Teaching heritage Spanish class doesn’t have to be stressful.
Taking over a brand-new heritage Spanish program doesn’t have to be overwhelming.
HEY THERE, I’M COURTNEY!
A Spanish teacher who creates resources that engage & empower heritage Spanish-speaking students, saving you time and energy!
HOW IT ALL BEGAN
In 2017, I inherited the heritage Speaker course at our school, but there wasn’t a set curriculum… just some novels and a class set of textbooks.
ENTER FREAK OUT MOMENT.
As a non-native speaker, I felt out of place and overwhelmed with where to start. I began with some articles from the textbook and a grammar packet, but it was NOT working.
We were all BORED OUT OF OUR MINDS.
So, I decided to ditch the textbook and flip the script. I thought to myself…my students come to my class with so much language already, why don’t we just talk, read, and write about topics that are actually happening in today’s world, relevant topics that hold their interest?
So, that is what we did! And the rest is history.
For six years now I have been building out a curriculum rotation because I have the same group of students for 3-4 years in a row.
Founder of the Ascendencia Curriculum
What started as a personal passion project has now evolved into a full-fledged curriculum and a team of editors, illustrators and curriculum writers that have come together to make it happen.
The curriculum has four main components: reading, writing, culture, and community.
The best learning takes place when students are hooked on a topic that directly relates to their life experiences.
Students are more engaged when they are actively involved in the learning process.
The focus is on the whole child because our students are humans, first. The Ascendencia curriculum includes identity exploration and popular psych topics like self-love and happiness. In that way, this curriculum strives to improve their Spanish while also equipping them with practical life skills to help them navigate life’s twists and turns.
CORE BELIEFS BEHIND THE CURRICULUM
– Our best learning takes place when we are engaged.
– Engagement takes place when we are active participants in the learning.
– Heritage speakers deserve quality materials that meet their needs.
– Every voice matters- my students’ identities and experiences are valid.
– First and foremost, we are humans – teach the whole child.
– Shared experiences build community.
– The right book at the right level can ignite a love for reading.
– School should be fun, so parties are a must!
– You can learn something from everyone.
GET TO KNOW ME
I am “wife” to Lamar, “mommy” to Oskar & Sofie, and “profe” to my students. Minnesota is home, and when I’m not teaching I enjoy travel, getting lost in a book or a telenovela, and cooking for family and friends.