Archives mensuelles : décembre 2017

Amis d’enfance?

Que reste-t-il de nos journées d’école?

Dans la cour d’une école, au milieu des platanes,
Les enfants jouent en chœur.
Les rondes et les bonds, les cris, les coq-à-l’âne,
Les chants pleins de ferveur,
C’est la joie distillée, très belle Marie-Anne,
Qui coule dans les cœurs.
Le maître dit: « C’est bien. » Continuer la lecture

De la dictée

Qui veut tuer son chien l’accuse de la rage. Mais pourquoi vouloir le tuer? L’histoire récente de l’école française est émaillée de procès iniques. La dictée est peut-être le plus décrié des exercices traditionnels. On n’a pas encore osé le supprimer tout à fait, tant sa pratique est ancrée dans l’imaginaire national, mais on l’a dénigrée, découragée, réduite à l’inefficacité. Elle est tolérée comme un lien symbolique entre les générations. Mais tout se passe comme si on ne la conservait que pour ne pas fâcher un électorat réactionnaire, ou par une sorte de nostalgie mal placée. Il y a dans les attaques contre la dictée le même mélange de bêtise et de lâcheté que pour le redoublement.

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Giving explanations

After my first series about games in pedagogy, I would like to share some trivial considerations. An army seldom collapses from a very tough battle, or because the enemy has been very smart, but rather from a lack of supply. In most cases, disease is deadlier than bullets. A lesson does not fail from a lack of fun and does rarely fail because the teacher hasn’t worked enough. It fails because of very common and uninteresting issues, such as a broken LCD projector, a lack of rituals, bad weather and so on. A teacher suffers much more from chatter than from true violence. There is no glory in it, but it hurts all the same. In my next articles, I would like to discuss those seemingly boring matters, because they are essential. So let’s get started with

Explanations

One major rule: keep them simple.

The trick is that you’ll probably make the lessons more complicated by trying to explain them. First, make sure that the students are in good condition before you give an explanation or a set of instructions. Partial explanations are confusing as well. The main strategies to give an explanation:

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Games for Language lessons

These are short language games, with little or no preparation. To be used as a starter or as a reward at the end of a lesson.

General precaution: As most of the games are known with many variants, it’s always a good idea to check the rules before they get started.

A few tips to make the activities entertaining:

  • Speed
  • Speed
  • Speed
  • Rewards of some sort. Glory is better than candies, and much cheaper.
  • Only a few minutes in a row. If the result is not perfect, it’s better to play the game again a few days later than to prolong it until the students are bored. By the way, it’s also much more effective for memorization to space the repetitions a little bit than to try to memorize everything at once.

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