“A Mexican-American Indian Girl and the Bracero’s Search for Grace” was written by Norma Landa Flores, M.A. Multicultural Speech Communication
Teacher/Author/Curriculum Developer, for educators, counselors & community leaders to download @teacherspayteachers.com
The Oral Communication lesson was written to remind multicultural communities that many culture’s beliefs, values, attitudes, languages & environmental survival needs should be integrated when planning English Language Learning and Oral/Speech Communication Curriculum.
Basically, A Mexican-American Indian girl and her cousins become secret matchmakers for the Braceros their parents are in charge of. They incur the wrath of local Migrant Working fathers who don’t want their daughters courted by anyone else except their American soldier sons. During an unexpected snowstorm that makes it impossible for the people of Holly to go into town to purchase much needed winter goods, supplies are airdropped for the Braceros by the United States Department of Agriculture, are shared with folks in Holly as the girl’s students find sanctuary,in a secret silo hiding place and grace, with the acceptance of Holly’s residence and Migrant Worker bride’s families.
Pages 2, 3, 4, 5 & 6 tells a story about how Alma, her cousins, the local migrant worker’s kids and the Braceros attend the movie’s to watch cowboy films after church. While the kids are learning lessons about doing good deeds from the Red Ryder and his side-kick, Lil Beaver, teen age girls are holding hands with young Braceros. All of the children become love note couriers to them. A Halloween Barn Dance is held to bring all the families together. But the girl’s father’s play a Halloween trick on the Braceros to show their disapproval of their “inappropriate courting.” To get back in the father’s good graces, the Braceros share their emergency airdropped gifts from the army, with grateful people of Holly. The town decides to treat the Braceros with the same kindness as they received by letting four of their daughters marry and hide their new husbands from the United States Department of Agriculture and the Army sent to find them.
Page 7 is when students have a verbal discussion with each other to respond to 5 open questions and express their opinions about how they feel or what they would do or if they know of a similar situation they can relate to in the past or in the present.
Page 8 is the Functional Pronunciation Assessment & Lesson of the consonant
[ ʃ ] as in shoes [ tʃ ] choose. Specific directions on which sh sounds to push air forward and which ch sounds to touch the teeth ridge then, stretch jaw and push air forward are contrasted, described, practiced and evaluated with dyads taking turns reading and listening to six contrasting sounds sentences.
Page 9 is the Assessment of Communication Competence and English Speaking Skills, ACCESS © N. L. Flores 2005 form listing six observable oral communication behaviors to rate student’s speaking skills & suggest areas of improvement. This form can be used to assess any other speech presentations students participate in and to recommend areas of oral communication improvement needed.
Page 10 is the Contexts & Standards-Based Criteria for Assessing speaker’s Functional Pronunciation with observable, unbiased oral communication behaviors ranging from Excellent, Very Good, Good, Risky, Poor & Dangerous.
All in all, Narrative Poem, Pronunciation Lesson, Cultural Word Code Switching, Questions for open Discussion of Student’s Values and Assessment of Speaker’s Verbal Feedback using Standard American English Appropriate to Poem’s Context for grades 4-12 & Adult, History, Geography, Ethnic, Social Studies, Multicultural and English Language Learners and Sanctuary Students, fulfills the mission of every teacher concerned with teaching multiculturally, realistically and ethically.