Tuesday, March 24, 2020

Extended French Read-Alouds at Home During the Covid-19 Crisis

If "not enough time" was my excuse for not maintaining my blog before, I guess that reason has flown out the window now. Plus, like other parents, I'm at home trying to figure out how to supplement my own children's "productive time" without stressing them or me out too much. I'm just aiming for active brains, and low-key enough to keep everyone well, mentally and emotionally.

You probably know of lots of sources for short French texts and audio texts already. Personally, I have been looking for something a little longer. Here's what I've managed to find for us.



I follow several children's authors on social media. For English audiences, I've noticed a number of people doing read-alouds for kids, or giving teachers permission to do that for their own classes of students. In French, this has seemed a little scarcer. (What's new, right?) Well today I was excited to spot something new. Pierre-Luc Bélanger, a fairly prolific francophone author who is also a teacher, according to his profile, decided to share an unpublished work via read-aloud on YouTube. It's called Les folles aventures de Florimond Fleury au cirque. You can find his introductory video, and then check out each subsequent chapter as well. There are ten chapters plus a prologue. If your students or your own kids watch one per day, that will carry you through two weeks of at-home learning! Merci beaucoup, M.

You may have already heard that lots of edtech companies have made things free - for now - as well. Audible is one such source. I've seen lots of posts referring to how they have free ebooks for many langauges. For French, there were only 21 books in total when I looked. And some are the typical public domain French literature - Le Compte de Montecristo & several contes. However, there were a few GOOD options as well, for junior-intermediate immersion students or possibly even high school French langauge learners.   Porteur de masques, Le ournal d'Alice (Tome 1), La course des tuques, and L'école des gars (Tome 1) would be my picks for extended reading through listening. If you like, you can look for an ebook version of these novels as well, so that your child can read along while listening to the audio book. In my house, I'd be perfectly happy with either of my kids listening to the audio book on its own though as well. For this, you'll have to download the Aubible app.

Check out on facebook the page for le Festival de littérature jeunesse de Montréal as well. These are shorter reads, but whole stoybooks at least. Wednesday posts will be for older readers, they say. That might be something helpful to keep in mind when trying to find something to appeal to various ages.

There's also a facebook video recording that I found of Un Cheveu sur la soupe by the publisher 400 coups. This one is a little off - I'm not judging because I've not attempted recording myself live while reading - but the picture book is displayed backwards. Probably still totally acceptable for just looking at the illustrations though, I'd think.

Two requests, before I go:

1) If I'm wrong and there are folks who need a list of where you can access various shorter texts for children to just read, please let me know.

2) I'm happy to add other sources if you have some great leads. I'm aware of other books read aloud on Youtube, but I'm trying to honour copyright even in this tricky and surreal times.

I hope that helps someone out there!  Stay safe, stay indoors, and stay sane, mes amis! Please do feel free to share the link to this post, or my tweet about it, to parents and teachers who you think may wish to be informed.



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