In an effort to get students out of the classroom, Casco Antiguo Spanish School has developed a scavenger hunt – what other Spanish School in Panama offers that?! The scavenger hunt is a perfect example of a challenge of Spanish Immersion being met with creative problem solving to produce something great.
The inspiration was the usual, create exciting new teaching methods to meet the dynamic needs of our students, in this case a group of 18 High School students coming from the Cambridge School of Weston in Massachusetts, USA to learn Spanish. With Casco Antiguo as our back yard, getting everyone outside was an obvious choice as we decided what kind of engaging Spanish Immersion activity we could construct for such a large group of students.
The biggest challenge was not just to accommodate the varying levels of Spanish among the group, but to turn that to their advantage and make something even better out of the mixture of skill sets. The group was divided into three, with a range of Spanish skill levels in each group. This ensured that Spanish beginners wouldn’t be overwhelmed on the streets of Casco while giving more advanced students the chance to step up in a leadership role to support the group learning. Then, each individual student was given certain tasks specifically created to best suit their language level and learning needs. The groups set off in different directions and the race began!
Moving from one plaza to another, being met by a teacher from the school at each main point, the students scramble to find the answers to their questions. Fulfilling our mission to make culture a part of language acquisition, the questions are about local history and architecture, as well as traditional and contemporary culture. And because a little competition is never out of place, the team that finishes first with the most correct answers wins a prize! The first scavenger hunt with our pioneering crew was such a success that we have repeated the hunt regularly in our Small Group Intensive courses, now how’s that for Spanish Immersion?!