Engaging Students While Learning a Second Language

This is the task that I had given to myself when I decided that working as a French as a second language teacher was my career direction. I’ve learned many things along the way. My first year, I worked primarily as a supply teacher, and was in and out of different classrooms. My second year, I was given the amazing task of leading a Grade 3 French Immersion classroom through the curriculum in a fun and engaging way. I left Chelmsford Public School in June, thinking that I was going to do a completely different assignment: I was off to teach English and Math to a Grade 6 classroom. I was looking forward to the challenge, but secretly worried about whether or not I would miss spending my day in French.

I don’t have to worry about that anymore.

As of tomorrow, I am off to Copper Cliff Public School to teach Core French, grades 4-8.

I’ve taught Core French before, and I’m very much looking forward to having the opportunity to do so again. I’ve spent my day perusing Pinterest and trying to find interesting ways to interest my new students in learning a second language, especially one as valuable to them as French can be in an area like Sudbury.

I have found great things during my search. Many pedagogy recommendations have been part of my essential reading tonight (with A Guide to Reflective Practice for Core French Teachers leading the way – I’ve gotten lost in its vortex. I think it may be my new Core French bible!), as well as many great ideas that I’m looking forward to trying in real-time, with real students. I’ve been putting together BINGO cards, and Getting To Know You printables all night. I can’t wait for this new assignment. This will be a great new experience for me. My head is spinning with totally new ideas. I keep having this vision of using Twitter to engage my Junior and Intermediate students in Core French studies. Maybe we could have Core French Twitter journals? What do you think? I’ve been looking for a way to incorporate Twitter into the classroom forever, and having the kids write a journal in 140 characters or less in French really seems like a perfect writing activity for something like Core French. If I do go through with it (because honestly, I can’t get it out of my head!), I’ll let you know how the experiment goes.

See you tomorrow, Copper Cliff! Excited that I get to spend the whole school year with you folks!

Pssssst, parents! n my search today, I found this excellent website that deals with helping your children with their FSL homework. Click on it, and enjoy all of the resources it gives you. They’ve got great websites to share (like BonPatron.com and FSLWorkToolbox.ca) as well as really great advice on how to deal with helping your child with Dictee and motivating Tweens to learn French. They’ve definitely got many good ideas!

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