“Barrio Poems & Prose for Christmas & New Year,” written by Norma Landa Flores, author of “Street Corner Flight,” in “Mirrors & Windows: Connecting with Literature,” EMC/Paradigm Publishing, is a 26 page collection of seven bicultural poems and short stories that communicate crucial multicultural meanings to bicultural children in the barrio and around the world. You can buy it @teacherspayteachers.com ~
“Barrio Poems & Prose for Christmas & New Year,” facilitates oral interaction through oral practice, oral discussion, oral clarification of mispronunciation, and oral communication assessment of bicultural messages, meanings, values and shared world views. All the poems/short stories are illustrated so that students will get clues about the communication situation and enhance their vocabulary repertoire.
The first poem on page 3, Why Santo Clòs Gave Us Pickles, shares the story of 3 families living next to a pickle factory in San Jose, California. And how, instead of Christmas toys, they received jars full of pickles. It made everyone laugh,” Because you see. . .La Risa (Laughter) is free! The poem focuses on the Contrasting Sounds: [ æ ] & [ ʌ ].
The second poem on page 5, Alma’s Christmas Eve Surprise, describes a migrant worker family’s Christmas Eve dreams that were interrupted by field rats looking for warmth beneath the family’s cots. Alma’s papa throws zapatos (shoes) at the rats and saves their Christmas Eve dreams. The poem focuses on Contrasting Sounds: [ i ] & [ ɪ ]
The third poem on page 6, A Gift for the Old Folks Home, describes the residents of an East Los Angeles Retirement and Convalescent Home for Seniors and how some children from a local ballet folklorico (folkloric dance group) entertain the old folks and give them their big regalo (gift) on Christmas Day. The poem focuses on Contrasting Sounds: [ ʌ ] & [ oʊ ]
The fourth short story/poem on page 8, Flowers For Their Home Made Toys, relates the story of two out of work families and how they couldn’t afford to buy toys for their little girls. But the fathers built doll furniture and the mothers made rag dolls for their children to learn that, “ Felìz Navidàd means that, even if we don’t have money for sparing, we’re not too poor for caring! The story focuses on Contrasting Sounds: [ ɛ ] & [ ɑ ]. Page 14 is the Functional Pronunciation Assessment Form with 6 sentences for students to take turns pronouncing and evaluating each other’s pronunciation competency.
The fifth poem on page 15, New Year’s Eve Kisses, Besitos, Describes the feelings of a shy 18 year old boy who meets a plain looking almost 16 year old girl at a New Year’s Eve dance and winds up getting his first besitos (kisses) near East L.A.’s Salazar Park. Page 16 is the Multiple Choice Questions for Discussion page, including student’s values.
The sixth poem on page 17, No More Felìz Año Nuevo! Describes how all the folks in El Paso, Texas had high hopes for their 17 year old neighbor Felìz. He joined the Marines because his English was poor and he was slight of built and couldn’t find work anywhere. Felìz’s life ended, faraway in the fields of Viet Nam. But his birthday is still celebrated . . . with lot’s of love and pride. Page 19 is the Multiple Choice Questions for Discussion page, including student’s values.
The last short story/poem on page 20, Hop! Hop! Happy New Year! Describes how a Barrio family celebrated their New Year’ Eve way back in 1970. The men have copas ( cups) of liquor.The ladies cook and chat. The little boys wrestle. The little girls listen and join in all the conversations. And finally, at 12 midnight, everyone goes outside to do the Bunny Hop and raise a big racket. The neighbors advise them that they should “Be quiet! There’s no need for a riot!” The family explains that it is their way of wishing each other a “Prospero Año Nuevo-Prosperous New Year!” Page 25 is the Multiple Choice Questions for Discussion page, including student’s values.
Each poem and/or short story is followed by a “Multiple Choice Questions” worksheet and a 3 question discussion form that encourages students to work in pairs as they explain why they chose the answers and how they feel about the topic or situation in order to share beliefs, attitudes & values, orally.
Don’t worry if you don’t speak Spanish. Most of the words are explained in the text. Explaining the Spanish words is the bilingual/multicultural part of each lesson. In this 26 page download, “Barrio Poems & Prose for Christmas & New Year,” author Norma Landa Flores uses her Collaborative Classroom Communication and Interview Constructed Response oral communication pedagogy ( i.e, Teaching Oral Communication in Grades K-8 by Ann L. Chaney & Tamara L. Burk, Allyn & Bacon, 1998 ) to offer you and your students, “Un Regalo, A Holiday Gift.” You can purchase this PDF Digital Download by visiting Norma Flores’ Oral Communication Lessons Store @teacherspayteachers.com ~