Teaching El Internado Episode 1

We just finished watching episode 1 of El Internado in Spanish 3.  Here is the lesson plan/step by step process that I did: (my classes are 80 minutes, every other day)

  1.  Introduce core vocabulary for Episode 1.  CLICK HERE for the structures.  I used two story scripts to help reinforce the structures. STORY SCRIPT 1  |  STORY SCRIPT 2  I used TPR, PQA, circling, gestures, actors, etc. to teach the words.  This lasted for about 2 weeks (or until the structures were acquired).
  2. I then started to introduce the characters.  First I showed the Internado Trailer as an introduction to the show.  I then used this presentation to talk about who is who.  This lasted about one class period.
  3. After about 2 weeks, we were ready to start watching the first episode.  I showed the first graphic novel and we read it together.  I then showed the first 15 minutes of the episode.  During the episode I paused it  many times and clarified meaning and checked for comprehension.  The graphic novels really help! We then read and completed this reading from Mike Peto as much as we could.
  4. The next class, we read the second graphic novel and watched the next 15-20 minutes of the episode (right after Hector delivers his first lesson to his class).   We then continued the reading.  We played a game of Kahoot and a game of Plickers.
  5. The next class, I started by showing these two photos.

    I gave them 2 minutes to write as much as they could about each scene.  They shared their quick writings and we talked about the photos.  We then read the third graphic novel, watched that part, and read the fourth graphic novel.  We also continued completing the reading.

  6. After about 3 weeks, we finished the first episode.     I gave them this comic strip and asked them to write quotations and captions in Spanish.
  7. We then played Quien lo dijo and they wrote the answer on a little white board.

Going slow is extremely important with El Internado.  While watching the episode, I paused it frequently to talk about what is going on.  Watching 15 minutes of the episode turned in to almost 45 minutes total class time.  A few things that are essential for comprehension: the graphic novels, the reading, and pausing and discussing.

After we finish episode 2 in January, I will post what I did.



  1. I am so grateful for your generosity! I Will follow your plan. I am algo using Many of your ideas that i did find on your blog. Greetings from Chandler, Az!

  2. This is really helpful. We just finished episode 1, as well, and students felt like it went too slow. They enjoyed it, but thought it took forever. Thank you for affirming I was going slow enough, but reminding me to vary my activities to keep their interest!

    • Wow! I just found your site and these plans and resources are incredible!! I was thinking about using this with my 3rd year spanish classes.
      a question about purchasing the DVD set, did you have any problems with the DVDs not working properly? Do they need a certain DVD player that is set to play foreign media?


      • I have had no problems with Spanish DVDs. They play just fine in my computer. You only need to download the VLC Media Player (it’s free) and use it to play the DVD. Otherwise, your computer will want to change regions. I’m glad that you found the resources ! Let me know how it goes.

  3. Thank you so much!!! I can’t wait until your next post! I will be following. Thank you for doing all the heavy lifting and sharing so many ideas

  4. Thank you for sharing all the work! Do you watch the Internado once a week? When do you do the extra activities? I have 50 min period and I am watching El Internado on Fridays but I feel I should do the extra activities on Monday but I have other activities too. Any advice?

    • We watch it every Friday. In level 4, we do the activities after the episode. In level 3 (when we first start watching it) we do some activities while watching (like the reading guides). Since the episodes are over an hour long, most of the extra activities are done the next class.

  5. What kind of information do you include about each of the characters in their introduction? Information specific to episode 1? I don’t want to give anything away! Thank you for all of these awesome resources!

  6. First of all your blog has been a huge help and resource on my journey to becoming a CI teacher. When teaching episode 1 in Spanish 3, is this all your teaching during the whole three weeks? I have 50 minute periods. If this is not all you teach during the 3 weeks, then can you tell me what a typical day/week looks like in your classroom.

    • Yes, when I do episode 1 in Spanish, that is all we are doing for the 3 weeks. It is all Internado focused. But it is not just watching it. We read the graphic novels, reading guides, play Kahoot, Quizizz, Quizlet, do other games, and talk about it. We have 80 min block periods so sometimes I might throw in some FVR or do a song, but primarily it is all Internado.

  7. Hi! Quick question about El Internado. My Spanish III’s are not so strong. And I am teaching a Spanish II Honors class. I am incorporating El Internado and I purchased Mike Peto’s Episodio 1 student guide sheets to fill out after watching and talking about it. I am feeling like my kids are not understanding about 1/4 or even more of the words used on the sheet. Do I just keep going? Did your kids struggle? I retyped and made the first one more comprehensible, but I don’t know if I want to do that for every one… Aaah. Sorry. Thanks for any help. And I am going slow. Really SLOW. Only half way thru first episodio after a few weeks. We are doing other things on other days, so it is not all we are working on… Thanks!

    • Sounds like you are doing everything right. For my kids, Internado may not be 100% comprehensible (I and they are okay with that) so my goal is to make it at least 90-95% comprehensible. They can definitely tell what is happening and they know the important vocab structures. Do your kids like it? What do you do before watching it? Do you MovieTalk some of the key scenes? When we first do Internado in Spanish 3 with the first few episode, that is all we are doing every class.

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