! 
A little bit about me:
I grew up in a small town in Michigan, in a very big family. I am not a native Spanish speaker - I started learning Spanish in high school and enjoyed it so much that I decided that I wanted to help others learn it, too. My favorite part of knowing more than one language is that it has connected me to people and places in the world that I never would have imagined otherwise. Currently I am trying to learn Arabic as my third language. We'll see what comes next!
I have been teaching since 2008. I taught K-8 Spanish in Detroit, and a few years ago I also got a Fulbright grant for one year in Spain. That means I got to live in Spain for a year, teaching English, speaking lots of Spanish, and getting an in-depth look at the Spanish language and culture. (I also got to spend a summer walking across Spain on the Camino de Santiago - about 300 miles.) More recently, I made another big trip: I moved across the country to San Diego to teach Spanish here at UDA!
Learning about new languages and cultures is very important to me. I believe that making connections and forming positive relationships with people - especially people different from ourselves - is a way to change the violence, misunderstandings, and injustice that we often encounter in our country and our world. Here in San Diego, almost a quarter of the population speaks Spanish, which makes the Spanish language a crucial way to participate in our local community.
I live with my husband and mi gato. I also volunteer with Youth for Understanding (mentoring exchange students from around the world.) In my free time, I spend time on grading your creative projects, activism, writing, photography, dancing, sleeping, spending time outside, drinking coffee, and telling cheesy jokes.
I'm on twitter @kennedyspanish (where I try to share photos of the stuff we are doing in class!) and I have lots of resources on my weebly website: kennedyspanish.weebly.com. You can reach me at skennedy@urbansd.com or with the contact link on this page!
Need some individual help? Come see me:
  • Tuesday & Friday during 6th/7th grade lunch (11:50-12:35)
  • Tuesdays after school (3:30-4:30pm)
  • Before school by appointment!


Recent Posts

6º Prueba de Vocabulario: U1L1

6th grade will have a vocabulary quiz on Monday, November 27th.
(This is vocab we have been working on during the first trimester, but I did not want to give it at the very end because all my quizzes can be made up and I wanted students to have a chance to study and retake if needed!)
A study guide with the vocabulary and resources is here and sent home today on paper. There are also other practice resources in Google Classroom!

Photography Club!

2nd Trimester I will be running a Middle School photography club again! Please see the attached document for more information and an application (or pick one up from me in person.)
Space is limited so sign up soon! The deadline for applications is Monday, November 27th.
In 6th-8th grade Spanish classes, students will be making zines again this year to kick off the year with explorations of why languages are important! In class this week they are exploring a variety of zines from local artists and from middle school students last year, and planning out their own zines. We will be sharing these zines on Saturday, October 7th, at the San Diego Zine Fest! See more info on our project overview. Can you help our young zinesters finish, copy, fold, and share our zines? Sign up here
Middle school Spanish students are working hard on their zines! They have made rough drafts and written author bios in Spanish, and in the coming week will be finishing up the finals. 
Can you come help us finish, copy, fold, and share zines at the San Diego Zine Festival? Sign up here!
If you are able, stop by at our table at Zine Fest on Saturday, October 7th!

Middle School: Remind.com & Homework Calendars

The beginning of the school year is going well! As we work together to cultivate responsibility in our middle school students, we have a variety of reminders for students and parents.
Resources and assignments are shared with students via Google Classroom, and they have planners to write down reminders of deadlines. All teachers' Google Classrooms automatically post to one combined homework calendar, which you can find at these links:
Middle School is also using Remind.com to send text and/or email updates to parents and students. If you would like to get these updates, you can either go to the website below (from your computer or smartphone) or use the text code.
  • 6th grade: 
    • Website: rmd.at/udaspan6 
    • Or text code @udaspan6 to the number 81010
  • 7th grade:
    • Website: rmd.at/udaspan7 
    • Or text code @udaspan7 to the number 81010
  • 8th grade:
    • Website: rmd.at/udaspan8 
    • Or text code @udaspan8 to the number 81010

5th grade Border Angels Field Trip

This October, fifth grade students will be taking a field trip as part of our Journey North Project! Information about the field trip and the project are available in the attached information sheet, which was sent home today along with a permission form.

Please return this signed field trip form by the end of this week!

We need volunteers to drive for this trip! If you are able to drive, please contact Señora Kennedy with the number of kids you can take: skennedy@urbansd.com (Information about our volunteer requirements are available on our website.)

Please let me know if you have questions!

It is the time of year when students and parents are asking how to improve their grade before the end of the year!
I try hard to make grades in Spanish reflect a few things:
1) A student's work at learning a language
2) What students know and can do in Spanish
This year middle school has separated grades into Project/Product, Process, and Skills/Content. I have found this very helpful for making these grades clearer, and I hope it has been clearer for families and students, too. Many of my students have found that is impossible to get a great grade in my class without completing any homework outside of class. This is because learning a language requires practice beyond the classroom, and how much time students spend on practicing is directly related to how much they grow. With this said, my policy has been that students are not able to make up missed homework since the purpose of homework is consistent, ongoing practice outside. Students can improve their language proficiency (and often their grade) by practicing more, but if they have not practiced or completed work until the end of the trimester it is not possible to get an A (unless they have a time machine.)
If students are not happy with their current grade, they do have one option since we do not have regular June homework (due to the end of the school year.) Students have a chance to get some extra points if their grade is below 100% by doing the following:
  1. Get in some more practice by completing at least 2 new skills on Duolingo (not counting what is included on May homework)
  2. Complete a survey about what homework options you tried and enjoyed this year, and opinions to help me improve our practice options for next year! 
Details and the survey are available on Google Classroom. 
As always, Tarea de mayo is due on the last day of the month. Don't forget that this can include work on skills or projects that you complete at home!
A few 6th grade reminders as we come to the end of the trimester!
  • Our Lotería projects were due last Friday! We are excited to display them at exhibition and present and play them in class. I am still in the process of grading these projects, but I have marked them as collected, missing, or incomplete on Power School and sent student email reminders to all students who are not finished.
  • As always, Tarea de mayo is due on the last day of the month. We do not have regular homework for June due to the end of school, but students have a chance to do extra Duolingo and take a survey to get some extra points if their grade is below 100%. Details are on Google Classroom.
  • As always, I am available during office hours and lunch/recess on Fridays for extra help!
I am excited for summer, but also for the chance to work with this group of students for 7th grade!
¡Hola, fotógrafos!
As we come to the end of the year, we are coming to the end of photo club! Yesterday during club each student worked on picking two favorite photos to print. Depending on how many people contribute photos, we will print and mat 1 or 2 photos per student. If you did not pick two photos yesterday (or if you were not at photo club) you can still add them to this folder by this Saturday. (I will be printing them Sunday. If you would like to print out your own 4x6" photo to bring, you can do that instead!) Please name the files with your name and 1 or 2 (for first and second favorite.) 
Here's what our next two meetings will look like:
  • Next week (5/30): We will be preparing some of our photos for exhibition! I will print and bring the photos submitted to me, and we will put them into mats and hang them up.
  • Last week of school (6/6) will be our last meeting of the year. If you want to bring a treat to share feel free! Thanks to Dakota & her family who have been bringing us snacks this trimester, to prevent hangry photographers. :)
I have been so inspired by this group of young artists! If you have not already seen the work they have been sharing on our SeeSaw, click here to see your child's work and here to see our public blog.
As always, let me know if you have questions!

Proyecto: Textos Pegajosos (8º)

Preguntas Principales:

  • ¿Cómo aprendo? ¿Cómo me comunico?
  • ¿Cuáles textos quiero usar y compartir?
How often do song lyrics stick in your head? What books do you remember from childhood?  What rhymes help you remember important information? Finding texts that stick with you and communicating with others are both important for meaningful language learning. On your own or with a group, you will be choosing an authentic text from a Spanish speaking culture. This could be a song, a rhyme, a poem, or a book - something meaningful to you and appropriate for your level. You will choose a language goal for yourself, plan how to share that text with your chosen audience, and most importantly identify and hone your skills as an independent language learner as you get ready to move on to high school.
See an overview, dates, and resources for our final project below (or on Google Classroom!)
(The photo is of some of last year's 8th graders teaching 1st grade a song as part of this project.)

Can you help us film our project?

5th grade has been working in groups to plan presentations or videos about our school to share with our pen pals in Spain. They have written scripts and plans, and will be going to various classes and parts of the school to film and/or photograph for their project. I am looking for parent volunteers who would be able to help supervise small groups while they film. This would be on Mondays or Thursdays from 10am-noon. If you have any availability this coming week or in the following weeks, let me know!
In 6th grade we just started a project that combines the traditional Mexican Lotería game with the language skills we have been learning in class! After playing the game in class, students have been looking at a collection of creative Lotería decks (both historical and contemporary) to learn and review words in Spanish, and to learn about the rules for the gender of nouns in Spanish in a hands-on way. After seeing these creative examples, students will create their own version that shares information about themselves, using the Spanish skills we have been learning so far this year. For most students, this will include descriptions and interests. For native speakers, we will include accents and stressed syllables.
It's been a lot of fun so far to play Lotería in class and to see all the creative versions, from the traditional Don Clemente versions you can buy in most Mexican grocery stores to the more recent Space Lotería by Chepo Peña. I can't wait to see what our creative students come up with themselves!
Check out the project overview here with more information, links, and resources: tiny.cc/UDAloteria. A rough draft will be due (in their project packet) on 4/27 and the final Lotería will be due 5/18 before camp. All project due dates will be posted on our homework calendar: tiny.cc/UDAHW6th
I have designed and planned this project to be completed in class, but if students are absent or off task they may need to catch up at home or during office hours. At home for homework, students should be practicing their describing adjectives (which we will be using during this project, and which are a review of skills from the end of 5th grade.) They will have a vocabulary quiz on 5/4 on these adjectives. Remember to log any at-home practice on the report for tarea de abril!
En la clase de español, acabamos de empezar un proyecto con la Lotería Mexicana. Después de jugar la Lotería en la clase, los estudiantes han usado una variedad de Loterías históricas y modernas para repasar y aprender palabras en español y explorar las reglas para el género de los sustantivos en español por una manera interactiva. Después de examinar estos ejemplos de loterías creativas, cada estudiante creará su propia versión que comunica información personal, usando las palabras y la gramática que estamos practicando en la clase. (Para todos los alumnos, nos enfocamos en describir actividades y gustos. Para los hablantes nativos del español, nos enfocamos en las sílabas tónicas y la acentuación.)
Nos hemos divertido con el juego de Lotería en la clase y la exploración de Loterías creativas (de las versiones tradicionales de Don Clemente hasta la nueva Space Lotería de Chepo Peña.) ¡Espero con anticipación ver las Loterías creativas de nuestros estudiantes!
Aquí hay el enlace para una descripción y todos los recursos que corresponden al proyecto: tiny.cc/UDAloteria. Entregarán una copia borrador (en su paquete del proyecto) el 27 de abril, y la fecha de entrega para la Lotería Final será el 18 de mayo, antes que salir para AstroCamp.  Como siempre, las fechas de entrega están en nuestro calendario de tarea: tiny.cc/UDAHW6th
Mi plan es que los alumnos terminen este proyecto en clase, pero si hay ausencias o si no usen su tiempo en clase en una manera productiva, puede ser que necesitaren recuperar este tiempo en casa o durante mi horario de oficina. En casa, los alumnos deben practicar sus adjetivos de descripción, que vamos a usar en este proyecto. (Es vocabulario del año pasado.) Tenemos una prueba de vocabulario el 5 de mayo con estos adjetivos. ¡Pueden incluir práctica de vocabulario en su reportaje para la tarea de abril! Para hablantes nativos, la cosa más difícil es escribir estas palabras, y les recomiendo Spell o Gravity, actividades en Quizlet, para practicar.