If your students want to talk about a movie or book that they are familiar with, I find it useful to have them look for the entry in Wikipedia first, so they can start seeing relevant vocabulary at a glance instead of just having to use a dictionary. This first step is also useful to discover interesting items about your book or movie. In the example above, we see in (1) how the title of the movie has a different name in Spain or in Latin America, which tends to happen, and this can give way to a discussion about it (for amazing examples of trailers of movies translated in different accents in Spanish, see the section “Doblado doblado” in the always interesting Zachary Jones’s website Zambombazo). In (2), we see an example of cognates that would be very easy for anyone to understand, “romper su código de silencio.” And in (3), we find the word “cuidador” for zoo keeper, although if we had the students use a dictionary, this is what they would have found instead:
|zoo-keeper, zoo keeper n||(attendant at an animal park)||guardián de zoológico, vigilante de zoológico nm|
|Despidieron a vigilante del zoológico por robar la comida de los chimpancés.|
This, of course, is a correct translation (as we see from the movie title above) but it is also logical (for a native speaker) that in the movie they would use the word “cuidador” for the protagonist instead, as it is a more common word (which can also have many different meanings). If we had not seen this Wikipedia entry, my student (and myself) would probably not have thought of using the word “cuidador” and would have been repeating the, although correct, more cumbersome other two forms listed.
For even more vocabulary, in the case of movies, you can also use IMDB in Spanish. Here’s the entry for this movie in particular.
In what other ways do you use Wikipedia in Spanish in your class?