Making it real – oral language in French class

This is the second Triad whose work is being featured on this blog.  I sat with them last week as they established their baseline for their inquiry.  The group has already recorded a good deal of student work to act as their baseline.  They do have plans to continue to share work using different forms of social media including Skype.

The oral component is always a priority in second language teaching.  Our goal is to make it authentic and usable in the real world (e.g. salutations, good manners, every day basic vocabulary).If students are engaged in authentic conversations in the class and are taught the necessary vocabulary, then they will feel comfortable and be able to converse amongst themselves in the classroom.  This activity is very rich because it brings language arts components to real life situations.

The FSL Triad met on Friday to discuss our Baseline results. Our junior kids were paired up and they asked each other questions EN FRANCAIS about their family.  Some teachers gave them “sentence starters” such as Quand (When…) Qui (who…) Ou (Where…) Est-ce que (Does…) others chose not to.  We noticed some were easier to use than others.  For our mid-line, we will interview another class in the same school (e.g. Jennifer Kealey’s class will meet with Caroline Ghaffari’s class). And our final activity will be to SKYPE with a class from another school.  The question will vary a bit – we will ask “what does your family do at Christmas”.

The students will converse with a partner and ask one another questions about his/her family. For our midline assessment, the students will have the same conversation but with a student from another class in our school. For our final assessment, the students will have the same conversation but with a student from another class in one of our triad schools, through Skype. Results will be examined to see whether the students are more comfortable speaking and if they are using more complex vocabulary and sentence structures.

#ecoo13 Learning through global collaboration, exploration and innovation

Flat Stanley

Kristen Wideen @mrswideen

Learn to incorporate global collaborative projects with your primary students. Discover strategies and resources for engaging students in all curriculum strands with authentic student examples.This presentation will highlight resources for facilitating learning through global collaboration. Student blogging, global read alouds and collaborative projects will be explored in depth.

Support notes from Kristen

Thank you so much for attending my session.  If you have any questions or comments you can find me online in a lot of places.  Listed below are some of the ways you can get a hold of me:


Twitter: @mrswideen

Class Twitter: @mrswideensclass

Professional Blog:  Mrs. Wideen’s Blog



Here are a few ways to connect with other classrooms.



Download Skype Here:

Skype In The Classroom:

Mystery Number: Here


Twitter:  Download Here

Index of Twitter Chats: Here

Blog post about activities you can do with your class on Twitter:  I Created A Class Twitter Account, Now What?


Download Kidblog Here.

Download Edublogs Here.

Primary Blogging Community Here.

Quadblogging Here.

Collaborative Projects

Projects By Jen



Skype or Google Hangout

Mystery Skype – skype to someone and you have to figure out where they live.  Students ask questions to the Skype connection

Mystery number – using Skype or Twitter – one class chooses a number the other class tries to figure it out.

Sharing an inquiry – any question can be explored between classes

Primary Blogging Community – project linking up classrooms to blog together – now has 80 classrooms working together K-4

What is the Primary Blogging Community?

The PBC is a community of primary teachers (children aged 5-10) that want to share their students’ learning via their classroom blog and their students’ personal blogs.  Classrooms will be grouped with 3 or 4 other classrooms from around the globe.  The program is 8 weeks long.  The first 4 weeks will concentrate on the classroom blogs only.  Each week, one of the classes will be the focus class and the other 3 classes will be visiting and commenting on the focus class blog.  The following week, the second class will be the focus class, and so on.   This is a chance for the other classes to see what is happening in your school and class, to discover where in the world you are located and to learn about how to write a good blog post and to watch how you model and work together to write good comments.  After the first 4 weeks, we switch the focus from your classroom blog and concentrate on student blogs.  The same rotations occur but the focus is solely on your student’s individual blogs.

Flat Stanley Project – everywhere that Flat Stanley went the students blogged about this.  Example of a multi-media Flat Stanley site

Here is a Flat Stanley blog

A key point for blogging – kids need an audience!  If you close your blog the students have no audience and they will lose interest.  Consider the potential of teaching other students around the world.  Kids need the feedback and comments.

Example of a project that connects – ePals