One of my favorite accounts is National Geographic in Spanish (@Natgeoesp). As expected, the images in this account are gorgeous, and offer stunning scenery and animal shots. The photo below is one of my favorites, and is perfect for my novice-level unit on animals and the food chain! Not only does the picture capture the food chain in motion, but the caption “¡La captura! ¡La caputra en el aire!” gives a jumping-off point for a conversation around the animals, their eating habits, and the food chain in general.
Using the picture, students brainstorm a list of any words that come to mind: colors, animals, verbs. etc. Students pair up and share their words or work in small groups to expand their lists. Groups then report out to the class as the teacher takes down the words. These can be used as personal vocabulary or even as a way to guide the lesson.
Guess the picture
Provide students with descriptions of various pictures. Students can highlight any cognates or words they already know to activate their prior knowledge. Have students match the description to the correct picture.
Question and answer
Begin with simple questions about the photo such as: What does the bear eat? Where does the bear live? Is the bear hungry? After practicing with each of these questions, have students take the lead by asking the same questions about a different animal. With each new animal, introduce more vocabulary based on the goals of the lesson.
Come back to the visual after some time working with the vocabulary. Have students write their own caption to go along with the picture. If you use multiple pictures, have students match the quotes with the correct picture.
There are a wealth of visuals available for all languages. Each day, you will find new and different photos to share with your class. While an image search can provide similar pictures, Instagram provides a more authentic resource as it is coupled with authentic language.
Check back for my next post on some great Intagram accounts to follow!