JLC Mini Grant Recipient - Ooltewah High School
Educator: Elizabeth Boyd
Junior League Mini-Grant: $750.00
French Film Stars
Submitted by Beth Loyd, a French Teacher and Junior League Mini-Grant recipient at Ooltewah High School:
"My name is Beth Boyd and I am the French teacher at Ooltewah High School. This is my first year teaching school and it has been a wonderful year. I was lucky this year to receive a Junior League Mini-Grant for the purchase of camera equipment. The equipment purchased with this grant is enabling me to film skits that my students write and perform in French.
The student groups are assigned vocabulary words from which they must construct a story. Sometimes the combination of the words is silly or unusual. All the better! A story that makes you laugh is one you will remember.
Students are graded on group indicators such as vocabulary and language structure of the script. They also are graded on individual indicators such as their individual contribution to the group, and pronunciation and delivery. Following filming, the groups watch their recorded performances on the computer. Watching old and new skits allows them to compare their progress.
Students have been able to draw on all their skills: reading, writing, speaking, and listening as well as their knowledge of grammar and vocabulary. Everything they have learned so far comes together as they create something new and original. They learn to see French as a living language, and not just a school subject. Students are able to assess their performance and set new goals.
As a teacher, I keep this perspective in mind myself. Language study is not just about verb drills and rote memorization, although it may incorporate those methods. True language study is a more holistic approach incorporating use of the language and appreciation of the culture. Using the language is the joy the keeps students coming back to study another semester. It is the key to unlocking the culture just as it is the key to students’ confidence in the foreign language classroom."