Adjectives are one of those things everyone has to cover, whether you teach with a textbook or not. This year I have been introducing and practicing adjectives in a few different ways and I think it’s been great! Check out these easy activities, displays, games, and reading activities for ideas on how to teach adjectives in Spanish class!
Yo Soy Bulletin Board Adjective Display
This visual display has a lot of cognates that helps us remember to use adjectives when speaking and writing! It essentially becomes a massive word wall as well as a colorful display. It stays up all year round!
P.S. This resource comes with two options: “Yo soy” or “SÉ” so you can choose which you’d like to use with your students!
I also love this idea for a collaborative classroom word wall!
Photo credit: Brian Coutlangus
This idea has popped up a few times in the Spanish Teachers in the U.S. group, but unfortunately every post I could find said they got the idea from someone else! So who knows who came up with it first (if it was you, send me an email so I can give credit!), but it’s a great idea!
Students work together to create a word wall of adjectives in Spanish that describe themselves. In the middle or in larger letters for the display include the word, “SOMOS”. What a great way for students to add a personal touch!
Each time we introduce a character in a class story we use at least 3 adjectives in Spanish to describe them. The word wall is really helpful for that – and I always make sure that at least one of them is not a cognate so we practice something they might not be able to just pick up from the wall.
An intro to a story is usually something like, “Hay un chico. El chico se llama Bob. Bob es trabajador, interesante, y lógico.” Then we’ll circle with the adjectives and discuss each one via PQA in class with the students! For example,
Teacher: Class, Bob is hard-working. Is Bob hard-working? Yes. Student A, are you hard-working? (If the student says no, I go with it and then say, oh RIGHT, you’re not hard-working, you are VERY hard-working. Always positive!). Class, Student A is hard-working. Student B, are you hard-working? Yes, you’re hard-working too! Class, who is hard-working? (Hand raises, or they can answer with Student A/B). Class, am I hard-working? No? Oh, you’re right. I’m a teacher. I’m VERY hard-working. I work a lot for you! Class, who is more hard-working, Bob, or me? (I like to compare with the fictional character. We get a ton of practice with comparisons when we do this!). Student C, are you hard-working or VERY hard-working? etc.
We will continue with this and the other adjectives as long as there’s interest. This is a great way to get a lot of practice with I, you, s/he, we, and they forms of the verbs, as well as get some subtle repetitions of adjective agreement.
Are you hard-working? Oh, we’re both hard-working! Class, who is hard-working? Student A and D are both hard-working. Who is very hard-working? Class, Student B and I are very hard-working.
A solid intro to a story – describing the character and discussing characteristics – can easily take a full class! The examples above work with any characteristics – hair, eye color, physical traits, personality – you name it!
I love these readings because they wrap adjectives, likes/dislikes, and basic personal information all in one! They practice adjectives in Spanish in context but they also have support for the students in terms of footnotes at the bottom. Students are successful with these readings, especially when all they need to do is make a quick check on the bottom of the page and then move on!
I also use them a few different times. I have readings that are basic introductions and personal descriptions, readings that are all about different famous Spanish-speakers (perfect for Hispanic Heritage Month!), and readings about a family and all of the people who are part of it!
You can use these in a few different ways, but my favorite is probably in a gallery walk format. I hang the readings up around the room and students walk, read, and record responses to questions in a scavenger hunt type activity. They read a TON and don’t even realize it! Muahahaha. Sneaky practice is the best practice.
I also print the readings off and make them into a little booklet and add them to my classroom library. Students pick them up to read during our FVR time!
The final way I like to use these readings is in a comparison activity. Students pick one reading. Then they sort the sentences into Similarities and Differences. Finally, I have students re-write the sentences under the differences category so they are true!
Picture Talk or Movie Talk
There are so many ways to include adjectives practice in class! Whenever we do a Picture Talk or a Movie Talk we always describe the characters and the people in the images as we discuss.
It’s also a really fun “sponge” activity to pick out an image (without showing students), describe a person in it, then project the image and let the students decide who you were describing. You can turn that into a full lesson by printing enough pictures for pairs to each have two, then let students describe and guess in pairs!
Games are always a great way to introduce and practice any skill!
Spanish Mama has a really awesome Guess Who template available for a free download on her blog and Martina Bex has shared a game called Thief! that is also a super fun way to practice adjectives and clothing. There are tons of different ways to include and practice adjectives!
Have you tried any of these activities for teaching adjectives in your Spanish class? What questions do you have for me? Drop a comment below and let me know!