It’s been a hectic few weeks but it often seems that at times the simplest things are the most effective. This is the story of a Year 7 French class – we were learning the numbers from 1-20.
Lucky enough to have a projector in the classroom I have been able to use projected images as part of the fly swatter game, used occasionally by language teachers. The fly swatter game is something similar to the card game snap. In pairs students are required to snap up the relevant card (usually a vocab item) before the other person. Sudden inspiration (the kind that finds me whilst running around the neighbourhood) had me using pictures of various national football (soccer) teams, the kind where they’re all lined up and smiling before the game. Football players conveniently have their numbers on the front of their shirts as well as the back, so we projected these images on the screen, called out a number in the target language (French in this case) and it was on… The winner in each case was able to stay up at the board to face their new challenger and, after it was all over, confectionery was passed on to those who had been able to stay up at the board the longest. To keep them on their toes the picture was changed to a different team, just as they got used to it.
Projecting the image onto the board minimised any damage that could have happened to the flashcards – as a result of over-enthusiastic language students (all boys). It enabled those not involved and not so confident to take it all in before they had a go and at the end of it all, some who knew very few of the numbers were able to identify them. Reasonably happy with this one.