Thursday, 27 February 2014

Spanish KS1 ,Going Bear Hunting Rhyme and Game

Spanish KS1  ,Going Bear Hunting Rhyme and Game

Suish suash, glo glo glorogló
Plochi plochi plop
Túpiti túpiti tap , suu, uuuu
Tipi tip tipi tip
İAhhhhhhhh!  İEs un oso!

        The children are going normally going to listen to the story vamos a cazar un oso when we play this Going on a bear hunt rhyme and game .
But they love it so much that we often play it just for fun!


      Our children practise their numbers first .
3.       We set up a path of numbers across the classroom and the children step carefully across the path of numbers in a line. The numbers are repeated so we have three paths of numbers of  1-10 .the children sing / chant the numbers as they walk until the teacher calls stop!  The teacher calls out a number and if a child is stood on that number then they are out of the game and caught by the imaginary bear ! The teacher can call put more than one number.
4.       How many bear hunters will we have left after we have played the game three times
5.       Once we feel the children know their numbers well enough, we ask them to put on their bear hunter kit ( imaginary hat , binoculars , wellington boots) and we pretend to go out to see what the terrain is like .
6.        For each of the terrains – as in the book – we have a sound to represent  the terrain

Suish suash glo glo glorogló = river
Plochi plochi plop= mud
Túpiti túpiti tap= forest and owls
Suu, uuuu= snow storm
Tipi tip tipi tip = inside a cave

7.       We need to become good explorers , so we practise the sounds and add actions
8.       We ask the children to close their eyes and come with us on an imaginary journey through the different terrains .The teacher  tells the  story in English of their journey and the children join in  with sounds that “colour” in the terrain that is described . they are the sound effects.
9.       Now they are finally ready to become” Bear explorers “! They need to practise the rhyme , remember their actions and their numbers  too …..but when they get to the end of the rhyme they need to listen out for you to shout out / whisper / say very quickly etc the final line İAhhhhhhhh!  İEs un oso!

10.   When they hear you say the final line, they must freeze frame and stay very still until you have counted backwards very slowly from 10-1. If they move then the bear will catch them!

Tuesday, 25 February 2014

Châteaux et chevaliers

Châteaux et chevaliers!
This sequence of activity based around French castles and creating our own class chevaliers was inspired by a tweet by Emilie @EWoodruffe who works with Janet Lloyd Network in a primary school teaching French, where language learning  is a part of the whole school creative curriculum model . Her challenge this half term is to link language learning to the year group focus : “Castles” .

I have created a sequence  of language learning suitable for UKS2 French with listening , speaking , reading and writing  performance and DT .

Activities below can take your class on a journey to France , to the Loire , along the Loire and the castles , inside a creepy castle and to meet knights and give these French chevalier personalities , equipment and physical descriptions . You can mix and match activities to suit your class focus and they all lead to the creation of your own class chevaliers! 

Stage One : Les châteaux de la Loire
Pretty obvious place to start. Here is an evocative clip from You Tube introducing les châteaux  de la Loire 

We love using child friendly maps of France to bring the country nearer to the children, with symbols and 
information they want to know. Often in UKS2 we will use these maps alongside Atlas work looking at the geographical features of the country .
For this focus we need to locate the Loire on a map Below are two of favourite child friendly maps of France 

We sometimes take a virtual visit via google maps and their visites virtuelles 360 France

Once you have watched the video clip with the children , located the Loire on one of the child friendly maps and taken a virtual tour of the Loire and the castles via google maps , then it’s time to ask the children to annotate with Art work a simple map of the Loire valley and the châteaux. You could use a map like this one and allow the children to decide how they want to annotate five castles along the Loire

This stage can also include the joining in and practise of an authentic French comptine: “Ah mon beau château "

Build a cardboard castle
And what about following French instructions to work in pairs and create castles of our own for a class display from teteamodeler !

Stage Two : Stepping inside the castle
Take the children on a story journey into a creepy castle, and listen to the wonderful Dark Dark Tale in French. You find a clip of the story on You Tube , search for "  une histoire sombre , très sombre"

This French school’s website below has a wonderful PDF of  step by step activities linked to literacy which may like to try:

You could come back to this castle and the creepy story once you have learned about the knights who might have lived there …..Children love changing what is in the box at the end of the story and this time it could be something linked to the knights’ equipment or characteristics etc that  the children are about to  learn about .

Stage Three : les chevaliers
Who are the chevaliers ?

Introduce the class to these wonderful  cartes de chevaliers

Play Quiz Quiz Swap and investigate names and personalities
Each child can be one of the Knights from a selection you decide of 6 cards from this pack .The children can practise introducing themselves as the different knights . I would select five or six so that we can  practise the names as a class and look at their portraits and decide how they would bow or introduce themselves flamboyantly . 
Now give each child one of the 6 cards you selected . You will need enough for each child The children can walk around the room with a card and play Quiz Quiz Swap (just ask a question – name – give a response – name of knight – swap cards and move on). 
Play this a second time and build  dialogues ( ask and answer questions about names , (pick a castle from Loire) where someone lives , how are they feeling and make sure to add a greeting and a farewell )
Hold "listen ins " where the class need to stop and listen to a dialogue between two of the children who deliver their dialogue  performing as the knights would do and then the class restarts the conversations and the Quiz  Quiz Swap  game. 

Stage Four : Jousting
Knights and jousting go together  ! So we could go back and revisit familiar language and families of words during this unit by introducing an ongoing “jousting match” between tables of children that takes place for five minutes during the period of time in the term that we are working on our theme of chevaliers . Each table is given one of the knight's names from the cartes de chevaliers as their table's knight .
Jousting is between tables or as an "in front of the class" competition. A class “jousting league table “ is required , to record points that the  “chevaliers” win . If one table wins a joust it gains 3 points , if it’s a draw then both tables of chevaliers gain one point.  Set up table jousting matches where the tables have to select a knight to go into battle with a knight from the other table. These are games where each player speaks  alternately  e.g. I speak , then you speak , then I speak etc. Hesitation means the other knight wins!
The jousts could be   based on the following …
·         Saying the months in chronological order.
·         Saying the months in alphabetical order
·         Say the months from December backwards
·         Counting in twos from 0-30
·         Counting backwards from 30
·         Saying the days of the week in alphabetical order

Stage Five : Knights and parts of the body calligrams

Revisit the parts of the body that the children already know and introduce new nouns you may need for the following parts :heart, brain, body

What type of body does a knight need to be the best? 
Here are a few suggestions…
A brave heart
Powerful  body
Fast legs
Strong arms
Clever brain

This is an opportunity to work with the children on the physical attributes of a knight and to look at the position and agreement of adjectives after nouns.
Working in pairs ask the children to investigate with bi-lingual dictionaries the key adjectives and to find the gender of the key parts of the body that are needed to describe their knights .

Build your own class chevalier
Draw round a child and then stick the outline to the wall . This will be your class knight and will work as a memory prompt , a working wall and a focus for other stages as we build our class chevalier
  1. Give out key body parts and ask children to place them in correct positions on the outline
  2. Give out the key adjectives  as cards to other volunteers Where do they think the adjectives fit best? 
  3. Now ask a final group of   children to add any adjectival agreement they think is necessary to the adjectives and/ or to move the adjectives around if they think they fit better next to a different part of the body.

Last knight standing
Ask the class to help you decide upon an action for each physical description and then play our favourite type of bingo “Last knight standing” .
Ask the children to freeze frame in an action linked to the physical description. Call out a physical description and any children freeze framed in this action is out and must sit down Knights remaining must change their freeze frame action and play the game again. Who will be the last knight standing?  

Knight calligrams
Give out the outlines of the knights . Here’s a simple knight template

Ask the children to create a calligram of the physical description of the knight you have built .

Stage Six : Personality of knight
Set the scene with this wonderful song. Thanks to @Janejaneheg for this suggestion by the way! Chevalier de table ronde 

Today we are creating personalities for the knights. 
Children need bi-lingual dictionaries to look up the French meaning of   key adjectives to describe their ultimate knight e.g. brave, kind, trustworthy etc that you have written on the flipchart. 
Collate the list after the activity on your flipchart or whiteboard.  
Play Chinese whispers with the attributes
Create a memory game with the attributes  with children working in groups of six where they have to say what was said before and something for themselves and include the phrase
Now the children need to create in their best medieval handwriting on a scroll template an advertisement for  a new knight.
They have the language  to physically describe a knight , say what personality attributes he must have and they have the key phrase “Je cherche un chevalier qui est ……” .You will need to help the children to say also “Je cherche un chevalier qui a ….+ physical description

Stage Seven : The armoury of  knight
Look at the possible equipment a knight might need :

Select from this equipment key language to create a game of lotto 

First equip your class chevalier 
Using the large outline you drew of a knight and physical description ask the children to help you using pictures , cognate recognition and bi-lingual dictionaries to decide where you should now add the equipment for the knight that you have selected  .
Introduce each item to be placed on your knight by saying “le chevalier porte……”
The volunteer who comes to place the equipment on the knight must say the complete phrase too.

Now play lotto – who will be the winning knight?

Finally have a game of table armour beetle drive with six pieces of armour that the children need to win for their own knight’s template (use the templates from the knights’ calligrams) . The children must take it in turns to throw a dice, name the item they throw which is linked to that number – picture and number clearly displayed at the front of the classroom - and then draw the item in  the correct place on their template. If they throw a number that they have already thrown they mustn’t draw anything and wait until their next turn  . First person to complete the armour wins the game . They must tell their table what their knight is wearing
“Le chevalier porte ……………!”

Stage Eight : The identity of our class chevalier!
You are now ready to create an identity for your class knight .
Ask the children in pairs or on tables to create an identity for the unnamed class knight
He needs a name , a castle where he lives , a physical description , a description of his armour and a description of his personality .
You will have to decide whether the class is ready to write in the third person singular or if you want to ask the children to write in the first person singular as if they are the knight.
The children need to present their descriptions to the class and the class needs to vote on the best knights description , marking it on the following : pronunciation, 
fluency , 
interesting description 
( each area can be awarded a maximum of 5 points ) . 
Which descriptions win? 
From these descriptions which one will the class decide to keep when they hear them one more time?

And finally
Following the instructions here your class chevalier needs to have a selection of shields in his armoury! The shields  are to be made by every child and then used as display around the chevalier , displaying their handwritten descriptions of the class chevalier that they created with a partner

Monday, 24 February 2014

Performance as a vehicle to support Transition between Stages of language learning

Performance as a vehicle to support Transition between Stages of language learning
Language learning seems to me to be a stage by stage process. 
As a learner we like the familiar to build upon when we are first learning a language and we enjoy exploring how versatile a small amount of language knowledge can be.Throughout the JLN KS2 SOW there are opportunities to take part in performance, to use performance to demonstrate understanding of a written text and to add character to a sketch or text by adding character, attitude and voice .Sometimes it’s just about adding English stage directions with early learners who don’t have sufficient language knowledge to do this in the target language .This activity in itself links well with Literacy at KS2 and developing dialogues and play scripts.

Performance therefore seems a bridge in my opinion between KS2 and KS3 that the children can take forward into their secondary school language learning and see this as natural progresson .
Working with a secondary school and its cluster primary schools I asked the Secondary HOD to commit to revisiting and using plays and sketches with Y7 in Autumn term that all the children in the cluster schools had practised with their own Y6 class teachers during the Summer term .Most of the children in the cluster schools worked in French and some of the children worked in Spanish.  The children we decided would not necessarily all want to stand up and perform comedy sketches based on simple core language in front of their new perhaps unfamiliar peers. They would however be happy to revisit and perform in groups the sketches – giving the secondary teachers an opportunity for some valuable AfL : pronunciation, recall and with a few additional phrases how well children could understand and cope with unfamiliar language .
It’s worked so well , that the Y6 teachers want to spend time working on the sketches .The children are delighted that their work has been valued and taken seriously and the HOD reports that his staff found it an invaluable learning opportunity . By this he means what his staff learned about the new Y7 language learners .The best bit of it all is probably the value the secondary language  department put on the learning as they invited the children to volunteer to take part in performances of their sketches plus additional language etc at the Y6 Open Evening in early October!

And this year?
Well that’s why I am writing this blog page….because we are at the point in the Y6 learning year where we will begin to prepare them for future language learning in our schools. We review and revisit their knowledge , create presentation and after Easter the Y6 teachers will weave the sketches through their language learning .The teachers may also celebrate the end of a stage in language learning by selecting some groups' sketches for the End of Year Y6 Farewell Assembly .They facilitate this learning knowing that it is valued by the local High School . The HOD wants to showcase the sketches again this year and to develop further the AfL opportunities .
Having their work valued means that the primary school teachers themselves are very happy to sit down with myself and the MFL department this March and share more of their children's learning. A mutual respect is developing between colleagues who will use a learning activity as vehicle by which to move the children from one stage to the next in their learning.

I started the blog by saying that language learning is a "stage by stage process"and in my opinion here is an ideal vehicle by which to prepare children in KS3 , 4 and 5 to explore authentic texts,films and plays in the target language and it all starts so simply …… in KS2!


Saturday, 22 February 2014

Conveying emotions with UKS2 through Art and mirror mime drama

Conveying feelings through Art 

I love pinterest  and whilst looking on some boards today I found this idea based on the picture of the Mona Lisa , which someone has used to portray feelings and emotions.It inspired me to explore emotions through Art , Drama and creative outcomes!

Mona Lisa and feelings

With Year 6 in French, Spanish and German this half term we will be exploring personalities. I think the idea of  assuming the character of people in famous pieces of Art and then exploring how they might look if they were angry , sad, happy , bored, friendly etc adds an exciting and creative dimension!

Here's what we will do .....

1. Find art that contains portraits of people

Again whichever language you are using this French pinterest board will help ! (Thanks to @icpjones  on Twitter who tweeted the link!)

Abecedaire de peintres

3. Practise the emotions - up to 8 emotions- that you want the children to explore with the characters in their portrait. The paintings do not need to express these emotions - it's about the children exploring how to convey these emotions and then perform them in the persona of the character they have observed in the painting. 

5. Share the emotions as facial expressions and word cards with the children. Can they identify the emotion - is it an emotion that is easy to recognise through the written word or do they need to use visual clues? Take feedback

6. Practise the emotions in full sentences with the children in the target language e.g "I am friendly"

7. Put the children in  pairs in a space where they can stand and face each other . Develop a mirror mime activity . One partner is A and the other partner is B . You ,as the artist, tell all the partner A children with which facial expression they should start  the activity. Simply say in the first or third person singular (example her is first person singular) one of the emotions you have introduced e.g "I am  happy !" and the children who are partner A should create that facial expression . Partner B must mirror exactly partner A and their facial expression. 

8.You, as the teacher, must now select another emotion and say "but now I am angry!" . This is where the mirror mime takes place . Partner B must observe Partner A and as partner A works out how to slowly change their expression from happy to angry , partner B must copy Partner A exactly  

9. Swap roles - so that Partner B now leads .Complete the activity above a second time.

10. Now ask the children to reverse roles again. Announce a  new emotion "I am  ....." .Partner A creates this facial expression and Partner B must copy . Now, as the teacher ,say a new emotion and  this time, partner A must say the statement they hear you say and use a voice that is appropriate to the emotion plus continue to move from one facial expression to the next . Partner B must copy the voice, the facial expression development and then as you say your next statement Partner B takes over the lead role and it flows from one partner to the next  .

11. Ask the children  to explore independently working in their pairs at least 6 of the emotions that you have introduced and practised. Hold freeze frames and view ins - where you stop the class and all the class observes work of a pair then the pairs return to their independent work until you freeze frame again.

12. Bring the class back to their tables.Give each table or group in the class a different portrait to work with and possibly a different artist. The table (no more than 6 children ) should decide which 6 emotions they want to explore with the character in the portrait . Each child must create an emotion statement e.g "I am sad" - each child must think of the voice and the action for the character and share this with their group .  

13. The group or table must put together their work as a piece of Art . This is a six sided piece of Art (if there are 6 children in the group)  - so the children need to decide how they want to stand , sit , perform so that the audience understands that each emotion is a different emotion of the same character.I might suggest to a group for example that they stand facing outwards in a hexagon if there are 6 of them and that the hexagon moves round to the right each time a new child performs their emotion etc - a bit like a carousel . Or some children might like to see their character as something that grows out from the sides of the original piece of Art . Each child and its face appearing out from either side of the child who starts the performance .so many creative possibilities that the children can find!

14. And finally give each child a piece of A4 card and some coloured pens . Ask them to create a sequence of "sides" to a person's  character . they must show the "sides of this character's personality"- either the character in the portrait or someone they invent .This might be a good chance to link this to the phrase "different sides to his / her personality" in our language

Each side is an expression that conveys an emotion that this person feels and the children can decide which emotions they convey . They must also write the full statement for each emotion and select the colour to write in they feel conveys this emotion! . Show them the Mona Lisa picture link at the top of this blog to explain how this could look. It could be a sequence of six pictures. It could be a 3D object with six sides . It could be a dice etc  

Looking forward to seeing the results of this ! Thanks Pinterest for the inspiration!

Friday, 21 February 2014

World Book Day Long Live Books

World Book Day, Long Live Books!

The following lesson plan is based upon the story book "Vive les livres!" . I bought this last year in France  and have been waiting and waiting for World Book Day to use the book in all its glory .

Vive les livres!

It's a very simple book with one phrase per page but very powerful images which make readers think about what makes a good book ! It uses phrases such as "livre gros" ( and the image is an elephant on a page) and "livre petit" ( and the image is a mouse on a page ) and "livre chapeau" ( well that's a book as a hat!)

In French language learning classes we will read the story book to the classes both at KS1 and KS2 .
With KS2, I have used the book as a stimulus to encourage children to think about all the types of books they might read and what their favourite books are.

It involves mime, performance , memory , a rhyme and then with Years 4 , 5 and 6 some written creative work ideal for a World Book Day display! 
The children will have to consider types of books and think of their own favourite book.
The types of books we will introduce are based on the types of books that children will have exposure to in school e.g:

 big book, small book, sad book , funny book , scary book , rainy day book ,sunny book, happy book , sports book , geography book , history book , a book to share etc 

The story book "Vive les livres" ends by suggesting that there is a book for everybody at all times!  The graphics are wonderful and the hardback copy of the book is large enough for the whole class to see .Want to know more then you can get a flavour of the book here ...

Take a look inside

Here are the activities in the order we will deliver them in French, Spanish and German

NB: Activities in italics are for Y4, 5 and 6 and you may decide that some of these activities are appropriate for Y5 and Y6 only

  • First activity will work best if you have real books that show the different types of books that we are describing and practising with actions linked to the book types. However you could use a mixture of real books and also pictures of the type book you want the children to guess, say and add an action for each type of book 
  • Put the books / mixture of books and pictures or pictures on display at the front of the classroom
Getting to know the types of book
  • Look at each book and say the book label phrase that matches the type of book you are showing the class and ask the class to decide what they think the label must mean
  • Add a voice to the labels e.g .a scary voice , a big voice, a long and tall voice , a happy in the garden voice etc. Ask the children to say the phrases with you / without you / to a partner.
  • Can they now think of an appropriate action for the label of the book .Each action must have a movement to explain the type of book and an open palm action to depict “a book”   (e.g. sunshine book could be: right hand high up in the air wide open and opening and shutting (to represent the sun) and then both hands at waist height as open palms to depict a book.
  • Can the children work with a partner to create their own actions to represent the book labels ? 
  •  Now the children should create their own “visual performance book shelf” , saying each type of book with the voice and the action the class has associated with the type of book.
7.       With Year 4 , 5 and 6 share the written labels(as large labels ) for all the books – stick these to the flip chart or whiteboard or bring them up on the interactive whiteboard.
Year 4, 5,and 6 activity – working in pairs - can the children in Y4 ,Y5 and Y6 see if they can recognise any of the labels and decide with which book they think the label belongs and with which voice and action the book label belongs.

Playing games with the types of books
  • Play one or two simple games to recall the key language that all the children have spoken and practised : You could … a simple game of charades / a game of Simon says / a game of say it if the action I am doing matches what I say / Chinese whispers
  • With Year 3 play this as a class game (where the teacher reads the labels and challenges members of the class)  and with Year 4,Y 5 and Y 6 play this as games on their tables or in groups of 4-6 children .Each table or group will need a set of book labels. Place the book labels face down . Children take it in turns to turn over the labels, say the type of book and then challenge another person to try to name a book they have read or can think of that matches the label . Encourage the children to think out of the box so for example a hat book – may be a book where the character wears a hat e.g. Room on the Broom has a witch in   a hat or Paddington wears a hat  and a garden book may be a book that they have looked at about flowers or a book where the children play in a garden  etc.

      Year 4,5 and 6 :Can the children think of other types of books that they can describe  by being creative and inventive with language they know e.g. “animal book / sport book/ geography book /food book/ art book etc

My favourite book is ……
  •   Can the children tell their partners or their tables their favourite book title and the type of book it is . They must select from the books we have labels for !
  • Now generate a rhyme with the story labels   and the final two phrases ”books are for always and books are everywhere “ in French , in Spanish or in German. The phrases should be said in the order they are on the chart first time through and with the actions the class or pairs have created

Two Extension Activities  .
  • Either

All year groups  …….Can the children pick out their favourite types of books from the label list and create their own rhymes always ending the rhyme with “books are everywhere and Books are for everybody “

  •   Or

With ………Y4,Y5,Y 6 a possible creative written activity :
Year 4  - write a statement about their favourite book – my favourite book is (name of book . It’s a (type of ).book written with a design on paper or cardr to look like the outside cover of their favourite book.
Year 5   - write a short message in a bottle about two favourite books and the type of books they are…. With a desert island disc theme – which two books would you want to take with you and then send to other people from your desert island in a bottle as a special message?.
Year 6-   write a draft tweet about a favourite book, the  type of books it is and why they like just 140 characters ! Our classes love this idea!
You may want to let the children be inventive and use bi-lingual dictionaries for types of books. Children can include a picture with their draft tweet , either as a drawn picture of a character or the book cover or as an IT follow up activity where they write a draft tweet and add a  digital link to their favourite book etc

And the good news is that this book exists in German and Italian!Thanks to @lisibo for tracking them down!

Here's the Italian version too .....

Wednesday, 19 February 2014

Spring is on the way ! Growing number sunflowers

Spring is on the way ! Growing number sunflowers
Last year we introduced a very simple “sunflower song to our work with Y2 , which even when they got into Year 3 they still select as their class favourite when asked what do they want to sing and perform

The sunflower song
It’s really simple. In Year 1 and 2 we start to sing the sunflower song.All you need to do is put a sequence of numbers  to the familiar refrain of frère Jacques and explain to the class that the song is all about growing from a seed to a beautiful sunflower. 

I based it on sunflowers   because of the fields and fields of sunflowers I see when I visit Europe. 
We look at pictures of sunflowers and challenge the children once they know their numbers 0-10 to count as many as they can before they run out of target language numbers ….we often end up saying numbers beyond 10, but the number 10 is our class target!
Here are two of the pictures I use that I took on holiday .

One of my colleagues practised the Mandarin version  with her Year 3 children as an extension to their learning in French . They learned the song in French and then used the actions , the skills of listening for key sounds and the performance they already knew to create a performance song in Mandarin!

The Sunflower song and performance

The performance is simple .Children crouch down tight like seeds in the ground and grow slowly upwards until they reach 10 , when they should be stretched up tall with their hands and fingers spread out so that their hands are like sunflowers . One hand represents each sunflower on the number 10. In any language the song simply goes.....


Sunflower maths

In Year 3 this Spring half term we are busy revisiting language with our classes and will use this simple sunflower maths activity with all our year groups to keep on revisiting those all important numbers .

I introduced and used this activity last year with classes and then shared it at the start of the academic year with PGCE Primary MFL ITTs at Manchester University  . I know that quite a few of them have gone on to use this activity and have found it very effective, whether they were specialist or non-specialist primary linguists .

In Year 3  we revisit numbers  from KS1 or introduce  for the first time numbers 0-12 in the first couple of weeks in Autumn term .Now we can revisit them and use this activity to consolidate knowledge and extend knowledge . 

We can link it to our Science projects of growing seeds and read a story about the cycle of the sunflower and engage children in very simple number bond activities.

I like to use these two stories in French and in Spanish ,Diez semillas /
dix petites graines to reinforce the cycle of the sunflower and its seeds

The sunflower maths activity is simple and effective....

Stage one

Show twelve individual petals on a flip chart . Ask children to discuss with their partners  the number that they think the numbers and the simple mathematical sentence on the petal represents

Stage Two :

Show them the sunflower pictures of the flowers in the fields. Ask them to join in with the sunflower song from KS1 (see above)
Now ask them to help you to grow your class maths sunflower .

Stage Three

Show the empty sunflower with no petals on your flip chart .

Ask the children to find for you the petals and place them in the correct position on the sunflower . 
Find “one” first  and then find “six “ next as this allows he children to see the order like the clock face. 

Even if you are using higher numbers or odds/ evens etc  finding the first petal and then  the petal with the number which goes at the bottom of the sunflower seems to help the children to position the other petals .You should expect the children to place the petals on the flipchart without support – which means they have to think about the order of the numbers and number bonds etc.

You should end up with an almost complete sunflower- with just one petal missing! 

Now ask the children to write on their whiteboards the possible number sentences for the missing petal (in this case the number “ten”) . 
Once the children know the words for plus/ minus / equals they can share their idea with a partner . (With older children expect more complex number sentences and teach the words or phrases for multiply and divide )

Pair and group activities :

Children can then create their own games and with some core language “find” / “where is ..?” they can play the game with a partner or a table of classmates

Moving on with higher numbers and more advanced learners

With Year 4 and 5 we can use the Pocoyo video clips for longer more engaged listening although the younger children like these clips too!

"Pocoyo la graine "

Or in Spanish "Pocoyo la semilla "

 or I love the French story book about growing seeds: toujours rien?
Here is a You Tube clip of the story 

We can link the sunflower activity to higher numbers and more challenging use of the four functions in Maths in mathematical sentences! 

Children can write the mathematical sentences as words rather than figures to add challenge both for the child writing and for the child reading the message on the petal

Colour mimes and word association

Colour mimes and word association. 
Revisiting and extending knowledge of spoken and written colours 

Half way through our learning year, it's good to revisit familiar language and extend the language we know.
We have introduced or revisited with the children in year 3  six colours and the question "what colour is it? "
Now we want to extend this knowledge further. 

Select the colours you want to practise with the children and the new colours you want to introduce  .
Think of key objects you associate with the colours e.g  yellow= sun / blue= sea/ green= long grass/ red = fire /black = dark and eyes shut / white = cold snow ball /pink = a flower / lilac = butterfly

1.Create a mime to represent each colour ,share these with the children and say the colour in the target language at the same time 
2. Ask the children with a partner to recall as many of the colours as they can in the target language and to decide what each mime represents . Ask one pair to share their ideas with another pair . Take class feedback
3.Call a colour , can the children respond with the correct mime 
4. Ask a child to call a colour , can the class respond with the correct mime
5. Ask the children to create mimes of their own for three colours and then to challenge a partner.
6.Revisit or introduce the class to the colour words in the target language . Can they help you place pictures of the objects you mimed next to the correct written colour.
7.Mime a colour, can the children write down on a whiteboard the colour they think you associate with the mime 
8. Conceal the written word and perform the mime , can the children recall independently the written word for the colour?
9. Can the children solve your colour symbol slide messages? they must look at the message . Decide which colours are being depicted . Write down the colours as many times as they see the symbol and create their own colour  and action spoken message 

e.g.Here is an example colour message slide and the simple written response expected in the target language would be "blue,blue, yellow"

Now challenge them with symbol slides - no colours just symbols to create their written and spoken responses !

Linking parts of the body and movements with mime performance , Art and dance

I love mime artists and the way they can control their bodies and isolate parts of their bodies to exaggerate movements
This next half term we teach parts of the body to our Year 4 children . 
We have great fun learning rhymes , playing response games , designing  fantastical creatures etc. The other day I was inspired by a poster of a famous work of art from the Tate Henri Matisse Cut Outs  series. It was “Icarus “ by Henri Matisse and this  led me to think about how we could develop some movement activities around parts of the body nouns in target language learning.I think it makes a great creative primary cross curricular learning  experience for the children .Hope some of you may give this a go!
Henri Matisse Icarus.

Stage One 
First teach the parts of the body nouns and explore the nouns in both singular and plural forms. We all love "Heads, shoulders , knees and toes " in target language teaching because it gets the children up , moving listening, responding and joining in.

Below is a link the wonderful Mama Lisa songs and the page that offers you the chance to explore this song in lots of languages!

Once the children are up and moving why not let them listen to , join in and sing along with one of the two following clips in French or Spanish ...

Here in French is "Jean petit qui danse ..."

And in Spanish here is "Juan Pequeño baila"

Using these clips help you to create active  learning parts of the body and some great class performances for assemblies!

Stage Two 

Inspired by Icarus I decided to put together the simple sequence of learning above with  some activities which will  develop understanding of instructional language to generate a physical response 

You may read this and think well I can achieve part one of this or  I can combine part one and part two or part one and part three ....That’s fine , it’s about pushing boundaries and exploring the link between language learning and communicating a whole creative outcome .

1.  Parts of the body and physical movements
1.       Practise and teach the parts of the body – usual games and activities –listening and responding. Make sure that the children have practised both the singular and plural of the key parts of the body you will need for the activities below.Engage the children in the singing of one of the songs mentioned at the top of the blog or a song that is your favourite for teaching parts of the body  Make sure it is a physical response song.
2.       Introduce and practise the key instructional language for “run”, ”jump”, ”touch”, “clap”, “hop”, “move”, ”walk”, ”crawl” ,”slide”, “kick”,”push”,in the target languag .Link the language with an action , create mime performances of the language and the actions. Ask the children to do their actions slowly , quickly , softly etc
4.       Now call a part of the body and the class should respond with an action representing the command they think best fits with that part of the body e.g.  “hands” – children might respond by clapping or “legs” children might respond by walking or running ....but if you shout  “leg” then maybe they will respond with “hopping”- as it’s on one leg!

5.       Play the game a second time but this time the children should say the command and do the actions.

6.       Can the children work in groups of four to create a flowing movement from one side of the hall to the other which involves them saying a part of the body  , then an action, then a part of the body , then another action using the instructional language you have practised with the class? They should  use at least five movements and five body parts to get from one side of the room to the other!

7.       You can change the focus slightly  and add challenge by asking the children to call a number of the body parts e.g. three legs   – so the children will have to demonstrate three people hopping or two children – one running and one hopping .

8.       If you have IPads then the children can take photos or a video of their sequences and then back in class can add their own written statements or  record themselves saying the sequence of movements and body parts in time with the video clip or photo show .

2. Bring Art to Life .
Creative consolidation of language

Using the picture of Icarus explain that mythical character Icarus wanted to fly but he flew too near to the sun!
Can the children make the painting of Icarus move ?

Ask the children to observe the picture of Icarus and make their own painting of Icarus but they need to paint the body as words , using the key body parts to create the background of the painting.
For example each body part will be made up of the noun printed or written in the target language over and over again.

Over the top of the part of the body the children need to add a piece of instructional language representing a movement.The background of the body will be covered with grafiti style vibrant  instructional commands that are in  explosive word shapes  bringing the specific limb to life  e.g over the hand they could paint "push" and over a leg they could paint " run" etc in the target language. 

Mime artists.
Challenging and creative performance of new language

Give the class a picture of a sportsman or woman in action
In pairs ask the children to create a sequence of three movements that the sports star makes when they move in their specific sport . Can they create a repetitive mime routine and add to it a repetitive target languagespoken sequence made up of parts of the body and actions that fit the sequence of movements ? 
Ask the pairs to demonstrate to the class  through repetitive spoken mime how the sports person moves in their chosen sequence of actions
This will be a repetitive  , rhythmical spoken performance e delivered  to demonstrate the physical  process taking place .