In order to promote (fictional) reading, especially in a foreign language, our students have to read a novel or at least a series of short stories every year.
The English book we use in grade 9 has four different topics that can be taught independently from each other, which means I don’t have to follow a strict order. So I “switched” unit 1 with unit 4 and pushed the unit on Australia to the end of the school year because I wanted to do another literature project with the class.
The project consisted of two big parts:
- Australia in general
- Australia in literature
For the first part I used all material the English book provided including all online material. Then I tried to enhance it with digital media (the class and I said we “pimped” the old material 😎).
The second part mainly focused on the novel we chose: A Prayer for Blue Delaney by Kirsty Murray. Of course, the assignments for the novel were also creative and designed to be done digitally.
Having the good experience from year 8 in mind, I talked to the principal again to substitute the traditional class test with an ePortfolio and reactivated the GoogleDrive account for the whole class.
I had no idea what my students knew about Australia and what was totally new to them.
So the first thing I did was creating an answergarden asking them “What do you know about Australia?”. They came up with many keywords, ranging from wild animals to aboriginal culture. I was pretty impressed!
To organize their random answers they gave in answergarden I wanted them to find categories for a mindmap. This mindmap should “guide” them through the whole project: whenever they discovered something new, they added that to a certain category. Another advantage was that they could collect more information for their mini project “The Magic of Australia” (see later post with “Activities”).
After creating the mindmap and correcting some (spelling) mistakes in answergarden, we played a Kahoot! on Australia which I prepared beforehand (I used many questions from the Cornelsen “Blockbuster Quiz” for that).
Now it was a piece of cake for them to match short texts and pictures on Australia*. The information could then be used for their mindmap again which completed the first introductory lesson on Australia.
Their homework was to prepare more facts on Australia which are presented in their English book (English G21 A5A, pp. 8-9)
So, if you are interested in finding out more, stay tuned 😉 I will upload all activities and (free) material I used for the whole project.
*The “Australia Quiz Cards” and the Australian map with the pictures cannot be shown here due to copyright. You can find them under “Kopiervorlagen” for Unit 1.