Tuesday, February 5, 2013

Using Movies to Help ESL–Guest Blog Post from Madame Aiello

Recently, I added 6 hours a week of French lessons to my load.  In an effort to free up some time for me to  master this important learning,  I have  asked some amazing bloggers to guest blog for us here on Raki’s Rad Resources. Today our guest blogger is Tammy Aiello from Teaching FSL.  She has agreed to do tonight’s Tuesday TESOL Tip, and she’s more than qualified to do so. After you check out her tip, and grab her freebie be sure to stop by and check out hsignatureer blog – Teaching FSL.


Tuesday TESOL Tip:  Use movies to engage language learners and increase vocabulary.


Hi there! I'm Tammy (aka Madame Aiello) and you can visit my blog at Teaching FSL  I'm honoured to be guest-authoring a blog post at Raki's Rad Resources!  Heidi's ideas are materials absolutely are "Rad" and she's been at this much longer than I have, so I'm thrilled that she's opened her virtual door wide and welcomed me.

I'm a French as a second language teacher in Canada, but I have a secret……….… I'm qualified to teach English as a Second Language as well.  Wanting to try my hand at offering something for English Language Learners as well, I thought it would be wise to draw upon what I know best - things I have used in my own classroom. 

Last year, I showed my French classes the film The Ant Bully, with the French language track turned on, and subtitles as well for portions of the movie. I developed a whole package of activities to explore and discuss the film.  Since I first saw this movie in English with my kids, I thought the inspiration I felt to use it in class would certainly be something for ESL teachers to consider.  There are themes of bullying, identity, and acceptance to explore, and the fact that Lucas is a newcomer in his neighbourhood is sure to make some personal connections with your students. The film also offers a few opportunities to discuss media literacy, and of course a full length movie is rich in vocabulary and sentence structures to explore. Since it's an animated film, it really does capture the kids' attention.

For a synopsis of the movie, I recommend checking Internet Movie Database. I love their parental guidelines, which let you know exactly what objectionable content a movie contains, in clear terms so that you can decide for yourself if you are comfortable exposing your little learners to something. (Warning... there are boogers and butt cracks in this film!)

I've got a little freebie for you imageto try out today related to the movie.  It's a set of
True or False questions that span the entire duration of the film.  Simple enough, but it can lead to some really interesting discussions as well as helping you to check for understanding with your English Language Learners.

Watch for another free sample in the near future as I will be creating a full package equivalent to my FSL material. If you try this, I'd love to hear how your students responded to the activity!