Based on the Disney/ Pixar movie, my 6th graders designed their Islands of Personality, core memories and headquarters. I love how they turned out and how much these kids were willing to share of themselves. Thanks guys, what a wonderful glimpse into your lives!
In 6th grade we have been learning about the advantages and disadvantages of the internet and various social networks. For their final project all 6th graders worked together to make an anti mobbing video.
One of my favorite thing about seeing my 8th graders every day, is the fact that this allows us to have cultural units and some projects. For my cultural unit about East and West Germany the students are asked to show what they learned about the differences about the two countries at that time in a creative project. The choices are to write a story, poem or song or to draw a picture or make a model or poster. This year's 8th grade has produced some fantastic creative work. For the first time, I have gotten a song that was actually performed. The classes produced lots of great models as well as some well written stories and poems. These are just some examples of what the students produced. Well done!!
Both 7th and 8th grade classes finished their current chapters with oral projects. Some recorded their own video and some were presented live in class. Here are some of the videos from the 2013 7th and 8th grades. 7th grade presented some basic getting-to-know-you dialogues, while the 8th graders presented their schedules.
For a take home assessment to our mini unit, "Separation and Reunification of Germany," the 8th graders had to create pictures, stories, poems, songs or even a 3D-model to show what they learned. I picked some of the best work to show cast it here. Enjoy these wonderfully creative projects.
Kathryn and Maddie decided to put their creative energy together to create this great model of the Berlin wall.
Scroll through the document below to read some fantastic writing by our very talented students. Some chose to tell a story out of a family's perspective, others rhymed and managed to put so much of what they learned in a poem or rap.
There were many more great examples. Fantastische Arbeit!
Homework is probably no student's favorite part of school. First you have to go to school and do all the work in class and then you should do more at home?
But even though it seems like just another way to keep you busy, homework is giving you a way to practice your skills at home by yourself. In your homewok choice packet you have 20/39 different choices (depending on if you are in 7th or 8th grade) of what to do for homework for each due date. Each choice is practicing a particular skill: reading, listening, speaking, writing and cultural awareness. You may choose what to focus on each time. So while it may feel to you like I am just keeping you busy, I am actually helping you advance one of your skills on your own.
It can be so hard to practice German outside of class when there is no one else to talk to and it is important that you find ways to do it regardless. A language lives from practice and use.
The picture here shows you the bulletin board that we have in class with some of your homework assignments that turned out really nice and serve as great examples for what a good finished product should look like. I also save the nicest flashcards in a box so that everyone can use them for review if you want to come to visit during RECAP or before/ after school. I love going through your finished work. The best thing about being a teacher is seeing what amazing things your students can do!
With the school year just behind us, I would like to share a small video clip that was taken from the final presentations for 7th grade. Many of the presentations really displayed what the kids learned and how far they have come. The clips I chose, have both been chosen for the quality of the presentations as well as the quality of the videos. Unfortunately many of the videos didn't have the greatest sound.
As we moved away from our mini-unit on Sophie Scholl and resistance during World War II, we are now trying to answer the question in class: What is intolerance? What does it feel/ look like? And how can I express what I know about intolerance in German. To lead from the topic of the Holocaust to a unit concerned with intolerance in school, we read and analyzed a very powerful quote by Martin Niemöller about personal responsibility:
“First they came for the socialists and I didn't speak out—because I wasn't a socialist. Then they came for the trade unionists, and I didn't speak out—because I wasn't a trade unionist. Then they came for the Jews, and I didn't speak out—because I was not a Jew. Then they came for me—and there was no one left to speak for me."
The students' objective was to rewrite the quote to match their own lives. Here are some of the students' quotes:
"First it came for my grandmom,
and I was still too young.
Then it came for my neighbor,
I never got to say goodbye.
Then it came for my friend,
some things should not be seen.
Then it came for my gerbil.
another friend lost.
And soon one day it will come for me,
when I am the only one left."
First the oceans were polluted, but I don't live near the ocean. Then the rivers were polluted, but I didn't go in the river. Next the lake was polluted but I don't swim in the lakes. Then all the drinking water was polluted... and it was too late to save it.
In our new unit we are following a boy from Southern Germany, who moved to the Hamburg in the North, where he gets bullied because he is different.
After all this work in the last couple months, we closed our environment unit with some unique action plans. The task for the students was to have a report and a presentation on how they can save the environment. Some students chose to make posters or PowerPoints, others did videos or ads. The more creative the better, and of course everything should be in German and present what they learned.
Every presentation had to have a verbal part. Unfortunately the camera that I used to tape the presentation stopped working after the first couple ones, but fortunately some students did some video taping and recording of their own. Enjoy!
As part of our review for the action plans and unit test, the 8th graders recorded statements on how to save the environment. Here are some of the clips, enjoy!