Monday, 20 October 2014

Halloween & mini pictures

Following on from last week’s post on numbers and Halloween sweets. I’ve put together a list of simple ideas – if you read my blog you know I like simple ideas – for activities using mini pictures. Mini pictures are one of my favourite tools because you can do so many things with them !

If you’re looking for some Halloween inspired ideas for this last week before half term then you might want to download these mini-pictures

Une araignée – a spider
Des bonbons – sweets
Une citrouille – a pumpkin
Un chat noir – a black cat
Un squelette – a skeleton
Un fantôme – a ghost

Below are a few of my favourite games to play with them.

At word level:

  • Montrez moi ! (Show me!)

1 picture per person
Call out 1 item then 2 items, etc.

*variation with a 2 sets of cards between 3 : fastest person in each group to pick the pictures and wave it (2 pictures / 3 children > competition !)  

  • Stand up bingo

  • Quiz quiz swap : Qu’est ce que c’est? C’est…

  • Categorising: le/la/les; colours; j’aime/je n’aime pas, etc. or let the children choose the categories

At sentence level:

  • Same games with familiar structures such as:

Je voudrais
Je n’aime pas

Pair/table games:

  • All cards facing down, 1 player picks a card and hides it from his/her partner who has to guess what it is. If he/she guesses it right he/she takes the card, otherwise the other person keeps it. Swap over. 

  • All cards facing down, children play together and take it in turns to say an item of vocab that they think the picture is (they take a guess). They turn the card over and check if they are right the card is then placed facing up, if not they leave it facing down, they continue until all cards are facing up.

Monday, 13 October 2014

Moving on with numbers : from 10 to 20.

 I am starting to look at ways to practice numbers to 20 with Year 2 at Culcheth Primary School. This particular class is now in its second year of learning French and have become very confortable with numbers to 10, so to keep them interested and making progress I’m going for ‘bigger numbers’.  I think that particular class is ready!

This is what I’ve done so far: 

  • First, I’m not doing a whole 30 min lesson on numbers I’m treating it as a starter/ a warm up after singing our greeting song and personal information Q&As. So every week I’m doing about 5 minutes.

  • Number song:

This song is already in my resources for Upper KS2 and children love it! 
As the children are getting more familiar with it,  I like to pause the song and ask the children what number comes next.

  • Counting:

In KS1, we have a focus on ‘Harvest’ time in France and we have been talking about sunflowers and grapes and used it to practice counting, colours, etc.
One of the favourite activity of my classes is to count ‘things’ i.e sunflowers in a field, how many grapes on a bunch?

I ask the class how many we should count. They have to suggest a number in French between 0 and 20 and then they can come and count them out loud (with the class joining in) on the interactive whiteboard, marking them with the pen as they go along, then we continue until we counted all the sunflowers, grapes.

With Halloween coming up I thought we could count sweets, here is a PowerPoint of pictures of sweets you can use - if you like.

I like this approach of constantly revisiting things instead of ticking things off as done plus it means you can make your resources last longer – I’ve used the same picture of a sunflower field for the last 3 lessons!

I’d reckon by Christmas most of the children will be able to understand/ remember their numbers to 20.

Monday, 6 October 2014

What worked well last week #11

One of our focuses in KS2 this half term is school life; so far, we have been discussing differences and similarities and had a handwriting lesson to practice our French cursive handwriting.
Last week, we were having a maths lesson… in French. We practiced our numbers to 20 and learnt the names for the symbols:

add = plus
take away = moins
times = fois
divided by = divisé par
equal = égal

We did some mental maths and some simple sums on the mini-whiteboard. We made it into a challenge by playing the countdown music and had to get our answers ready in 20 sec or so.

Then we had a go at some ‘physical maths’.  We showed the numbers using our fingers and used our arms to make up the symbols: cross shape for add, etc. It’s pretty easy to work out the actions for each symbol.

We did a couple of examples at the front with 5 volunteers, one person per ‘item’ in the sum:

i.e. 5 + 5 = 10

As well as showing their number or symbol they had to say what it was:
i.e cinq plus cinq égal dix

Finally, the children got in groups of 5 or 6 and prepared their own physical maths sum to test the rest of the class.

Another focus in Y6 is ‘all the about me’ including introducing a friend or classmate. We are trying to gently move the children (not beginners) from the ‘je’ form to the ‘il/elle’ form.

As a warm up/starter we had a game of ‘don’t break the chain’ with je m’appelle, il or elle s’appelle, etc.

First, I introduced the idea of the difference between je m’appelle and il/elle s’appelle by asking children ‘comment t’appelles-tu’ and then saying (and exaggerating) ‘il/elle s’appelle’ + pointing to the child. 
Pretty quickly they worked out I was taking about the 1st pers. vs. 3rd pers.

I set them the challenge on their table (4 or 6 children per table) to say what their name was, adding the previous person’s name and so on .i.e. je m’appelle… / il s’appelle / elle s’appelle… / etc.

We added an element of competition and tried to be the fastest table to say everybody’s name without breaking the chain (without getting it mixed up with je and il/elle). 

I didn't think it would be THAT much fun, but it was, and all the tables had a go at being the fastest

If you’ve been reading my blog you know I like simple ideas, well there you have...2 new – tried and tested- activities! 

Wednesday, 1 October 2014

Continuing the celebrations for European Day of Languages

This morning we had our belated European Day of Languages celebrations at Alderman Bolton Primary School.

Every year we invite parents to watch the French lesson, each class has a 20 minutes slot and they all prepare something to perform: a song, conversation, game, joining in a story, etc.

To make it not too time consuming for the teachers, in terms of preparation, we choose something the children did the year before so they already know the vocabulary, the songs, etc.

You can see the program below and the activities each class prepared: 

It was a brilliant morning and the children (and teachers) did so well! The parents really enjoyed it too!

I was particularly impressed with the Reception classes who had the parents involved in the activities (making French flags) and also their French café with a view of the Eiffel Tower !

Sunday, 28 September 2014

'Juggling' with colours

Our theme this year, for European Day of Languages, was:

 ‘ A grand day out’: Let’s go on a trip to France, to Paris…..What might we see? What might we do?

The idea was to join in the street acts/performers we might come across when visiting Paris such as mimes, jugglers, music, etc.  It was our way of celebrating learning French and learning about France. You can read more about it on Janet’s blog.

An activity that went down really well was ‘juggling’ with colours  - it required hardly any preparation and did capture children’s imagination.

Jayne (@DewsnipJayne) – a fellow JLN Associate French/Spanish teacher – suggested introducing the colours as ‘blobs’ of colour to make them look like juggling balls. Here is my take on her idea!  

First, I asked the children to juggle with pretend balls.

Whilst juggling I introduced the colours (‘the balls’) one by one: rouge….bleu…vert…

After introducing all the colours we spend a couple of minutes reviewing pronunciation, checking we understood all the colours, etc.

Then we started juggling again, we choose 2 colours : bleu/vert – and started juggling with the 2 colours, slowly then faster, we added a 3rd colour and continued in the same manner. We repeated this with other colours adding more and more until we had all the colours.

Finally, in pairs, the children had a go at choosing which colours to juggle with and in which order, doing ‘tricks’, fast or slow, etc.  

It went down really well with Y2, Y3 and Y4, whether new to this vocabulary or as a revisiting activity.

Et voila!  Another way to introduce/revise colours in your lessons ! What do you think?