Halloween Part II

OK, that video is awesome.  I’ve already shared it with my Spanish teacher who said “Well that makes sense. ‘Alma’ means ‘soul’ in Spanish.”  Never understood that before.

On Halloween itself I always go through the Erlkönig as sung by Dietrich Fischer-Dieskau.  I give them a copy of the lyrics and have them label who is singing (father, son, or Elf king), then watch it a second time to have them see how well the singing and music reflect the change of character.  Nice spooky piece that is classical to boot.  This is an activity that only works for German classes, but I absolutely love this song.

So what else is the the goodie bag?  Try a bunch of costume pictures.  Some examples include:

Don’t feel obligated to do all of these at once.  I did these today as a warm-up for Halloween week, but you can do it on Halloween day just as well. I started by asking what people are going to dress up as, and who is going trick or treating.  I then focused on people who didn’t know what to go as, and said I’d give them a couple of suggestions.

Once we got looking at pictures, it was pretty easy to describe them (a la Movie Talk).  If people started giving me too many “awesomes” or sidebar conversations in English I’d shut down the process until we were back on track.

Every now and then I’d ask people to assume that they were trick or treating and then got scared by something (vampire dog costume, rhino hairdo, etc.).  We then did a quick skit until it ran out of energy (throw chocolate, call for super cat to come save you, etc.) and then moved onto the next picture.

12 responses to “Halloween Part II

  1. Here’s a link (for your Spanish teacher) to an assessment I designed based on Alma, if you want to pass it along: http://martinabex.com/2011/12/04/alma/ And thanks for the reminder to pqa Halloween costumes…duh! Kids love talking about that and I left it out of my planning for the week completely.


  2. We started the Alma story in only two classes, because I really did go back to the drawing board for Mondays, and found that there’s a lot to say about Mondays! In the beginner class, we got only as far as the first sentence. In the advanced class, kids took over completely, so we have a unicorn dancing under the street until he sees a building that has a face on it. He asks the building a question, and it disappears, reappearing suddenly on the side of a moose. When he talks to it again, the face says “I am the Cheshire Cat,” and only the smile remains. Those kids…I guess we’ll finish the story tomorrow at some point. Then I will be able to share the embedded reading I created on Alma, and maybe even the texterize (?)–I’m spelling it wrong–activity.


  3. Michele’s Russian Embedded Reading from Alma is up at http://www.embeddedreading.com!!!


  4. Thank you so much for the information about “Alma”. It’s a great video. All of my classes loved it. I sent a letter to Ben about the things I did in some of my classes. Here its the link for the document:
    Report from the field


    • Martin, this was wonderful! It gives more ideas for using MovieTalk in a high school setting, as well as how to differentiate for all levels. Thank you so much for sharing!


  5. akismet-718f41c260e01b0cc6f242fca586547c

    One more information: We did a follow-up story in 7th grade: Qui a sauvé Alma? (Who saved Alma?). This gave us the opportunity to create a happy end. We created the little story (which you can find on my blog) on the blackboard and I wrote an extended reading with it. You may find the French reading here.


  6. Pingback: Halloween | Teaching Comprehensibly

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