Basurde Xiao Long

Choose Your Own Adventure – Minicourse.

Choose Your Own Adventure – Minicourse.

12 photos here.


Do you remember those ¨Choose Your Own Adventure¨ books? They were books in which, as you were reading, you could choose options. A brief example, with the Russian invasion of Ukraine:


¨You are the Ukrainian President Zelenski. Russia has invaded your country and there are fierce combats among Russian and Ukrainian troops to control the capital city, Kyiv. The Russian Army is bigger in the number of troops and resources. However, the Ukrainian citizens know well the battlefield and the army and militias are determined to resist the invasion. According to the information from your intel, you are your enemy´s #1 objective, for all you represent. You know that your family is their objective #2.

The US has offered you to be evacuated to their country and you need to make a decision.

-If you decide to stay in Ukraine, putting at risk your life, because you believe that your presence in the country is vital to resist, go to page 2.

-If you decide to get evacuated to the US because you think that you could be more useful abroad, organizing networks of international support, go to page 3.¨


I write these lines on Sunday 27 February 2022, very worried about the situation. The Ukrainian president remains in his country, which I think is a very brave move.

Any of the options chosen in this non-written book would take you to more bifurcations, and depending on your decisions the story could have a better or worse ending.

I hope this real nightmare ends up soon and well.


The reason I chose this controversial topic is that it is current and it can raise interest in an adult reader. In my classes, because of the age of my kids, I wouldn´t use a topic like this, but the example helps me to demonstrate that topics that we find close to us can raise our interest.


At my school, during five Wednesdays during the second semester -Feb. 23, March 16, April 13, May 4&18-, teachers offer what we call minicourses. I am a Spanish teacher, but those days I teach something different. The idea is to offer something that the teacher controls, is passionate about, has value and it´s interesting for students, apart from the subjects that they usually take. Here you can see the list of courses that we are offering in the MS. I think it is a fantastic initiative. But it is very important to choose well what we want to offer to our students.


-I had pretty clear one of the courses, iMovie.

-For the other one I was racking my brain and the idea of students collaboratively writing their own ¨Choose Your Own Adventure¨ book came to my mind.


How explain to 11-14 years old students this project? To start with, read a ¨Choose Your Own Adventure¨ book. But one that they feel close to, so I wrote a mini-story related to school, teachers, courses offered, good and bad decisions. You can read it here in English.


When I explained the activity I shared with my students this roadmap that I used at the time of writing the story. I asked them to take notes of the options that they were choosing, to be able to share the story with their peers just looking at their notes. And now we are creating a new story, putting ideas in common, and dividing the work among the 15 students. I will publish the final result later.




I saw that this could be a fantastic activity also for the Spanish class and for that reason I translated the story into Spanish. You can start reading on page 1 and follow the links. I ask my second and third-year Spanish students to read the story, take notes, and finally share in Spanish with the class the path that they followed, telling the story.


It´s an activity that has worked very well, both in English and in my Spanish class, so I share it here in case any colleague finds it interesting.




In English:

-Interactive book (start on page 1)

-Story in Google Docs (students don´t have access to it)

-Google Doc with links (students don´t have access to it)



En español:

-Libro interactivo (empezar en la página 1).

-Historia en Google Docs (los estudiantes no tienen acceso a ella – no se debe leer de forma secuencial).

-Hoja de ruta.

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