[Lesson Plans] Holiday Trees

This week, I’ve had students in both my schools again, but seeing how it’s right before Christmas break (and some of them have been out of school for a few days), even the normally well-behaved groups were off the walls.

It was my first time actually working with some of my students this week, and I ended up having them for 10 minute chunks instead of a half-hour, so I’d usually end up doing a little bit of intro stuff (what are your hobbies) and then do a shorter version of the lesson. I had hesitated to do a Christmas lesson, but one of my students specifically asked me to do one last week, so I decided to focus on a topic where I wouldn’t have to worry about laicete…Read more

[Lesson Plans] Having no students and playing the 3 R’s game

Last week I had the unique experience of being in a school with almost no pupils in it. I decided to take the early bus to school so I’d have plenty of time to meet the new teacher I’d been working with and to find out what I’d be doing. It was still dark out and I noticed a banner in front of the school that included the word «mort,» but I didn’t really understand or think too much of it.

I hung out in the teacher’s lounge and waited for the new teacher to show up but by 8am, it started to seem like something was off: there were pretty much no students around. I found out that apparently, there were some demonstrations going on and students weren’t being sent to school. My understanding was that parents were protesting because the school was going to lose its status as a ZEP school and would therefore be losing funding. According to my new teacher, however, I had to stay in the building for the hours that I’d normally be working.

There were no students for the first hour, so I did some lesson planning. During the next hour, there were three students so the teacher had me play hangman with them for an hour. I tried to make it more challenging by telling them that they had to make a question, or to make a question without the word «what». I also tried to have them practice naming body parts as they were drawn on the board, but it was definitely kind of a stretch.

Another class had about four students in it, so they came up with questions and grilled me about my life. One student asked me about what color school buses were in the US, and I replied «yellow». He then asked what color taxis were and I repeated «yellow» and he excitedly said “C’est jolie, non?” Sometimes I forget how interesting tiny details about other countries can be.

With my afternoon classes, I did a game about the 3 R’s (reduce, reuse, and recycle) that ended up being a blast:Read more

[Lesson Plan] Thanksgiving

This week was an especially fun one at school: I got to try out Beaujolais wine in the teacher’s lounge (naughty…); my students brought me snacks again; and I got to help set up the Christmas tree. Even though all the food and festivity was great, the highlight came in class: while discussing what we’re thankful for, a student told me “I’m thankful to be with you,” which totally caught me off guard and was really sweet.

Christmas tree take one

Christmas tree take one

I ended up getting some other interesting responses for what students were thankful for when we created “Thankful Squashes.”Read more