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La Tomatina: Mini Unit to Start Spanish Class

Are you looking for an engaging topic to start your school year in Spanish class? How about a festival where people literally have a giant food fight with tomatoes? La Tomatina is a yearly event that takes place in Buñol, Spain at 11:00am on the last Wednesday of August. For me, this falls during the first full week of school. I already decided when I planned out my tentative year curriculum that I would start the year with a Tomatina mini unit in Spanish 2. Since then I decided that Spanish 3 will also join the fun and do the unit as well. (I was waiting to see if anyone who took my Culture & Civilization Spanish 1+ would be staying with Spanish 3, since that class already did this unit). As a #deptof1 any time that I can overlap plans for levels and just differentiate, it really helps lighten the planning load. For those of you who have been following my back to school posts and saw my 1st weeks of Spanish 1, here are my 1st weeks plans for Spanish 2 & 3.  

My 1st 2 weeks of Spanish 2 & 3 are as follows:

Tomatina Mini Unit

La Tomatina: Mini Unit to start Spanish class - Mis Clases Locas


I am a firm believer that if you find something that is well done and works for you and your students, do it! This means that a lot of what I do in my classes has been purchased from excellent teacher authors who save me precious time, that I can use to hang out with my two little boys. This means that every single thing that I am using in this mini unit was created by someone else. I am going to stretch this unit to four days, but you could do a one day lesson if that is all the time you have to work with. 

The bulk of what I am using for my unit is from La Tomatina Cultural Unit from Martina Bex. If you only have one day, or want to use it with younger students, I would recommend La Tomatina - Simple Reading from Martina Bex.

Day 1


Day 2

Day 3 - La Tomatina (30 agosto)

  • Since it is the actual day of the event, we will have our own Tomatina, using the Snowball Fight activity from Amy Lenord. Students will be given red paper and will write something about themselves in Spanish. Students will crumple the paper and with the official music playing they will have their own snowball fight for one minute. Once the time is up, students will each pick up a piece of paper, and we will gather in a circle. I will read these out in Spanish, and students will guess who they are describing. When students return to their seats, they will do a quick free write about what they learned about their classmates. 
  • Embedded reading #3 from La Tomatina Cultural Unit 

Day 4


(On Friday Spanish 3 will watch El Internado & Spanish 2 will watch Living on $1 in preparation for their Esperanza unit which will start the following week)

More La Tomatina Resources



Do you have more resources for teaching about La Tomatina, please share! What are your other favorite festivals to teach about?

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