St. Valentine’s in the Classroom

When I walked into my Advanced Spanish classroom yesterday, I saw the words “Happy St. Valentine’s Day, Brianna!” written on the board. The message was written in Spanish and Brianna* later told me that her boyfriend, who doesn’t speak a word of Spanish, had found out how to write the Spanish version of the greeting so that the Spanish -only environment I strive to create in my classroom would not be disrupted. That was very thoughtful and respectful, so I really appreciated it.

Still, it felt kind of strange to have that message there when it was directed at just one student and everybody else was left out. I wasn’t going to erase the message because that would be mean, so I just wrote “AND EVERYBODY ELSE” under it in huge letters (in Spanish, of course.) It made the students so happy to be included in the greeting that I felt really good about my decision.

* Obviously, the name has been changed.

4 thoughts on “St. Valentine’s in the Classroom”

  1. y tod(a/o)s l(a/o)s otr(a/o)s? No really, how do you write/say it? I’m still trying to figure out how to read aloud stuff in gender inclusive French such as is found at the Collectif Emma Goldman…

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    1. In Spanish and French, even if you have a group of 1,000 women and just one man, they are all referred to in the masculine. One prof tried to use a more inclusive model but she immediately had an uprising of angry Spanish-speakers who were unhappy she messed with their native language. ๐Ÿ™‚

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