We have a group of 9 children (ages 3-10) who meet in my living room on Fridays for French Club. Normally, the first part of our time together is spent working through a song from French Sing & Learn. Once that’s done, we either practice a play that we’re working on, do some activities from Littératie en Action, or play language-learning games.
Today was a little different. We had a few extra kids because it was a PD day in our area, so we decided to set up 3 game stations, split the kids into 3 groups and rotate. The kids spent 15-20 minutes at each activity.
Station 1: Headbanz
This game is so simple that I must admit that I kind of rolled my eyes when I first heard of it. However, the kids have played it a bunch of times and they still love it. We place the cards French side up. The person whose turn it is asks questions to try to figure out what they are (i.e. the card on their head). They ask the other kids different yes/no questions in French to narrow down the possibilities. The kids have picked up a bunch of new words from this game. You can find the game on Amazon.
Station 2: Charades
One of the moms wrote out some French words on paper, cut them up, and handed one to each child on their turn to act out. This isn’t random – she assigns harder words to children whose vocabulary is more developed. This is another fun game that has helped the kids grow their vocabulary.
Station 3: Photo scavenger hunt
I asked each mom to bring some type of camera that they would allow their children to use on their own. I put together a list of things for the kids to find in our backyard and had them go around and take pictures. I purposely did not include images on the list to see how many of the words the kids already knew. For the ones who didn’t know the words or who can’t read in French yet, I explained to them what each word was using other French terms. For example, the first on the list was un pissenlit, which is a dandelion. To explain what that was, I said (in French) that it was a yellow flower with white seeds that you can grab in your hand and blow away. I made hand motions of doing this while I said the words and all of the kids had no problem figuring out what I meant. If you’d like to use my list with your kids, please feel free to download it here: Chasse aux trésors.
Ending game: What time is it Mr. Wolf? (Quelle heure est-il monsieur le loup?)
This simple game went over really well. Each child got a turn to be the wolf and they all had a great time!If you're not reading this post in your e-mail, sign up for updates right here and get your free guide to Getting Started Teaching French at Home: