Thursday, May 30, 2013

Hooray for Middle School French!

I've been using a brand new program for middle school French this year, and I continue to be extremely pleased with the results.  The program is called Ah, Bon? by Joanne Thomas (2011).  This semester I had a new group of students and was able to teach through chapter 4 (a little further than I got with the first semester group).  One of the wonderful things about this program is the way Joanne has incorporated just the right amount of practice that middle school students need in order to be successful.  Here's an example of what my students could do after about 12 weeks of class:

Students wrote the scripts for these videos in about 10 minutes.  They were able to do this with ease, and their spelling was excellent.  Then I asked them to practice reading the script a few times with a partner, and to see if they could do it without looking down at the words.  As you can see, the students were familiar enough with the phrases they were using to recite their scripts without really memorizing them.  If you don't speak French, it is also worth noting that the students are speaking with excellent pronunciation.  I ended up sharing the videos with their parents, and they were absolutely thrilled to see what their children could do!  What a great way to promote your French program!

I highly recommend Ah, Bon?.  I have found it to be extremely successful and worth every penny spent for all the resources that Joanne has so generously provided on the wiki space that accompanies the book.  She has also just published a Spanish version (2012).  If you're looking for a new middle school program, check it out!


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