After a couple of weeks of older (but great!) songs, I figured it was time to highlight something current. We certainly don't want to give kids the impression that "no one sings in French any more". So I took a peek at CKOI's francophone hit list this week for inspiration. I would encourage you to do the same from time to time. It does take a bit of exploring, as some songs just aren't appropriate, and others you might decide really won't appeal to your students at all.
I settled on Le monde à mes yeux by the Québecois group Kaïn. It has nice lyrics, with a balance between familiar vocabulary and language structures (for my students) and some new terms. And I like the way it sounds - a pretty song with country-pop-alt tones. I'm finding that is very important because most of the songs I play for my students they WILL ask to hear again, or they WILL start randomly singing in class. No joke, they think La Seine from A Monster in Paris's soundtrack is THEIR theme song (and they much prefer the French version to the English, I assume because they heard it several times in French first!)
If the album interests you, visit iTunes and purchase it there. Each song costs just $1.29, or you can buy the whole album for a pretty fair price!
This week's download includes a link to the "video" (just the album cover as the song plays) on YouTube and a Groveshark link so you can use less bandwidth with pretty much the same effect. You'll also find in the document:
- the full lyrics, along with 3 reflection and discussion questions (which could also be writing prompts if you prefer)
- identifying and analysing literary devices
- respond to oral texts and connect to personal experience
- making inferences
- A cloze passage version with fairly simple French vocabulary to fill in (great for Core French, grades 7-12)
- The missing words attractively displayed (to show on a projector while students listen, if desired, or to print out to differentiate the activity for certain learners)
- A simple listening activity to place six "chunks" of the song in order while listening.
- A metacognition printable page for students to reflect on which listening strategies worked best for them
To close, here's a great resource for explicitly teaching listening skills in the second language class. It was produced a few years ago by the Ontario Government for educators. Students may need to be familiar with some of these activities, or to refer to anchor charts in the classroom when examining what skills they do know how to successfully use.