Teach French with videos

There is no doubt about it and it should not surprise us. Students want videos and feel they learn better with videos. They are a generation brought up on TVs and computers. No surprises there. Allow my own students to reiterate this:

” I like it when we watch a video and have to write what they’re saying because it helps me figure out words I don’t know and helps me remember words that I have already learnt.”

“I like it when we watch videos because it helps us to learn and it is also enjoyable so we will absorb more information.”

“I enjoy watching videos in French because it really makes me listen and begin to understand the conversations. I can pick up basic information and learn what things are. It sinks in more.”

” I like it when we watch short French videos and also when we make our own slide and video presentations.”

“I enjoyed watching the video of the French girl telling the story and watching Phineas and Ferb because I learnt a lot of new words but it was also fun.”

“I enjoyed the video conversation activity we did. I think it was fun and enjoyable but I also learnt a lot about doing a French conversation.”

“My favourite project was the iMovie project in which we had to write an oral in French. It allowed me to hear how I pronounce things so that I could fix some of my mispronounced words.”

“I like French when we do interactive stuff like making a movie or putting together a slide show. I also like working in pairs or groups a lot.”

“I feel that the introduction of the laptops has meant excellent things for this class. We do a lot of work with technology and I htink it is a convenient and faster way of learning. The student must take responsibility for staying on task and I think that teaches us skills that we’ll need in later years of study. The laptops have meant a huge number of resources are accessible to us at any time.”

” I really enjoyed the projects we did throughout the course of the year, especially the video conversation . it was a very creative way to learn and it was fun and educational at the same time.”

We are asked each year, as part of literacy development across the school , to survey our students in a prose under supervision assignment. This way the students get the practice writing and we get some very valuable feedback. I use short videos of two to five minutes and I always make sure the students have a task to complete while they are watching. Since I teach French, it is often trying to keep a list of what they have understood. I have tested them later and they do remember things well this way. I try and keep the videos topical and I have found out they will go home and come back to class with recommendations of what we could watch! When they make their own videos we do a draft script and then I make sure they know the software before we do any recording. They have loved this and worked very hard and have been quite inventive.

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