an archive of lesson plans

Author: Maria Glukhova

F20 Online: Case Study

Conversation Class Lesson Summary

Language Resident Name:

Maria Glukhova

Day and Date:

Week 5+, Fall 2020

Language and Level (intermediate or advanced class):

  • All languages
  • Originally, it was for very advanced students, but the scenarios + tasks can be adapted for different levels

Class theme/topics discussed:

Case Study (https://writingcenter.ashford.edu/writing-case-study-analysis)

Goal of the class:

To talk about global issues such as Women’s Rights and Education and to work on problem-solving.

How did you structure the class?

Activity 1 – Brainstorm. What is a case study and why/how can we use it in Humanities?

Activity 2 – Students are divided into two groups. They receive two different cases with all the information about organizations they work for, the problem they try to solve, statistics, etc. Their task is to find an optimal solution, create a project, think of the recruitment, write down their goals and perspectives, etc. Then they have to present everything they have come up with to another group.  

Organization 1:

You are a non-governmental organization (NGO), and your focus is Women’s Rights. Your headquarters is located in country X. According to statistics, the majority of women (65%) in country X doesn’t work because they are not allowed to participate in activities other than taking care of their families and households. Additionally, in this country, girls are often forced to get married when they are 12-14 years old because this is a tradition. Moreover, many girls in this country don’t have access to education and often cannot read or write.

What steps can be taken to improve the situation of women in country X?

Organization 2:

You are an educational non-governmental organization. Your headquarters is located in country Y, where you work with children and teenagers (4-16 years old). According to statistics, most children (65%) from small villages and underprivileged areas of country Y have no access to education because their parents can’t afford to pay for school. Additionally, most of the schools are very small, and professional teachers are not motivated to work there. Moreover, children work hard on farms to help their parents, and they don’t have time to study. Often children cannot read or write, especially girls, because most of the schools are for boys.

What steps can be taken to improve the situation with education in country Y?

Tasks for each organization:

1. What is the name of your organization?

2. Describe the situation and the problem. Why is it important to solve them?

3. The goals and objectives of your organization.

4. Your strategy (what will be your focus? how will you act?)

5. Who will you work with? (your audience)

6. You need employees, – people who will work in your organization and help with the project. Write down what personal and professional qualities you would like them to have.

7. Your Manifesto – at least 5 points (Education comes first, etc. )

8. Come up with a project that your organization will be working on to help solve these problems. Describe the plan and program (at least 10 points, for example: building a school for girls, etc.)

9. You also need volunteers. What are their responsibilities? What kind of help do you expect from them?

The budget of your organization that you can invest in the project is $400,000

What technology, media or props did you use? (internet resources, playmobiles, handouts, etc.)

Zoom

What worked well in this class? What did not work?

How could this class be improved/ modified?

F20 Online: Music

Conversation Class Lesson Summary

Language Resident Name:

Marie Segura

Maria Glukhova

Day and Date:

Week 3-4, Fall 2020

Language and Level (intermediate or advanced class):

All

Class theme/topics discussed:

Music

How did you structure the class?/Ideas:

Activity 1 – Gathering vocabulary

Create a wordcloud for students to quickly brainstorm on music instruments/genres/etc..

Activity 2 – General questions for discussion

  1. When do you listen to music? Is it always the same? Does it depend on the day? (Quand écoutez vous de la musique + toujours la même? Ou dépend du moment?)
  2. Do you listen to music when you work? (Musique quand travaillent?)
  3. Do you play any instrument/make music? (Faites vous de la musique)
  4. If you could play any instruments, which one would you pick? What style of music would you like to play if you had a band? (Si vous pouviez jouer de n’importe quel instrument, de quoi voudriez-vous jouer? Quel type de musique si vous aviez un groupe?)
  5. Do you agree that “music soothes the heart” (La musique adoucit les moeurs)
  6. What was the last festival/concert you attended? (Dernier concert/festival)
  7. What’s your go-to song when doing a karaoke? (Quelle est votre chanson préférée pour un karaoké)
  8. Do you know any francophone artist? What’s your favorite song? (Une chanson ou un artiste français qu’ils connaissent + leur chanson préférée)

Activity 3 – Presenting francophone/X nationality artists

  • Pair students up. Ask them to look up an artist and fill in a table on a shared google doc. (nationality, music style, favorite song…)
  • Students present their artist to the other groups.

Activity 4 – The Voice

  • Brainstorming: what does a judge base their criticism on? What adjectives can they use? (maybe show an extract from the show). How do they convince people to join their team?
  • Students are the new judges for the Voice France. Students are asked to turn away from the camera. The LR plays some songs, and students have to decide whether they want to turn around or not. Then, they have to explain their choices: why did they choose this song? What do they like? What could be better (potential)? Or why didn’t they turn around? What was missing? 

Activity 5 – “Close-listening” [I usually do one class on it (Rus)]

  • Choose a song that has as much ‘material’ in it as possible: a lot of cultural references, good lyrics with maybe some philosophical aspects in it, an inspiring/controversial/simply interesting music video, etc. 
  • Give students a “free-writing” task/a discussion question that would help students to get into the topic that a song is about
  • If the lyrics are too difficult, give students a vocab list and go through it together (or they can work on it in pairs)
  • Give students the lyrics but with some blanks. Students have to fill them in while listening to a song. (There are different ways of choosing which words: the most difficult ones; related to one theme; adjectives, etc.)
  • Depending on a song, you might want to read and discuss the lyrics together after listening to the song for the first time + check if the students got the missing words right. 
  • I usually play a very philosophical contemporary song that has become extremely popular in Russia (Basta – Sansara: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aiCL0-U9WxI). The main idea of it that “our children will be better than we are” and that “when we are gone, we will not disappear because we will still be singing through our children’s voices: we are the same people being replaced in an endless circle of Sansara”. After we listen to the song and go through the lyrics, I ask a lot of questions about what they think, and the conversation usually goes on until the end of the class because it is a very deep topic. It might also be a good way of starting to talk about different generations, parents-children relationships, etc. 
  • Another way of working with just one song would be to play it without a video, and then ask students to describe what they imagine would fit as a music video (they can, for example, come up with a ‘script’ in pairs). After everyone is done, students share their results. 
  • Then everyone is watching the actual music video and students discuss whether it is similar to what they expected or not.  

Activity 6 – Making a group Playlist [credits to Katherine Pérez Gutiérrez]

  • Students should do some research on different music genres. Each group randomly (or not) gets a genre of music (hip-hop, rap, indie, etc.) and looks it up in a target language.
  • After everyone is done, students and an LR create a Spotify/(Rus)VKontakte playlist with all the good songs they found.

What technology, media or props did you use? (internet resources, playmobiles, handouts, etc.)

Zoom, Youtube, Spotify  

What worked well in this class? What did not work?

How could this class be improved/ modified?

F20 Online: Movies

Conversation Class Lesson Summary

Language Resident Name:

Maria Segura

Maria Glukhova

Katherine Pérez Gutiérrez

Day and Date:

Week 3-4, Fall 2020

Language and Level (intermediate or advanced class):

All

Class theme/topics discussed:

Movies

How did you structure the class?

Activity 1 – Talking about a specific movie (that you’ve asked your students to watch for the class)

  • While watching a movie, students should write down (in a shared Google Document) 10 words/phrases that they did not know, and that they want to use. Students should also write down an English translation for these words.
  • Each student needs to give 3 words that come to their mind when they think about the movie
  • They then need to explain their choices
  • Give 4 reasons to go and see the movie+ 1 reason not to (or the contrary).
  • Discussion about the themes used in the movie.

Activity 2 – General discussion about movies

  • What’s your favorite movie of all time?
  • What movie could you watch 50 times?
  • What’s the worst movie you’ve ever seen?
  • What’s a movie you like even if everyone else hates it/you hate even if everyone else loves it?
  • If you could be the villain in any movie, who would you be and why?
  • If someone was to make a movie about your life, what would you like to see in it? What genre would it be? Name 3 things you’d like to be included in it?

Activity 3 – Getting to know French movies

  • Brainstorm about movie genres and characteristics
  • Show students trailers/posters of movies and ask them to guess with what synopsis and/or genre they match. Either create a poll, put students in breakout rooms or create a kahoot.
  • In pairs, the students are given the poster of a French movie and have to determine the genre and imagine the scenario of the movie. 
  • They then present the movie to the rest of the class: they first describe the poster, then  explain what they think the movie is going to be about.

Activity 4 – Jury at an Award

  • Variant #1: Students have to choose: meilleur film, meilleur acteur, meilleure actrice, meilleure musique de film, meilleurs decors, meilleurs costumes, meilleurs effets visuels/speciaux and to justify their decisions.
  • Variant #2 (cf Blanca): Students become part of the jury of the awards. After seeing part of the trailers of those films, they have to vote for the best film, best music and best animation (sharing their personal preferences and professional aspects that they can notice). 
  • Variant #3: Students watch a series of short films/animations that an LR chose for the class. All short films can be about one theme, or completely random. After watching them, students work in pairs and decide, which are their top 3 (they should come up with arguments). Then students present their choice to the class and try to prove that their top 3 was the best choice. 

Activity 5 – Creating your own movie

  • In pairs, students have to come up with a plot for a new movie. They are asked to choose random numbers that correspond to specific constraints they will have to put in their movies (genre/objects etc). They have to write on a shared google docs where they can find guidelines.
  • Potential variant (cf Blanca): Students become directors and potential leading actors and actresses. That is, each “director” interviews different potential actors in order to hire the most suitable one for a specific genre that will be randomly assigned. The directors will make questions that are important for them in order to hire an actor suitable for that film genre and the actors invent a personality that would be suitable for that genre as well. Once the interactions finish, the directors share the names of the hired actors and actresses and see if the assigned genres matched or not. 

Activity 6 – Turning it French

In pairs, ask students to choose a famous movie and imagine a French version/parody of it. When and where would it take place? Who would be the characters? Would the story change? Share a common google doc to allow them to write their thoughts and see how the others are going + give them guidelines (original movie/French version columns for instance)

Activity 7 [It was a great class about stereotypes!]

  1. Students should finish two sentences:

He was a true Russian/French/X, but he never…

She was a true Russian/French/X, but she never…

This frame helps to understand what stereotypes students have about ‘true Russians/Xs’, men and women (e.g., He was a true Russian, but he never drank vodka -> “drinking vodka” is an attribute of a stereotypical Russian person.

2. All the results from the previous activity should be written on a whiteboard. Then we talk about why and from where the students have such images of Russians/France/X.

3. In groups of 3-4, students should come up with their own movie script (maybe in a specific genre). The movie should be Hollywood-like and about a (stereo)typical Russian/X person as a protagonist. The teams should come up with an idea, a movie title, and a plot summary. If there is time, students should also draw a poster with all the information about the team and present it on a ‘festival’ to their colleagues.     

4. Conclusion and a follow-up discussion.

What technology, media or props did you use? (internet resources, playmobiles, handouts, etc.)

Zoom, Youtube

What worked well in this class? What did not work?

How could this class be improved/ modified?

F20 Online: Hometown

Conversation Class Lesson Summary

Language Resident Name:

Maria Glukhova

Day and Date:

Week 3-4, Fall 2020

Language and Level (intermediate or advanced class):

All

Class theme/topics discussed:

Hometown

Goal of the class:

To talk about students’ hometowns, so they could make a virtual tour for everyone.

How did you structure the class?

0. Greetings, announcements, general questions.

Activity 1: [all together] Are you in your hometown now? Do you remember how it felt being back home in the spring? Did you notice any changes in the city you grew up in, or was it you who had changed?

Activity 2: [in groups of 3 in Break-Out Rooms] Write down a list of locations that people usually associate with their hometowns (for example, this is my school, this is my grandparents’ house, where I eat my favorite ice-cream, etc.). Does this list seem to be similar to everyone?

Activity 3: [all together]: sharing the results + the discussion. After that: the LR opens Google Maps and shows the students his/her hometown. Navigating in the city, the LR gives the students a tour using as much vocabulary as possible related to location, movement, description, etc.

Activity 4: [in pairs in Break-Out Rooms]: The students should do the same: to show their classmates around their hometown with a guide-like narration. 

Activity 5: [all together] Some of the students present their hometowns to everyone.

What technology, media or props did you use? (internet resources, playmobiles, handouts, etc.)

Zoom, Google Maps

What worked well in this class? What did not work?

How could this class be improved/ modified?

F20 Online: BLM, Social Movements, Discrimination

Conversation Class Lesson Summary

Language Resident Name:

Katherine Pérez Gutiérrez

Maria Glukhova

Marie Segura

Day and Date:

Week 2, Fall 2020

Language and Level (intermediate or advanced class):

All

Class theme/topics discussed:

Black Lives Matter, Social Movements, Discrimination

Goal of the class:

To talk about racial/ethnic discrimination and about social movements that fight for people’s rights.

Useful recourses for LRs:

Books/articles & Film resources about BLM principles (different levels): https://www.dcareaeducators4socialjustice.org/black-lives-matter/resources/middle-high#books 

How did you structure the class?

0. Greetings, announcements, general questions

  1. Conversation starters:

Racism 2020: What is the first situation/context/everyday situation that comes to your mind when thinking about racism?

What kinds of discrimination exist? (age, sex, nationality, etc.)

What do you know about the history of protest in the U.S? What about X language speaking countries?

What role has social media played on the display of news? Where have you been getting all protest related info from? Do you think it has made a difference on how people have found out what’s going on in the world?

“Generation” differences = how are different generations talking about/approaching current issues?

What makes someone worthy of getting a statue/a monument with their name? How important is it to think about the ideology that these monuments represent? Do they represent a person (wow, great guy!) or an ideology? What does removing a statue involve/represent/imply?

2. “Activities”

This topic has to do a lot with the language and the way we name things. For students, to learn what vocabulary is appropriate when we talk about race/ethnicity (more problematic for Russia, for example) might be helpful to read a short text/watch a video, with as many necessary words as possible.     


— Variant 1: 

Take a Facebook/IG post where a person (an activist, for example) examines racial problems/stereotypes/… in your target language. Cover the words that are terms that you want students to learn. Then write them down in a google doc so that students could translate them into English working together. Then ask the students to fill the gaps in the original text. Read the text together and discuss what message an author is trying to convey. 

— Variant 2:  [Mostly for Russia and other countries with ethnic discrimination

For some countries, ethnic discrimination is way more common than racial. The everyday discrimination against migrants from the countries to the South of Russia (Kazakhstan, Azerbaijan, Turkmenistan, and others) is in almost every advertisement: “I will lease an apartment only to persons of Slavic appearance”, “We will only employ people of Slavic appearance”. So, you could show students these advertisements as an example of how racial and ethnic discrimination is pretty much everywhere.

— Variant 3: 

Give students a few short articles about specific issues (racism, discrimination, etc.). Students should do some research in pairs, read it together, and then present what they have learned about a problem. You may want to give an article with two different perspectives/times (have things changed?)/places. Instead of an article, you can give students an advertisement/flyer/ad from, for example, a different century, that wouldn’t be acceptable now and then discuss what why.

— Variant 4: 

Discuss Black Lives Matter’s 13 principles: Restorative Justice, empathy, loving engagement, diversity, globalism, queer affirming, trans-affirming, collective value, intergenerational, black families, black villages, unapologetically black, black women.  What do you think is the most problematic issue to address/deal with?

What technology, media or props did you use? (internet resources, playmobiles, handouts, etc.)

Zoom

What worked well in this class? What did not work?

How could this class be improved/ modified?

F20 Online: Pandemic

Conversation Class Lesson Summary

Language Resident Name:

Katherine Pérez Gutiérrez

Maria Glukhova

Marie Segura

Day and Date:

Week 2, Fall 2020

Language and Level (intermediate or advanced class):

All

Class theme/topics discussed:

Pandemic

Goal of the class:

To talk about the current situation with Covid-19.

How did you structure the class?

0. Greetings, announcements, general questions.

1. Ice-Breaker I

Use a very short poll to start your class, eg:

What’s the strangest thing you did while attending an online meeting? (Multiple choice)

  • Ate breakfast
  • Wore pajamas
  • Brushed my teeth
  • Cooked lunch/dinner
  • Watched Netflix

2. Ice-Breaker II 

In pairs, students should come up with the best abbreviation meaning for “Pandemic” in the target language: 

P – pain

A- 

N – 

….

3. Main activity: 

Letter to future/past self: How would you explain COVID-19 pandemic?

—- A possible variation 1: 

Students can do this task in pairs. Imagine yourself being 30+ y.o (/or maybe themselves in September 2021/2/3..). The pandemic is already over, and everything is back to normal. Record a video message to yourself back in April 2020, when everyone was on their first quarantine and self-isolation week. From your experience now (when everything is fine again!!), what would you tell your younger self? How would you describe what happened? What pieces of advice would you give? What warnings? How would you recommend yourself to act? What new hobbies to try? Etc. 

If students could actually record themselves talking, it would be amazing to put all the videos=experiences together in one big video. 

—- A possible variation 2: 

Do the same thing, but for yourself in the future. For example, as a recommendation list. What should you do more/less when everything is back to normal? What have you learned about yourself/other people/the system/etc.? What would you have done differently if you knew the pandemic were to happen?

—- A possible variation 3:

Student 1 gets a “Survivor of the Pandemic” role, Student 2 is the interviewer. In pairs, students should record an interview “How You Survived the Pandemic of 2020” with similar questions to ask and topics to cover (what were you doing? what would you recommend? etc.) Students should record it in a talk-show format and then present to the whole group. 

4. Extra activity: 

Trivia: Make a Kahoot (or any other trivia game) with unusual things that had happened or had been said during the pandemic. Students have to 1) guess whether it’s true or false, 2) identify during what phase of the pandemic this happened, 3) identify where it happened.  For example, presidents/government representatives’ sayings, unusual/innovative gadgets, exotic animals getting into the streets, etc.

*Homework

(mostly for “Russians”, but every language will work!)

On Facebook, there is a group called Изоизоляция | Izoizolyacia. After pandemic hit, people were trying to entertain themselves while being stuck at home. They started copying the paintings and other works of art (at first only Russian artists, but now also international).  

Task: 

  • Try it! And upload a picture on Slack. (LRs and LAs should do the same, hehe). 
  • Students should also describe what materials, etc. they used. 
  • People like and comment.
  • There might be a prize for the funniest copy/interpretation.

What technology, media or props did you use? (internet resources, playmobiles, handouts, etc.)

Zoom, maybe VidGrid, Kahoot, Slack

What worked well in this class? What did not work?

How could this class be improved/ modified?

RUS S20 Adv/Int: Hometown (online)

Language Resident Name:

MARIA GLUKHOVA

Day and Date:

Thursday, 04/09/2020

Language and Level (intermediate or advanced class):

Russian, Advanced

Class theme/topics discussed:

Hometown

Goal of the class:

To talk about students’ hometowns, so they could make a virtual tour for everyone.

How did you structure the class?

  1. Greetings, announcements, general questions.

2.   Activity 1: [all together] Are you in your hometown now? How does it feel going back home? Did you notice any changes in the city you grew up in, or is it you who has changed?

3.   Activity 2: [in groups of 3 in Break-Out Rooms] Write down a list of locations that people usually associate with their hometowns (for example, this is my school, this is my grandparents’ house, where I eat my favorite ice-cream, etc.). Does this list seem to be similar to everyone?

4.   Activity 3: [all together]: sharing the results + the discussion. After that: the LR opens Google Maps and shows the students her hometown. Navigating in the city, the LR gives the students a tour using as much vocabulary as possible related to location, movement, description, etc.

5.   Activity 4: [in pairs in Break-Out Rooms]: The students should do the same: to show their classmates around their hometown with a guide-like narration. 

6.   Activity 5: [all together] Some of the students present their hometowns to everyone.

7.   Conclusion and a follow-up discussion.

What technology, media or props did you use? (internet resources, playmobiles, handouts, etc.)

Zoom, Google Maps

What worked well in this class? What did not work?

The class worked out great! I was very happy with the results and the atmosphere of it.  

How could this class be improved/ modified?

I would leave it as it is.

RUS S20 Adv/Int: Traveling (online)

Language Resident Name:

MARIA GLUKHOVA

Day and Date:

Tuesday, 04/07/2020

Language and Level (intermediate or advanced class):

Russian, Advanced

Class theme/topics discussed:

Where would you go after Corona?

Goal of the class:

To talk about travel plans and about different ways of traveling (moneywise, company, etc. )

How did you structure the class?

  1. Greetings, announcements, general questions.
  2. Activity 1: [all together] What is the most exotic place you have been to? Did you go there by yourself, or with other people? Why?
  3. Activity 2: [in groups of 3 in Break-Out Rooms] Discuss the advantages and disadvantages of traveling solo. Write down as many pros and cons as you can come up with.
  4. Activity 3: [all together]: sharing the results + the discussion. After that: there is a famous Ukrainian (and Russian) TV show about traveling called ‘Орёл и Решка’. It is about traveling, and there are two people in it. Why do you think the show is called that? Make predictions.
  5. Activity 4: [in pairs in Break-Out Rooms]: Watch the first 5 minutes of the TV show (Miami episode). Were you right about the main idea? Discuss the structure and key features.
  • Activity 5: [in pairs in Break-Out Rooms] After we discussed the idea of the show together, students work in pairs. They should go to https://34travel.me/post/destinations2018 and get a random country. They flip the coin, and one student has to plan the trip to this country with $100, while the second has an unlimited amount of money.
  • Activity 5: [all together] Student present their travel plans to everyone.
  • Conclusion and a follow-up discussion.

What technology, media or props did you use? (internet resources, playmobiles, handouts, etc.)

Zoom, YouTube

What worked well in this class? What did not work?

The class worked out well!

How could this class be improved/ modified?

I would leave it as it is.

RU F19 ADV: Poetry and Translation

Language Resident Name:

MARIA GLUKHOVA

Day and Date:

Tuesday, 10/08/2019

Language and Level (intermediate or advanced class):

Russian, Advanced

Class theme/topics discussed:

Poetry and translation

Goal of the class:

To work on translation skills and to perform poetry.

How did you structure the class?

0. Greetings, announcements, general questions.

Activity 1: Discussion. What is more important in the translation of poetry: to keep the form (rhythm, the literal meaning of every word, etc.) or the ideas and images beneath the text?

Activity 2: Students receive a poem by Wallace Stevens “Thirteen Ways of Looking at a Blackbird” in English. They should read it first and then we talk about ideas, technics, images, etc. that are present in the text. Then students work in pairs: their task is to translate 2-3 stanzas from English into the Russian language, keeping in mind the style of each stanza. Once everyone is ready, they should read what they have come up with, one by one. We edit the translation together and then read out loud one more time.

https://www.poetryfoundation.org/poems/45236/thirteen-ways-of-looking-at-a-blackbird

Activity 3: Students have to write their own stanza for a collective poem “Thirteen Ways of Looking at a [Human]”.

Conclusion and a follow-up discussion.

What technology, media or props did you use? (internet resources, playmobiles, handouts, etc.)

A whiteboard, handouts

What worked well in this class? What did not work?

The class worked out great! Students were very creative and poetic J

How could this class be improved/ modified? I would leave it as it is.

RU F19 ADV/INT: Storytelling

Language Resident Name:

MARIA GLUKHOVA

Day and Date:

Thursday, 10/10/2019

Language and Level (intermediate or advanced class):

Russian, Advanced/Intermediate

Class theme/topics discussed:

Storytelling

Goal of the class:

To practice improvisation while speaking

How did you structure the class?

Greetings, announcements, general questions

Activity 1: “Two Truths and One Lie”. Students work in groups of three. Each of them should tell three stories (‘’I don’t like cats” is not a story!) to the others. Then they ask this person questions in order to catch him up on lying. After that they take turns.

Activity 2: “Collective Story”. A teacher writes down on a whiteboard a phrase. It can be something like: “Katya missed her train and her takes an unexpected turn”. Students sit down in a circle. The first student has one minute to tell what happens next. When the time is over, the next student starts talking and continues the story, and so on.

Activity 3: “Story Cubes”.  Students are divided into two teams. Each team gets Story Cubes and the show begins. They should create a story and then present it to each other.

What technology, media or props did you use? (internet resources, playmobiles, handouts, etc.)

A whiteboard, Story Cubes

What worked well in this class? What did not work?

The class worked out great! Students had a lot of fun, they talked and laughed a lot.

How could this class be improved/ modified?

I would leave it as it is.

RU F19 Int/Adv: The First Impression

Conversation Class Lesson Summary

Language Resident Name:

MARIA GLUKHOVA

Day and Date:

Thursday, 09/04/2019

Language and Level (intermediate or advanced class):

Russian, Advanced/Intermediate

Class theme/topics discussed:

The first impression vs. after we get to know each other better

Goal of the class:

Keep getting to know each other

How did you structure the class?

[5 min]: Greetings, announcements, general questions.

[5 min]: Focused Freewriting. A teacher writes a famous Russian proverb on a blackboard: «Встречают по одёжке, а провожают по уму». After we make sure that every word is clear, the students should write down everything that comes to their minds related to that proverb. They keep writing for 3-4 minutes.

[10-15 min]: Discussion. A volunteer reads what they have written, and a teacher facilitates the following discussion (in my group no one knew this proverb and they came up with different interesting interpretations).

[15 min]: “Back to back” (credits to F. Klippel, “Keep Talking”). While the [Russian] music is playing, everybody walks around the room observing other people’s clothes, hairstyle, etc. As soon as the music stops, each student pairs up with the person standing nearest and they stand back to back. Each of the students makes statements about the other’s appearance («я думаю, на тебе синие джинсы», etc.). – Repeat a couple of times.

[15-20 min]: Everyone gets a paper with an empty square in a middle. They should draw themselves in that square / [write their name if the drawing doesn’t seem to work out well]. They exchange papers in pairs. The task is to ask each other questions and discover and write down 5+ facts about a person that might not be obvious at a first sight («Я думалa, что ты любишь смотреть фильмы ужасов, а оказалось, что мелодрамы» etc.). The last task is to tell these facts about another person to the whole group.

[5 min]: Reflection time. How do they understand the proverb now? What have they learned from their classmates?    

What technology, media or props did you use? (internet resources, playmobiles, handouts, etc.)

Whiteboard, pen

What worked well in this class? What did not work?

The students loved the class! I think everything went well.

How could this class be improved/ modified?

I would keep it as it is because it reflects on both parts of the proverb (meeting by the clothes + getting to know each other’s minds). I think it is a good option for the first or second meeting. 

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