We had some questions at ACTFL about how we managed to fit a 42 episode video and reading program into our school year in both college and high school.
We loved Destinos when it was fresh (and I still love Destinos!-- did you know it is online free?) but it was a bit long at 54 episodes. Additionally, it had quite a lot of video for one sitting. This was great for those of us who learned from Destinos in the 1990's before the pace of life became faster. If you are a non teacher who is reading this to learn Spanish, check out Destinos online. It is fabulous for adult learners.
All of our EduNovela series will differ greatly in content, but one aspect they have in common is that they are delivered into manageable chunks. Each episode has about 15 minutes of video and takes approximately 30 minutes total to complete. This varies since it is 1:1 and the user controls much of his or her experience. Though, note that most students finish in under 30 minutes. (As you see the samples, you'll notice the first episode is slightly longer for the sake of interest of the storyline.)
We also offer an auditorium style viewing of the Grand Finale if you wish! We cannot tell you how much fun this has been over the years, even having students come dressed as their favorite characters.
In college, we have students watch purely outside the classroom if only meeting in class 3 days per week. It is a great way to connect the students with language on the days we do not have classes, and even for snow days. My students always said it was the best part of any homework and they waited until they were done with all other homework to watch the show. If you teach purely online or blended learning, you will love using our programs. They have a short quiz that gets submitted directly to the instructor's grade book. It includes questions from the two short readings as well as the video for a well-thought-out experience. Next day in class, the fun really begins! Students come in chatting and leave excited to do their work. (You can also spread a few out over the long holidays. They can watch from almost any where in the world.)
I vary how I assign lessons when I use this methodology with high school. Given the great number of times we meet face to face, I can use it in class once per week. I can assign these outside of class, and even on days with a sub, thus there is no issue of getting to all 42 done, only the issue of there not being enough lessons to satisfy the students!
What I skip now in my textbook is a lot of boring stuff. They learn the word for pencil, pen, notebook and the like from me using it daily and teaching only in Spanish. Using names of characters that do not exist and that my students cannot connect with is no longer an issue. With the storytelling capacity this methodology brings, I create sentences to teach vocabulary, do verb lessons, or even any grammar such as the object pronouns. My classes almost teach themselves due to the storytelling nature of the programs.
We are most excited about
our free teacher-shared activities.
Not only will our authors share free activities in
el Salón de Profesores, but we hope
teachers will join in as well. We really envision
this will keep down expenses for those of you
strapped to those expensive online sites and
textbooks. (As a parent, I can't imagine paying
$180 again for my freshman in high school's
For us, the storyline of the telenovela or series is the base of much conversation in the classroom, but certainly not all, in both high school and college classes. We tried to find TV series that connect to the real lives of your students or the times we are living in, even if the series is historical in nature.
Feel free to reach out to us at any time with more questions like this.
The Edunovela.com Team