Foreign Language Lesson Ideas

Middle School Classrooms

Grade: 6-12
Subject: Foreign Languages
Objective: The student will be able to express his/herself verbally in a new language.
Original Post: Reverse and Improve Your Instruction with Screencasts

Using the FREE program Jing, have students create screencasts in the language they’re learning. They can explain step-by-step directions or record a dialogue, all the while annotating pictures on their computer to accompany their speaking. Students can re-record their speaking over and over, until it’s perfect — the repetitive practice will help them learn.

Once they’re finished, they can post the video for their classmates to watch. They can create an accompanying worksheet for their peers to complete as they watch the screencast.

Grade: 5-12
Subject: Foreign Language
Objective: The student will be able to use speaking and listening skills to communicate fluently in the target language.
Original Post: Skype’s New Education Site Connects Classrooms Across the Globe

On Skype in the Classroom, post a request for a partner class that natively speaks your target language. Most likely, there will be a class out there looking for English language partners, as well. Chat with the teacher to set up regular Skyping times and to assign students Skyping partners. Ideally, these sessions would be about an hour in length, with the first 30 minutes spoken in one language and the last 30 minutes in the other.

For each chat, give your students specific assignments — questions about their partner’s culture, life, etc. — to guide the conversations. You might also offer students some prompts, if they have trouble keeping the conversation going for the full hour.

High School Classrooms

Grade: 9-12
Subject: Foreign Languages
Objective: The student will be able to

  • understand and explain cultural differences between their home country and a foreign country;
  • write fluently in a foreign language;
  • hold common conversations in a foreign language.

Original Post: Powerpoint Schmowerpoint: Teach kids to create really engaging presentations

Often, foreign language classes have students present on customs or traditions of foreign countries. Xtranormal gives students a chance to practice their written communication, as well. Students can type a foreign-language script into the program, and it will be converted to a movie scene.

Students can use the program to create scenarios exemplifying local customs or traditions. These short foreign-language films can serve as intros to larger presentations or as tutorials for students at lower linguistic levels.

Grade: 6-12
Subject: Foreign Languages
Objective: The student will be able to express his/herself verbally in a new language.
Original Post: Reverse and Improve Your Instruction with Screencasts

Using the FREE program Jing, have students create screencasts in the language they’re learning. They can explain step-by-step directions or record a dialogue, all the while annotating pictures on their computer to accompany their speaking. Students can re-record their speaking over and over, until it’s perfect — the repetitive practice will help them learn.

Once they’re finished, they can post the video for their classmates to watch. They can create an accompanying worksheet for their peers to complete as they watch the screencast.

Grade: 5-12
Subject: Foreign Language
Objective: The student will be able to use speaking and listening skills to communicate fluently in the target language.
Original Post: Skype’s New Education Site Connects Classrooms Across the Globe

On Skype in the Classroom, post a request for a partner class that natively speaks your target language. Most likely, there will be a class out there looking for English language partners, as well. Chat with the teacher to set up regular Skyping times and to assign students Skyping partners. Ideally, these sessions would be about an hour in length, with the first 30 minutes spoken in one language and the last 30 minutes in the other.

For each chat, give your students specific assignments — questions about their partner’s culture, life, etc. — to guide the conversations. You might also offer students some prompts, if they have trouble keeping the conversation going for the full hour.

Skip to toolbar