This Online Supplement will only be available for a limited time. We encourage you to save any links for future use. Thank you!


Yucatán Teacher Index  (How to use the guide)

Chapter 1

Watch the trailer for each movie after reading about it in the reading OR watch all five trailers after the reading has been completed. As students watch the trailers, have them make a table to take notes in Spanish. They should write any words that come to mind in Spanish while watching the trailer that fit into the categories provided.

Here are the links to the trailers in Spanish:

Emociones Acciones Objetos Adjetivos
Nacho Libre


In chapter 1, students are asked to label some places on a map. Here are some links that may be helpful:

Map of Mexico

Use Google Maps to label ‘Los Cabos’

Physical map of Mexico to label the Sierra Madre Oriental mountain range and the Yucatán Peninsula


Chapter 2

Before reading Chapter 2, show students this YouTube video. Although the song is in English, its haunting melody and lyrics will surely pique your students’ interest in reading about Brandon’s adventures at Ek’ Balam. Play the audio!! While students watch the video, have them complete the writing prompts listed below (simply list them on the board and have students copy them onto a piece of lined paper). After the song is over, read each writing prompt aloud and ask students to share what they wrote.

  • Ek’ Balam es…
  • En Ek’ Balam, hay…
  • Pienso que el jaguar negro…
  • En Ek’ Balam, pienso que Brandon va a…
  • Las personas que vivieron (lived) in Ek’ Balam…


  • Show this video to students. It is an excellent dramatization of what the game might have looked like.
  • Another informative but slightly longer video


Chapter 3

This 5-minute documentary about the female artisans that live and work in Ek’Balam could serve as the basis for an excellent extension activity that ties together Mayan artwork and Ek’Balam. For example, you could have students list the things that the women in the video do (in English or Spanish). Then, compare the role of women in our two cultures! Talk about how the men make artwork that requires physical labor (woodcarving, for example) and the women make crafts related to fabric (hammocks, dresses, embroidery).

Chapter 4

Have students upload their pictures to Strip Creator. It is a website that allows students to add thought and speech bubbles to photographs/illustrations in order to create your own comic strips. On their photo, they should add one thought bubbles to show what the “bad man” is thinking and a second thought bubble to show what “Brandon” is thinking.


Chapter 5

To give students an idea of the size of Itzmal, look for a city near you that has a population of approximately 25,000 by scrolling to the bottom of this list.

There are lots of “tour videos” of Izamal on Youtube! Show your students this awesome yellow city! Here’s a great one! You may need to help make this more comprehensible to your students my re-phrasing some of the narrative in more comprehensible language. They don’t need to understand all the words to get the idea of what Izmal has to offer!


Chapter 6

Show your students the video “Lo gracioso del fútbol” with this intro: ¿Piensas que no te gusta el fútbol? ¿Piensas que el fútbol es aburrido? Mira este video a ver si cambia tu opinión…”  (replacement link for “kabum” soccer video which was included in the original version of this guide)

Purchase the song “Sube la mano y grita gol (no hay dos sin tres)” by Spain Latino Rumba Sound from the 2012 album ‘Los éxitos del verano/con Crisis y A Bailar’. Other versions contain the “f***” word, so be careful!


Follow up after the reader!

Pyramid Vocabulary game (Google slides) created by Jenny Robbins and adapted for this reader by Sarah Sheperd!



Novice High Interpretive Reading:

I can understand familiar words, phrases, and sentences within short, simple texts related to everyday life.

I can sometimes understand short, simple descriptions with the help of pictures or graphs.

I can sometimes understand the main idea of what I have read.

I can sometimes understand the main idea of published materials.

I can usually understand short, simple messages on familiar topics.

I can locate places on city (tourist) maps.

Don’t miss training events or special offers!

Subscribe to our newsletter.