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!
Courage. Love. Alaska. These have been the three topics that have dominated our classroom recently. First, courage – that was learning about the life and work of Martin Luther King, Jr., Ruby Bridges, and Rosa Parks. And about Bobbi Gibb, the first woman to run the Boston Marathon. And also about the lives of 26 other important and courageous woman leaders, from an alphabet book called Amelia to Zora. These stories naturally led into conversations about our own lives and times when we each needed to be brave in particular situations. Drawings and writings followed. We’ve also learned two poems on courage, which we will present at the soon-to-be rescheduled-because-of-weather Courage Assembly!
And then love – Valentine’s Day! We had fun making valentines for families and for our fifth-grade peer readers. Thanks to all who sent in goodies for the party! We learned that the Magic Valentine Potato (from a story by Daniel Pinkwater) is real! And he (she? it?) brought potato chips for us to share with our fifth-grade friends – how nice!
Then we celebrated Alaska Day – so much fun! Starting with photos of my own trip to Alaska last summer (which I LOVED) included sharing the photo of me doing a polar plunge in 38 degree water (which took all of my COURAGE), the day moved easily between outdoor and indoor activities, all related to Alaska and/or winter. Ms. Doherty and Ms. Heddinger treated us to a delicious blueberry pancake lunch (blueberries being one of the fruits that grows well up there). It was a terrific day!
And then it was The 100thDay of School! Truly, the fun has not stopped all January and February!
And our amaryllis bloomed! We painted it!
Regular work continued, also, in between all of these special events. Each child is making their own alphabet book, and each has now completed a Venn diagram using colored pasta. These culminating projects hang on our wall. As a group, the class did wonderfully well sorting by one and two attributes. Some even challenged themselves, sorting by three attributes, with great success!