(This lesson is my contribution to the Ratatouille unit, it was thrown together at the last minute, but came out well enough.)
Curious George (the movie) in French
Normally I don’t use tv with the children, but in this case it served several purposes: it allowed me to finish up my prep in the kitchen, it kept the children from pulling every toy out of every box (it’s been a problem) and it allowed them to hear some French without being frustrated by not understanding what was going on. (They only watched about 20 minutes or so.) The songs in the movie are not translated, it should be noted. Obviously my first choice was to put in Ratatouille, but it, like many other Disney movies, is only available in English on the dvd. This is a ridiculous choice on the part of Disney, as I believe all movies sold for use in North America should be dubbed into all three languages.
Bonjour mes amis!
Bonjour: good day (hello)
mes amis: my friends
je m’appelle: my name is
After going over a few introductions we sang “bonjour mes amis bonjour.”
I had a lot of fun translating our calendar time into French. We did all of our normal calendar time routine in English, then doubled the whole thing in French. I always do calendar time as part of our welcome activity in preschool, though I don’t normally list it in the lesson plan.
I only got through about half of the books I had in my possession. (Did I forget to mention that I was a French teacher in Virginia for a year? That’s a story for another day…) I’ll list only a sample of the books, not the entire collection.
“La dégringolade du Père Noël” by Gilles Tibo
“Ma Maman” and “Mon Papa” by Debbie Bailey and Susan Huszar
“L’Alphabet” by Roger Paré
“De la petite taupe qui voulait savoir qui lui avait fait sure la tête” by Werner Holzwarth and Wolf Erlbruch (translated from German but if you’re interested in a barnyard defecation story, it has been translated into English as well)
“Gros Grognon” by Jeremy Tankard (a translation of this adorable book)
“Château-Mystère / Mystery Castle” by Kathy Gemmell, ill. by Brenda Haw
“L’Île Fantastique / Fantastic Island” by Kathy Gemmell, ill. by Brenda Haw
Working out of the cookbooks they’re using for this unit, they assembled my childhood-favourite snack: bugs on a log. Celery and peanut butter in equal portions with raisins on top? It’s perfection.
For our craft we made Eiffel Towers out of wafer cookies, following the example found in my Ratatouille cookbook, “What’s Cooking? A Cookbook for Kids.”
There are many things I’d have done differently, but I threw it together on late notice. I’m quite worn out, but I don’t teach again until January so I have plenty of time to recover.