Another school year!
Like many foreign language teachers, I’m teaching many levels this year. Luckily, I have teachers around me who are open and willing to share, whether it be other languages teachers at my school or the other high school in the district!
These types of relationships are invaluable. Without them to discuss my classes, I would feel so isolated and overwhelmed. And sharing is getting easier for everyone with Google Drive. I share my stuff, too!! 🙂
Here’s some classroom activities that I’ve done or plan to do that I have shared with my colleagues or they’ve shared with me. Please feel free to make a copy to your Google Drives and use with your classrooms!
- Cet été : I was hoping to create an activity that would get the students talking and getting to know each other without putting them too much on the spot to speak French in front of everyone the first day. The students sat in groups and went through each box writing down the initials of those who did each activity. As I walked around, all of the students were engaged in reading the sentences to understand what they meant, and then telling each other more information about the activity in the box (I didn’t tell them to do that- but I’m glad they did!). One of the summer activities asks if they got their driver’s license- one student told his group it took him 3 tries, but he finally got it! That’s not the type of information he probably would have volunteered to the whole class, but it was fun for his group, and they’ll remember that about him. (The French teacher at the other high school in our district used this activity with her independent study students. The Spanish teacher at my school is talking about adapting it for her classes for an activity next week.)
- Oui ou Non : One of my classes is full of very very sharp kids who get through activities quicker than I anticipate. I could tell they were rocking and rolling and would finish way before I expected! So I created this Google Slides presentation to reinforce many of the same summer activities from the previous post. For this activity, the students would stand on the left or the right side of the room depending on if they had done the activity. They couldn’t bring their sheets with them this time! It was good to get them up and moving around some, and it was a very visual way to get to know more students in the class than just those in your group. I could also ask more questions to students who had done the activity- like which beach? who got married? etc. (In French of course.) The video games slide was especially telling because they found out that some students who they didn’t expect played the same video game as them!
- Connaissons nos amis! : This is an oral activity I adapted from Senora Moore, an amazing Spanish teacher at my school. She calls it the Starburst activity because the students have to answer a certain question depending on the color Starburst they choose. I’m not as nice as her when it comes to giving out candy, but I loved these questions. We were talking in the hall about what we had our students doing the first few days, and she told me about this. So she shared it with me, and I made a copy of it to my Drive, then adapted it for French. I also added more colors because I was going to have them choose strips of colored paper rather than Starburst! 🙂 The students did this activity in groups, and then as a class. (original activity in Spanish)
- IB Learner Profile Activity (French) : Senora Moore and I both teach IB Language B, so we work together a lot- our languages may be different, but our content themes and the assessments are the same. We like to teach the IB Learner Profile to our classes, and each year we do it a bit differently. (Last year the students watched a video then we discussed the attributes of the people in the video in the context of the learner profile. The video was really good, but we could have done a better job with the actual attributes). This year, all of our students have Chromebooks, so Senora Moore came up with a great activity to have the kids learn about the IB Learner Profile by creating a class Google Slides presentation in the language explaining the attributes. Each group will define in their own words the attribute, find synonyms for the word, explain how we can demonstrate that attribute in language class, and find an image that represents it. Then the students will present their attributes to the class. The presentation ends with discussion questions where students evaluate which attributes they feel they demonstrate, and which ones are difficult for them. (Spanish Version) For homework, I am asking my students to write down which ones they demonstrate and how as well as which ones are difficult and why they feel that way. We may continue the discussion the next day. Now I’m working on something similar for my AP class which I can share with the AP Spanish teacher.
Happy sharing! Happy back to school!