French

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I always love to incorporate the wider world of Francophonie into my French classes. One of my go-to assignments is a Francophonie research project. I’ve run variations on this theme across all levels of French study, and I’ll make a separate post about the whole project itself, but I wanted to share a supplemental assignment which incorporates digital literacy skills and some elementary coding.

For French I, the base project involves researching a country (location, capital, leader, languages, foods, etc.), which students then present in front of the class in French, while the rest of the students filled out a little passeport I had them assemble. One quarter, I brought my students into the library, to visit our learning technologist, who walked us through an “hour of code” exercise: digital postcards.

Here’s a sample of what a simple one could look like, using some C0-licensed pictures of Paris:

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My school's learning technologist directed me to VidCode's "Bestie Greeting Card" activity. Students learned some JavaScript, uploaded some videos and pictures of the countries they researched, and created animated, digital postcards for that country.

Some of my students got really creative, incorporating background videos, multiple images and filters, etc., showcasing pastoral countrysides, urban landmarks, and local delicacies from the countries they researched!

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Élise Gravel, a québecoise children’s book author and illustrator, has some wonderful posters to teach children about inclusivity and social awareness. Many of these are available for free to download and print from her blog, available in both French and English. Some topics include:

  • Identifying and stopping bullies
  • What is Autism?
  • How to minimize our impact on the environment
  • Making mistakes is human
  • Boys and girls can like whatever they want to like

You can hang these in your classroom for passive impact, or you can incorporate them into your lessons by having students analyze them and share their opinions.

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French news sites

Below are some French-language news sites that I give to my students for current events presentations.

General, simplified

Print news sources

Non-print news sources

Satire

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