Monday, July 20, 2015

Starting class, Starting the Year

I'm a big fan of starting class with a bell ringer/do now (I call it Macht jetzt) activity.  It gives students something relevant to do as soon as the bell rings to get them on task, thinking about German, and ready to learn, even if I am taking attendance or talking to an individual student.  It sets a good tone that my classroom is a place where we are working and learning and thinking for the whole eighty-five minutes of class (hopefully!).  

I even like to start out the first class of the year this way.  Again, I think it sets a good tone of what class is going to be like for the year and gives students something to do as I am helping students who are lost or have a schedule problem or all the other stuff that comes up on the first day of school.  

For German 1, I give students a crossword puzzle of German words that are very similar to English words that they should be able to figure out.  

I make my crossword puzzles at the free Discovery Education Puzzlemaker site.  

One of my big goals in German 3 is to get students describing German words with other German words they know (circumlocution), rather than translating to English.  So, their crossword puzzle has clues in German for German words they already know.

Click on the pictures of the puzzles for a copy.

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