Phone: 256-772-2075


Degrees and Certifications:

Joelle Jones

Hola. I graduated from Alma College with a French major and a Spanish minor.  I got my Master's Degree in English Literature from Oakland University.  I have taught every grade from kindergarten through twelfth grade.   I have been teaching elementary Spanish since 2014. I married my husband, Philip Jones, in 1992.  We have four sons.  

  • May Happenings

    Posted by Joelle Jones on 5/26/2023

    Happy Summer!  This time of year is always bittersweet.  Saying goodbye to students and ending the school year is always a little sad.  Knowing that another school year is finished and done leaves me feeling a little wistful.  It is the same feeling I get watching my children as they grow.  Time goes too fast!

    I have spent the last week reflecting on the past year.  I really saw students beginning to grow in their proficiency.  In some classes, I had some native speakers that used phrases that the other students began to copy.  I had students that used phrases correctly without prompting from me.  We were doing something in class and a student said, "Estoy enojado"(I am mad.).  We hadn't even practiced that phrase that day but he used it correctly and in context.  It is so gratifying to see that growth.

    In May, in almost all my classes, we did a lesson on whether objects would "flota" (float) or "se hunde"(sink) in water.   They really had fun predicting what objects would sink or float.  In Kindergarten, we retold the story of "The Hungry Caterpillar" in simple Spanish.  They did a great job and loved acting out the story.   In first grade, we celebrated the end of the year with a "fiesta" (party) and "globos"(balloons).  We had to rest though, so we took some "siestas" (naps) as well.    Second grade made Worry Dolls to wrap up their unit on Guatemala.  It was such a fun project.  Thank you so much to the volunteers who helped.  I could NOT have done that without you.Third grade did an art project in the style of a Salvadoran artist named , Fernando Llort.  Their projects turned out amazing!  4th grade wrapped up their cultural units on Peru.   5th graders learned about the dangers some children in Mexico have to face on their very long and treacherous paths to school.  

    It's been a joy to teach Spanish.  I am looking forward to next year.  

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  • Marzo/Abril Happenings

    Posted by Joelle Jones on 4/5/2023 3:00:00 PM

    Happy Spring!  It's so nice to see everything blooming and the sun shining.  

    The focus for K-3 in March was animals.  Students celebrated "La Locura de Marzo" (March Madness) with an animal bracket.  All the animals were from Spanish-speaking countries.  Students learned about the foods the animals eat, the habitats of the animals , and some interesting facts about the animals.  Some of the facts are:

    1.  The Iberian Lynx is from Spain.  The Iberian Lynx is the first large cat that is in danger of going extinct since the Saber Tooth Tiger.  In 2002, there were less than 100 animals in the wild.  Fortunately, their population is growing.   There are now more than 1,000 animals in the wild.

    2.  The Green Anaconda is the heaviest snake in the world.  

    3.  The Spanish Ibex is an amazing climber. 

    4.  There are many different types of Piranaha.  Some even eat more plants than meat.  When Piranahas lose teeth, they lose four teeth at a time.   The teeth grow back.

    5.   The Bee Hummingbird is the smallest bird in the world.  It is often mistaken for a bumblebee.  It flaps its wings 94 times a second, can fly in all directions(even upside down,) and can pollinate up to 1,500 flowers a day.

    6.    The Goliath Birdeater is the largest spider in the world.  It is 12 inches across.  It can project the tiny, barbed hairs towards the eyes and face of its predators to get away.  

    7.  The Harpy Eagle is the largest raptor in the world.  They have the longest talons of any bird and can carry prey up to half their body weight.

    8.  The Poison Dart frog is the most venomous animal on Earth.  There are only three types that can be fatal for humans.  The frogs are poisonous from the insects they eat.  If they stop eating the insects, they will eventually become non-venomous.  

    The winner of the "La Locura de Marzo" was the Iberian Lynx!  I am so glad the Green Anaconda didn't win!

    The 4th and 5th Grades also had their own "Locura de Marzo".  They listened to some popular musicians from Spanish-speaking countries.  There were eight songs that they voted on.  The winner of the bracket was Shakira, a Colombian singer.  Her song won over Marc Anthony's song "Vivir la Vida".  

    Looking forward to April, we will be focusing on food and family.  We will also be talking about the countries of Guatemala (2nd),  Honduras (3rd), Ecuador (4th), and Argentina (5th).  

    If you have any questions or concerns, please feel free to contact me.

    Happy Spring!

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  • January-February Happenings

    Posted by Joelle Jones on 2/10/2023 3:00:00 PM

    Happy New Year!  I can hardly believe it is already February!  

    In January and February, the focus has been practicing numbers, winter clothing vocabulary, and body parts.  

    In grades K-2 we practiced body parts by reading a story about a snowman and about a potato head named Enzo.  We used Mr. Potato Heads to review vocab.  Students really enjoyed this activity.

    Ms. Lavish 1st Grade Class

    To practice and review winter clothing items, the 4th and 5th graders have been watching the Billy La Bufanda stories.  They love watcing the adventures of Billy "the scarf" and his "dear, pink boots".  

    I am seeing a lot of growth in my students.  I am really proud of them.  

    If you have any questions or concerns, feel free to email me.

    Joelle Jones

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  • December Happenings

    Posted by Joelle Jones on 12/16/2022 2:00:00 PM

    Happy holidays!  It is almost time to wrap up 2022.  I really can't believe the first semester is done.  

    Here's a rundown of what we have been working on in November and December.


    We have been working hard to master counting one to ten.  More than 70% of my students can count to ten easily.   If students cannot, I always emphasize they can't do it yet.  Learning a language is a process and everyone learns at a different pace.  If they keep practicing, they will get there.  

    In first grade, we focused on counting to 20.  80%-90% can count to ten and I will begin assessing if they can count to 20 during the second semester. 

    In December we learned about holiday traditions in Spain.  My elf (Duende) visited Spain and taught us about some of the holiday traditions in Spain.  The students really liked learning about the lottery (el gordo), feeding the Christmas log, the lottery (el gordo), playing practical jokes on December 28th, and eating 12 grapes on New Year's Eve.  

    In 2nd grade, we continued to practice counting 1 to 30 and we learned about Puerto Rico.  We talked about how PR is an island, it's part of the United States, the Coquí tree frog is PR's mascot, the first people to live in PR were the Taínos , and the holiday tradition of Parrandas.  Parrandas are Christmas caroling with a twist.  Some of my second grade classes surprised some of their classmates by giving them a "Parranda".  It was really fun!

    In 3rd grade, we reviewed and practiced counting 1 to 50.  We also learned about the country of Nicaragua.  We talked about how there are 19 active volcanoes in Nicaragua.  What is really amazing is that Nicaragua is almost the same size as Alabama.   That's a lot of volcanoes.  We watched a video about how scientists are studying one of the most active and volatile volcanoes in the world, Masaya.  Brave scientists go down six stories into the volcano  and study the sensors they have placed around the volcano.  They hope the sensors can give them warning of when an eruption is imminent.  More than a million people live within 15 miles of the volcano and scientists hope to give them as much warning as possible to evacuate. 

    In 4th grade, we continued to review and to practice counting to 100.  We also learned about the country of Colombia.  Students learned that  Colombia is the second most biodiverse country in the world.  Colombia occupies only 0.8% of the world's land mass but has 10% of the world's  plant and animal species.  Students also learned that Colombia is the leading producer of emeralds, known for its coffee, and exports flowers.  Colombia is also home to a river nicknamed the "liquid rainbow" due to the bright colors of yellow, red, blue, green, and black.  A rare type of algae gives the river its bright  red color.  Students exchanged letters with our penpals in Vermont.  They are in the process of writing stories.  Heritage students started the stories with two or three sentences.  The Thetford school continued the story by adding two or three more sentences.  We are going to keep sending the stories back and forth as each school continues to add on to the stories.  It will be very interesting to see where these stories end up.  

    In 5th grade, students continue to review and to practice counting from 1 to 1,000.  Students also learned about the country of Chile.  Students learned that Chile has on average 8,000 earthquakes a day.  The country is as long as our country is wide.  Chile has the driest desert in the world.  We talked about the mining accident of 2010 and how 33 miners were trapped underground for 69 days.  Their story of the mining accident gained worldwide attention with over 5 million people watching their rescue.  

    It is the season of counting blessings.  I feel very blessed to be able to share my love of languages and culture with my students.  I really, really enjoy teaching about Spanish-speaking countries.  

    I hope everyone has a great vacation!  Enjoy your time with family and friends.  

    Señora Jones



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  • October Happenings

    Posted by Joelle Jones on 10/31/2022 3:00:00 PM

    Happy Fall!  I have loved all of the fall colors this year.   It's been a beautiful fall.

    The focus of October has been colors and numbers.  In Kindergarten, the goal is to be able to count to ten.  I have several students who have already met that goal.  In first grade, the goal is to be able to count to 20.  For some reason, many students can count to 20 but they skip 17.  We have been working on that. In  3rd grade, the goal is to count to 50, 4th grade to 100, and in 5th grade, the goal is to count to 1000 by 100s.  We are also working on colors and in 3-5 we are working on adjective placement and agreement.  

    For "Rock Your School Day" in 3-5 grades, we made paper airplanes.  Students named and decorated   their planes and the following week we flew the planes to see who could fly their planes the farthest.    This activity gave students an opportunity to practice  noun and adjective agreement (the names of their planes) and numbers (the distance their plane flew.

    In 4th grade, my students have the awesome opportunity of connecting with 4th grade students in Vermont, who are also taking Spanish.  We have exchanged letters.  We are looking forward to getting to know our new friends in Vermont.

    Looking ahead to November, we will be continuing to review and practice numbers and colors.  We will also be discussing "Día de los Muertos" in Kindergarten. In 1st grade we will discuss the tradition of "Castells' in Spain, the Dominican Republic in 2nd grade, Nicaragua in 3rd grade, Colombia in 4th grade, and Chile in 5th grade.  

    If you have any questions or concerns, please feel free to contact me.  


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  • September Happenings

    Posted by Joelle Jones on 9/13/2022

    Happy fall!  I love fall!  So glad it is here!

    All month in August, my classes have been working on the goal of being able to greet someone,  to introduce  themselves, and to ask and answer someone how they are.  Of course, in Kindergarten, the expectation is that they communicate more with gestures.   The 5th graders should be able to answer verbally.  

    Looking ahead, we will be practicing and reviewing numbers.  Kindergarten's goal is to count to ten, 1st grade 1-20, 2nd grade 1-30, 3rd grade 1-50, 4th grade 1-100, and 5th grade 1-1,000.  In the upper grades, we will also be working on the goals of being able to say their age, their birthday, their favorite number, and a phone number.  

    I will also begin introducing culture into our lessons.  In Kindergarten we will be discussing Mexico for the whole year.  In September we will discuss the traditions of how Mexico celebrates their  independence day on September 16th.  In first grade we will be talking about Spain all year.  In September we will talk about "Ratoncito Pérez", the mouse who collects teeth under children's pillows.  In 2nd grade we will talk about Costa Rica.  In third grade we will talk about Panamá.  In fourth grade we will talk about Venezuela and in fifth grade we will talk about Bolivia.  We will also be talking about Hispanic Heritage month.

    Hope everyone enjoys the cooler weather.

    Heppy fall! 

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  • August 2022

    Posted by Joelle Jones on 8/12/2022 7:00:00 AM

    August 2023

    Welcome back!  It is year nine for me and I am looking forward to a great year.  It is so good to see all of my students again.  I love meeting the Kindergarten students.   They're so tiny!  The 4th and 5th graders have grown so much since May.  I can't believe how tall some of them have gotten.

    As a Spanish teacher I often hear "I'm not good at Spanish" or "I don't know Spanish".  I am working on teaching  my students that just because someone isn't highly proficient in a second  language, that doesn't mean they can't communicate with someone.  Learning a second language is a journey.  It's about growth, progress and making mistakes.    It is not about perfection.  

    My job is to equip my students with tools to communicate and the confidence to use them.  

    The  first steps on "the pathway to proficiency" are to be able to greet someone in Spanish, to be able to introduce oneself, and to be able to ask/answer someone how they are.  Those are the goals we will be working on in August.  

    I am looking forward to a great year!  I am so glad to be with my students as they take their journey on the "Pathway to Proficiency". I can't wait to see their progress!  Have a fantastic school year!

    Señora Jones


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  • April Happenings

    Posted by Joelle Jones on 4/19/2022

    What's happening in April?  Lots of fun and learning is going on in April!  Let me just share what's been going on in our classes this month.

    In all my classes, but especially the younger classes, we have been working on using familiar vocabulary in sentences.  I have been focusing on the verbs "come"(eats) and "bebe" drinks.  They have been creating sentences like "Batman bebe la leche" (Batman drinks milk).  We're going to be concentrating on food vocabulary, so I am going to include "Me gusta" (I like), "No me gusta" (I don't like), and "Yo quiero" ( I want).

    In 4th and 5th grade we focused all year on practicing "All About Me" vocabulary.  "Yo me llamo" (my name is), "Soy de..." (I am from), "Tengo...años" (I am...years old), "Juego deportes" (I play sports), etc. I think practicing these common phrases is going to really pay off in their future studies.

    We are wrapping up cultural units in grades  2-5.  Second grade learned about Cuba, 3rd grade learned about El Salvador, 4th grade learned about Ecuador, and 5th grade learned about Argentina.  They really enjoy learning about the different countries.  

    In third grade, we drew pictures in the style of Fernando Llort, a famous artist in El Salvador. Look at the pictures tab on the website to see some of the beautiful pictures drawn by students.  I love them!  

    I so enjoy the growth and progress my students are making.  It keeps me going!  They definitely make it all worthwhile.

    Señora Jones

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  • February/March Happenings

    Posted by Joelle Jones on 3/10/2022

    Happy spring...or almost spring.  At the time I am typing this we are supposed to get snow!  I am from Michigan, so I miss getting snow, but not in March!

    In February, my classes did  a unit on winter sports and the Olympics.  We learned about some of the different sports in the Winter Olympics. I had some students pick  three countries that we would follow during the games for a medal count.    We practiced talking about some of the winter activities that we like to do and do not like to do  and at the end of the unit we had our own Olympic games to review vocabulary.

    During March, in Kindergarten through third grade, our unit is on animals.  I chose eight animals from Spanish-speaking countries.  The animals are then put into "brackets" and students can vote for their favorite animals. 

    In fourth and fifth grades, our unit is our favorite "March Madness" songs.  I picked eight songs sung in Spanish and put them in brackets.  Students then vote for their favorites.

    So glad that warmer weather is coming and I am so glad I get to do these fun units with my students.  

    If you have any questions or concerns, feel free to contact me.

    Happy Spring!

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  • December/January Happenings

    Posted by Joelle Jones on 1/31/2022

    Happy 2022!  

    In December we learned about some Spanish-speaking countries and their Christmas traditions.  In first grade we talked about the Christmas traditions of Spain.  In second grade we talked about Puerto Rico.  In third grade we learned about Nicaragua.  In fourth grade we learned about Venezuela and in fifth grade we learned about Chile.  

    In January we have been practicing winter clothing vocabulary.  My classes have made predictions about whether the groundhog will see his shadow.  

    Looking ahead to February, we will continue to  practice winter clothing vocabulary, winter weather vocabulary, and winter sports vocabulary in conjunction with the Winter Olympics.







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