At my school, we HAVE to give kids their textbooks. They’re barcoded through the library, and students check them out … So, my students picked up their textbooks this year even though I’m trying to get away from using them as a resource.
So, to make sure our (new) books don’t end up wrecked, I had each student cover their textbook in a paper bag book cover, something I learned when I was in school. I did a how-to in class, and most of the students did okay. Then, the next day, we went to the computer lab so that we could do some research on cultural topics.
I had each student pick a French person or monument/place. They had to find 8 facts about that person/monument/place, and then draw it on their book. It was a really simple project, but it got even some of my upper level kids to find out new information!
I had some students go above and beyond! Here are some examples:
These two students were able to represent Stromae very well!
Next year, I will try to find a way to make students find facts in French! We did English this year because I didn’t have a great way to show each student a credible internet fact site for each different option they selected. That, and I wanted to make sure they chose something of interest to them!
Other things that have been going around here are:
Trying out self-selected vocabulary, à la Amy Lenord! I tried recreating her “happiness ritual” post with my French III class and it worked out pretty well! We needed to review and also start on daily routines, so I used this infographic to start the class:
We talked through the infographic together, and then I handed out comic strip-style paper to have them create “une journée 100% ‘toi-ien,'” a word which I totally made up the night before.
I’ve tried out SSV with three of my classes and it seems to be working well. I’ve also got most of my classes on about 70% TL, so that is a huge success for me! I ultimately decided that easing into 90% would be a good strategy for me; I was worried about losing kids in the switch. I’ve seen kids drop a language class for a much simpler reason than “she speaks (comprehensible) French the whole time.”
I also borrowed an awesome idea from Kare at Creative Language Class, where I greet students at the door with the current vocab topic! Right now, I’m greeting my French I classes with “ça va” but I’m hoping to move up to some other ideas. Here’s the original post by Kara.
I’m hoping to have even better things to blog about soon (like 90%) but until then, this will have to do!