Spanish Level 1- Face-to-Face Activities

👨‍👩‍👧‍👦 Spanish Level 1, Activity 07: El Árbol Genealógico / Family Tree (Face-to-Face)

Photo of multiple pairs of hands on a tree trunk
Photo by Shane Rounce
Description: Students will practice recognizing family member terms (i.e. abuela: grandma), describe family members, and accurately use vocabulary related to families in Spanish. They will acquire information about another individual’s family and will practice describing their own and others’ family members.
Semantic Topics: Family, family tree, famous families, family members, description, familia, árbol genealógico, familias famosas, describir
Grammatical Structures: Descriptive adjectives, possessive adjectives, adjetivos descriptivos, adjetivos posesivos
Products: Family trees
Practices: Multi-generational living
Perspectives: What is the importance of family and taking care of your relatives in Hispanic culture?

NCSSFL-ACTFL World-Readiness Standards:

  • Standard 1.1 – Students engage in conversations, provide and obtain information, express feelings and emotions, and exchange opinions.
  • Standard 1.2 – Students understand and interpret spoken and written Spanish on a variety of topics.
  • Standard 1.3 – Students present information, concepts, and ideas in Spanish to an audience of listeners or readers on a variety of topics.
  • Standard 4.2 – Students demonstrate understanding of the concept of culture through comparisons between Hispanic cultures and their own.

Idaho State Content Standards:

  • COMM 1.1 – Interact and negotiate meaning (spoken, signed, written conversation) to share information, reactions, feelings, and opinions.
  • COMM 1.2 – Explain the relationship between cultural practices/behaviors and the perspectives that represent the target culture’s view of the world.

NCSSFL-ACTFL Can-Do Statements:

  • I can ask and answer questions about the members of my family and ask about someone else’s family
  • I can describe the characteristics of someone
  • In my own and other cultures, I can identify whom people consider to be part of their family

Materials Needed:

Would you like to make changes to the materials? Access the template(s) below:

Warm Up

Materials Needed For Warm Up:

  1. Begin by opening the Google Slideshow and introducing the Can-Do’s.
    Hola, ¿cómo están? Estoy ____. Vamos a empezar el lab de hoy con los can-do statements.
  2. Split your students into groups of 2-3 and give each group a famous family tree.
    Vamos a dividirnos en grupos de 2-3. Cada grupo va a tener un árbol genealógico de una familia famosa.
  3. Have the students in their groups/partners discuss the relationships of the family tree in Spanish. 
    En sus grupos, hablen sobre las relaciones de la familia en su árbol genealógico. Por favor hablen en Español.

Ejemplo: _______ es la madre de ______.

4. Have each small group present the family tree to the entire group. When presenting to the entire group, have students choose three characters and describe them.
Por favor presenten las relaciones familiares de su árbol familiar. ¿Quién es la mamá de quién? ¿Quién es el hijo o hija de quién? También deben escoger tres personas y describirlas. 

Ejemplo: “Marge es la mama de MaggieBart y LisaElla es intelligente.” (La familia Simpson)

Main Activity

Materials Needed For Main Activity: 

  • Whiteboards & Markers
  1. Give each student a whiteboard and a marker.
    (Optional modification: This website has a user-friendly family tree generator that would be a great option for use with laptops and doesn’t limit the space as a whiteboard would.)
  2. Have the students work in partners. Make sure students interview each other and create a family tree for their partner.
    Van a hacer una entrevista sobre sus familias. No van a llenar su propio árbol, sino el de su pareja. Necesitan hacer preguntas como: ¿Tienes un hermano? ¿Cómo se llama?
  3. Take time to model what you want the students to do with a student.
    Por ejemplo, si yo estoy con esta persona (gesture to a student), yo puedo preguntarle “¿Cuántos hermanos o hermanas tienes? “¿Tienes tíos?” Y yo voy a dibujar el árbol de mi pareja. 
  4. Students should be going back and forth asking questions to each other so that they are both drawing each other’s trees at the same time.
    Ustedes deben tomar turnos hablando y haciendo preguntas, para que cada persona esté dibujando el árbol genealógico al mismo tiempo.
  5. After making the family tree of their partner, each person has to tell the group one thing about their partner’s family.
    Tienen que compartir algo de la familia de sus parejas. Por ejemplo, “Mi pareja tiene 10 hermanos y no tiene primos.
  6. Now, the students will turn to their partners again and ask about the characteristics of their family members. For example, students can ask, “What is your mom like?”
    Ahora, tienen que hablar sobre características de tu familia con tu pareja. Por ejemplo, pregunten: ‘¿Cómo es tu madre?’ Y la pareja puede responder: ‘Mi madre es muy alta y morena. También es muy simpática y le encanta correr.’
  7. After taking turns describing different family members, the instructor can go around with each student and have them share one of the family members and their description.
    Ahora voy a preguntarles a cada uno de ustedes sobre uno de sus miembros de familia y deben describirlo. 
  8. If time permits, the instructor can have the students ask them about their family and draw out their family tree as the students ask them questions. The instructor can also have students ask them to describe a family member.
    Ahora ustedes pueden preguntarme sobre mi familia y yo voy a dibujar mi árbol genealógico usando sus preguntas. Después, ustedes pueden hacerme preguntas sobre mi familia y yo voy a describirla. 

Wrap Up

Ask students the following discussion questions to talk about in their groups:
• En tu cultura, ¿a quién consideras parte de tu familia? (In your culture, who is considered as part of your family?)
En otras culturas, ¿a quienes se les considera parte de la familia? (In other cultures, who is considered as part of a family?)


• Read Can-Do statements once more and have students evaluate their confidence.
(Use thumbs up/thumbs down or download our student cards.)
• Encourage students to be honest in their self-evaluation.
• Pay attention, and try to use feedback for future activities!

NCSSFL-ACTFL Can-Do Statements:

  • I can ask and answer questions about the members of my family and ask about someone else’s family
  • I can describe the characteristics of someone
  • In my own and other cultures, I can identify whom people consider as part of their family

Cultural NOtes: 

How to Revise or Remix a Pathways Project Activity

Feeling creative?  The Pathways Project needs your help in revising and remixing activities for the K-16 language classroom.

Try taking an activity to the next level by:

  • Add new content (something you’ve created or another OER source)
  • Contribute additional activity suggestions
  • Integrate authentic materials such as videos, infographics, photos, etc.
  • Suggest how to implement the activity in the classroom
  • Customize the content for a specific audience or group of learners (for example, K-5 learners or to differentiate for student’s needs)



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Let's Chat! Spanish Copyright © 2022 by Amber Hoye; Kelly Arispe; Abby Cain; Alejandra Garcia; Alejandro Montoya; Alexis Araiza; Anna Gamino; Ashley Johnson; Ashley Potzernitz; Ashlyn Nutting; Austin Robishaw; Blake Simony; Brooke Staszkow; Camille Daw; Carla Lara; Cecilia Morales; Chloe Robinson; Claire Werlin; Daniel Felix; Danielle Snyder; Elian Tovar; Emily Hawley; Gabby Bates; German Tovar; Iris Torres; Ismenia Gallegos; Jaelyn Quisel; Jenna Del Toro; Jordyn Preble; Jorge Corea; Julia Dryer; Kailyn Phillips; Kimberly Murphy; Leah Alboucq; Lillian Cobb; Linzy Carpenter; Madalen Bieter Lete; Madi Goertzen; Mariela Montoya; Maya Grubaugh; Mayra Saldivar; Natalie Mendoza; Nicholas Sulier; Ninna Payne; Reynaldo Nunez; Ryan Byrd; Sergio Sarmiento; Sue Juarez; Tea Recanzone; Thaïs Lacar; and Yuliana Cisneros is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 4.0 International License, except where otherwise noted.

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