Welcome to Week 17 of Spanish 3!

with Señora Melo

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Welcome to Week 17 of the course! Dec. 15 - 19, 2014

Welcome to week 17 – Dec. 15 through Dec. 19. This week we are beginning to work on our final exam project. There is only 1 graded assignment this week. It is the final project RLC. You may attend it either this week or during week 18 (after winter break). I strongly suggest that students attend it this week so that they can start working on the final exam project as soon as possible. Remember that the final exam project counts towards 25% of students' semester grade, so it is imperative they do well on it. Please see the list of assignments below for this week:

Repaso para el Proyecto Final de Español III

**Preparing for your Final Project - Required Live Class** - (during week 17 or week 18)

    • _____ RLC: Proyecto Final de Español III

**All Quarter 2 (previously listed) work must be turned in by

January 2nd for Traditional Calendar courses to go on your report card.**

The assignments for this week as well as for the entire semester can be found in the schedule of assignments here. *Just a friendly reminder that sections 8.4-8.5 close for good on Friday, Dec. 19 at midnight. This is one week after the assignments were due. Remember that there is a one week built-in grade period.*

Final Projects

Final Exam/Projects are right around the corner! Just a reminder for how the course grades are calculated:

  • Quarter 1 37.5%
  • Quarter 2 37.5%
  • Final Project 25%

It is extremely important that students are paying attention to the requirements for this project and including all of the required pieces in the project since it counts so much towards their semester grade. Students have struggled during the semester with not including required elements in their projects and receiving low grades as a result. Please see this Tips for a Great Final Project document that students have access to in the final project section of the course.

Gradebook Changes for Spanish Courses for Quarter 2 - This starts NOW!

I am re-posting this information since it is now in effect for quarter 2.

In quarter 2 (now), there will be two major changes occurring in all Spanish Moodle courses.

1) The gradebook settings will be modified, so that all assignments will be placed in the categories for which they are named and the “Future Work” category will be removed. Furthermore, the averages will include only assignments that are completed and graded at any point in time.

2) The mechanism by which assignments are opened and closed in all Moodle Spanish courses will change. The Spanish Moodle courses will no longer be able to feature the conditional release of assignments. As such, assignments will continue to be due according to the schedule of assignments. However, they will close one week after their due date. All assignments within the specified time frame will be open/available to all students to complete, regardless of previous status. This will require students to make sure that they stay on pace. In order to create a smooth transition, all Spanish courses will continue following the same layout and schedule through the end of Quarter 1. All Quarter 1 assignments not turned in by the closing date will stay as 0s. Then, starting in Quarter 2, assignments will be due on certain weeks and will then close permanently one week after their due date. You will find the links to the schedule of assignments, as well as the set closing dates for all assignments in the Moodle Spanish courses. Each week there is a list of assignments that are due, as well as a closing date for some assignments. Again, assignments will close one week after their due date. This built-in one week “grace period” is in case students are sick, on a field trip, lose Internet or any other reason that would prevent them from working for a day or two. Once the assignments are closed, zeroes will be put into the gradebook for any missing assignments. Lastly, it is important to note that while the “assignments” will all close according to the mentioned schedule, ALL instructional content is and will always be available via the “All Instructional Content” section of the course/s.

It is very important for students to login daily and work for at least 90 minutes a day, if they are in a block course and 45 minutes a day if they are in a year long course. If they are not allocated sufficient time at school in which to finish their coursework, they must make plans to complete the work at home or in another location with high speed internet access.

Please feel free to contact me if you have any questions or concerns.

Ellen Hart, Instructional Director of the Arts and World Languages Department



**Closing Dates for all ALL Spanish Moodle Courses**

Spanish 1 Early Calendar & Traditional Block Schedule of Assignments

Spanish 1 Yearlong Schedule of Assignments

Spanish 2 Early Calendar & Traditional Block Schedule of Assignments

Spanish 2 Yearlong Schedule of Assignments

Spanish 3 Early Calendar & Traditional Block Schedule of Assignments

Spanish 3 Yearlong Schedule of Assignments

What can you do to help your student/s succeed?

  • NEW! If your child is struggling with time management and submitting their work in a timely fashion, please ask me to get them paired up with a Virtual Buddy from the Peer Tutoring Center. This is an NCVPS student trained in helping your child to get back on track with their work. Please contact me for more details!
  • Remind them to read the course announcements DAILY (called the Learning Block Forum). This is their lifeline to the course and contains critical information and instruction.
  • Make sure that you and they are familiar with the Spanish Dept. Guidelines. A link is posted to these in the announcements and they are available under "Start Here!" module/section.
  • Make sure that they have printed off the "Schedule of Assignments" under "Start Here!" module/section. You can also access it here. This document has every assignment on it and when it is due. The students should use this as a check-off list to keep track of what they have done and what they have left to do. It's critical that assignments are completed in the order listed on (or ahead of) time.
  • Make sure that they complete *ALL* assignments, to the best of their ability and on time. The Moodle Spanish courses are set up as "conditional" where *all* assignments are open/available, but can't be accessed until completing the previous activity/assignment (with certain scores being required for certain assignments). This means that students may work as quickly as they'd like, but they must complete the prior assignments before moving forward. Any assignments that are not completed will earn a zero. Again, this is why the "Schedule of Assignments" is so important. It keeps them on track, completing work, in order, and on (or ahead of) time.
  • Remind them to take their time to read through and learn the material and not to rush. There should always be a focus on quality. Students may redo any assignment that isn't a quiz, test/final project or auto-graded assignment (with one attempt).
  • Remind them to go ahead and mark their calendars to schedule when they will attend additional their "Required Live Classes". While students are required to attend a total of 6 (Getting Started, Unit 1, Unit 2/3, Unit 4/5, Unit 6/7 & Unit 8/Final). They are more than welcome and encouraged to attend more! These are live classes with me and/or other Spanish 2 teachers to go over the unit's major topics, assignments, present/discuss the material in detail, practice, ask/answer questions etc., just as you would in a regular classroom.
  • Encourage them to ask questions, seek help, and communicate with me as much as possible. Communication is critical in an online class. Blackboard IM is the quickest/best way to communicate with me when I'm online and texting is the quickest/best way to communicate with me when I'm not online. However, they can also send me Moodle messages, text me, email me, Tweet me, or call me.
  • Remind them that the use of external sources (such as online translators, native speakers, other students, etc.) is forbidden and considered cheating. Everything that the students need should be in the course and he/she should use the material from the course for his/her answers. If he/she wants to know how to say something, he/she should ask me. The only approved reference is www.wordreference.com and this can only be used for a vocabulary word in isolation, not translating word-for-word, verb conjugation or for sentence structure. Please make sure that you and they know all of the details of the academic honesty policy and the consequences of not following them, as stated in the Spanish Dept. Guidelines (link above).
  • Ask them how they are doing and have them show you their grades in the course. Moreover, ask them what they are learning and why they are learning it. If they can't answer these questions in detail, please let me know, as they may need extra help. Grades (and feedback) are always available under "Grades" in the left-hand sidebar. Specific feedback is provided for assignments, so make sure that they check over completed assignments to learn from any mistakes. If your student/s and/or you have questions/concerns on any of the grades/feedback, please let me know.
  • ELAs are responsible for checking and reporting grades to the students/parents on a bi-weekly basis after NCVPS grade reports have been sent to the schools.
  • Feel free to contact me via email (at erin.melo@ncpublicshools.gov) anytime and by phone/text (at 919.346.3889) before 9 p.m. It's easier for me to email as I teach at a face-to-face school. If you need to talk via phone, I still can... just have to find a good time (usually when my husband gets home) when someone can watch them. am available in the afternoons after 4 p.m.

Sra. Melo's Final Exam Required Live Class

Friday, Dec. 19th, 5pm

This is an online event.

Students are required to attend a Final Exam RLC (either with me or with another Spanish 3 teacher. Parents and ELAs are invited to attend.

World Language Culture Cafe Extra Credit Session: La Leyenda de La Flor de Nochebuena

Monday, Dec. 15th, 9-10pm

This is an online event.

Be sure to take notes during the session and read the details for the extra credit assignment and submit it to your teacher after the session. A copy of your notes must be submitted as well.

World Language Culture Cafe Extra Credit Session: Arabic Celebrations

Thursday, Dec. 18th, 8:30-9:30pm

This is an online event.

Be sure to take notes during the session and read the details for the extra credit assignment and submit it to your teacher after the session. A copy of your notes must be submitted as well.

Grading, Rubrics & Feedback

The course grade is comprised of 2 parts (Course work the Final Project/Exam). The final course grade is made up of: Course work = 75% and the Final Project/Exam Average=25%. Progress reports are completed and submitted to schools every week. Students in NCVPS Spanish courses are graded based on their Spanish-language proficiency. It's the school's/ELA/s responsibility to provide them to the students/parents. Please see the rubrics below for complete details. NCVPS only reports numerical grades, not alphabetical grades due to the variance among different schools/districts. All assignments receive specific feedback. It's critical for the students to check their grades/feedback daily and inquire with the teacher if they don't understand something or feel that there is an error. Assignments not attempted/completed receive a 0.

Grading Rubrics:

Below, are the grading rubrics that will be used to evaluate your performance/proficiency throughout the course. You should refer to these often, so that you know at what proficiency level you are performing and what you need to do to move to the next level. I have seen many students this past week not be able to move to the next level based on items I asked them to revise from their first attempt to the second attempt in looking at the rubrics. This could be something as simple as using cohesive devices in your speaking or writing. A list of cohesive devices was posted in this announcements for students to show up this week.

Proficiency Levels and Examples:

Often students have misconceptions on what they will learn/be able to do by the end of the course. For world language, please note that you will not be fluent after one or two levels. It takes time to develop and increase in proficiency.

  • Click here to see the overarching grid of proficiency levels and outcomes.
  • Click here to see samples of Novice level speakers
  • Click here to see samples of Novice level writers
  • Click here to see samples of Intermediate level speakers
  • Click here to see samples of Intermediate level writers
  • Click here to see samples of Advanced level speakers
  • Click here to see samples of Advanced level writers
  • (Click here to see samples of all levels of Listening)
  • (Click here to see samples of all levels of Reading)
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Students Who Need Help

Students are required to attend the Required Live Classes throughout the course (at least one per unit/module), which is a virtual classroom environment that allows for complete interaction with the teacher and other students. As such, questions are often answered in these sessions. However, if/when a student needs additional help, he/she should first ask me, the teacher. If I'm not available and it's a quick question, he/should should take advantage of the NCVPS Peer Tutoring Center's Quick Questions via Blackboard IM. If more serious content tutoring/remediation is needed, the student/s can request one-on-one tutoring with me and/or a peer tutor. If a student is weary, nervous, and/or conscientious about taking the class online, he/she can request a Virtual Buddy from the NCVPS Peer Tutoring Center for moral support, technical assistance, and more.

Click Here for the NCVPS Virtual Support Center!

The NCVPS Virtual Support Center is available for technical assistance (for which I cannot do/help). They can be reached via phone during business hours or any time via Help Desk ticket.

About Me

My name is Erin Melo and I have been teaching levels 1- AP Spanish Language and Culture for the past 13 years. I graduated with an undergraduate degree in both Spanish and Secondary Education from James Madison University in Harrisonburg, VA. I also received my Master's Degree in Secondary Education from that institution as well. I have studied abroad in Salamanca, Spain and traveled to both Mexico and Brasil as well. I have taught high-school Spanish in both northern Virginia as well as in Wake County, NC. I currently teach for 2 different different online schools in North Carolina as well.