This unit is designed for IB Spanish B Standard level year 1 and year 2 and it is aligned to the core topic Identidades although it can also be used in AP Spanish language or other higher level Spanish classes. Students must have completed at least 2 years of Spanish prior to taking the class. The purpose of this unit is to begin the year by demonstrating the relevance and importance of language as part of our identity as human beings. In this unit, we will incorporate history, theory of knowledge, linguistics, and composition in a variety of assessments. The unit is six weeks long and divided into two parts, each three weeks. In the first part of the unit, we will explore how language shapes the way we think and perceive the world. We will transition to the origin of the Spanish language and learn about the evolution of Spanish and the differences between European Spanish and Spanish spoken in Mexico. The performance task expects students to interpret expressions from European Spanish to Mexican Spanish and vice versa, as well as complete a written narrative describing cultural and linguistic differences if they were to visit Spain. The second part of the unit focuses on hispanics in the United States and explores questions such as, What does it mean to belong to two distinct places? and, What part does language play in our identity? Through discussions of and readings on chicanismo, mestizaje, hispanics and latino and Spanglish, students will learn how we as humans are connected, whether racially and/or linguistically related or not. In the performance task, students will analyze the lyrics of “Somos más americanos” and perform a mock Paper 2 reading comprehension exam titled “Estadounidismos: la evolución del español en los Estados Unidos.” In conclusion, this unit focuses on the evolution and transformation of the Spanish language; from European Spanish to the adaptation of Nahuatl terms in Mexico during colonization, to the current Spanglish we hear around us every day.
Hammons, Josie and Ramirez, Claudia Fernanda, "La frontera y la comunicación: How Language Influences Our Identity" (2019). Understanding by Design: Complete Collection. 428.
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