Welcome to an excellent Spanish program at North!

¡Bienvenidos a un excelente programa de español en el Norte!


(How the brain learns)


List of Courses | Syllabi I Resources | Contacting the Instructor | Assignments | Study Guides |Alumni


SPAN&121(Spanish I) - Spring 2016

Intensive (5 weeks) (Apr.4- May 9)

CLASSROOM: IB 3325 (10-11:50 Mo-Fri)

INSTRUCTOR: Cristina C. Zahajko
IB 2309A

1:00-1:50pm M &Th > April 4 - May 9

1:00-2:20pm Tu &We > April 4 - May 9

10:00-10:50am > May10 - June 14

(preferably by appt.)

Telephone: (206) 934-4539
Fax: (206) 934- 3784

E - mail: cristina.zahajko@seattlecolleges.edu

Web page: http://facweb.northseattle.edu/czahajko
* for homework - go to Ass121SpringInt.HTM



VISTAS - Introducción a la lengua española...4th Ed., Blanco / Donley > ISBN 978-1-60576-888-5


TUTORING CENTER - language learning assistance:

Page One Writing and Language Center

Find it under tutoring:



COURSE DESCRIPTION: (This is an intensive course and it runs for five weeks for two hours a day)

SPAN&121 (Spanish I) is the first segment of a structured introduction to the language and to the cultural aspects of regions and countries where Spanish is spoken. There is no prerequisite for this course, but students are expected to understand the basic grammatical structures, such as the function of nouns, adjectives, verbs, adverbs, pronouns, etc. in English and/or in their native language.

Tthe learning process involves, at all times, the four elements of language acquisition and use, i.e., reading, writing, listening and speaking.

Students begin with basic survival language, such as name, address, numbers, etc. and are encouraged to use it even before understanding the grammatical formations. The structures are learned alongside and eventually they explain some of the spoken language already in use.

To facilitate the learning process and to address the different methods of memorization, we use in class and have available in our resource center (Page One Writing and Language Center ) a series of audio and video programs and other electronic tutorial. We also have a free-of-charge personal tutoring,



A) Based on General Education (North Seattle Community College)(January 2005)

A Definition of General Education

... the mission of North Seattle Community College , the college community affirms the place of general education in all programs. 

General education provides the non-specialized portion of students' education, emphasizing attitudes necessary to function as a citizen and life-long learner, skills required for college level inquiry and competence, and knowledge that demonstrates awareness of the complex world in which we live.


To help students achieve the outcomes of general education, certain attitudes should pervade the entire culture of NSCC and encourage faculty, staff and students to:

•  Recognize the value of intellectual inquiry, personal responsibility, and ethical behavior.

•  Discover the interdisciplinary nature of knowledge.

•  Demonstrate a willingness to learn from many cultures, persons, methods, and viewpoints.

•  Find joy in the process of self-discovery, in expressing oneself creatively, and in life­long learning.


General education will provide introduction and practice in the ability to think critically, to use quantitative reasoning, to write, to demonstrate information literacy, to use computer skills, to work in groups, and to deal with diversity. 

This course will satisfy the following General Education outcomes:

Outcome 1. Think critically in reading and writing .

Outcome 3. Discover, develop, and communicate one's own creative and critical ideas in writing and respond in effective writing to the spoken, written, and visual ideas of others.

Outcome 6. Work and communicate effectively in groups.

Outcome 7. Deal constructively with information, ideas, and emotions associated with such issues of diversity and conflict as culture, ethnicity, race, gender, religion, age, sexual orientation, and abilities.

Outcome 13. Understand the elements of a global society.

B) Specifically: By the end of this course, students should be able to:

* read with a fairly good pronunciation

* understand basic instructions and communicate in the present tense with good use of descriptions (students will prepare a photo album with descriptions and locations of relatives and friends and they will also write a ready- to-send postcard )

* conjugate verbs in the present, present progressive and immediate future tenses with a variety of subjects and endings

* recognize the main similarities and differences between their own culture and the Hispanic world

* have a personalized mini-portfolio entitled "Mi vida en español" which will adapt the textbook-learned structures into their own experiences.


COURSE OUTLINE:COURSE OUTLINE: Grammatical structures, vocabulary, idioms, etc., and written assignments, will be taken from the textbook- Chapters 1-6

OTE: Textbook exercises will be reviewed in class and then will be turned in ( neatly organized and with corrections clearly shown) on the days of the corresponding exams. Other individualized homework , "Mi vida en español", will be picked up, corrected and graded by the instructor as stated on the web page.  The completion of all assigned homework is mandatory in order to receive a grade for this course. 

The homework assigned from the textbook has abreviated answers given online. This form will not be accepted as completed homework. The purpose of writing these exercises is to have a foundation for the individualized, "Mi vida en español", " creative thinking" projects that will be picked up on the due dates. Students need to work through each exercise by writing and understanding complete sentences in order to read and translate them in class.


Regular attendance, punctuality and participation. Because this is an intensive course, students are expected to spend at least two hours a day on homework in addition to the work done in class.

(Suggested Organization)

#1. A notebook with 5 divisions is ideal for this course:


A.  Classroom notes  
B.     1.  List of homework assignments  
    2.  Homework with page and exercise numbers  
 C. Verbs  
    1.  Regular  
    2.  Irregular
    3.  With Prepositions
D.  Vocabulary  
    1.  Nouns  
      a.  Masculine
      b.  Feminine  
    2.  Adjectives  
  E.   Idiomatic Formations  

#2.  Sitting arrangement. Please rotate around the classroom every

class day, so that throughout the quarter, you may be able to work with every single student. Since we have different backgrounds and levels of Spanish knowledge in class, this interaction will be of benefit to all students.


The proficiency in conversation, structure, vocabulary, reading and overall communication will be measured by:

* class participation and reading
* preparation of questions for classroom dialogues
* commentaries and discussion of video series and films viewed in class
* interviews and discussions with guest speakers
* Interviews with classmates (intended to create a relaxed classroom atmosphere)


The final grade will be based on the number of points earned during the quarter. The maximum of 320 will be tallied as follows:

Exams: 2 (50 min) of 100 points each (dates given below) . 100 points

QUIZ GRADE ):     There will be 2 quizzes. These could be sets of questions for guest speakers or other assignments. Each one will be worth 10 points and will be labeled "QUIZ" on the web assignment page.   (THIS IS A VERY IMPORTANT GRADE ­THE SPECIFIC ASSIGNMENT WILL BE PICKED UP ONLY ON THE DAY THAT IS DUE) 20 points

CLASS PARTICIPATION:  Each student will receive up to 100 points for his/her participation in class. The instructor's criteria will be based on discussion of written and oral assignments, pronunciation, reading techniques, work on the board, preparation of questions for classroom dialogues, class attendance and the laboratory exercises.

Great emphasis will be given to attendance for the full class period each day,  participation in class, homework turned in or reviewed in class on the day that it is due, reading skills, structure comprehension , discussion of “Destinos” video , class group activities, overall oral proficiency, etc. 100 points


VERY IMPORTANT: Class attendance is mandatory and the key element in grading class participation. If the student foresees more than three hours of absenteeism during the quarter, s/he must discuss the circumstances with the instructor.

***VERY IMPORTANT NOTE: This course is not designed for students who have a reasonable knowledge of the language and want to take a couple of exams. If this is your situation, please ask about our Challenge exams.


Other Credits:
*a) Perfect attendance ( 9:00-10:50 am) 10 points

*b) Extra credit from the selection following:

To a maximum of            10 points

* 5 min. skit (turn in a written draft to be corrected before oral presentation)

*Class presentation and drill of a grammatical point.
* Presentation of "how to use or operate" something (full explanation given in Spanish)
* Written presentation of vocabulary and its application -from sources outside of the textbook - i.e. magazines, films, radio, TV, Internet, etc.
* Peer-tutoring helping a classmate at least 5 different times for one hour each time. Tutor gets credit. (Form must be obtained)

*Conversation Hour - Students will receive 3 points for meeting 5 times for 1 hour each time. Schedule will be listed on assignments page (need to turn in the attendance form (signed-by-the- facilitator)]

* Etc. (please submit your suggestions)

* Service Learning. Students may get 5 points for working as volunteers in a Spanish-speaking helping capacity. Students must work at least 5 hours. They must present a) documentation signed by the supervisor of the program b) a brief report 10 sentences in Spanish about the project.

*Mini-porfolio "Mi vida en español" Making Learning Visible (Best work will be exhibited at the symposium in June) . Organizing all "para entregar" homework after rewriting all corrections, illustrating and turning it in. (Students must make all of the corrections in order to get the full points) 3 points

* Borderline students (with excellent class participation ) may be granted up to: 3 bonus points (usually on exam #1)


EXAMS (50 min each) HOL (Non-instr days)
# 1 -Wed , April 20 None :( this segm.
#2 Mon May 9  


The Seattle Community Colleges use a numerical grading system. Numerical grades may be considered equivalent to letter grades as follow:

A   94-100  3.9-4.0  301-320  
A-   90-93  3.5-3.8 288-300   Excellent
B+  87-89  3.2-3.4 278-287  
B   84-86 2.9-3.1 267-277   High
B- 80-83  2.5-2.8 256-266  
C+ 77-79 2.2-2.4 246-255  
C 74-76 1.9-2.1  237-245   Average
C- 70-73  1.5-1.8   224-236  
D+   67-69   1.2-1.4  214-223 
D  64-66  1.0-1.1 205-213   Minimum
F  -63 0.0 

212>below  Unsatisfactory


Accommodations for students with disabilities.

In our commitment to student learning we want to support all students. If you have a disability that will affect your performance in this class please let me know . Students with disabilities are encouraged to use Disability Services for support in implementing reasonable accommodations for their disabilities. You may make an appointment with Disability Services by calling (206) 934 3697 or stopping by the DS office on the 2 nd floor of the Campus Center.


Seattle College District has a zero-tolerance policy on sexual harassment, discrimination, sexual violence, rape, bullying, or hazing. Please see District Policy and Procedure 419 for our process on investigating and responding to reports of sexual harassment and sexual discrimination. If you have experienced sexual harassment or discrimination, sexual violence, or bullying, or are aware of an incident involving these violations, report it immediately to NSC’s Title IX Coordinator (Marty Logan at  206-934-7792, marty.logan@seattlecolleges.edu) or to the District Compliance Officer (Jennie Chen at 206-934-3873, jennie.chen@seattlecolleges.edu ).  All Seattle Colleges faculty are required by the District to report incidents of sexual misconduct to the Title IX Coordinator.