What is Puerto Rico?
Spanish IV Students Use a Variety of Tech Tools to Create Digital Presentations, Conduct a Peer Critique, and Reflect on Learning Outcomes
BY STACEY ROSHAN, DIRECTOR OF INNOVATION AND EDUCATIONAL TECHNOLOGY
Students in Spanish IV, taught by Bryan Whitford and Hilary Vellenga, just wrapped up their unit on “Los hispanos en los Estados Unidos (United States).” As part of their Integrative Performance Assessment (IPA), students were tasked with demonstrating their understanding of Puerto Rico’s people, culture, and history. This project involved multiple steps in which students were able to:
- Individually synthesize the information they have learned
- Creatively demonstrate their comprehension
- Peer review a classmates project
- Revise their own projects based on feedback from their partner and ideas gained in the peer-critique process
- Reflect on what they learned in doing this project
PART 1: ADOBE SPARK VIDEO
Students were asked to create a digital presentation to respond to the following prompt —
Prompt: Now that you have learned about the island’s history, use images to make a presentation that represents the aspects of Puerto Rico that we covered together. Share what you know and what it means to you.
- Write about it. Use relevant and appropriate vocabulary from the unit to caption or label the images — Presentational Writing Vocabulary Quizlet set.
- Talk about it. Use natural and honest expression to share your message – connect the visual with a verbal description. Give your viewer instructions on how to look at your presentation and explain/give additional information for the visual elements — Presentational Speaking Vocabulary Quizlet set.
Students used Adobe Spark Video to demonstrate their understandings of the material learned over the course of the unit. Adobe Spark Video is a simple tool, allowing students to add images, text, music, and voice to their presentations. By keeping the tech simple in this project, students were able to keep focused on the major curricular learning goals while also being given creative freedom to uniquely present their work to the class.
PART 2: PEER REVIEW & REVISION
After publishing their videos, each student was assigned a partner. Students received a link to the presentation their partner had submitted and were tasked with providing constructive feedback on a Google Form. Students were asked to comment on the use of vocabulary and expression and how images were pair with text and narration to effectively answer the essential question.
After the peer critique, students received the feedback their partner had provided. They were given the chance to then make revisions to their video before it was graded by their teacher.
This process provided an opportunity for:
- Peer to peer learning
- Students to see the work of their classmates
- Practice giving critical feedback
- Students to make revisions to their work before receiving a final grade
PART 3: FLIPGRID REFLECTION
Students were asked to reflect on the project in Flipgrid. Flipgrid is a video response platform, making it easy for students to submit a video reply to the prompt assigned by their teacher. For this task, all videos stayed private, meaning only the student and their teacher were able to view the video, allowing this to be an open dialogue between teacher and student.
Students were asked to respond to the following prompts in Spanish, giving evidence that they had also reviewed the feedback from their partner:
- How did this project help or increase your understanding of Puerto Rico?
- What is one new idea and/or one new question you have how about Puerto Rico?
- Why is it important to use visual elements to study Puerto Rico?
- What do you want the world to know about Puerto Rico?
The structure of this rich activity asked students to create, critique, revise, and then reflect. Creating a digital presentation to answer the essential question: “What is Puerto Rico?” was only the first step of the learning cycle. Not only did students have an opportunity for creative expression in this project, there were also multiple elements of peer-to-peer learning and revision embedded into the project. Before receiving a final grade from their teacher, students had a chance to revise their work based on peer feedback. What’s more, they had a chance to learn from the work their classmates had submitted, to deepen their understandings and open up new perspectives.