Last week, I blogged about some of the back-to-school decor in my classroom. One thing I intentionally left out is the bulletin board up above. It's pretty simple, but I think it's effective. Each year I hang up posters for popular movies in French. At least two of them are from that year and the others are from recent years. Students when they see this board are able to make a connection to their personal lives. I know the argument could be made that these movies aren't "authentic" and that I should be putting up actual francophone movies, but I do feel these movies are authentic. These movies are released in francophone countries with these titles and francophone teens enjoy them. Not only that, but so do many of my students, so they're drawn in.
Since I teach first year students, at the beginning of the school year, I show a video explaining why French is important. Here are the main components of the video:
-Scenes of France
-Where French is spoken
-People sharing why they learned French
-Clips from francophone music videos and TV shows
-Clips of celebrities (that my students would know) speaking French
-Clips of movies (that my students would know) in French - this ties into the bulletin board
-Clips from our high school's French Night (a musical lip sync extravaganza), so students can see what they can do with the language down the road
Due to the ever-changing nature of what celebrities and movies are popular, I update this video nearly every year. This year I really gave it a makeover, and made a PowToon for the part about where French is spoken, putting in personal bits about our own school and classroom to make it more relevant. I also put some of my photographs of France in the beginning (if you'd like to see more of my work, visit my Flickr Photostream). I will address PowToon, as well as a similar tool called Sparkol Videoscribe, in a future post).
Here is the video, all ready to go for 2013:
After the video, we have a class discussion about what they understood, what they saw, and what they learned. Their homework is to discuss these points with their parents, and leave an optional comment on the blog. They can watch the video at home as well.
You will note the use of copyrighted material in this video. Fair Use allows for the use of small portions of copyrighted work for educational purposes with credit given to the creator.