Before we part ways for Spring break, I wanted to share a brief update on what the different classes in the French curriculum here at BCD have been up to lately.
From poetry writing and presentations, cooking demo’s, PenPal exchanges, cultural and geographically themed projects, and learning songs, French students of all ages at BCD have been busy abeilles! (bees)
The 7th and 8th-grade French classes are now putting the finishing touches on their Slam Poetry videos – for submission to the Slame Tes Accents! international competition proposed through the organization, Francophonie des Amériques. The students were challenged to create a poem as a class and choose how they wanted to Slam their poem, employing the pre-requisite vocabulary and meeting other requirements for the contest. The 7th grader chose a theme of ‘unity through different accents’ and ‘self-confidence’ under the umbrella of the international French-language community. Their project was filmed in a casual, walk-through style in the Learning Commons.
For their part, the 8th-grade class embraced a ‘high-tech’ approach, using a drone, filmed outside, and with voice-over audio. Their message is aimed at the importance of recognizing the shared community of the French-speaking community around the world, no matter skin color, orientation, religion, current events or other cultural facets.
I’m very proud of the energy, enthusiasm and quality of work that these students brought to their projects. The organization will announce the winners in April.
For more information about the contest, please visit : http://www.francophoniedesameriques.com/slame/
The 6th graders took a cultural microscope to the different regions of France, each choosing a region of the Hexagon and shining the spotlight on and outlining notable facts for each. If you are looking for any fun + tasty recipes to try over the Spring break, have a look at their posters for guidance!
Our 4th and 5th graders have prepared their third round of letters to their friends in France. It has been an incredible experience to see the connection grow between these classes on both sides of the Atlantic as the school year has evolved. This project strengthens not only vocabulary use, sentence structure, talking about oneself, asking questions and letter writing, but more importantly, it brings the ‘human element’ into our French language learning experience. The children have been able to establish a relationship with their PenPals and with the Ecole Montessori d’Uzès since September; learning more about ‘a day in the life’ of their pen-friends, both personally and academically. Through these letters, here are some of our takeaways : we were all saddened to hear of the tragic deaths by fox of two of their school chickens, Le Chef and Flash, 🙁 we were intrigued to learn of shared interests in Harry Potter books and favorite flavors of ice cream, and felt a general curiosity and interest about the importance of the celebration of Carnevale in France.
I welcome you all to visit the French classroom in Ryan 22 to see our PenPal board, read the letters and see the beautiful drawings done by our PenPal friends.
Our Kindergarten and grades 1-2 friends are starting to prepare for the performance of a classic French song at the Spring concert. More on that to come!!
Best wishes to everyone for a safe and fun Spring vacation.
P.s.. check out the BCD photo album to see some pictures of our continued adventures in French!
Mois de la Francophonie, How Will We Celebrate at BCD?
Bonjour tout le monde!
What is the Mois de la Francophonie, you ask? The goal of La Francophonie Month, organized each year around the world, is to promote the French language in the context of cultural diversity, as well as to support dialogue and bringing together people, groups and communities interested in the Francophonie. 33 million people in the Americas live and radiate the French language around them.
We will celebrate La Francophonie Month at BCD in several ways, starting off with a crepe-making ‘atelier’ on Friday, February 1, with grades 4-8. My husband & local chef, Benjamin, will help us to assemble our ingredients and share the technique to making a perfectly thin and delicious crepe! …more details to follow, to be distributed by email per grade.
Another way in which students will celebrate Francophonie month is by participating in an international ‘Slam poetry’ competition, called ‘Slametes Accents’. Through this competition, the Center of Francophonie des Ameriques aims “to highlight the diversity of French accents hosted by the Americas, to highlight the vitality and dynamism of the Francophonie of the Americas and stimulate interest in the Francophonie by demonstrating to students the power of words. Whether French is your second or mother tongue, whether you are starting out or perfecting it, display your accents and make them vibrate in video form!”
With grades 7 and 8, we will create a video of 60 to 90 seconds. Our class slam must integrate some 15 proposed words. This is an opportunity to celebrate the richness, vitality, and diversity of the French language during the month of the Francophonie.
Here are some objectives of the competition, which we will approach in a way that best represents our Francophone culture at BCD and our school community! …
Stimulate interest in the Francophonie of the Americas in educational institutions.
Generate the pride of speaking French and belonging to the Francophonie family.
Engage students in their learning of French.
Demonstrate the evocative power of slam.
Develop written and oral skills in French.
Among the many prizes offered is the chance to win a visit to the school by Mathieu Lippé, a popular artist, singer, and slam poet from Quebec who has enjoyed great success among young people with his “contagious” dynamism. His visit, in the form of a creative workshop, will certainly help stimulate and promote student interest in the French language.
For more information about this engaging and inspiring educational challenge, please follow the link; http://www.francophoniedesameriques.com/slame/
Bonjour et bienvenue to the 2018-2019 school year!
Over the summer, I spent time preparing materials for the new year. I tapped into new resource providers, like the publisher Bayard-Milan, and I am looking forward to implementing new resources in partnership with what is currently in circulation for native-speaking students in France. I’ve built on my visit last Spring to the International School of Boston (ISB), a bilingual French-American school, have reviewed my notes, and am bringing new ideas into play this year throughout the various grade levels here at BCD. While visiting ISB, I spent the day shadowing French teachers in different grade levels, 1st through 5th, to get a firsthand account of a day in the life of a French immersion school.
Reading in the target foreign language is a pillar in strengthening a student’s aptitude and comprehension. In French class at BCD, I will continue to include French stories and French language educational magazines into daily classwork, which will encourage the students to learn about themselves, the world around them, and about expressing their unique personality … in French!
The grant was titled “The Magic of Reading in French; ” its goal is to bring free books to children enrolled in French classes in both public and private schools across New England. The objectives of this fund are to:
Trigger children’s curiosity for French language and culture;
Expand kids’ French language skills – all under the guise of having fun with French books;
Improve and strengthen existing French tracks.
And…drum roll please…
On a gagné!We won!
When I arrived on campus last Friday, I found four big cardboard boxes full of brand new French books for BCD! These 70 books will contribute greatly to our school’s French-language literature resources which will be used in French class across the grade levels. I also encourage students and parents to borrow books as often as they’d like to read at home.
The different resources and the experiences I refer to in this post, combined with the enriching, culturally appropriate, and level-appropriate novels and multimedia tools we currently use in my curriculum, will help enable the continued discovery and encouragement toward the enjoyment of literature in French at BCD.
I hope that you have all had a fun summer! I, along with my colleagues, are so happy to welcome you back to the BCD campus this week, or to campus for the first time if you are a new student and family! Here’s to a great year!