3 Strengths - Mis Clases Locas

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Teaching with Novels

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Meet Sra. Wienhold

3 Strengths

Check it out! Come see me in person at the IWLA Conference on Saturday, October 11 in Des Moines, Iowa at 9:20a.m. in the Cedar Rapids Room for a presentation about baile viernes & música miércoles titled Música en la Clase. I would love to see you there!


Three Strengths I have as an Educator

1. I Love Performing

I love being in front of a crowd and performing. I grew up being on stage, and if you asked me what I wanted to be as a child the answer was always "an actress." I would rather get up and give an impromptu speech or presentation in front of a class than write an essay any day. I think of teaching as putting on six show five days a week. Every class has paid for a great show, so you need to deliver with the same amount of enthusiasm, whether it is the 7:30am Monday show the week after Homecoming, or the 2pm Friday afternoon before the big game. I have little shame or fear and will make an idiot out of myself to get a point across, or get the students' attention. This is why I felt like the book Teach Like a Pirate was speaking right at me, and making it ok to be the ridiculous teacher. 

I am asked quite often: "How do you implement baile viernes in class?" "How do you get students to buy in to dancing in class?" The answer is you have to sell it. Whether you are a good dancer, or have have zero rhythm, if you are up in front performing with all you have, the kids will join in. If you introduce it as an option and you sit in the back and watch, it will fizzle and kids will feel self conscious to join. Fake it 'til you make it, and try to give your best performance each and everyday. 

2. I am Organized

For the most part in my teaching life, I consider myself an organized teacher. I really tried hard my first year to set up systems and processes to keep everything organized. I have a magazine holder labeled with each day to put materials in advance for each day by class. My goal is always to leave school in Friday with the whole next week planned, and everything ready to go for that week. (Of course this is the week I failed at this since I was swamped with Homecoming details after school Friday and finished up plans Sunday night, whoops!) I LOVE binders and have a binder for pretty much everything. As you can see in my desk drawer I have labeled binder clip with each class, To Grade, To Enter in Grade book, etc. These work great for me, but now with almost everything online with 1to1 computer and Google classroom, I need to keep up my organization digitally as well. 

When you teach all levels Spanish I-IV you have to be organized. In my morning I teach two sections each of  Spanish II and Spanish I as well as Spanish IV with no breaks. Granted I am better at working on the fly with a little experience under my belt, it gives me anxiety to not be ready, and the delivery and students suffer when everything if not all ready to go. 

3. I Love Spanish

I do not think I could do what I do without loving the content that I am teaching. When I got my graduate degree, others mentioned that I could become a professor in Leisure, Youth & Human Services. While I enjoy that field, the same passion is not there for me as I have for Spanish. I love seeing students learn another language and thrown out of their comfort zone into a whole new world. 

What do you see as your strengths?


  1. Replies
    1. Gracias! I realized later I failed at the prompt, considering I was supposed to write about 5, not just 3 strengths!


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