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Guantes de cartόn: an activity for the novel Felipe Alou

While teaching the novel Felipe Alou: Desde los valles a las montañas in Spanish II, I was inspired by this post about making cardboard gloves, like many children do in the Dominican Republic. The Monday after prom is notoriously blah and low energy, so I decided to try and spice it up by making guantes de cartόn (cardboard gloves).

Guante de Cartόn

Before class 

  • Hook - Tell students to bring in something that could be used to make a baseball. 
  • Prep - Collect cardboard boxes from the recycling, as well as get enough scissors for each pair of students. 

Class Plan

  • Discuss in Spanish about pobreza (poverty): would they be happy living in poverty, how would they survive, what would they have to do without, what they need to participate in favorite activities, and what they would do for fun if had very little. 
  • Go through reading in Spanish found in this post about children in the Dominican Rebublic making baseball gloves out of cardboard boxes
  • Give directions to make glove
    • Each pair can only use cardboard & one pair of scissors
    • They should have something they have found to make a ball 
    • They should be speaking Spanish while creating (I should have done a better job making sure they had the vocabulary for staying in the TL while creating - cut, fold, etc). 
  • Students create gloves

This class realized their gloves were not the best for their fingers!
  • Go outside to play catch/game 
    • If it is not nice out and you are brave let students try them out in class, or head to the hallway or gym. 
    • If you would like to try and play an actual game, find a stick or old bat for an authentic feel. The plan is to head outside tomorrow to try everything out. 
trying out their creations with a sock ball
  • Watch Videos & Discuss - Mariano Rivera (from Panama) makes a cardboard glove. Compare the simplicity of his glove to those they tried to make in class. 
  • REFLECT! The key with any new experience is to have students reflect either out loud or in a free write about what they learned, how their perspective has/has not changed, and their empathy level for those in poverty. 
This is something that I will definitely keep in my plans for future years. Students were engaged and energized during a usually dull Monday. Next time I will do it sooner i the novel, maybe after chapter 2 of Felipe Alou.

**Update here is my assessment for Felipe Alou.


  1. Wow. What an awesome, fun, and meaningful activity! I will definitely do this next year when I do our Dominican Rep lesson.

  2. Love! Thanks for the great ideas!


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