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Latest from frenchteacher

Here are the subscriber resources I have added in the last month:

Text and exercises on overcrowding in French prisons. Article, vocabulary list to complete, questions about the text, general questions on prison and law and order.
Y13 (advanced)
Video listening for near beginners: Trotro fait un bonhomme de neige. Linked video with sentences to recognise, gapped translation and a mini story in French to complete. By the way, if you didn't know, Trotro is a cute little donkey much loved by toddlers in France. Fortunately, unlike most donkeys, he speaks French slowly and clearly.
(Y8 - near beginner)
Parallel reading passage and exercise on the organisation Islamic State. Some useful background knowledge for students.
(Y10-11 - intermediate)
Parallel reading. The story of three Mexican fishermen rescued after drifting 8000km across the Pacific. True/false/not mentioned exercise and an idea for written exploitation.
(Y10/11 - intermediate
A French to English translation on the subject of the cartoon book market in France. Model answer provided as for all the translations on the site.
Y12-13 (Advanced)
Two parallel readings for intermediate level. Weird hotel complaints and phobias. Parallel French-English text, true/false/not mentioned and other exercises.
Y10-11 (Intermediate)
Two parallel readings for intermediate level. The first is about young people's changing online behaviour in France, the second about superheroes. Parallel texts (French and English) with true sentences to identify and some gap fill. Could work with excellent Y9 pupils.
Y10-11 (Intermediate)
Video listening. The Ariane rocket launcher. Link to short video from 1jour1question. Correct sentences to identify and vocab to complete. Teacher's answers provided. You could do this with fast Y10s, Y11 or Y12 (high intermediate/low advanced). The1jour1question videos are really good for this level.
Y10-11 (Intermediate)
Three new parallel reading for beginners. The Eiffel Tower, the Channel Tunnel and the EU - short parallel texts (on in French, one in English) with true or false sentences to identify and a vocabulary list to complete. I've also posted a front cover page if you want to make the parallel texts into a booklet.
Y7 (Beginner)


Popular posts from this blog

Tell stories


How can we make listening more enjoyable and effective for pupils? How can we turn it from a potential chore to something more memorable (and therefore more likely to stick in their long term memories)? I am of the opinion that since humans are "wired" to engage in personal listening and speaking (the expression "social brain" has been used in this context), they may be more interested and attentive when the message comes from a real person rather than a disembodied audio source. (This may or may not be relevant, but research has been carried out which demonstrates that babies pick up phonological patterns better when they listen to a caregiver rather than listen to a tape or watch a video - see here for summaries of research into this area by Patricia Kuhl.)

One easy way to make listening stimulating for pupils is to tell them easy stories in the target language. I was reminded of this while reading Penny Ur's book 100 Teaching Tips (reviewed here

New GCSE resources on frenchteacher

As well as writing resources for the new A-levels, I have in recent months been posting a good range of materials to support the new GCSEs. First exams are not until 2018, but here is what you can find on the site in addition to the many other resources (grammar exercises, texts, video listening etc).

I shall not produce vocabulary lists since the exam board specifications now offer these, with translations.

Foundation Tier 

AQA-style GCSE 2016 Role-plays
AQA-style GCSE 2016 Photo card conversations
AQA-style GCSE 2016 Photo card conversations (2)
100 translation sentences into French (with answers)
Reading exam
Reading exam (2)
How to write a good Foundation Tier essay (ppt)
How to write a good Foundation Tier essay (Word)

Higher Tier 

AQA-style GCSE 2016 Photo card conversations (Higher tier)
AQA-style GCSE 2016 Photo card conversations (Higher tier) (2)
20 translations into French (with answers)
Reading exam (Higher tier)
How to write a good Higher Tier essay (ppt)
How to write a…

What teachers are saying about The Language Teacher Toolkit

"The Language Teacher Toolkit is a really useful book for language teachers to either read all the way through or dip into. What I like about it is that the authors Steve Smith and Gianfranco Conti are totally upfront about what they believe to be good practice but back it up with research evidence." (Ernesto Macaro, Oxford University Department of Education)

"I absolutely love this book based on research and full of activities..  The best manual I've read so far. One of our PDs from the Australian Board of Studies recommended your book as an excellent resource.  I look forward to the conference here in Sydney." Michela Pezzi, Teacher, Australia, Facebook)

"Finally, a book for World Language teachers that provides practical ideas and strategies that can actually be used in the classroom, rather than dry rhetoric and theory that does little to inspire creativity in ways that are engaging for both students and teachers alike." (USA teacher, Amazon review)

The Language Teacher Toolkit review

We were delighted to receive a review of The Language Teacher Toolkit from eminent applied linguist Ernesto Macaro from Oxford University. Macaro is a leader in the field of second language acquisition and applied linguistics. His main research interests are teacher-student interaction and language learning strategies pupils can use to improve their progress.

Here is Professor Macaro's review:
The Language Teacher Toolkit is a really useful book for language teachers to either read all the way through or dip into. What I like about it is that the authors Steve Smith and Gianfranco Conti are totally upfront about what they believe to be good practice but back it up with research evidence. So for example the ‘methodological principles’ on page 11 are supported by the research they then refer to later in the book and this approach is very similar to the one that we (Ernesto Macaro, Suzanne Graham, Robert Woore) have adopted in our ‘consortium project’( The point i…

5 great zero preparation lesson ideas

When the pressure is on and there are only so many hours on the week, you need a repertoire of zero preparation go-to activities which promote input and/or practice. Here are five you might well find useful.

1. My weekend

We know that listening is the most important yet often neglected skill for language learning. It's also something some pupils find hard to do. To develop listening skill and provide tailored comprehensible input try this:

You tell the class you are going to recount what you did last weekend and that they have to make notes in English. The amount of detail you go into and the speed you go will depend on your class. Talk for about three minutes. If you spent the whole weekend marking, you can always make stuff up!

You then make some true or false (maybe not mentioned too) statements in the target language about what you said in your account. Class gives hands up (or no hands up) answers. This can then lead into a simple pair work task where pupils make up their own tru…