Primary French Easter Activities

Primary French Easter Activities

Looking for some fresh Primary French Easter Activities? Our blog is packed full of creative and fun ideas which children will love!

Primary French Easter Activities

We recently ran our Primary French Easter Activities webinar where we shared a range of great activities which focussed on exploring:

  • Planning learning
  • How to introduce Easter vocabulary
  • French language phonics and grammar
  • Arts and crafts activities
  • How to make an Easter card
  • Traditions and Stories
  • Songs

The blog below will explore each of these areas in more depth!  We’ve also referenced different levels (Early, First and Second) to exemplify what the teaching might look like at different stages.

Planning Learning

You can do a lot with a little language and so here are some key things to consider when you’re looking at a new learning context like Easter.

  • Which steps of learning do you want to achieve? It doesn’t necessarily have to be a case of learning new language off by heart.  If learning the vocabulary is the goal, then that is, of course, absolutely fine and a completely valid part of language learning.  You might, however, want to reflect upon the learning steps ahead of this.   For example, your learners would be better focussing on understanding and using (repeating language) in the first instance and then revisiting, retrieving and remembering the language at a later stage.
  • What are the key aspects of learning you’d like to focus on? For example, do you want to explore writing in French, different cultural traditions, or maybe phonics? It might be all of the above!
  • Where are the opportunities to link to wider learning?  We’ll explore this below however, it’s always worth considering how you can bring in other aspects of learning. For example, listening to and following instructions in the target language or other areas of language such as numbers, colours, descriptions, questions or body parts!

Carefully consider what the key aspects of learning are for your learners.  

  • You can offer progression by recognising interim steps to learning. For example, in our Easter Star Trackers, we offer different step-by-steps stages of learning which recognise progress.  For example, understanding language occurs before saying language independently.   By recognising and marking this, we create a sense of achievement and a better understanding of how we progress when we are learning a new language.

Introducing  Easter Vocabulary

How much vocabulary do you want to introduce?

I find that the following is a good guide in terms of how mcuh language you should introduce for a new primary topic:

3 – 5 new words / phrases for Early learners

5 – 10 new phrases for Middle/Upper Primary/Elementary

NB: There’s a useful summary of children’s language learning and development via the TILES (Toolkit for Self-Improvement in Language Learning) Language Learning section.

Active Learning and Introducing Vocabulary 

Primary-aged children respond really well to active/rhythmic/melodic approaches.   This is a great way to play with language and really focusses children’s attention on the sounds of new words and phrases.

When you listen to new language, try clapping out the syllables with learners, look for the rhythm of the word and then use that with an action.

You’ll find a video with our Active Easter Language Presentation in our Easter Lingobox which presents the vocabulary in this way for you.   Here’s a short clip, taken from our resources which demonstrates what I mean:

For younger learners, you can do present this for them and ask them to copy and repeat.  For middle to upper primary learners, explore this with them, clapping out syllables, working out rhythms and adding actions of their own!

French Language Phonics and Grammar

The word œuf (egg) comes up surprisingly often in primary French!

It’s a great word to learn because it sounds so French and vowel-y and is a lot of fun to say and play around with!   One thing to notice about the phonics here is that the F is pronounced in the singular version but not when it’s plural.  Listen to the 2 examples below to see hear the difference:

un œuf = an egg (singular)

 

des œufs = eggs (plural)

Œ / œ  Ligature

You might also notice that in the word, œuf (egg)  the letters O and E are squeezed together.  This is called a ligature.  It basically means that the letters are pronounced as one.  There are actually two different sounds for this however, you are really most likely to hear the œuf sound.   Here are some ideas of how you can explore this with your learners:

  • Try writing the shape of the letters together
  • Look out for it in other words e.g. ma sœur (my sister)
  • Look out for it in English to make links across languages.  It isn’t written together in English anymore (it was until around the early/mid-20th century) but the pronunciation works the same way i.e. it creates one single sound.  Examples include words such as amoeba and phoenix.

Easter Language Active Learning

Once you’ve introduced some Easter language and added actions, you can play lots of fun games.  I’ve added some examples below and would love to hear if you’ve used any of your own!  You can always share your ideas via our social media – we’d love to hear what you’ve tried with your classes!

Easter Port/Starboard –  Call out the different Easter vocabulary and children have to respond by moving to an area of your classroom/hall doing different activities.  For example – un lapin (a rabbit) and they have to hop to one area.   un poussin (a chick) they have to flap/walk like a chicken to another area etc.   Call out la chasse aux œufs! (Easter egg hunt!) and they have to move to “an egg” – if you’re playing this outdoors, you could ask children to draw un œuf on the ground before you play the game.

Head, shoulders, knees and toes – Easter version! 

The head, shoulders, knees and toes song works really well with lots of different language topics and actions.  You can play around with to see what works and fits.  I would also recommend asking older learners to come up with their own version of the song. Working in groups like this is a great way of thinking more deeply about the language, developing wider skills such as communication and supporting language retention.  If your older learners make up a version, even better if they then teach it to others such as younger year groups or their peers.

Here’s a snippet of our version – you can access the full version on our website here.

 

Easter Arts and Crafts Activities 

Once you’ve introduced vocabulary, the best recipe for retention is to then revisit them in and out of context as much as possible!  When children can recognise and understand some simple nouns, it works really well to them embed them in simple instructions such as arts and crafts, drawing and cooking.   Many of the basic instructional verbs are similar to the English (cognates) or are easily demonstrated with actions.  They also repeat over and over throughout different activities.  For example, verbs such as:

ajoutez =  add

dessinez = to draw

prenez = take

I’ve used the EZ (vous) form of the verb in the imperative.  This is the form of the verb used for giving instructions to a group.  You could use the singluar form however, the EZ ending is really consistent across different verbs so (in my opinion!) it’s more accessible.  It also works well in rhymes!

I’ve copied links to a couple of our Youtube videos below.  These walkthrough making an Easter card in French and how to draw an Easter egg.

You’ll also find a video on How to make an Easter Rice Krispie Cake in French along with a recipe in our French Easter Lingobox.

Youtube: How to draw an Easter Egg in French

Youtube: How to make a French Easter Card 

 

French Chicken Dance! 

Following simple instructions through fun activities such as dancing is a great way to provide immersive language learning without the pressure of making mistakes. The whole focus is just on listening and joining in.  Children’s brains are designed to absorb language through listening.   When they take part in activities such as the chicken dance below, they will quite often just naturally start to copy the language they hear.  It’s a great, low-stakes way of creating language learning experiences which children love!

The full version of the chicken dance is available on our website.  It also comes with a translation of all the instructions.

 

 

French Easter Traditions

The French Easter Bells story is a lovely way to continue to revisit Easter vocabulary and learn about French Easter traditions.  Our Easter Bells Story is entirely in French however it’s written in simple, repetitive phrases to help understanding.  The full transcript is also linked in the video description.

You can watch the video via our Youtube channel on the link below:

French Easter Bells Story

In our French Easter Lingobox we have a full package which shares Learning & Teaching Ideas for the French Easter Bells Story.   Here are a few examples below:

Early Level:  Watching the story with children and ask children to explain what happened.  You could also play a game asking them to call out Ding-Dong with the bells.

First Level/KS1: Watching the story with children and ask children to explain what happened and pick out any new or familiar words.   Re-enact the story with children acting as the bells, dropping eggs, returning to France and then looking for eggs.

Second Level/KS2: Create a storyboard display of the French Easter story.  The transcript can be used to support this and children could work in groups to display different parts of the story.