Pennsylvania Homeschoolers

AP* Online Classes

APUSH with Mrs. Hawkins has been one of the most enjoyable and informative classes I've taken, period. I have learned so much about American history, but I was most impressed with how much my writing and thinking skills improved.

AP Class Reviews

AP Spanish Language taught by Ray Leven

by Students and Parents

AP SPANISH posted by Mr. Leven on May 09 2018 at 14:26:44

AP Spanish Language taught by Ray Leven

by Students and Parents

 

Evaluacion de la clase de AP posted by Kirstie Shierkolk on September 04 2015 at 18:41:15

 

Sr. Leven,

 
Ya que éste es mi tercer año de tomar clases de AP, y mi último año de escuela, he estado recordando las clases que he tomado durante todos mis años escolares. Y me he fijado que su clase de español pertenece al grupo de mis clases favoritas. 
 
Sé que ya han pasado dos años desde que yo estuve en su clase, pero los recuerdos que tengo de ella son buenísimos. No más quería decirle de nuevo cuánto aprecié todo lo que usted nos enseñó. Por causa de su clase, mi español sigue siendo mejor que jamás era antes. 
 
Si usted me hace el favor, dígales a sus alumnos de este año, que yo les digo que esta clase en que están será una de las mejores que habrán de tomar. 
 
Muchísimas gracias por todo.

 

 


 

Mr. Leven's AP Spanish: Personalized, Motivating, and Supportive posted by Cullen Chosy on June 01 2015 at 12:15:10

 

This year, I have found Mr. Leven’s AP Spanish class to be highly engaging and challenging, while also motivating. Much of what has made the experience so enjoyable has been the evident effort that he puts into the class, whether in organizing our actual class time, assigning homework, or giving comments on projects. The shifting focus of the homework, and the larger in-depth projects, such as reading pieces of literature, or investigating a Spanish-speaking artist and their work, made studying for the class much more exciting and refreshing than it would have been had we strictly adhered to the textbook. The class had definite structure, was well-organized, and Mr. Leven brought to it a level of personal attention that I really appreciated.

 

 


 

Outstanding AP class! posted by Catherine Bodnar on May 15 2014 at 21:07:07

 

When I started this course, Spanish was my weakest subject.  My learning had been mostly independent study, and the teacher with the Texan accent who had taught me before certainly hadn’t helped with my pronunciation! 

In short, the prospect of taking an online AP Spanish class was daunting.  Yet all this changed in Mr. Leven’s class.  Spanish quickly became my favorite subject—the class I looked forward to each day. 

The small group setting made for ample time of nearly one-on-one learning, which was invaluable and a tremendous help in gaining confidence in Spanish.  Each week we would have a class session via Skype, complete with lively discussions (all in Spanish, of course!) about the literature we had read, any current events, and thoughts in general. 

Although I had many favorite assignments, perhaps my ultimate favorite was the weekly literature we read and wrote about for homework (and the animated discussions that followed!).  The stories were captivating, and they have encouraged me to continue to read in Spanish outside of class.  Each week, in addition to the reading assignments, we would also go through a chapter in grammar.  These grammar lessons gave us an edge on the essays in the AP exam and also helped us gain more sophistication in our writing abilities.    

We went through extensive review for all parts of the AP exam in its new format.  Mr. Leven really cared that we gained mastery of the material and were comfortable on all parts of the exam—persuasive essay, presentational speaking, and all. 

While the AP Spanish exam completely changed this year—including culture along with language—I still felt completely prepared all parts of the test.  In fact, the reading sections seemed surprisingly easier than the weekly assignments Mr. Leven would have us read.  I even enjoyed the multiple choice section on the exam with all its reading selections. 

At the start of the year, I was a hesitant speaker.  Now I feel infinitely more confident in my Spanish communication abilities.  It is a thrill to be able to skim through the headlines of a Spanish online newspaper and delve into articles of interest… to listen to a Spanish podcast from a Spanish-speaking country and clearly understand what’s going on. 

This course does an unparalleled job at preparing for the exam in May.  My experience in this class, however, has gone even further beyond the scope of the AP exam.  Thanks to Mr. Leven’s super teaching, I’ve grown further as a Spanish student this past year alone than in my four other years combined.

 

 


 

Best spanish class I have ever taken... posted by Catherine Cahill on June 13 2013 at 14:50:38

 

 To be honest I was at first very nervous about taking AP Spanish, but especially about taking the exam. But I can also honestly say that it was the test I was the least nervous for by the time May came because Mr. Leven had spent an extensive amount of time preparing us for the exam. In all the years I've taken spanish, I never learned as much or reviewed as much as this spanish class. It was the difference between my spanish sounding like google translate spanish and a real knowledge of the spanish language. 

 

 On average I spent about 5-6 hours a week on all the homework, including corrections and extra studying. Any student looking to take this class must be ready to be challenged in reading, writing and peaking spanish. I certainly left this class much more confident in all those areas of spanish, thanks to Mr. Leven's detailed corrections and assignments. Students must also be prepared to write a lot! We had writing, as well as grammar and literature assignments every week, including a few enjoyable projects. Also the opportunity to speak once a week via Skype with Mr. Leven and the other students was a great opportunity, especially since most of us get very little spanish exposure at home. It was also an opportunity for almost one-on-one teaching from Mr. Leven. Myself and the other classmates were able to ask many questions and help our understanding that way as well. I would recommend this course to anyone wanting to fine-tune their spanish skills.

 

 My favorite assignments were the stories we read every week. Reading literature in spanish was at sometimes a challenge but enjoyable. After that I definitely enjoyed the listening/writing assignments which required us to read an article in spanish as well as listen to a news cast or such in spanish and then write a review on the overall subject. I now read all the news in spanish! I feel like even if I don't end up doing well on the exam I learned a great deal this year in this class. And I certainly feel prepared to go off to study spanish in college with a solid background. 

 

 

 


 

Excellent preparation for the AP Exam... posted by Aleena Vargas on April 04 2013 at 17:20:26

 

This course does an excellent job of preparing students for the AP Exam. Mr. Leven reviewed all the fundamental concepts of Spanish grammar, using the textbook Repaso, and performed drills in class to make sure we learned them thoroughly. Since I have studied Spanish for a few years, there was not much new material to learn. However, the review helped to solidify areas of study that had previously been somewhat confusing for me, such as the subjunctive mood. Also, Mr. Leven has helped me fine-tune minor errors in grammar through various Spanish writing assignments.

The literature assignments were my favorite part of the class. Mr. Leven chose works from authors such as Gabriel García Márquez, Ana Maria Matute, and Jorge Luis Borges. The stories not only gave me a better understanding of Spanish literature, but also provided a rich source of advanced vocabulary.

On average, the homework generally took me 5 hours each week. For someone who has previously studied Spanish, the course is not difficult. The emphasis is not on learning new material but rather on perfecting what we have already learned and building our vocabulary, in order to perform well on the AP exam. Although Mr. Leven is always available to help a student with a concept, it is the student’s responsibility to put effort into improvement.

Writing assignments related to the literature assignments prepare students for the reading comprehension sections of the exam. Class presentations based on information from audio and written Spanish sources prepare for the oral and listening parts of the exam. This class provides students plenty of familiarity with hearing, speaking, and writing the Spanish language, which is what the AP exam requires. I would recommend it to anyone who is willing to work hard to perfect their Spanish.

 

 


 

decent, but could definitely improve (and hopefully will) posted by R. on June 11 2012 at 16:28:14

 

I think it should be made clear that this class is supposed to prepare you for the AP Spanish Language exam, not the literature one (even if sometimes it seems that way).  The class is, of course, for those who have studied Spanish for a number of years and are pretty serious about it. That said, I didn’t find the class to be particularly intensive or challenging. Part of that may have been because a lot of work was review – even if I got answers wrong, the concepts were familiar. Part of it may simply be because there wasn’t all that much work to do for the class. The amount of time homework took varied a lot, starting at about two hours per week, plus the hour for class.

Homework consisted of a couple things: reading, doing exercises (mostly from the book Repaso), and some variation of researching a topic and doing a short presentation of it to the class. There were very few tests and quizzes. During the weekly skype sessions, we discussed what we read and the topics of students’ presentations, and completed grammar exercises. There was also a project on Spanish-speaking artists. Although there is something of a schedule, Mr. Leven is pretty flexible and may well spend more time on an area of difficulty if a student asks.

This class is good for someone entering their 4th or 5th year of Spanish and who is simply interested in continuing with, but not necessarily devoting a lot of time, to their Spanish studies.

In terms of preparation for the AP exam, the class wasn’t much help. There was hardly any explanation of what the exam would be like. Although some of the homework, like reading about a topic and writing a short piece about it and our opinion on it, had correlations to what’s on the exam, there was never any direct practice for the exam. At times, the class didn’t even seem to have any direction at all. I only felt prepared for the AP exam because the month before I spent quite a while practicing for it myself. Hopefully though, Mr. Leven will work on this and add direct preparation for the exam. Some other issues with the class are partly there, no doubt, because Mr. Leven is still experimenting with teaching online.

Overall, the class is decent. Even if somewhat disappointing, it was still useful and hopefully it will get better. At the same time though, anyone looking for an intensive and very challenging class should look somewhere else.

[Note: This student got a "5" on the AP Spanish exam.]


Evaluacion de la clase de AP posted by Kirstie Shierkolk on September 04 2015 at 18:41:15

Sr. Leven,

 
Ya que éste es mi tercer año de tomar clases de AP, y mi último año de escuela, he estado recordando las clases que he tomado durante todos mis años escolares. Y me he fijado que su clase de español pertenece al grupo de mis clases favoritas. 
 
Sé que ya han pasado dos años desde que yo estuve en su clase, pero los recuerdos que tengo de ella son buenísimos. No más quería decirle de nuevo cuánto aprecié todo lo que usted nos enseñó. Por causa de su clase, mi español sigue siendo mejor que jamás era antes. 
 
Si usted me hace el favor, dígales a sus alumnos de este año, que yo les digo que esta clase en que están será una de las mejores que habrán de tomar. 
 
Muchísimas gracias por todo.


Mr. Leven's AP Spanish: Personalized, Motivating, and Supportive posted by Cullen Chosy on June 01 2015 at 12:15:10

This year, I have found Mr. Leven’s AP Spanish class to be highly engaging and challenging, while also motivating. Much of what has made the experience so enjoyable has been the evident effort that he puts into the class, whether in organizing our actual class time, assigning homework, or giving comments on projects. The shifting focus of the homework, and the larger in-depth projects, such as reading pieces of literature, or investigating a Spanish-speaking artist and their work, made studying for the class much more exciting and refreshing than it would have been had we strictly adhered to the textbook. The class had definite structure, was well-organized, and Mr. Leven brought to it a level of personal attention that I really appreciated.


Outstanding AP class! posted by Catherine Bodnar on May 15 2014 at 21:07:07

When I started this course, Spanish was my weakest subject.  My learning had been mostly independent study, and the teacher with the Texan accent who had taught me before certainly hadn’t helped with my pronunciation! 

In short, the prospect of taking an online AP Spanish class was daunting.  Yet all this changed in Mr. Leven’s class.  Spanish quickly became my favorite subject—the class I looked forward to each day. 

The small group setting made for ample time of nearly one-on-one learning, which was invaluable and a tremendous help in gaining confidence in Spanish.  Each week we would have a class session via Skype, complete with lively discussions (all in Spanish, of course!) about the literature we had read, any current events, and thoughts in general. 

Although I had many favorite assignments, perhaps my ultimate favorite was the weekly literature we read and wrote about for homework (and the animated discussions that followed!).  The stories were captivating, and they have encouraged me to continue to read in Spanish outside of class.  Each week, in addition to the reading assignments, we would also go through a chapter in grammar.  These grammar lessons gave us an edge on the essays in the AP exam and also helped us gain more sophistication in our writing abilities.    

We went through extensive review for all parts of the AP exam in its new format.  Mr. Leven really cared that we gained mastery of the material and were comfortable on all parts of the exam—persuasive essay, presentational speaking, and all. 

While the AP Spanish exam completely changed this year—including culture along with language—I still felt completely prepared all parts of the test.  In fact, the reading sections seemed surprisingly easier than the weekly assignments Mr. Leven would have us read.  I even enjoyed the multiple choice section on the exam with all its reading selections. 

At the start of the year, I was a hesitant speaker.  Now I feel infinitely more confident in my Spanish communication abilities.  It is a thrill to be able to skim through the headlines of a Spanish online newspaper and delve into articles of interest… to listen to a Spanish podcast from a Spanish-speaking country and clearly understand what’s going on. 

This course does an unparalleled job at preparing for the exam in May.  My experience in this class, however, has gone even further beyond the scope of the AP exam.  Thanks to Mr. Leven’s super teaching, I’ve grown further as a Spanish student this past year alone than in my four other years combined.


Best spanish class I have ever taken... posted by Catherine Cahill on June 13 2013 at 14:50:38

 To be honest I was at first very nervous about taking AP Spanish, but especially about taking the exam. But I can also honestly say that it was the test I was the least nervous for by the time May came because Mr. Leven had spent an extensive amount of time preparing us for the exam. In all the years I've taken spanish, I never learned as much or reviewed as much as this spanish class. It was the difference between my spanish sounding like google translate spanish and a real knowledge of the spanish language. 

 

 On average I spent about 5-6 hours a week on all the homework, including corrections and extra studying. Any student looking to take this class must be ready to be challenged in reading, writing and peaking spanish. I certainly left this class much more confident in all those areas of spanish, thanks to Mr. Leven's detailed corrections and assignments. Students must also be prepared to write a lot! We had writing, as well as grammar and literature assignments every week, including a few enjoyable projects. Also the opportunity to speak once a week via Skype with Mr. Leven and the other students was a great opportunity, especially since most of us get very little spanish exposure at home. It was also an opportunity for almost one-on-one teaching from Mr. Leven. Myself and the other classmates were able to ask many questions and help our understanding that way as well. I would recommend this course to anyone wanting to fine-tune their spanish skills.

 

 My favorite assignments were the stories we read every week. Reading literature in spanish was at sometimes a challenge but enjoyable. After that I definitely enjoyed the listening/writing assignments which required us to read an article in spanish as well as listen to a news cast or such in spanish and then write a review on the overall subject. I now read all the news in spanish! I feel like even if I don't end up doing well on the exam I learned a great deal this year in this class. And I certainly feel prepared to go off to study spanish in college with a solid background. 

 


Excellent preparation for the AP Exam... posted by Aleena Vargas on April 04 2013 at 17:20:26

This course does an excellent job of preparing students for the AP Exam. Mr. Leven reviewed all the fundamental concepts of Spanish grammar, using the textbook Repaso, and performed drills in class to make sure we learned them thoroughly. Since I have studied Spanish for a few years, there was not much new material to learn. However, the review helped to solidify areas of study that had previously been somewhat confusing for me, such as the subjunctive mood. Also, Mr. Leven has helped me fine-tune minor errors in grammar through various Spanish writing assignments.

The literature assignments were my favorite part of the class. Mr. Leven chose works from authors such as Gabriel García Márquez, Ana Maria Matute, and Jorge Luis Borges. The stories not only gave me a better understanding of Spanish literature, but also provided a rich source of advanced vocabulary.

On average, the homework generally took me 5 hours each week. For someone who has previously studied Spanish, the course is not difficult. The emphasis is not on learning new material but rather on perfecting what we have already learned and building our vocabulary, in order to perform well on the AP exam. Although Mr. Leven is always available to help a student with a concept, it is the student’s responsibility to put effort into improvement.

Writing assignments related to the literature assignments prepare students for the reading comprehension sections of the exam. Class presentations based on information from audio and written Spanish sources prepare for the oral and listening parts of the exam. This class provides students plenty of familiarity with hearing, speaking, and writing the Spanish language, which is what the AP exam requires. I would recommend it to anyone who is willing to work hard to perfect their Spanish.


decent, but could definitely improve (and hopefully will) posted by R. on June 11 2012 at 16:28:14

I think it should be made clear that this class is supposed to prepare you for the AP Spanish Language exam, not the literature one (even if sometimes it seems that way).  The class is, of course, for those who have studied Spanish for a number of years and are pretty serious about it. That said, I didn’t find the class to be particularly intensive or challenging. Part of that may have been because a lot of work was review – even if I got answers wrong, the concepts were familiar. Part of it may simply be because there wasn’t all that much work to do for the class. The amount of time homework took varied a lot, starting at about two hours per week, plus the hour for class.

Homework consisted of a couple things: reading, doing exercises (mostly from the book Repaso), and some variation of researching a topic and doing a short presentation of it to the class. There were very few tests and quizzes. During the weekly skype sessions, we discussed what we read and the topics of students’ presentations, and completed grammar exercises. There was also a project on Spanish-speaking artists. Although there is something of a schedule, Mr. Leven is pretty flexible and may well spend more time on an area of difficulty if a student asks.

This class is good for someone entering their 4th or 5th year of Spanish and who is simply interested in continuing with, but not necessarily devoting a lot of time, to their Spanish studies.

In terms of preparation for the AP exam, the class wasn’t much help. There was hardly any explanation of what the exam would be like. Although some of the homework, like reading about a topic and writing a short piece about it and our opinion on it, had correlations to what’s on the exam, there was never any direct practice for the exam. At times, the class didn’t even seem to have any direction at all. I only felt prepared for the AP exam because the month before I spent quite a while practicing for it myself. Hopefully though, Mr. Leven will work on this and add direct preparation for the exam. Some other issues with the class are partly there, no doubt, because Mr. Leven is still experimenting with teaching online.

Overall, the class is decent. Even if somewhat disappointing, it was still useful and hopefully it will get better. At the same time though, anyone looking for an intensive and very challenging class should look somewhere else.

[Note: This student got a "5" on the AP Spanish exam.]


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