Vamos a Buscar

Una búsqueda de tesoro 

Marcia Davis, Spanish Teacher, Yorktown Middle School

Our annual field trip to La Plaza Tapatía is one of my favorites. John Vincent, a fellow Spanish teacher colleague in my district, shared this brilliant idea with me several years ago. This past May, my 8th grade Spanish 1 students and I embarked on this fun-filled event.

La Plaza Tapatía is a Mexican grocery store located on the west side of Columbus that carries a wide assortment of groceries, including a butcher shop and bakery. Normally, I give my students a list of items they need to find in the store within thirty minutes. This year, I ditched the paper and decided to use the Goose Chase app for my students to capture images and video as they found items in the store.

With Goose Chase, I created several missions with instructions about what to look for and specific tasks to complete within a specified time limit, such as searching for produce, dairy, candy, meat, beverages, and grocery items. Students worked in teams of three or four, which I assigned several days prior to the field trip. Additionally, prior to the field trip, I spent a class period introducing the technology and how to use it to record their findings so they could practice using the app. 

The missions I created had differing point values, based on the depth of knowledge for the task. For example, I asked my students to find Jarritos, a popular soda, and Mexican Coca-Cola, and take a photo to upload to Goose Chase. I also gave my students several signs to use, similar to those used with a Breakout activity, to hold in their photo to show, “Lo encontramos!” On their scavenger hunt in the butcher shop, they had to identify an item they thought tasted good or bad and take a photo of the item with the appropriate sign, “rico,” or “asco.” A more complex task required students to initiate a conversation with a bakery employee, in Spanish, about the different types of pan dulce. To demonstrate evidence of a competency statement within the interpersonal communication standard (“Negotiate meaning using requests, clarifications and conversation strategies”), students recorded a video of their conversation and uploaded it to Goose Chase. Once the students identified a concha, they took a photo with the sign that said, “Es una concha.”

After the scavenger hunt, my students had an opportunity to purchase items from the grocery store. Besides the popular Takis, my students were intrigued by the pan dulce and purchased several different kinds to sample. From the grocery store, we headed to El Vaquero, a Mexican restaurant, to have lunch. Again, prior to the trip, we reviewed menu items and discussed the importance of being prepared to leave an adequate tip for our server.

This trip is one of my favorites, and although we went at the end of the school year, I especially love to go during the Christmas season, because La Plaza Tapatía has a beautiful display dedicated to Nuestra Señora de Guadalupe, whom we learn about in December, and an abundance of spectacular piñatas. This is a great opportunity to get out and experience the beautiful language and cultures we learn about in our classroom.