Teaching Bianca Nieves y los 7 Toritos

Here is what I do when I teach the novel Bianca Nieves y los 7 ToritosTeaching Bianca Nieves y los 7 Toritos

My favorite novel that I teach is Bianca Nieves y los 7 Toritos by Carrie Toth.  It is compelling, dramatic, comprehensible, contains great action, interesting characters, and great culture.  I never have had students want to finish a novel more quickly than with this one.  They want to see what happens next and what happens to Salomé.
Introducing the Novel:
Chapter 1:
  • I read chapter 1 to the class.  As I was reading, I checked for comprehension.  I had my classroom Ipad user use my random name selector app.  When I stopped reading, they used the app, told me the name and I asked that student a question (either personalized or comprehension). We then played a Quizizz to review and played Happy Hangman from the teacher’s guide.
Chapter 2:
Picasso of Plates!
Chapter 2: Bianca sees her Dad with Salomé for the first time.







  • I read chapter 2 to the class and we acted out (Reader’sTheatre) part of the chapter.  We played this Quizlet Live with structures from the entire novel.    We also did the Picasso of Plates activity from the teacher’s guide.
  • To review chapter 2 during the next class I did two things: 1) I showed photos from our reader’s theater and asked questions about what happened.  2) We played Plickers

Chapter 3:

  • I read chapter 3 to the class (their preferred way of reading is for me to read to them).  At the end, I gave them events from the chapter and they had to put them in the logical order.

Chapter 4:

  • I read chapter 4.  We acted out the part where Bianca catches Salomé with her Dad’s
    Salomé drops the financial papers!

    financial documents and also with the big news announcement.

  • The next class, using the class photos, they did a partner writing about the main events of the chapter.  Here is a copy.
Chapter 5:
  • I read chapter 5 to the class.  We played a Quizizz to review the first five chapters of the novel.   We also used the slideshow that is in the teacher’s guide to review the main events so far.  We also played Flippity Bingo  and a Kahoot about chapters 1-5.

Chapter 6:

  • This is my favorite chapter to read and to act out!    This chapter is all about
    El Juli in the arena

    Reader’s Theater.    This is a major bullfighting scene.  I had some intense background music playing during the fight and some sad music at the end.  Props, music, emotions, yelling, and dramatic reactions all bring this chapter to life.  Make sure to take lots of photos and videos during the scene.  I put the photos and videos together and make a movie and show it at the beginning of the next class.  Here is an example from a few years ago.

Chapter 7:
  • I read chapter 7 to the class.  Using the true/false quiz in the teacher’s guide, we played the marker partner game (if the statement is true, first person to grab the marker gets a point).  There is also a good scene to act out with the doctor, Bianca, and Salomé.

Chapter 8 and 9:

  • I read the chapters to the class.  After reading chapter 9, we recreate the Jerry Springer Show in class.  There is a script in the teacher’s guide.  This is a lot of fun and a great way to become the characters.  I was Jerry Springer and I used this theme music when the show started and whenever there was a “fight.”

Chapter 10:

  • I read the last chapter to the class.  My students wanted to know if there was a second book!  We played a Kahoot and there is a great review slideshow in the teacher’s guide.


  • I do two things for the summative assessment for this novel:  the listening part of the traditional assessment in the teacher’s guide and the proficiency based assessment in the teacher’s guide.
After the Novel:
  • We watch the film Blancanieves.  There are some great resources for this film HERE.  I sometimes give my classes this venn diagram to complete.
  • We did a Breakout for the novel from Arianne Dowd.  She also has some great MovieTalks and other cultural resources for this novel.  Be sure to check out her post HERE.
  • With the new film Olé, el viaje de Ferdinando coming out, I plan to do more with this film.  For now, there are many things that can be done with the trailer and Arianne has some good stuff HERE

Other resources:

  • Carrie Toth has a blog series on her site with extra activities for her novel. Here is the link
  • Sharon Birch has extra activities on her site.  Find them HERE
  • Cynthia Hitz also has some extra activities on her site.  Find them HERE
  • Allison Wienhold also has some extra activities.  Find them HERE.


  1. This is great! Do you have links for the Quizzz and Kahoot games you mention? Would be great to incorporate them as I am teaching this novel right now 🙂

  2. This is so helpful! How long do you usually spend on this unit? This is my first time teaching a novel and I haven’t figured out timing yet. Thank you!

    • With all of the pre-teaching, Ferdinando stuff, and actually reading the novel, we spend almost 2 months on it. The students absolutely love it and it ends up being one of their favorite novels.

  3. Wow! So helpful. My high school students (level 1) loved the whole thing about bullfighting. I really think that they will enjoy this novel. However, is this novel in present tense only (on one side) and past tense (on the other)? Or is a combination of both? If so, how did that work for you and your level 1 students?

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