Two want one

I am going to video a class with a bunch of kids I don’t know tomorrow morning. I will try out Blaine’s new to me method of talking to an actor in present tense and the class in past, and I am going to steal a version of the story that Bryce used at iFLT this summer, in which two kids want to do something with the same boy. I will start by asking them to draw or write where they would like to go with a friend and to put a big star if they would like to be the actors for the story. I will teach them the rules as we do some PQA. I will put up both Cyrillic and Latin characters for the Russian words, and I will use just a few cognates: teatr, concert, bank…checking to make sure that they are true cognates. I will get an artist up right away to draw the story, and that or another artist might get to draw some of the locations.


6 responses to “Two want one

  1. So it’s done, and it was fun! I wish I could always teach kids who aren’t looking for a grade. The unedited video will be up soon, and if folks want to see it I can send the link.

    One reason that it went well was that Cara, our new French teacher, was hanging out in the room laughing at all the important spots as well as gesturing. When I saw her gesture, but the kids weren’t, I could remind them to do so.

    The only real negative was that I didn’t get to do Blaine’s new method really well. I implemented pieces of it, but I guess I need a lot more practice to get it going.

    I used the following phrases in the 65 minutes:

    Do you want to go?
    Who wants to go?
    I want to go…
    Who said that he wants to go…?
    He wanted to go
    She said…
    With whom did she want to go?
    Where did he want to go?
    Who wanted to go…?

    It’s really quite a bit of grammar and vocabulary to do on the first day. Also, I did have kids who were talking from first person. I think that as I get better at this I will be able to teach in a more organized way.


  2. Loved reading this. i hope that down the road folks who dismissed Blaine’s new approach will really try it before making a judgement. It is a new way of thinking…and that is always worth a try!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Love you! Laurie


  3. My daughters came to the video class, and their comments were mostly about how they enjoyed watching the kids, and how engaged and laughing the students were. “They were having so much fun,” while what I was worrying was that surely they must be getting bored with so much repetition of the “wants/wanted to go” phrase. As Jody was commenting elsewhere, what we see is not necessarily what others are seeing. My kids noticed how one of the runners who came in late with a friend was hitting his friend until the friend started gesturing with him. That’s peer pressure.

    I remembered another mistake I made: I used the wrong form of verb of motion in the beginning of class. Oh well.

    Guess I didn’t hear anyone dismissing Blaine’s approach. I think it has great potential!


  4. Looking forward to your findings!


  5. I have a link to the completely unedited draft footage of the video now. There is a series of introduction retakes at the beginning and a really annoying ticker running through it so that I can pick out the ten minutes I want for what I will be using for a presentation for “Innovative Methods for the Russian Classroom” at a University of Victoria conference next week. If you would like to see the video anyway, send a note to my email or leave a comment here and I will get it to you.


  6. Shoot me link via email. I’d love to see it.


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