K-12 Teaching and Learning From the UNC School of Education

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Learning outcomes

Students will:

  • learn to conjugate verbs in the preterite indicative tense
  • utilize the preterite accurately
  • learn travel vocabulary

Teacher planning

Time required for lesson

2 weeks


Technology resources

  • The students may go to the Learn Spanish to practice the preterite tense.
  • The students will view and interpret the video that goes with Unidad 1 Etapa 1 of the En español text.
  • The students will listen and interpret the CD that goes with Unidad 1 Etapa 1 of the En español text.


  • Students will review the present tense.
  • Students will review the verb vocabulary from Spanish I.
  • The teacher will link and extend the knowledge of the students to include the preterite tense by modeling the verb conjugations and their pronunciation.


  1. The teacher will model questions and answers in the tú and yo forms.
  2. Students will receive a list of the 100 Most Used Verbs in Spanish. They will use this list to practice the tú and yo forms in pairs.
  3. The teacher will conduct oral drills with the other pronouns. For example, the teacher will say “nosotros” and various verbs like hablar, comer and vivir. The students will answer chorally.
  4. Students will be given a piece of paper which they will fold into eight boxes. In each box, they will create one sentence using the preterite tense to illustrate what they did last summer. Then, they will illustrate their sentences.
  5. Then, students will use their drawings to ask and answer personal questions in pairs.
  6. The teacher will make a statement using the preterite tense. The teacher will call on individual students to create a question that provoked that statement. This also reviews interrogative words.
  7. Students will read the two stories and identify the preterite tense in each.
  8. Students will create drawings to illustrate their understanding of the stories.
  9. Students will answer questions in the preterite based on the two stories.
  10. Students will practice the conjugations using the two songs “Yo hablé” and “Quise, hice, vine yo.”
  11. Students will create a timeline of their life’s main events to demonstrate mastery of the preterite indicative tense. Students will present their work to the class in the target language.


  1. Oral Presentation Rubric
  2. Reading-Art Rubric
  3. The students must complete a traditional paper and pencil test.
  4. The teacher will give students a participation grade based on their involvement in the class activities.

Supplemental information

  • Stories: “El Monte de Nuestro Alimiento” and “La Cascada de la Novia”
  • Comments

    This lesson was created as a result of the workshop, What’s New and How to Use the New 2004 Second Language Standard Course of Study, held on February 2–3, 2005, at James Sprunt Community College in Kenansville, North Carolina. The lesson reflects the collaboration between Carol Thomson of Northside High School in Onslow County and Ronda Hatcher of West Brunswick High School in Brunswick County, North Carolina. The purpose of the lesson is to teach the preterite indicative tense and travel vocabulary.

North Carolina curriculum alignment

Second Languages (2005)

Grade 9–12 — High School Level II

  • Goal 1: INTERPERSONAL COMMUNICATION - The learner will engage in conversation and exchange information and opinions orally and in writing in the target language.
    • Objective 1.01: Communicate present and past information by recombining basic vocabulary and structures orally and in writing.
    • Objective 1.02: Exchange information by asking and answering original questions orally and in writing.
    • Objective 1.04: Engage in oral or written conversation (face-to-face, e-mails, letters) about everyday topics using strings of simple sentences.
    • Objective 1.05: Use culturally acceptable vocabulary, idiomatic expressions or gestures.
  • Goal 2: INTERPRETIVE COMMUNICATION - The learner will understand and interpret written and spoken language on a variety of topics in the target language.
    • Objective 2.01: Demonstrate understanding of some oral and written idiomatic expressions, phrases, sentences and passages.
    • Objective 2.02: Demonstrate understanding of increasingly complex oral and written questions relating to familiar topics.
    • Objective 2.06: Interpret phrases presented with accompanying gestures, intonation, and other visual or auditory cues.
  • Goal 3: PRESENTATIONAL COMMUNICATION - The learner will present information, concepts, and ideas to an audience of listeners or readers on a variety of topics in the target language.
    • Objective 3.01: Give oral and written presentations about people, places, things, and events using simple sentences and paragraphs in present and past time.
    • Objective 3.02: Dramatize songs, short plays and skits, or poetry on familiar topics.
    • Objective 3.04: Recombine known language to produce personalized statements.