an archive of lesson plans

Tag: Expressions (Page 1 of 4)

FR INT/ADV S23 Introduction to French Literature


– To introduce students to French literature and its cultural significance

– To improve students’ reading comprehension in French

– To expand students’ vocabulary and improve their language skills through games and activities related to French literature


– Copies of short stories or extracts from French literature (in French)

– Vocabulary lists for each story/extract

– Whiteboard and markers

– French literature-themed games such as Scrabble, and French literature trivia


– Begin the class by asking students what they know about French literature, what books from French authors they know and/or like/have read before.

– Discuss the significance of French literature in French and global culture and education.

Activity 1: Reading Comprehension

– Hand out copies of short stories or extracts from French literature.

– Divide the class into pairs or small groups of 3 and ask them to read the stories/extracts and answer questions.

– Each group presents their answers to the class

The following activities are examples of games you can use in this class:

Activity 2: Vocabulary Building

– Provide the students with a vocabulary list related to the short stories/extracts they read in the first activity.

– Have them work individually or in pairs to create flashcards or a quizlet deck with the new vocabulary.

– Once the vocabulary list is complete, conduct a quiz or game to test the students’ understanding of the new words.


Activity 3: French Literature Trivia

– Divide the class into teams and conduct a French literature trivia game.

– Questions can include famous French writers, their works, and their impact on French culture.

Activity 4: French Literature-Themed Games

– Play Scrabble with French literature-themed words.

– This activity can help students expand their vocabulary, practice spelling, and improve their understanding of French literature.


– Recap the class by discussing the importance of French literature and its contribution to French culture.

FR F22 INT/ADV Les Stéréotypes/clichés sur les Français

Goal of the Class: Students discuss on stereotypes they have on French people; they also learn about the various stereotypes existing in different regions of France and also different kind of expressions used in daily speech and referring to these stereotypes. Students practice their listening and speaking skills by watching videos in French on the topic, and then discuss about it both in groups and then with the whole class

Warm-up : 10/15 minutes

Intermediate and advanced : Par groupes trouvez 5 clichés que vous avez sur les Français (in groups find 5 clichés/stereotypes that you have about French people). I gave students 10 minutes to talk about it in groups and then I asked each group to share what discussed. Then I showed them a picture of different typical stereotypes existing about French people around the world with vocabulary included and further explanation of them if needed.


As a transition towards the first activity, I gave them three commonly used expressions in French that are related to stereotypical traits generally assigned to French people: Grande gueule (talk too much, is too direct), dragueur (flirty), nul en langues (bad at languages)

Advanced: for advanced I added more specific cultural input on various stereotypes depending on the regions in France:

  • En France, selon les régions il y a aussi des clichés différents: Par exemple, on dit qu’en Bretagne il pleut tout le temps, à Paris les gens sont hautains et arrogants (haughty and snobbish), en Alsace ils mangent que de la choucroute (plat traditionnel avec du chou), la Normandie est principalement peuplée de vaches.
  • Ce ne sont que des stéréotypes et donc pas totalement vrai! par exemple, en Bretagne il ne pleut pas tout le temps (mais souvent) et beaucoup de Parisiens sont très gentils (pas tous)

Activity 1: In groups still I then asked them to discuss the following questions revolving around stereotypes on Americans:

  • Quels sont d’après vous les stéréotypes que les personnes étrangères ont sur les Américains ? (What do you think are the stereotypes that foreign people have about Americans?)
  • Est-ce qu’il y a des stéréotypes spécifiques pour chaque états des Etats Unis? Donnez des exemples (Are there specific stereotypes for each state in the United States? Give examples)
  • Est-ce que vous connaissez des clichés sur d’autres pays Européens comme l’Italie, l’Angleterre, l’Espagne, etc.? (Do you know any clichés about other European countries like Italy, England, Spain, etc.?)

After they discussed for about 10-13 minutes, we exchange as a class and then I gave them some stereotypes we have in France about Americans:

  • Les Américains mangent mal et il y a des fast foods partout
  • Les Américains sont très patriotes
  • Il y a plus d’armes (guns) que d’Américains
  • Les Américains n’ont pas d’assurance santé
  • Les gobelets rouges (red cups) dans les fêtes étudiantes
  • Les ‘Hugs’ pour dire Bonjour

Activity 2: this second activity is centered on a video I showed them. One is on how Europeans living in France and speaking French fluently view French people, and the other one is similar but is an interview of non-European people living in France.


  • En regardant la vidéo, notez les mots que vous ne connaissez pas sur une feuille de papier ou votre téléphone portable (While watching the video, write down the words you don’t know on a piece of paper or your cell phone)
  • Les Français vus par des Européens (how Europeans see French people) :
  • Quels sont les clichés/stéréotypes mentionnés dans la vidéo? (What clichés/stereotypes are mentioned in the video?)

Then I showed them some slides I created with photos on new vocabulary mentioned in the video, here is an example:


Quels sont les clichés que certaines personnes hors d’Europes ont sur les français?

Quelles sont les habitudes / les comportements typiquement français ?

Last activity : Les gestes et expressions typiquement francais – French also speak using gestures. This video is very funny and explains some of these common gestures used in the common speech in France:

1- j’ai les chocotes/ça fait peur/c’est flippant/j’ai peur

2- I’m drunk

3- j’en ai par-dessus la tête/j’en ai marre

4- ça m’énerve!

5- et toc! / dans ta face

6- les doigts dans le nez (it was easy)

laquelle intégreriez-vous dans votre vie de tous les jours ? (Which one-s would you incorporate in your everyday life?)

Est-ce que vous utilisez des gestes quand vous parlez?  (do you use gestures when you speak?

Feedback/end of the class: give one or two words that you learnt today, how many times do you think people do ‘la bise’ in France to introduce themselves?

Ressources used: Powerpoint, Youtube videos, images

Reflection: This class went so well both in the advanced and intermediate classes. The students were participating a lot and we ended up having very interesting points and elements of discussions raised all throughout the class. These classes definitely showed that conversation classes are much more than just practicing the target language, they can also be an opportunity to learn and enlarge point of views, knowledge on various topics/issues, etc. This class led to deep and meaningful exchanges as a whole class.

FR F22 ADV La mode écologique ou pas ? (Eco-friendly fashion)

Goal of the class: learn about a phenomenon/trend in France related to the increase production of eco-friendly clothes and the increase launching of eco-friendly brands. Learn vocabulary on ecology, fashion, and the environment.

Warm-up: Do you like fashion? Do you buy a lot of clothes in a year? Do you like buying specific brands of clothes?

Activity 1 : La mode eco-responsable

  • Students are shown 2 short videos, one providing facts and numbers about the textile/clothes industry in France, and how it came to become the second most polluting industry in the world. The second video is about the upsurge of eco-friendly clothes/fashion in France
  • After watching the videos, students are asked to state one or two elements they learnt in the videos and talk about it with the whole class. For instance:
  • Chaque année 100 milliards de vêtements sont produits dans le monde
  • Après l’industrie du pétrole, celle de la mode est la plus polluante au monde
  • 700 000 tonnes de vêtements chaque années en France
  • La mode éco-responsable
  • Les créateurs de marques étiques et écologiques
  • 70% des Français disent ne pas être intéressés par la mode

Some vocabulary was provided on colloquial words/expressions used in the videos

  • Quantité astronomique – quantité énorme
  • La fast fashion – la mode jetable
  • Se zapper – s’habiller

Activity 2: Débat – Quelles solutions pour créer une mode plus écologique ?

Students were asked in groups of 3/4 to draw a mental map with at its center : “la mode eco-responsable”. They have to find solutions to create more eco-friendly approaches to fashion and shopping. Then they make a presentation about it in front of the class, helped by the mental map they filled out with ideas and solutions:

  • dessinez et remplissez une carte mentale. Incluez plusieurs solutions pour créer une mode eco-responsable et durable (sustainable) – vous pouvez vous inspirer de ce site internet:
  • chaque groupe fait une presentation de leur projet lorsqu’il est terminé

Ressources : Powerpoint, Youtube, handout (mental map)

Reflection : This class went very well, the topic interested the students, the presentations were very resourceful and students came up with deep and smart solutions. We ended up the class prolonging the debate and extrapolating to other areas of societies and consumerism that could be improved in a more eco-friendly way. We also ended up changing topics towards the last 10 minutes of the class and talked about Cartoons, and I showed them the opening themes of one of my childhood French cartoons and we talked about it.

DE F22 ADV Food and Groceries – Wie bereite ich deutsches Essen zu?

TopicFood and Grocery + Vocabulary for Cooking and Baking
Goals of the ClassIdentify food in a recipe and know how to cook/bake it  
Warm UpWho enjoys cooking? Who does it regularly? Has it changed with the pandemic? What’s your favorite food?
Activity 1Quick food quiz about fruit & vegetables I showed them typical German fruits and vegetables (pictures) and they had to guess the name and translation. I showed just pictures and they had to guess the name of the fruit or the vegetable. What ingredients are used for this dish?
Activity 2Everyone was given 3 vocabulary words (verbs for cooking) and had to explain them without using the word. Think of a dish that consists of the ingredients mentioned and then present it to the others. Not all ingredients have to be included and other ingredients can be used.
Activity 3How to use the ingredients to cook? potatoes, beans, mushrooms, tomatoes, peppers, cucumber, carrots  Apple, peach, strawberry, kiwi, banana What are the ingredients of your favorite foodShow us a picture 
What worked well in this class? What did not work (and how could it be improved)?  Especially the explanation of the cooking vocabulary worked very well, and the students were able to memorize the vocabulary and use it later. Also, the presentation of the favorite dish with ingredients and cooking instructions was well received. The fruit and vegetable quiz were a bit too easy, here one could choose more difficult products.

DE F22 INT Stereotypes

Goals of the ClassKnow stereotypes and describe them with adjectives. Form opinions about them and be able to explain them
Warm UpCity land river game
Activity 1Video about German stereotypes with subtitles. The text of the video was printed, and the most important adjectives underlined. Input on the descriptive features – adjectives of the video. I – You – We (Think – Pair – Share) What can you see on the picture? Describe what the picture has to do with Germany?
Activity 2What is your experience with stereotypes? What do you think about them? True often/ True sometimes/ Not true at all?
Activity 3What stereotypes are there about the 5Cs 😀 Which ones about other countries?Do you know any stereotypes from TV? NerdsCheerleaders egos?Athletes? What are these stereotypes like? Find adjectives to describe these stereotypes Think of a stereotype Act out the stereotype
What worked well in this class? What did not work (and how could it be improved)?  The topic of stereotypes was very well received by the class. Since many students in this class come from different countries, it was very interesting conversations about possible stereotypes. The warmup game also went very well, in which the students had to find a city, a land, a river, a food and a brand for a certain letter. Stereotypes is an interesting topic for multicultural classes.

DE F22 ADV Job Interview in Germany

TopicJob Interview in Germany
Goals of the Classstudents should be able to conduct parts of an interview in German. Prepare for possible questions and answer them correctly. Know the procedure of a job interview in Germany.
Warm Uphave you ever had a job interview? How did you prepare? How did it go?
Activity 1We watched a video of a job interview and then discussed and wrote down the typical mistakes. After that we watched the following video, in which the mistakes were pointed out. We compared them with ours and discussed them.
Activity 2We discussed the 4 stages of a job interview: Greeting Main part Questions Goodbye I gave the students questions for each category, to which they had to come up with individual answers and then present these answers to each other.
Activity 3conduct an interview Role play 2 persons play the interviewer – 1 person the applicantPick a job offer and try to conduct a job interview  I brought the students 4 job ads with which they were to conduct a real job interview. After every Job interview, we gave each other feedback
What worked well in this class? What did not work (and how could it be improved)?  I would actually change very little about this class, as it worked out very well and the subject was also considered very important by the students. The only thing that could be done is to adapt the job ads to the students in order to make the interview more accessible and easier.

FR S22 INT/ADV – Votre Week-End idéal

This class was done online and could also be done in person.

Warm –up (10 minutes) –group discussion = (main zoom chat : send the link of the Google Doc with vocabulary on the routine as well as the following questions students have to discuss in breakout rooms)

•Quel est selon-vous le WE idéal? Qu’est-ce que vous aimez faire en général le WE? – What do you think is the ideal WE? What do you usually like to do on weekends?

Activity 1: Video ‘French people describe their WE’ (20 minutes –8 minutes for the video, 10 minutes for the group discussion)

Instructions: jot down what you understand from the video –écrivez sur une feuille de papier / sur votre ordinateur -ce que vous comprenez dans cette vidéo: Quelles sont les activités que les personnes interviewées aiment faire le week –end ? – What are some activities that the persons interviewed like doing on Weekends? Qu’est-ce qu’ils aiment faire avec leurs amis ? – What do they like doing with their friends?

Then we discuss it as a class and the students share what they understood and think about it –10 to 15 minutes –

Vocabulary input: What do these words mean? (Habituellement, Je bosse, aller en boîte, le confinement, se balader, faire un tour à…, profiter, la province); If there is some time left I propose a game they would play in Breakout rooms– ‘Qui est-ce?’ OR ‘Tu préfères’:

Tu préfères…Voyagez dans le monde entier sans pouvoir revenir à ton pays d’origine ou jamais sortir de ton pays ? Arriver toujours 1 heure avant à tes rendez-vous ou toujours arriver 1 heure en retard ? Passer toute ta vie à manger de la junkfood ou ne plus jamais manger tes plats préférés ? Vivre dans la maison de tes rêves dans un quartier chaud ou vivre dans une maison moche dans le quartier de tes rêves ? Être pauvre aux côtés de l’amour de votre vie ou être multimillionnaire sans jamais connaître l’amour ?

Resources:Vocabulary sheet (google doc provided)with expressions and words to be able to talk about one’s routine, Zoom Screenshare, Youtube, Powerpoint

FR S22 INT/ADV – La routine matinale (the morning routine)

Warm-up (15 minutes): Questions to discuss in group around Morning Routines and habits

The students have to discuss the following questions in groups of 3 to 4 students: Avez-vous une routine le matin? Que faites-vous habituellement après le réveil? (petit-déjeuner? Douche? Sport? Yoga? Lecture? Méditation?) – Do you have a morning routine? What do you usually do after waking up?

Qu’est-ce que tu fais en premier le matin?–What is the first thing you do after you wake up? Quelles sont les bonnes habitudes que vous aimeriez prendre le matin?–What are some good/healthy morning habits you would like to develop?

Qu’est-ce que tu manges au petit-déjeuner?–What do you usually eat for breakfast?

Est-ce que tu es un/une «lève tôt» ou un/une «couche tard» – are you an early bird or a night owl?

Provision of a vocabulary sheet with a lot of words, expressions and idioms pertaining to the morning routine in French (I included more difficult expressions/turn of phrases and idioms for the advanced level class). This sheet is designed to be a support for the following activities as well.

Activity 1: (20/25 minutes)

The first activity is based on creativity (writing) in groups of 2/3 students. First, I ask them to individually write on a small sheet of paper one word in relation to the word ‘Morning’. Then they all give them to me, I shuffle them, I create groups of 2/3 students, and each group randomly picks two papers. Based on the words they picked, they have to come up with a short story of about 100 words. This activity not only calls on to students’ imagination and creativity, but the way it is designed (team work) also makes it a good way for them to practice speaking in French by working on writing their story. They really liked this activity and it took them approximatively 20/25 minutes to write their story, after which each group chose to either tell the story or act it out. The whole class had a lot of fun!

Activity 2:

Another activity that could be done in this class is the following:

Les Français nous racontent leur routine matinale dans les rues de Paris –French people tell us about their morning routine in the streets of Paris : Video screening of Parisians interviewed in the street on their morning routine:

This video is very good not only for the vocabulary and expressions used by the persons interviewed but also because it teaches the most accurate ways of expressing one’s habits in a colloquial manner.

Instructions: Jot down what you understand about the interviewees’ daily routine; what did they understood about the interviewees’ morning routines: Quelles sont les routines matinales des personnes interviewées dans la video?

The last part of the activity can be a little quiz on words and expressions mentioned in the interviews that are either colloquial or idiomatic. Activity 2: Another activitythat could be done in this class is the following:•Les Français nous racontent leur routine matinale dans les rues de Paris –French people tell us about their morning routine in the streets of Paris -: Video screening of Parisians interviewed in the street on their morning routine: This video is very good not only for the vocabulary and expressions used by the persons interviewedbut also because it teaches the most accurate ways of expressing your habits in a colloquial manner. •Jot down what you understand about the interviewees’ daily routine;•After watching the video, I ask them to tell me what they understood about the interviewees’ morning routines: Quelles sont les routines matinales des personnes interviewées dans la video?•The last part of the activity can bea little quiz on words and expressions mentioned in the interviewees that are either colloquial or idiomatic.Resources: PowerPoint, Vocabulary sheet, Youtube

FR S22 ADV- La Francophonie

This class is designed to introduced students to the French speaking world. After this class, students will know about the French speaking countries, the distribution of the french language in the world, some linguistic specificities/differences between the various French-speaking countries

Activity 1:

  • 1) Par groupes de 3, au tableau, notez tout ce que la Francophonie représente pour vous​ (In groups of 3, on the board, write down everything that ‘La Francophonie’ means to you)
  • 2) discutez et choisissez dans votre liste l’élément qui représente le plus la France pour vous. Justifiez votre choix​ (Discuss and choose from your list the item that most represents France to you. Justify your choice)

Activity 2:

  • – Que nous apprend cette vidéo sur la présence et l’importance de la langue Française dans le monde?​ (What does this video tell us about the presence and importance of the French language in the world?​)
  • Combien de personnes parlent le Français dans le monde? ​(How many people speak French in the world today?)
  • Quel est le top 5 des langues les plus parlées dans le monde? (what are the top 5 languages most spoken in the world today?)

Cultural Input:

Liste des pays ou régions où on parle français (list of the countries/places where French is spoken): ​

La France et:

• La Belgique, le Luxembourg, la Suisse, Monaco. ​

• En Afrique: l’Algérie, le Burkina Faso, le Bénin, le Cameroun, le Congo, la Côte d’Ivoire, Djibouti, le Gabon, la Guinée, Madagascar, le Mali, le Maroc, la Mauritanie, la République centrafricaine, la République démocratique du Congo (ex-Zaïre), le Sénégal, le Tchad, le Togo. ​

• Certaines îles: les Comores et les Seychelles, Vanuatu, Haïti. ​

• Le Québec,  Louisiane aux États-Unis, Nouvelle-Écosse et Nouveau-Brunswick

• En Inde (Pondichéry), au Moyen-Orient (Égypte, Israël et Liban), au Cambodge, au Vietnam, au Laos, à l’île Maurice et en Afrique du Sud. ​

Activity 3 + cultural input:

  •​ (8 Colloquial French Expressions You Should Know)
  • Parmi les expressions qui sont mentionnées dans cette vidéo, quelle est votre expression favorite? (What is your favorite expression amongst those presented in this video?)

mots et expressions de la Francophonie (words and expressions from the Francophone world)​:

  • chafouin rusé, sournois. Il viendrait de l’ouest de la France (je l’utilise pour dire que je suis de mauvaise humeur = ‘Grumpy’)​
  • « il est fada! » (Il est fou!) ou « fada! » comme ponctuation de phrase (Dingue! / fou!)​
  • vigousse, en Suisse, signifie « vif »​
  • tap-tap: un mot haïtien pour désigner une camionnette servant de transports en commun​
  • poudrerie: un mot québécois pour désigner la neige poussée par le vent…​
  • lumerotte: mot belge pour parler d’une source de lumière de faible intensité​
  • dracher: s’emploie lorsque la pluie tombe à verse (pouring rain), en Belgique​
  • champagné: un mot d’Afrique centrale pour désigner quelqu’un qui a de l’influence, ou de multiples relations

To wrap up this class, the last activity can be the following:

Activity 4:

Par groupes de 3, trouvez et partagez avec les autres des situations/anecdotes personnelles durant lesquelles vous vous êtes sentis (In groups of 3, find and share with others personal situations/anecdotes in which you felt):​

  • chafouins (de mauvaise humeur)​
  • Vigousses (Energiques)​
  • BG (beaux)​
  • En PLS (mal/malade)​
  • Frais (se sentir bien)​
  • Enjaillé (motivé)​​

Ça peut être des situations de tout les jours, des souvenirs spécifiques, des moments embarrassants ou drôles 

ES S22 INT Social Media and Technology II

Language Resident: Franco Rivas Quiroz

Level: Intermediate

Class theme/topic discussed: Social Media and Technology II.  

Goal of the class:

Students will be able to:

  • Determine benefits and opportunities for social media and summarize them by designing a hypothetical social media app.
  • Practice verbs and actions used for social media tasks such as “dar me gusta, publicar, comentar, subir una historia, etc”.

Class structure:

Warm up:

Students are asked to remember and say social media-related vocabulary filling a chart on the board that breaks them down into actions, characteristics or things.  They are encouraged to ask if there are words that they want to say but are not sure how. Expected words are: viral, me gusta, compartir, bloquear, muro, perfil, inicio, subir, descargar, publicar, etc.


Crea tu red social ideal: In couples, students will design a new and innovative social media app they would hypothetically become successful. They will do that through the following steps:

  1. Consider pros and cons of commonly used social media apps. Determine how to include the good things about it and solve the bad ones.
  2. Think about a target for the app, see how they would satisfy their costumer’s needs and what kind of content there will give.
  3. Determine the way it will be advertised and funded (are they going to use advertising on the app?, will they charge a subscription fee?, will they receive donations?, etc.”)
  4. Design the layout, main colors displayed, logo and slogan, using colored chalk.

Students present their social media app to the class.

Wrap up:

Students discuss whether they would really use that app if it existed and if they would ever stop using the ones that they already use and replace them with another activity.

Resources used: Projector, laptops.

Reflection: What worked/did not work? How can it be improved?

It seems that throughout the weeks students feel more comfortable in the class and they speak more. In general they participated well and carried out the activities creatively. I went around the room helping them understand the instructions and making sure that they were doing what they were supposed to. They ended up creating fun social media platforms that they exposed to the rest of the class. It worked well for the couples, but unfortunately in one of the groups of three people, it was clear that there was a student that was not participating very much. My way to deal with that was just go around and ask them about what they were doing at the moment. It worked apparently.

FR S22 ADV – Cartoons (Toy Story)

Warm-up (10 minutes): Students share in groups of 3/4 what are/were their favorite cartoons and animated movies growing up and nowadays.

Activity 1: Screening of a video extract from Toy Story 1 (animated movie)–10 minutes-,

the French version: (l’arrivée de Buzz).

Students have to think about these two questions while watching the extract: Que se passe-t-il dans cette scène? Décrivez les personnages et ce qu’ils font? (What happens in this scene / describe the characters and what they are doing)

Vocabulary/cultural Input: (5/7 minutes) in this scene, as it is the French version, characters speak in a colloquial way and use a lot of idioms/expressions that French people use in their daily speech/conversations. Students are asked whether or not they know or understand the meaning of the following words and expressions mentioned in the extract:

Je l’ai pas fait exprès (faire exprès), Voilà qui tombe vraiment à pic (Tomber à pic), On arrête pas le progrès, causer (//parler), ultra moderne (at the cutting-edge)

Activity 2: Students are asked in groups of 3/4 to imagine they are film producers from Hollywood who wants to create a movie adaptation of Toy Story with real actors. They are casting directors and have to find actors and actresses who would according to them impersonate the best the animated versions. When they found the actors, they do a small presentation to convince me that their casting is the best one.

FR F21 ADV – La Musique et vous

Warm up/ice breaker (15minutes):

  • Qu’est-ce que vous avez fait ce Week-end? est-ce que vous êtes allé quelque part, vous avez regardé la casa del papel sur netflix, vous avez dormi?
  • Small Game : ‘Tu préfères…’ – Tu préfères vivre sans café ou sans chocolat ? Tu préfères pouvoir voler partout où être invisible ? Tu préfères voyager dans le passé et rencontrer tes ancêtres ou aller dans l’avenir et rencontrer tes arrière-arrière-petits-enfants ?
  • Create groups: Depending on the number of students one has in their class, they can make 2 to 3 groups of 3/4 people.
  • Give the students a vocabulary sheet with words, expressions, idioms about music, musical instruments, types of musics, celebrations, verbs, etc.
  • Vocabulary sheet I designed and provided to the class:
  • Activity 1: ‘La musique et vous’ (15/20 minutes) in groups.
  • Start by asking them to discuss the following questions: Quel-s genre-s de musique préféré vous / vous écoutez? pourquoi? (What type of music do you prefer listening to and why?) – I personally first gave my example using elements I included in the Vocabulary sheet and we discussed with the class my musical tastes. I asked them to also share with their group why do they like listening to a specific type music: Does it relax them? help them to focusing on a specific activity? help them sleep, etc.
  • Cultural input: Les expressions/ proverbes qui s’inspirent du vocabulaire de la musique (French expressions and famous saying that include music-related words/phrases): La musique adoucit les mœurs = la musique est un bon moyen d’éduquer les gens / mettre un bémol = lorsque deux personnes discutent ou débattent de quelque chose, l’une d’elle peut interrompre l’autre pour expliquer qu’elle n’es pas d’accord avec cette personne, elle pourrait dire «je mets un bémol sur ce que tu dis», ce qui veut dire, «I disagree» d’une manière plus subtile et moins directe / ça me chante = ça me dis, «I feel like-doing it», «if I want to»
  • Activity 2: La fête de la musique
  • Start by asking them if they have ever heard of or have ever been to a ‘fête de la musique’ in France which occur every summer (generally around the end ofJune) in almost every French cities and villages.
  • Video screening of Paris’ 2017 ‘Fête de la musique’: ( – after watching the video, discuss with the whole class the following questions: Avez-vous déjà participé à une fête de la musique en France ou dans votre pays d’origine? si oui décrivez votre expérience, si non pensez-vous qu’il existe une fête similaire dans votre pays / région? (Did you ever participated in one before? if yes describe your experience/opinion of it; if no, is there any similar celebration-s/annual event-s where you’re from?)
  • I used a powerpoint to structure and guide the unfolding of the class. This class was very interesting because I noticed how curious and interested students were when I talk about French cultural aspects, traditions and linguistic peculiarities of the French language. From there a lot of them started asking questions and compare/associate with how it is back home for them, or in California.They really liked the fact that I showed a video on «la fête de la musique” in France, which is a well-known musical celebration taking place all around France in Juneevery year in June all around France. I had prepared a comprehensive and detailed vocabulary sheet on vocabulary and expressions in relation to music but they seem to have not needed it that much which showed me that the advanced class needed more to learn idioms, specific expressions and even colloquialism.

JP F20 ADV: Reading Kanji

Language Resident/Assistant Name:  

Kozue Matsumoto 

Day and Date:  

Tuesday November 24, 2020   

Language and Level (intermediate or advanced class):  


Class theme/topics discussed:  

  • Last class: kanji games 

Goal of the class:  

  • Guess how to read unusual kanji

How did you structure the class?  

  1. How are you doing? Hanging in there? Good news if any??? (7 min) 
    1. Hawaiian Thanksgiving dishes – lots of Asian food included  
  1. Guess and read the kanji (45 min) 
    1. Veggies
    2. Fruits 
    3. Things in the water 
    4. Family names 
  1. Most complicated kanji (10 min) 
    1. Some legendary mysterious kanji 
    2. Officially registered real kanji

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

Class agreement, breakup rooms 

Zoom, white board 

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

  • We talked how we feel at the end of the semester. Since everything happened online at home, there is not a huge difference compared to pre-COVID time when students used to move back to their hometown etc.  
  • We talked a bit about Hawaiian Thanksgiving food 
  • Kanji guessing game was fun, and they had very good questions such as when these vegetables were introduced to Japan and how their kanji were decided like that. 
  • One student was sharing her knowledge about how Taiwanese use the same kanji for the same fruits and how a kanji was chosen for a certain fruit because of the meaning of kanji (蕃) 
  • We guessed some strange and rare family names and some super complicated kanji as well. 
  • We had a pretty fun time. They used everything they know to guess the kanji, such as a documentary film about fish that they watched the other day, the knowledge of Taiwanese usage of kanji, etc. 

How could this class be improved/ modified? 

  • There are lots of kanji. Some are easy to guess, and others are just impossible to guess. We can do a lot about this. 

If you have a more detailed lesson plan, please attach it below (OK to use target language for that).  Please attach any handouts as well. 

Below are what we did with whiteboard



Things in the water 

Rare and strange family names 

Complicated kanji 

Taito たいと – a family name (not officially recorded in anywhere but there is a story around this kanji)

Biang – From Chinese kanji

Jin ジン – dust

JP F20 INT/ADV: Haiku

Language Resident/Assistant Name:  

Kozue Matsumoto 

Day and Date:  

Monday October 5, 2020   

Language and Level (intermediate or advanced class):  

Intermediate / Advanced

Class theme/topics discussed:  

  • Haiku 

Goal of the class:  

  • Learn about Haiku 
  • Create haiku and kigo 

How did you structure the class?  

  1. Good news (5min) *We share positive stories at the beginning of each class.
  1. Today’s plan and watch a video:  (10 min) 
  1. Example of “kigo” (5 min) 
  1. Break out room (2-3people) (25 min)  
    1. How we appreciate season? Any new “kigo” that we can create that’s specific to American seasonal moments? 
    2. What reminds us of seasons? What kind of things do we appreciate in a season? What do we do, see, hear, taste or feel in a season?  
    3. Let’s make a haiku! 
  1. Main room (15 min) 
    1. Share the haiku each group made.  

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

Class agreement, breakup rooms 

Zoom, Breakout room, emails, YouTube and internet resources.   

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

  • They knew the basics of haiku. The video helped them understand a little deeper about haiku. 
  • “kigo” is an interesting concept. Instead of telling them this as a rule, I let them think about and come up with their own “kigo” in their own environment (American or California or whatever they think of) 
  • I believe it’s a nice activity to reflect how we are related to our environment, such as nature or seasonal events.  
  • This also turned into finding a little nice or memorable moment in their daily life relating to a season 
  • They enjoyed thinking of “kigo” and they explained how seasonal a certain word is to me, as I’m not quite familiar to American seasonal practice.  
  • They enjoyed making haiku, too, and they are using some techniques such as ji-amari (extra letter) or taigen-dome (ending a phrase with a noun)   
  • I also had them type their poem into the chat so I can make sure I know what they did and also I can save it. 
  • This was also finding a little nice or memorable moment in their daily life 

How could this class be improved/ modified? 

  • We focused on fall as it’s fall now, but we can do this any seasons 
  • We can also do “senryu,” which is like haiku, but you do not need to use “kigo” in it. So this could be a little freer and more hilarious.  

 If you have a more detailed lesson plan, please attach it below (OK to use target language for that).  Please attach any handouts as well. 

Some concepts: 

Student works (with my quick translation): 

With Milky way, tonight’s moon is rare. 

While enjoying the colorful fall tree leaves while it’s on fire in California 

At Corn field, a skeleton is coming while dancing 

花枯れる (はなかれる) 
BTS が来る (ビティエスがくる) 
The season the flowers die, it’s also a season BTS comes here. Feels happy. 

Taco Tuesday, also Thanksgiving, I’m eating too much 

At dusk, I curve a pumpkin and light inside. 

Fall time, I remember lots of colors. 

Coming in the fall, I feel happy looking outside 

In early spring, while waiting for a train, I saw the girl. 

My homework is all blown away, thanks to a strong spring wind! 

Cicada sounds, let’s spit out seeds with my sticky hands 

The first rain, and then snow falls, the mountain sleeps 

大雨で 峰
A huge rain fall, the peak of mountains become white as mountains sleeps 

After the rain, the clounds are blown away and I see a white mountain.  

JP F20 INT/ADV: Music Videos

Language Resident/Assistant Name:  

Kozue Matsumoto 

Day and Date:  

Monday November 9, 2020   

Language and Level (intermediate or advanced class):  

Intermediate  / Advanced

Class theme/topics discussed:  

Goal of the class:  

  • Get to know some contemporary attempt of Japanese traditional music 
  • Describe music videos, what do you see? What do you hear?

How did you structure the class?  

  1. How are you doing? Hanging there? Good news if any??? (7 min) 
    1. We are trying to stay calm with the presidential election result being updated.
  1. Today’s plan (3 min) 
  1. Breakout room (30 min): Each group has a different music video
    1. Watch the videos 
    2. How many people are there?  
    3. What are they doing? What are the instruments? 
    4. What do they wear? 
    5. What kind of music? 
    6. What is traditional and what is not traditional? 
    7. Do you like it or not and why? 
  1. Main room (20 min) 
    1. Explain the music video and watch video 
    2. Wrap up. Stay positive, and stay calm,  

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

Class agreement, breakup rooms 

Zoom, breakout rooms, youtube videos 

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

  • Students were a little tired at the beginning with upcoming exams and all the homework they have 
  • Each breakout room had a different music video. So I told them to describe the video really in detail. 
  • They enjoyed the videos.  
  • We learned some way of describing music, terms such as “traditional,” “contemporary,” and other terms used for traditional clothing.  
  • In breakout rooms, they asked me some words that explain musical moments, things artists are wearing, or the scenery. They used these terms when shearing in the main room. 
  • I first let all the groups explain what they watched. After that is done, I shared my screen and played all three videos at once. They loved it.  
  • Students enjoyed the music, costumes, the techniques of artists, and other details.   
  • This is one of classes students chose as the best.


  • Students enjoyed the music, costumes, the techniques of artists, and other details. 
  • We ended up with talking a lot about Japanese arts and elements in videos. 
  • Students have a little more knowledge about Buddhism in this class, and it made some discussions very interesting. 

How could this class be improved/ modified? 

  • I noticed that students used chat a lot as we all watch the videos together. Probably I can make use of the chat function more effectively with music moment. I don’t know how yet though. Something to keep thinking for the next time.  

If you have a more detailed lesson plan, please attach it below (OK to use target language for that).  Please attach any handouts as well. 

Videos Shared:

Vocabulary that we learned: 

楽器:がっき:musical instrument 

Students’ comments on chat for each video
17:06:41     From Lena She-Her : This lit 
17:06:50     From Mason Cai : ^^ 
17:06:54     From Marina Aina : ^^^ 
17:07:00     From Ruby Hoffman : ^^ 
17:07:10     From Ashley Cheng : ^^^^^ 
17:07:32     From Marina Aina : The mv visuals are so nice too 😮 
17:07:48     From Alyssa Zhang : those masks damnnnnn 
17:08:06     From Mason Cai : :OOOoOOO:  
17:10:24     From Marina Aina : Ive never felt more untalented in my life LMAO they’re so good 😮 
17:10:32     From Kate McHale : this really slaps 
17:10:34     From Ashley Cheng : It really do be one of those days  
17:12:03     From Kano Cheng : I want to be this man when I grow up 
17:12:29     From Ruby Hoffman : yes oh my god 
17:12:37     From Marina Aina : i think you can accomplish that dream :,) 
17:12:40     From Kate McHale : immaculate vibes 
17:12:42     From Ashley Cheng : I wonder if my buddhist grandma would appreciate this 
17:13:07     From Alyssa Zhang : i want to know what hes saying 

JP F19 ADV Facial Expressions, Gestures & Emojis

Language Resident Name: Miki Saigo

Day and Date: December 3, 2019

Language and Level: Advanced Japanese

Class theme/topics discussed:
Face expressions, gestures and emojis

Goal of the class:

  • Talk about emotions and certain situations to use gestures/emojis
  • Learn cultural differences about gestures and facial expressions

How did you structure the class?

  • Warm-up: Greetings and announcements
    – Cultural events
    – Lunch Table attendances
  • Activity I: Emojis
    I give students Handout of emojis and briefly explain what “emojis” are. In pairs, I ask students to discuss (i) what kind of emotions/meanings the emojis represent, and (ii) in what kind of context people would use the emojis in a message. After a while, I ask the questions to the whole class and discuss together. If needed, I explain cultural backgrounds of some of the emojis. I also ask if there are other emojis that students often use.
  • Activity II: Gestures
    I show a list of words/situations on the screen (“to call,” “thank you,” “when you meet your friends” etc.) and ask students to think of gestures they might use in the situations. Students work in pairs, and when they are done, I ask them to act out each gesture. We talk about cultural differences found in the gestures.
  • Activity III: Discussions
    In pairs, students discuss the following questions:
    1. Are there other gestures you use/ have seen? (To give examples at first, I mention a couple gestures that I have seen in American TV shows.)
    2. When you travel abroad and you don’t know the local language, what do you do? (It could be gestures or other ways to communicate.) For example, when you’re at a store or in a taxi?

What technology, media or props did you use?

  • Handout with pictures
  • PowerPoint slides

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

We had lively and interesting discussions throughout the class. Students enjoyed talking about emojis more than I had expected. I think it was a good topic for our generation. The first few emojis in Handout were meant to be basic expressions (e.g. smile, laugh, cry etc.), but they developed way more than that and had a huge discussion (e.g. “It is a fake smile you make when you don’t like something,” “You don’t use this crying face when you are actually sad,” “It could be happy tears”). Moreover, students in this class had culturally diverse backgrounds, so it was interesting to compare the cultural differences in gestures (e.g. how to count with your fingers in China).

How could this class be improved/ modified?

I was going to do another activity (storytelling by using emojis), but students spent a long time discussing emojis (which is fine because they enjoyed and talked a lot). Depending on the audience, however, I would use another activity to adjust the time.

Handout & Slide (Activity I):



DE F17 INT Thanksgiving

Conversation Class Lesson Summary

Language Resident Name: Ines Fister

 Day and Date: Monday, Nov 20, 2017

 Language and Level (intermediate or advanced class): German, intermediate, 3 students

 Class theme/topics discussed: Thanksgiving

 Goal of the class: Students learn basic vocabulary about Thanksgiving

 How did you structure the class?  

4.15-5.45 (30mins): Story telling – my funny Thanksgiving (story cubes from German LR closet). Each student gets 5 story cubes (= dice with various symbols) and has to tell a story about Thanksgiving which includes all the symbols they diced. The other students have to guess which part of the story came from the cubes. Students can ask for and look up vocabulary.

5.45-5.15 (30mins): collect all vocab on the board; students handcraft a vocabulary turkey – all the new words are written on feathers made from paper; they can color the feathers and the turkey (prepared by LR) as they want and stick all the feathers on the turkey – it’s a nice decoration for the classroom or the bulletin board.

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

whiteboard, story cubes; handcrafting materials (paper, scissors, colors, glue or tape)

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

It worked very well, but we would have needed a little more time. They had troubles telling an exciting story that also has to do with thanksgiving; but as they are intermediate that is okay.

 How could this class be improved/ modified?

Add some basic vocab work before having them telling the story. Repeat all the vocab in the end. If you have enough time, each student could make their own turkey – for example assign them different themes like family, food and activities. The activity, including the additional proposals made, could be planned for two lessons.

 If you have a more detailed lesson plan, please attach it below (OK to use target language for that).  Please attach any handouts as well.

ES S17 ADV Expressions with animals

Language Resident Name: Tamara Olivos

Day and Date: April 27, 2017

Language and Level (intermediate or advanced class): Advanced Spanish

Class theme/topics discussed: Sayings with animals


How did you structure the class?

Upcoming Cultural Activities, check attendance to language tables


Warm up: Scattegories: With one letter of the alphabet students must fill in the categories.

Activity 1: Ask the class what animals they know in Spanish and write them on the board. Then, try to elicit what qualities they think each of those animals have.

Activity 2: With the handouts, students must match the saying with its meaning. This could be done in pairs. (you can choose different sayings online)

Activity 3: Check their answers and clarify questions about meaning. Small discussion about whether they have similar sayings in English.

ES S17 INT/ADV Common Expressions with Animals

Language Resident Name: Joaquin Garcia

Day and Date: 02/07/2017

Language and Level (intermediate or advanced class): Intermediate/Advanced Class

Class theme/topics discussed: Animals, Spanish sayings

How did you structure the class?

Heads-up: upcoming cultural activities

Warm-up: All students standing up. I give a student a ball, within 15 seconds he/she has to think of an animal that starts with the letter “a”. Then he/she passes the ball to another student who must do likewise but with letter “b”. If a student fails has to sit down. We go through the alphabet until only one student is standing. You can go from “z” to “a” again if many students still remain playing. Also, it would be wise if you remove from the beginning those letters with only/none animals (e.g. “x”).

Activity 1: We brainstorm some useful vocabulary to describe animals and I write it down on the board. Then, each student writes the name of an animal on a piece of paper and I stick it on other student’s back. All students stand up and move around and with yes/no questions, they need to figure out which is the animal on their back.

Activity 2: Students are in pairs, I give them a list with Spanish sayings involving animals in one column, and the meaning on the other (although they are not in order). They need to match up the two columns by thinking on the meaning of the sayings. After, I give all the solution and we check how well they did.  If there is time left, you can put the students in pairs or little groups and they have to come up with a context where a saying is properly used, they even can act out the situation.

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


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

How could this class be improved/ modified?

Very successful class. Students liked all the activities. Maybe it would have been better doing everything faster so we had time to act some of the sayings. Depending on the level of the students, this can work with an intermediate class although I would recommend to reduce the list of sayings in activity 2. For advance, this matches the difficulty level definitely.

 If you have a more detailed lesson plan, please attach it below (OK to use target language for that).  Please attach any handouts as well. 

A Ser un lince 1 Ser astuto
B Ser un cerdo/marrano 2 Haber poca gente
C Ponerse como/ser una vaca 3 Tener poca memoria
D Llevarse el gato al agua 4 Afrontar un problema
E Meter/Esconder la cabeza como un avestruz 5 Sufrir las consecuencias de algo sin tener la culpa
F Ser un zorro 6 Ser un/a cobarde
G Matar dos pájaros de un tiro 7 Haber algo oculto o sospechoso
H Ser un burro 8 Salirse con la suya, vencer, triunfar
I Hacer el/ser un perro 9 Mismo problema pero con distinta forma
J Estar en la boca del lobo 10 Tener mucha memoria
K A caballo regalado, no le mires los dientes 11 Darse cuenta de un peligro y cambiar de actitud
L Tener la piel de gallina 12 Haber mucha abundancia
M Haber cuatro gatos 13 Estar loco
N Tener memoria de elefante 14 Comportarse sin modales
Ñ Tener un cerebro de mosquito 15 Estar en una zona peligrosa
O Ser un gusano 16 Ser muy listo
P Ser un/a gallina 17 Ser poco inteligente
Q El mismo perro con distinto collar 18 Ser el que manda, el jefe
R Estar como una cabra 19 Evitar/huir de los problemas
S Tener memoria de pez 20 Conseguir dos cosas a la vez
T Agarrar el toro por los cuernos 21 Ponerse/Estar muy gordo/a
U Aquí hay gato encerrado 22 Engañar a alguien en un negocio
V Atar perros con longanizas 23 Ser tonto
W Verle las orejas al lobo 24 No buscar defectos ni preguntar el precio de un regalo
X Cortar el bacalao 25 Ser un miserable
Y Dar gato por liebre 26 Padecer frío o emocionarse
Z Pagar el pato 27 Hacer el/Ser un vago






ES S17 ADV Spanish Proverbs

Language Resident Name: Joaquin Garcia

Day and Date: 02/14/2017

Language and Level (intermediate or advanced class): Advanced Class

Class theme/topics discussed: Spanish proverbs

Goal of the class: Students get to learn expressions and proverbs which are commonly used in Spain and other Latin-American countries.


How did you structure the class?

Heads-up: upcoming cultural activities

Activity 1: We watch a couple of videos about Spanish sayings and we comment them openly.

Activity 2: I put students in little groups and I distribute Spanish proverbs, however, each of them is separated into two parts. Students in the groups must match up the proverbs.

Grupo A

A quien madruga,

Dios le ayuda

No dejes para mañana

lo que puedas hacer hoy

Más vale pájaro en mano

que ciento volando

Mala hierba

nunca muere

Ande yo caliente,

ríase la gente

Grupo B

No por mucho madrugar

amanece más temprano

Más vale tarde

que nunca

Quien no arriesga,

no gana

No hay mal

que cien años dure

Allí donde fueres,

haz lo que vieres

Activity 3: Some of the proverbs mean the exact opposite things as others. Students must stand up and try to find those proverbs.

Grupo A

Ejercicio. Lee los refranes que aparecen a continuación y emparéjalos con la definición correcta.

  1. A quien madruga, Dios le ayuda
  2. No dejes para mañana lo que puedas hacer hoy
  3. Más vale pájaro en mano que ciento volando
  4. Mala hierba nunca muere
  5. Ande yo caliente, ríase la gente

Refrán para aquellas personas que en vez de conformarse con las cosas seguras que tiene, prefieren arriesgar.

Hace referencia a las personas que tienen un mal comportamiento. Este refrán nos dice que el mal nunca desaparece y, por tanto, las personas malas no cambian.

Recomienda ser rápido, ágil –y no vago o perezoso– para tener éxito en las tareas que se realizarán a lo largo del día.

Se dice cuando una persona prefiere actuar con su propio criterio y conciencia, sin tener en cuenta la opinión de los demás.

Aconseja no dejar pendiente para otro día los trabajos o actividades que menos nos motivan y agradan.


Grupo B

Ejercicio. Lee los refranes que aparecen a continuación y emparéjalos con la definición correcta.

1. No por mucho madrugar amanece más temprano

2. Más vale tarde que nunca

3. Quien no arriesga, no gana
4. No hay mal que cien años dure
5. Allí donde fueres, haz lo que vieres

Para conseguir aquellas cosas que deseamos, es necesario arriesgar. De otro modo, no podremos conseguirlas.

A veces, no importa si las cosas las hacemos demasiado tarde. Lo importante es que las hagamos.

Recomendación para adaptarse a las costumbres de otras culturas y países. Aconseja comportarse como la gente que tenemos alrededor para evitar conflictos.

No debemos precipitarnos o ir rápido en aquello que queremos hacer porque los acontecimientos deben seguir su ritmo natural.

Con este refrán, consolamos a aquellos que tienen problemas de difícil solución. Es un mensaje de esperanza que nos dice que las desgracias no son para siempre.


Activity 4: I distribute one more proverb to each student and they have to describe it to the rest of the class.


Activity 5: In pairs, they must act a situation and use the proverb correctly in front of the rest of the class.


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

Laptop, hands-out, youtube.


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

How could this class be improved/ modified?


They loved to learn this kind of vocabulary, specially the last list of proverbs and acting them out. Plus, it was a good training for the Open House activity. I definitely recommend this class.


 If you have a more detailed lesson plan, please attach it below (OK to use target language for that).  Please attach any handouts as well.




ES S16 ADV Expressions with verbs “dar” and “tener”

Language and Level (intermediate or advanced class): Advanced Class

Class theme/topics discussed: Spanish expressions and idioms

Goal of the class: to learn common expressions used in Spain and general idioms with the verb “dar”

How did you structure the class?

Warm up: Scattegories

In a piece of paper students write a list of categories (names, countries or cities, fruits or vegetables, objects, etc). Then, someone randomly selects a letter from the alphabet and students must write one word that starts with that letter for each category. It’s a competition, the fastest student stops the game.

Activity: I selected a list of useful and very common idioms with the verb “dar” and “tener”. Separate the class in pairs and give 1 expression to each pair (it includes an example and meaning). They must come up with a dialogue and then act it out in front of the class. The rest of the students must recognize the idiom and explain its meaning. Each couple presents to the class. At the end of the activity I give everyone a full list of the expressions.

After this we watch a funny video of Spanish expressions being represented literally.

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

I was a bit scared for the expressions activity because I couldn’t really think of a fun way to learn vocabulary. It turned out really well and they were engaged in the activity. They were also quite positive about my little challenge of choosing one expressions and try to incorporate it into their speech during the next class or language tables.

Handout of expressions

Lesson summary Jan 26.docx. copy

RU F14 INT Going crazy + Expressions of necessity/need

Conversation Class Lesson Summary

Language and Section: Russian Intermediate 11

Date: September 17, 2014

Class theme/topics discussed:

Going crazy and expressing the need (in that order)

Goal of the class:

Watch a couple of fun videos to remember the expression “to go crazy”, revise expressions of need, necessity, obligation

Structure of the class (unless you attach your lesson plan below):

 Activity 1 – General discussion + Warm-up Video 1 – 5 minutes

More vocabulary in HANDOUT 3

Activity 2 – Video 2 t.A.T.u. Ya soshla s uma (I have lost my mind) – 5 minutes

Lyrics in HANDOUT 1

Activity 3Video 3 Non cadenza Ne soiti s uma (Not to lose my mind) – 15 minutes

Lyrics in HANDOUT 2

Discussion: What is going on in the video? Where are they? What are they doing? Why does it end the way it does? Is this a happy ending?

Activity 3 – “I NEED…” – REVISION – 20 minutes

I need something (Мне нужен/нужна/нужно/нужны + Noun ) vs. I need to do something (Мне нужно/надо + Verb)

Short adjectives revision (structure)

Он уверенный (всегда) – он уверен, что (сейчас)

Examples, vocabulary work

Activity 4 – I NEED – exercise – HANDOUT 4 – 15 minutes

Two types of pair work:

  • Read your sentence in English out load and your partner translates it into Russian
  • Read your sentence in English (not say it out loud), translate into Russian, the partner translates back into English, you verify



RU S15 ADV Apologizing

Conversation Class Lesson Summary

Language and Section: Russian Advanced 13

Date: January 29, 2015 

Class theme/topics discussed:

Apologizing, making amends, Open House

Goal of the class:

Review different ways of saying you are sorry across formal and informal registers

Structure of the class (unless you attach your lesson plan below):

Activity 1 Video – President’s Yeltsin Resignation/New Year 1999 address – 15 minutes We watch all 11 minutes of Boris Yeltsin’s famous “I’m leaving” address on New Year’s Eve 1999 where he resigns, asks the Russian people for forgiveness, asserts the “bright future” agenda and appoint a successor, Vladimir Putin, who is part of new “energetic, smart generation”. We discuss Yelstin’s ways of asking forgiveness

Activity 2 – American politicians apologizing – HANDOUT 1 – 15 minutes

I show a small article on the screen – why do politicians apologize so rarely? And then we discuss what American politicians sometimes apologize for (Handout 1, adapted from here Each student gets one politician, they read out their “story” and I write expressions of apology/sorry on the board.

Activity 3How could you! – HANDOUT 2 – 15 min

Each gets one “mistake” and they say it to their neighbor – how could you not visit Grandma at the hospital? And the neighbor has to apologize.

Activity 4Open house – 15 min

We discuss ideas for the Oldenborg Open house and look at funny word play sentences (HANDOUT 3)

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

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

This class went very well! I am glad we did some hardcore political analysis watching Yeltsin’s speech, which is incidentally also very easy to understand. Watching it 15 years later is quite extraordinary, and it explains so much of what’s going on in Russian politics right now. In other activities we progressively lightened it up. Again, there was a great balance of listening (video in Activity 1), speaking (all the discussions), and reading (Activity 2).

How could this class be improved/ modified? 

Please attach your lesson plan and handouts for this class below – if you used any.



RU S13 ADV Future and advice

Conversation Class

Lesson Summary

Language and Section: Russian Advanced

Date:  02/26/13

 Class theme/topics discussed: Ways to know your future; Giving advice

 Goal of the class:

–        To practice future tense

–        To develop imaginative talk in Russian

–        To practice problem-solving

 Structure of the class (unless you attach your lesson plan below):

–        Pair work: students exchange their dream collages[1], they look at them for a while and try to imagine the future for another student according to his/her dream collage. They also think of questions they would ask regarding their future. While they are doing that, the teacher is writing down some expressions the students could use on the whiteboard;

–        Pair work continues (role-play): one of the students wants to know his/her future, another student is a fortune-teller. To make the game more interesting students ask their questions they came up with earlier;

–        Pair work continues: switching roles;

–        Presentation: each student tells his/her future after he /she ‘went’ to a fortune-teller and comments on whether it was close to what he/she was actually dreaming about;

–        Discussion: Fortune-tellers, can they really predict the future or are they just good psychologists? + Students tell whether they would ever go to a fortune-teller for real;

–        Asking students what other ways of predicting the future they know (horoscopes are among them);

–        Students go to the white-board and draw 3 zodiac signs each. The teacher tells the name of each of it in Russian;

–        Students get their February horoscopes and read them to the class;

–        Together we identify the different parts of a horoscope (love life, career, family & friends etc.) and note its element of advice;

–        Students need to write down on a piece of paper their own or an imaginary problem that needs a solution/advice. The teacher writes down such expression as ‘in my opinion’, ‘to my mind’, ‘I believe/consider’, ‘my advice is’ etc.

–        Game ‘Doctor Ai-bolit’: the teacher collects the papers with problems, mixes them and pretends that he/she is the one who needs a piece of advice. He/she reads the problems one by one and students pretend to be the ‘doctors’ – those who give advice. In order to get 1 point a student should be fast and creative in giving advice. The one, who gets the most points, also gets some prize.

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

–        Dream collages

–        Whiteboard

–        Fact magazine, which contains horoscopes

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

It was a fun class as it involved a lot of different activities implying different skill sets. The students had a chance to imply their imagination while telling the future to their partners. The final stories were quite interesting. Another fun thing is that they had a chance to draw on a whiteboard. This way they remember new vocabulary better due to association. The students also like the activities that involve competition and some prize. So they were really motivated during the ‘Doktor Ai-bolit’-game. During this lesson the students talked a lot so be prepared that you might not have the time to finish all the planned activities. However, you can always continue them in the next lesson.

[1] We made those collages during one of the previous lessons when we were talking about the dreams. Otherwise, they could be made in the beginning of the new lesson.

FR S13 ADV Proverbs

Conversation Class

Lesson Summary

 Language and Section: French Advanced

 Date: 1.24.13

 Class theme/topics discussed: French Proverbs

 Goal of the class: Make the students learn about proverbs and break the ice in a new class

 Structure of the class:

–        Activity 1: I cut 20 proverbs in two pieces each. Each student was given 4 pieces and for each piece had to figure out who has the matching piece. In the end each student had two full proverbs. They wrote them down on the whiteboard and we discussed their meaning.

–        Activity 2: Students worked in pair. They picked one proverb and they had to act it out and to make the rest of the class guess what proverb they picked.

–        Activity 3: Students worked in groups. They were given two words. From those words they had to imagine a dialogue that included as many proverbs as possible.

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

Generally it worked well but 18 students + all these pieces of paper: that was a little bit confusing!

 How could this class be improved/ modified?

 With less students!



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