Updated Word Lists Part II

OK, the usefulness of word lists is pretty well established in my mind: they ensure that I strategically focus my word choices in areas that will pay off down the road.  At the same time, however, there can be  some downsides.  For me, sometimes my PQA suffers because I’m so focused on getting “useful” words out there that I don’t get words out there that help me get to know my students better.

A good case in point was on the word “carries” that I did last week because it is on my list number II: in one class I learned that they carried book bags, back packs and cell phones to school. Blah blah blah. I had a script that went along with it that might have created some spark, but the PQA with that particular class just left me cold.  (The other class chose to carry baby buffaloes, unicorns and polar bears to school so we were fine–one of my student’s lockers opens up to Narnia, dontchaknow).

So one of the things I’m focusing on this quarter is really doing a better Job of PQA. The thing I’m just now realizing is that maybe the target phrase from my list may be so-so in the PQA department, but I can have it ride shotgun along with a livelier “fun” word that I can get some mileage out of. To help me with this, I’m trying to better use the scripts I have from Anne Matava; Anne has a great feel for creating situations that are interesting to students, and so I’m pressing her accumulated wisdom into service.  I took her scripts, translated the target phrases into German (where they speak to me better) and then cross-referenced them with my charts.  The following index is the result;

(Note: Matava I refers to Anne’s first volume of scripts and Matava II refers to her second volume of scripts.  I’ve provided the target phrases for the first few of these, but out of respect for how much time it took Anne to write all of these, I don’t want to just re-publish much of her table of contents on the internet free of charge.  So, I’m taking this halfway approach to show how many resources there are available on these lists while still being a semi-responsible internet citizen. If anybody happens to already own both books and would be interested in my full list, let me know and I’ll email you a copy).

Wichtige Wörter (Important Words) I

needs; wants; has; loves; travels to; plays; sleeps; takes; girl; boy; there is; says; lives; was; fast/slow; is afraid of; big/small; beautiful; looks for; finds; eats; likes; can; must; sees

Matava I: The Thirsty Boy, pg. 8
hears something; travels to; I’m sorry

Matava I: The Tent Story, pg. 12
hears something; takes, runs to

Matava I: The Dirty Room, pg. 18
want; travels to; dirty

Matava II: Can’t Find Her Brain, pg. 6
can’t find; looks for; helps him/her

Wichtige Wörter II

stays; buys; cries; receives (gets); reads; writes; feels; thinks (about); would like; invites; calls (on phone); does; hurts; wears; believes; should; shows; doesn’t know; happens; now/later; simple; maybe; looks (watches); may; heavy/light (easy/hard); only

Matava I: An Important Test, pg. 6
thinks; an important test; stays

Matava I: Report Card Day, pg. 7
finds;shows; report card

Matava I: Afraid of the Package, pg. 11
receives a package; doesn’t want to open it ; is afraid of

Matava I: Cutting Down a Christmas Tree, pg. 14
wants to cut down a Christmas tree; nothing happens

Matava I: Going to the Mall to see Santa, pg. 16

Matava I: A Day in Court, pg. 19

Matava I: I Would Prefer Something Else, pg. 22

Matava I: Fun with Squirt Guns, pg. 30

Matava I: What Will Happen?, pg. 35

Matava I: Nothing to Wear, pg. 40

Matava II: The Love Letter, pg. 10

Matava II: Cheap Jewlery, pg. 18

Matava II: Come Outside!

Matava II: Take Two Gummy Bears and Call Me in the Morning, pg. 29

Matava II: Can I Carry Your Book Bag?, pg. 32

Matava II: Bored, pg. 67

Wichtige Wörter III

pays attention to; pleases; tries; with/without; starts/stops; again; together; always/never; because; so that; sometimes; same/different; visits; looks like; belongs to; somebody/nobody; back; uses; before/after; understands; ready; becomes; forgets; his/her; still

Matava I: Try It On!, pg. 13

MatavaI: He Talks Too Much, pg.15

Matava I: Let’s Start!

Matava I: I Lost Something on the Way, pg. 23

Matava I: Let’s Celebrate Together, pg. 41

Matava II: King of Pain, pg. 21

Matava II: Proud of Our Son, pg. 22

Matava II: Don’t You Recognize Me?, pg. 52

Matava II: The Fortune Teller, pg. 26

Matava II: Don’t Drink the V-8!, pg. 31

Matava II: What a Good-looking Young Man!, pg. 34

Matava II: A Life-changing Experience, pg. 38

Matava II: Totally Different, pg. 46

Matava II: Don’t You Recognize Me?, pg. 52

Matava II: That Belongs to Me!, pg. 65

Wichtige Wörter IV

It depends; enough; like/prefer/most prefer; part; not yet; one more time; already; our; something; exactly; works; at; is missing; otherwise; lifts; fits; allows (lets); against; through; wanted; was able to; had to; would; would be; would have; every day; as soon as

Matava II: Lazy, pg. 7

Matava II: Not Full Yet, pg. 14t

Matava II: Let Me Out of Here!

Matava II: Not Enough Room, pg. 28

Matava II: The Inventor, pg. 40

Matava II: Dorm Life, pg. 45

Matava II: Totally Different

Wichtige Wörter V

except for; during/while; almost; lays/lies/puts; explains; tells (a story); really; leads; anyways; there; somewhere; since; meets; sends; although; especially; back; is happy about; looks forward to; feels; decides; Excuse me!; safe/dangerous; because of; remembers

Matava I: Table Manners, Part I, pg. 25

Matava I: A Room of His Own, pg. 28

Matava I: Let’s Go, pg. 42

Matava I: The Class Trip, pg. 43

Matava II: I Can’t Go Out With You,  pg. 8

Matava II: The Greeter, pg. 24

Matava II: The Exchange Student, pg. 47

Matava II: The Speech, pg. 50


10 responses to “Updated Word Lists Part II

  1. I’m struggling with the same problem for PQA. Having recently bought the Matava books I’ve started to use the first scripts with my 6th and 8th graders in French. So I find your wordlists very helpful. Please send me a full copy.


  2. Me too! This is tremendous. This gives a great blueprint for others to follow.


  3. THERE IS A PORTAL TO NARNIA IN MY CLASSROOM, TOO!! It’s in my coat closet. Maybe one of these days my students will go to Narnia and end up in your student’s locker! I’d love a copy of the complete wordlist as well. bex_martina@asdk12.org


  4. Nathan, thanks for your lists. I would appreciate a copy of your Matava list. Thanks!


  5. I’d like a word list copy too, please. Idkyu8me@yahoo.com


  6. Hi Michele, Over the past couple weeks I’ve been thinking how helpful an electronic list like this (=easily searchable) would be. Please also send me the info.


  7. Hi Nathan,
    I just found your post again while I was trying to figure out which structures to focus on for next week. I would very much appreciate it, if you could e-mail me the full list as well (I also own both of Anne’s books) at brigitte.kahn@verizon.net
    Thanks so much!!!!


  8. Hi Nathan,

    Would you please email me the full list as well? (I am purchasing both of Anne’s books).

    Merci bien!


  9. Jennifer from NJ

    Hi, I would appreciate the full list, please. Matava’s scripts have been great. Ps. I love your blog.


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