Practical Proficiency with Huellas

In upper level classes, it is hard to find the right balance between lighthearted, fun, engaging stories and real-world, current, engaging topics. I have, on occasion, found that my juniors and seniors were carrying the heavy load of a curriculum that was too grammar heavy. I have also, on occasion, found that my juniors and seniors missed the point of what we’d been doing in our curriculum because it was too light. It’s a conundrum.

  • We want our language classes to TRULY lead to more proficient speakers.
  • We want our language classes to be inclusive… places where no one walks out thinking they aren’t cut out to learn languages.
  • We want our language classes to be engaging because engaged students acquire more language.
  • AND we want our language classes to lead our students to a level of fluency that allows them to advance their skills even without us walking the path to proficiency with them.

But how do we do it?

With Huellas 1 & Huellas 2

What is Huellas?

How do I IMPLEMENT this curriculum?

We think that there are two ways: Option A, make Huellas your full syllabus. Here are my most recent scope and sequence (the pandemic has really wreaked havoc on a lot of things so we did NOT get through all I anticipated this year… I am hesitant to create them for next year because I JUST DON’T KNOW… Are you feeling this way??? Is next year going to be a regular year???)

Option B- Go a la carte. We know that sometimes you’re just TIED to a district curriculum but we hope that the flexibility of our plans and unit structure will allow you to incorporate the units you love without causing waves with your colleagues!

What if I am new to using readers?

I have a lot to say about the power of readers in the classroom. The more we read, the higher my students score on the AAPPL exam (they take it to qualify for the Global Seal of Biliteracy and IL state Seal of Biliteracy). BUT… If you have never used a reader in class, I don’t recommend you dive in with 4!

Because the curriculum does not fill a full year without the readers, we have begun work on a booster bundle for Huellas 1. The curriculum is under construction but we know that budgets are often due at the end of the year so we are offering the new bundle on Pre-Order at a discounted price! Check out the product description for the anticipated release dates of each piece of the new bundle!

A final note:

We hope that Huellas can engage and inspire your students to use their new language to be conscientious consumers and conscious stewards of their planet!

Find all of our Huellas products on sale this week, April 6 and 7, 2021 for 25% off with code FORYOU21.

Author: senoracmt

I began teaching Spanish in Illinois in 1994. I have taught levels 1-4 in a small rural high school, 8th grade introductory Spanish, Biology 1, and 101 and 102 at the community college level. My Spanish classes are partnered with the community college to offer students 8 semester hours of dual credit on completion of Spanish 4. In 2011 I met Carol Gaab and Kristy Placido and have since co-authored the book "La hija del sastre" with Carol Gaab and authored the novels "La Calaca Alegre", "Bianca Nieves y los 7 toritos." "Vector," "48 horas","Bananas", "Sostenible", and "Papálotl" through Fluency Matters. In 2006 I became National Board certified and I have been serving as a mentor both for candidates seeking certification in world languages other than English and a virtual mentor for candidates in all certificate areas. I completed my Masters degree in Spanish education in 2011 and did my research on the use of Understanding by Design to create meaningful cultural units for the language classroom. I am a frequent presenter on this topic, please consider me if you are interested in a workshop on backward design. In 2013 I was named the ICTFL Foreign Language teacher of the year and in 2014 I was selected as CSCTFL's teacher of the year. In November of 2014 I was lucky enough to be one of the five finalists for the ACTFL National Teacher of the Year in San Antonio, TX. What a "Cinderella" experience! You can reach me via email at senoracmt at

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