The 7th and 8th graders I teach are kind and smart. I will share with you two short stories of classsroom life:
I was explaining the French expression "apprendre par coeur" "learn by heart" but I kept seeing puzzled eyes above the masks, so I just kept explaining over and over and felt myself getting more and more lost in my explanation.
Suddenly, I felt gentle tug on my blazer behind me and a boy’s voice say softly, "It’s okay Madame. We understand. We have the same expression in English." Laughter all around.
Earlier in the year, I was trying to teach the students to use the French expression for "Here" during attendance which is "Présent" pronounced "Prezon" and with great success I finally hear from the front of the room: "Prezon, Prezon, Prezon, Prezon but then I hear, "Croissant" (Cwasson)- which is exactly the correct phonetic pronunciation. By golly, that was funny. Set the whole class laughing and broke all tension in trying to get through a tough day. The class has agreed that the student will soon be a writer on SNL.
As a Foreign language teacher, it is difficult for me to hear the student's response to a question in French through their mask and plastic barriers. Asking them to repeat the answer is not ideal because it only makes the student try to shout, not a great solution during COVID. If they each had mini-white boards, they could show me the answers in French instead. This will encourage learning and keep us safe. We will reuse the same 30 boards for all six classes so it is quite economical!. Thank you! Merci!
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