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 A diorama style museum exhibit created by a tsudent for class.

Language Department Chair and Spanish Instructor Gina Egan looks at how French II and Spanish II classes have been busy in the Makerspace this quarter. Both classes worked to create dioramas that accompanied written and oral work. 

Noticing that morale seemed low through January last year, and keeping in mind mental health and wellness, Language Instructors Dr. LeBel and Ms. Egan brainstormed about new ways to cover the topic “Las fiestas,” or “Parties and Events.” It was during this conversation that the project on festivals of the Spanish-speaking world was born. Students discussed the importance of museums, as well as the ethics of collecting cultural artifacts, particularly considering that many artifacts throughout history have been taken without permission and displayed without proper context. Students then composed a mission statement about museums and developed their own exhibits, conducting research on the history and context of each object to be included. Finally, students visited each other’s exhibits and completed written reflections on the experience.


Students kneeling in a library looking at diorama style museum exhibits.

Students visiting their classmate's exhibits and preparing reflections on the experience.


A makerspace room with many students working on various machines and crafts.

Many students using the MakerSpace in the weeks before break to work on class projects including for language classes, Signature, and personal projects!

French Instructor Eloise Bererd was looking for a new way to cover a particularly tricky grammar topic—the passé composé vs. the imparfait. “I noticed last year that it didn’t seem to be sticking, and I wanted a fun way for students to interact with the topic that would get them to use the grammar in context.” 

Keeping in mind the theme “the home and household chores,” students created miniatures of their ideal homes and put them in neighborhoods. From there students had to write diary entries about what was happening in their home and try to solve a murder mystery that occurred in their tiny town. “I hope to revisit these houses in units through the rest of the year, and see if we can continue to include the new vocabulary and themes in our stories.”

A dollhouse style project made by a student showing the interior of a house made of cardboard.


A dollhouse style project made by a student showing the interior of a house made of cardboard.


Students report they liked the creative aspect of the projects, having a break from the usual classroom to go somewhere different, and using their hands to create something physical. 

“My favorite part of the house project was creating the house,” said Sophia H. ’27. “I really enjoy building things and doing hands-on work, and every time I made a piece of furniture I asked myself ‘what is this called in French?’ which definitely improved my vocab. I also liked having the creative freedom of making whatever house I wanted in whatever color.” 

“I think creating the house was a good way to put an image to the words we are learning,” adds Abigail P. ’26. “Having characters was a fun way to review many things we learned last year in French I, like adjectives and possessive pronouns.”

This piece was written by Language Department Chair and Spanish Instructor Gina Egan.



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