My postings seem to be all about my S2 class at the moment, but they are doing such good and interesting work, with such gusto
I mentioned in recent tweet how happy I have been with them, particularly the standard of recent homework, but also the great work they've been doing in class. Due to their cooperation and sense of fun the recent series of lessons has been so enjoyable I thought I'd share them with you.
For those of you who know Métro 2 (Mod 2 Unit 4) we are looking at arranging to go out, using the conditional phrase "on pourrait". Since acquiring an IWB I've been finding an awful lot of super resources via TES Connect, but the one below is my favourite. I made a simple search using "on pourrait" as my keyword, filtering it through Modern languages. This gave me 17 different resources. I looked at 2 or 3 before I came to chocolatchaud's "Qu'est-ce qu'on pourrait faire?" PowerPoint.
What an brilliant idea...an Explosion of Ideas. Using the powerpoint I presented the idea of the "on pourrait + infintive" construction and gave each table group an A4 sheet with a photocopy of the spider diagram from slide 2. I then explained the task, emphasising that the ideas didn't have to be serious BUT they had to be in good (ok reasonable) French, and that they had to get as many as possible. On the board I put up a 15 minute countdown courtesy of e.ggtimer, and I gave them some background music ( a couple of tracks from Trans-Europe Express by Kraftwerk) which was not hugely appreciated but I kept it on anyway.
After the fifteen minutes were up the recorder's from each table went to another table and discussed and noted their ideas for 2 more minutes. On their return the groups then had to decide of their Top 5 activities.
Then I dropped the bomb...the next lesson they were going to find their perfect partner via Speed Dating. That caused no end of groans.
That evening I collated all the top 5's and drew up this table ready for the next lesson.
Speed Dating Sheet - Free Legal Forms
The lesson involved a major room reorganisiation which had the students puzzled on their arrival, but they soon got over it. Next came the tricky part of explaining what to do.
- in the column headed "moi" tick 5 fave suggestions
- put 1st partners initials in next column, ask "Qu'est-ce qu'on pourrait faire ce soir?"
- place a tick against each of partners 5 responses
- answer partners question with your 5 faves
- on signal move 1 place to the left and repeat process
This took us almost to the end of the lesson but first they had to find their ideal partner by finding the best match from the responses gained during the exercise.
At the start of the 3rd lesson I dropped the second bomb, now they had to sit and work with their perfect partner. Cue serious groaning all around. The aim of this lesson was to introduce the idea of making excuses using "je ne veux / peux pas, parce que..." Again I resorted to TES Connect and found an excellent presentation by Cestrian to introduce the excuses. To this I added my own slide with an exemplar of the sort of dialogue I wanted them to produce. Here it was my turn to be proud of myself as I dicovered how to add sound to a ppt.
I then set them to work producing a dialogue in their pairs. This took longer than I anticipated because of various disruptions affecting the timetable, but we finally got it done.
Then we came to the culminating event...presenting the dialogues. Of course as soon as I mentioned the video camera the grumbles started. My initial idea was to have each pair do a sort of Alias Smith and Jones head-to-head, but then I had an even better idea (inspired I must say by Emma's homework). Why not get puppets to do the speaking for them.
They seemed to like this idea much better.
Here are the results:
In analysis the series of lessons took a little longer than I antcipated, but in some respects I wasn't able to control that. I really enjoyed this topic and the students have definitely had fun in the lessons. We didn't go into the grammatical explanations of "on pourrait + infinitive" but the students have used it in a question and in making a series of (ridiculous) suggestions. Most importantly they have worked with lots of other classmates and they have showed off their creativity and imagination both in thinking up strange activities and producing their dialogue.
As the implementation of Curriculum for Excellence approaches is it more of these kind of lessons we should be getting our learners to experience? Yes and no I think. On a simple physical and mental basis maintaining the kind of drive necessary for these lessons would be impossible everyday...and doing this kind of stuff everyday would render them becoming as stale as lessons in classes taught by those who have "taught the same thing successfully for the last 25 years and can't see why i should change now." However these kinds of lesson allow students to experience different kinds of learning (collaborative, direct teaching, experiential) and to allow their creative juices to flow. It also allows for something to be created at the end, i.e the film.
I'd be grateful for your thoughts.
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