Saturday, May 31, 2014

Change up

I have moved on from adjectives to adverbs now.  I did a summative test with the students and found that the students who had not done their homework did not do well at all on the test.  Even "catching up" on the video view at recess was not enough focus for them.  Part of the success is having the luxury to focus quietly at home at their own pace.

My first lesson with adverbs was a little different.  I incorporated a video from another source and put it in a course file in D2L.  The students still had to take similar notes as they had been doing all along.  I asked them to find the answers to about 6 questions in the video on adverbs.  Most were able to do it.  Some students had done way more work than I had asked.  My homework delinquents are still that way.

I put some practice exercises online instead of using paper.  Then I made an interactive game on kahoot.  Perhaps adding some gaming into the classroom will push those delinquents into practicing their skills!

Here's the lesson

Course file in D2L - Adverbs

Here's some practice questions:

Adverb practice questions

And here is my game - it was sooooo much fun!!!  Kids wanted to play it again!

Kahoot adverbe game

Wednesday, May 7, 2014

"Homework" in class

Traditional homework is now done in class. I circulate around the room and we have time for me to help individuals. Here I am, walking around while the students are writing their stories: While they were working on their stories, I noticed a few problems with the adjective placement. I was there to remind them of the rules - and the exeptions. They peer edited and then re-wrote the stories with the descriptive feedback they were given. Flipping the class and watching the work, I was assured that they were writing from the heart in French and not using translation software. Here you can see examples of their writing and the improvements they made.
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Thursday, April 24, 2014

Les adjectifs

Students are continuing to take notes based on my lessons and there is still a mad rush among many to be the first to view my lessons.  I keep uploading lessons and forgetting to click the publish button.  Many are persistent and will check throughout the evening in case there is any change in the status of the video.  The next day they are rewarded with French cash!  Hopefully all will have viewed the video before our next task tomorrow.

Here is the next video on adjective placement.  Normally the adjective is after the noun except for the "Baton" adjectives:

Wednesday, April 9, 2014

Students engaging in the lesson

If you view this video, there is a spelling error that I made TWICE - instead of typing voici, I typed voice. I don't know why, I never do that normally. However, when I checked my email the night I posted the lesson, I had many notifications from YouTube that students had commented on my video on my error. Another one also thought that my adjective as the passé composé and asked a question about that as well. All in French!!! When they came in the next day, everyone was excited to talk about my mistake and we discussed whether Madame used the word 'fermé' as an adjective, or was it a past participle?

Monday, April 7, 2014

Test results - Imparfait

The results are in from the test.  The students mostly had A's, even when I made the writing tasks harder.  The lowest mark was 60.  I asked if the online lessons helped, and for some it did.  I also did one other thing differently.  I didn't have time to correct all the students work the day before the test, so I posted the answers online and told the students to check it themselves.  Perhaps for some students who wouldn't have otherwise studied, this was an advantage for them.  It kind of forced them to go online to correct their own work and go back to the tutorial if they needed to.

Sunday, April 6, 2014

Using the imparfait in context

After flipping the class and doing tasks, it was time to take the learning up a notch and have the students actually using the concept in their writing.  I was taking the D2L advanced course online and creating lessons for imparfait anyway.  I had the students view a picture online and write sentences describing what they saw.

Imagine que tu as un caméra et tu filmes cette scène. Écris 10 phrases à l'imparfait.
Réponds à ces questions: Qu'est-ce que les gens faisaient? Décris les gens. Décris le temps (soleil, température). Décris le décor.

Quand tu as fini, remets ton travail dans le dropbox. Décris cette scène
Si tu ne sais pas comment remettre ton travail, clique ici pour voir le vidéo.

I gave them feedback and had them correct their work for a mark.  They were pretty good at this.  Again I had maybe 5 who didn't take it seriously, or else just wrote their sentences on a piece of paper. 

I was also preparing and oral communication activity - a restaurant review. I also asked them to describe their restaurant setting in the imparfait. This they did on the blog posts in D2L. That didn't go over too well, so they wrote them down on paper and had their peers check the verbs for correct usage and conjugation. I left this up to them to work out and have not yet seen their work.

My third Imparfait lesson

Time for the third lesson came and I was able to create the video without too much problem.  Students had complained that they were unable to view the video - I wasn't sure why.  Maybe because they did not have Windows Media Player?  I was forced to created a YouTube channel.  Everyone can access that.
I sat at my desk while the students were working and one student had finished early.  I asked him if he knew anything about creating a YouTube channel.  He did - I am not surprised and he walked me through it - in French.
Now I had a YouTube channel.  I uploaded my lesson and told the students.  They were thrilled and thought it was so cool.  I told them they didn't have to subscribe, I would just post it on the D2L site.  They WANTED to subscribe.  How awesome is that.

If you are a francophile, you will notice that I made a slight error.  I forgot to put an apostrophe between the je and entendais.  It's difficult to be focused on everything when you are creating these video lessons!
Anyway, the students told me the next day.  Ok, rewards for watching the video and an extra one if you noticed my mistake.
I didn't want any negative parent feedback, so I took the video off the D2L site and replaced it with a Prezi I created for my course which covers the same concept.
Here it is:
I checked the note-taking - all good.  A few students lagged behind and had to view the video at recess - maybe 5 total.  Onto to inclass work.  Very few students appeared to need my help.  My lowest student proudly showed her work.  I'm not sure what is helping her.  I think she gets help from her peers.  In any case, it's more than what she would do if she took it home.