Course Syllabus

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Mme McCormick:  mccormicka@wellesleyps.org

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~ L'art dans les rues de Paris ~

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\(\Uparrow\) Check out the Engage! Page by clicking on "Les Agendas" to get an idea of each day's classwork and homework!

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Visitez la France!  

…Well, not really. But imagine you could. You would want to be prepared to enjoy the fabulous food, people, and culture to their fullest, non? From its wines, cheeses, chocolates, and pastries to its awesome street art, cathedrals, majestic buildings, charming countryside, and blending of cultures, la France is as rich in the flavors of its history and ever-evolving culture as a yummy, cheesy gratin.

So let’s dig in. As your French teacher, I am appealing to your imagination and whimsy; I’m asking each of you to suspend disbelief each time you come to French class. Let’s think of our time together as preparation for a journey. Why do I ask this of you? My goal is to share my passion and knowledge of French language and culture with you in the most interesting and meaningful way possible. We may not be able to fly off to Paris tomorrow, but we can do the next best thing ~ bring France and all its wonders to us.

But France is only one place where French is spoken. While my love of French stems from living in France, there are close to 50 other countries in which French is spoken! Our exploration of language and culture will take us around the world.

  Être dans le bain!   

The French have a great expression to describe linguistic and cultural immersion – they liken it to bathing! With increasing frequency as the year progresses, I will speak mostly in French. You may feel lost, but don’t shut down.  Be patient with yourself, smile and guess! You’ll be amazed how much you can understand through gesture and context as long as you are relaxed and open to taking some risks. Let yourself be guided by the famous French proverb: Only they who do nothing make no mistakes.

Every class will be packed with activities, and outside of class you will be asked to engaged in meaningful skill-building work. I will hold you accountable for your full engagement.

\(\bullet\bullet\bullet\) LANGUAGE LEARNING 2.0 \(\bullet\bullet\bullet\)

THIS IS NOT YOUR PARENTAL FIGURE'S FRENCH CLASS! What we now understand about language acquisition and how people learn has transformed how we teach French. Gone are the days of textbooks filled with conjugation tables and workbooks with flat fill-in-the-blank exercises. Here are the YouTube videos, audio clips, and infographics made by French speakers for French speakers. As I give you the tools to become a proficient reader, writer, listener, and speaker of French, we will engage with many authentic resources so that you can get used to hearing spoken French, reading real texts, and communicating (both orally and in writing) in pseudo-real scenarios. Our THEMATIC UNITS build proficiency skills in a cultural and linguistic context.

Unité 1A: Le Bonjour + La Bise  ~ How do I interact with people in French-speaking cultures when I'm just learning the basics?

Unité 1B: Le moi unique ~ What makes people individuals, & how am I unique?

Unité 2: La famille ~ What does family, in its broadest sense look like, & what does it mean to me?

Unité 3:  Les loisirs + les préférences How do choices around free-time, food, and clothing shape identity and/or reflect who I am?

 

Something for Everyone!

Because X needs to hear the words in order to memorize them, Y needs to see the words written out, and Z needs to draw pictures in order to remember them, I have designed a course that will hopefully appeal to various learning styles and allow everyone to feel successful as they strive toward proficiency. I vary the types of activities and assignments to encourage you to figure out what type of a language learner you are based on what seems to peak you interest. You can expect assignments, projects, and activities such as:

  • Puzzles & vocabulary games
  • Interpretative reading assignments
  • Dialogues, role plays, and discussions
  • Audio + Video interpretation & creation
  • CANVAS forum posts + online activities
  • Written+ Oral Performance Assessments
  • The occasional Achievement Assessments (an old-fashioned tool to encourage you to commit to memory essential words and phrases)

The way it works:

It is not about cramming; it’s about cognition, repetition, and practice! I will require you to try out a variety of study methods so that you can eventually figure out which ones work best for you. Class time is designed to reinforce the learning you do at home. Participation is a MUST. This is not always easy for some people. We will work to create a safe & supportive environment for our learning community in which incorrect answers are considered a welcome part of the learning process and where it’s fine to feel a little funny about pronouncing strange Frenchy sounds. You‘ll find that the risks you take enhance the richness of your French experience.

Everyday Tools for Success ***PLEASE READ!!***

-- Pencil & pen (a few different colors if possible)

-- Ear buds with microphone

-- 3-Ring Binder with the following 4 sections LABLED

  • NOTES DE VOCABULAIRE**
  • DOCUMENTS 
  • PROJECT ASSIGNMENT SHEETS
  • “T.I.N.T.W.O.L” + FEEDBACK/GRADED WORK

 ** NOTE: it is crucial that you keep your notes in sequence. I prefer you write them on lined paper, but if you insist on writing in a spiral notebook, make sure your notes are exclusively for this class. The spiral notebook must fit in your binder.

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