Easy to use pre- and post- exams Spanish lessons

By Britta

Have a sneak peek at our next issue of the Spanish magazines.

Have a sneak peek at our next issue of the Spanish magazines.

The end of school year might be in sight but for most there are still exams to come.

To help you deliver engaging Spanish lesson during these busy pre- and post-exams periods, we have prepared many interesting articles and interviews. They are bound to inspire you to use our magazines in the classroom! Below I listed some of the highlights from each of our Spanish foreign language magazines.

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Spanish Tongue Twister

By Britta

Picture 3Tongue-twisters are great fun.

Although difficult to articulate properly, tongue-twisters are a useful tool for the Spanish classroom too. The main thing is to keep it light.

In that spirit, Chantal and Maje have created a tongue-twister video. Why not get your students to speak after Chantal?

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Perks of the job

By Britta

Screen Shot 2014-02-12 at 17.47.14Mary Glasgow Magazines sell magazines and books in more than 34 countries and we could not do so without the help of our agents in those countries.

It is not often that we have face-to-face contact with the agents. But sometimes one of us is lucky enough to travel abroad to meet with them. And sometimes those who have remained at home in the office get a taste of what the visit to that country was like in the form of a gift.

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Mediterranean Diet, broken New Year’s resolution buster?

By Britta

Download the article below the cut

Download the article below the cut

Did you know that eating healthy to lose weight tops the 10 New Year’s resolutions and, alas, the 10 most commonly broken resolutions too?

Now that February has arrived,  statistically speaking, there is a big chance that many of you – yes, just like me – have given up on their diets and I bet it’s not much different with your students.

We all know that changing your eating habits is really what’s required. And if it’s not just weight loss you are after but a diet that benefits your health in general then the Mediterranean Diet is worth looking into.

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Current news for Spanish learners with podcasts … and it’s free

By Britta

Screen Shot 2014-01-29 at 09.55.11Do you like your students to be up-to-date with what’s going on in Spanish-speaking countries? Are you looking for graded articles that mirror what’s in the News? Are you looking for such a resource, hoping that it is free?

You are at the right place. At es.maryglasgowplus.com  we publish a topical news story at three proficiency levels together with a read-along podcast of the articles each week.

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Need help convincing children to take GCSE Spanish?

By Britta

Download the article after the cut

Download the article after the cut

As everyone who is involved in language education knows, there are many good reasons why learning a foreign language is important and beneficial to students’ careers, brainpower and social understanding. But again as we all know learning a foreign language takes time and dedication and it can be hard to convince pupils that persevering with it will benefit them in the end – especially when the foreign language has to compete with other subjects over inclusion in students’ GCSE subject lists.

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Year 7 using The Hobbit article to describe people

By Britta

Screen Shot 2014-01-06 at 09.23.21Sue’s Yr 7 have been writing using The Hobbit article and thoroughly enjoying it too! The article is all about physical description, introducing body features and matching adjectives.

There is a reading  text and a gap fill activity where students complete model sentences of how to describe a person. They then answer questions on the reading material before building sentences with their personal information (download the article below the cut).

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9 Spanish proverbs with animals – activity

By Britta

Screen Shot 2014-01-02 at 09.49.21Animals feature in many proverbs, idioms  and phrases. Funnily enough for many of these a cultural equivalent exists in other languages.

I have a long standing fascination with proverbs and their translations into other languages.

Below are nine Spanish proverbs featuring animals and I am pretty sure that you will  know most of them from your own culture.

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Spanish classroom magazines fit for 2014

By Britta


Check out the covers of our January/February Spanish mags!

With Christmas just gone and New Year’s Eve approaching this seems a good time to look ahead. Instead of fearing January’s grey skies and impending winter blues why not take some positive steps and look around you for things that might actually make you look forward to the coming winter months at school. Sounds impossible?
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Spanish Christmas Song Sing-along

by Britta
Picture 4

As your last Spanish lesson of 2013 is fast approaching why not have a merry Christmas sing along in class? Traditional Spanish Christmas carols may be a little too difficult (and also perhaps overused) so we like to present you with Mary Glasgow’s very own ¡Ya llega la Navidad !, a classic in the making you will agree.

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Personal profiles by Spanish Year 7/Level 1 students

by Britta

Picture 4Sue’s Y7 students have created PowerPoint Presentations to introduce themselves to Mary Glasgow.

‘Mary Glasgow’ visited them in the shape and form of our Education Design Manager Nicolle Thomas who is currently planning the look and feel and visual user-friendliness of our magazines for the new series 2014/2015.

Nicolle is already working on many new layouts and to road test her ideas with kids and teachers in the classroom she went to see Sue and her students.

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Marché de Noël/Christmas market – lesson-plan

Picture 1There are about 25 notable Christmas markets or Marchés de Noël in France. Among these the traditional Christmas market in Strasbourg is the oldest and one of the largest. It dates back to the 16th century and spreads from the place de la Cathédrale throughout the city.

In our French beginners’ magazine Allons-y !, we have an article about the Christmas market in Strasbourg. It provides a glimpse into the magical world of its market stalls and local produce. It also gives information about the history of the town itself.

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Year 7 looking for conjugations of “Vivir” in the article ¡Vivimos aquí!

by Britta

photo 3Sue’s Y7 students are doing detective work: They are looking for conjugations of “Vivir” in the article ¡Vivimos aquí!

I always thought this is a great starter to learning verbs: familarizing oneself with the way its conjugations look through discovering them in an authentic text.

Additionally, knowing the various ways a verb can look is a great tool for accessing written texts. It’s a fantastic reading tool. See how many conjugations your students can find in our article!

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Hunger Games: Catching Fire – Level 2/Yr9 lesson

By Sue

Sue used our magazine article Una Chica en llamas with her Year 9 students to teach daily routine via The Hunger Games. This is her account:

photo 3So, this week I was using the Hunger Games article in Ahora to look at reflexive verbs and daily routine.

I followed the recommended lesson plan from the magazine, and the starter went down a bomb!

From there, I introduced the idea of the diary/blog. They worked cooperatively in groups translating the first part of the text to give them confidence for working with the diary on the following page.  There was lots of Pose, Pause, Pounce, and Bounce to constantly consolidate the language they were using and to reaffirm the patterns in reflexive verbs in their minds.

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What Spanish students say about classroom magazines

By Britta
Main pic 10.47.14

As part of our case study with Ormiston Horizon Academy we sent out a student survey (download under the cut). We asked the kids 24 questions about themselves and their Spanish learning:  15% said that Spanish was their favourite subject,  26% said Spanish was their least favourite subject, 66% enjoy learning Spanish and 38% say Spanish lessons are more fun than other lessons

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German Advent lesson plan

To start our new page of German MFL teaching posts, Britta has written about the beginning of the Christmas season.

By Britta

And you thought Halloween was scary... - Chantal

And you thought Halloween was scary… – Chantal

Not long now until the pre-Christmas season in the German-speaking countries starts. In fact, in Salzburg, Advent is starting today with the opening of the Christmas markets.

You will know all about the Christmas idyll, I am sure – hand-crafted Christmas decorations, gingerbread, Stollen and others foods typically eaten at this time of the year… However, there is a more scary side to Christmas and this is centred on the Nikolaus tradition in the German-speaking countries.

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5 listening activities that don’t require worksheets

by Britta

audioclass_blogYou may have downloaded our piñata video and watched it with your students. You probably then also downloaded the transcript and did a very simple listening activity in that you asked your students to watch the video and follow the transcript, i.e. to link the sound of the words with their written form.

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Latin teen celebrities – Yr7/Level 1 lesson plan

by Britta, with a video from Sue

Latino teen celebrities

Download the full article after the cut

What have Adam Irigoyen, Jake T, Austin, Jasmine Villegas and Victoria Justice in common? Answer: They are all young famous Hollywood celebrities and they all have Latin American roots. From Cuba over to Argentina and from Mexico to Puerto Rico, they all bring some Hispanic culture to Tinsel Town, and they all feature in Mary Glasgow’s ¿Qué Tal? magazine too.

Sue’s Year 7s have been working with the article ¡Uau! ¿Son Latinos?. As groups, they had to work out the meaning of the different paragraphs – as you can see and hear in the video.

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French, English, German – call for blogging MFL teachers!


We are thrilled to announce that we will soon be adding pages for French, English and German to our blog, and we would love you to join in and use these pages to post your own teaching ideas. Whether you have testimonies, activities, lesson plans, pictures of classroom displays, student work or performances from your classroom to share with the world, we would love to hear from you. This is your invitation to become one of our guest bloggers!

  • Are you a French, English or German teacher with a MFL classroom story to tell?
  • Do you use Mary Glasgow resources?
  • Have your students ever produced work that made you exceptionally proud?
  • Have you created a lesson plan or activities that worked really well and that you have re-used many times?
  • Have you developed a project that your students shared with their school or another community?

If the answer to any of these questions is yes and you would like to share your story, your and your students’ work or simply your views on MFL teaching, then please get in touch. Just contact us with your thoughts, pictures or material using our contact us page or email us.

We are very much looking forward to hearing from you! Please get involved in what we hope will become a fantastic online resource and community for MFL teachers.

9 jokes for Spanish learners

By Britta

The second issue of the Mary Glasgow magazines is out!

The second issue of the Mary Glasgow magazines is out!

Reír es sano – laughing is healthy – is what they say in Spain. To help you restore your energy levels for the count-down to Christmas, we have compiled a list of 9 Spanish jokes – with a linguistic twist.  Do you know what it is?

1. ¿Qué le dice el 1 al 10?
Para ser como yo, tienes que ser sincero.

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