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Teaching French Grammar in Primary

It has been a while since my last post! I had a baby in October so I’ve been focusing on her for the last few months. Isn’t she cute? Today I want to talk to you about teaching French grammar in primary. It often isn’t something that is focused on too much, but there are simple ways that you can work on grammar with your students.

I find grammar to be the hardest thing to teach in a second language because they make mistakes based on their first language. How many of you are triggered by hearing “je suis fini”, “je j’aime” or “j’ai a”? When they start making mistakes like this every time they say something, it becomes a fossilized mistake and they become even harder to break. In this post, I’ll be talking about how I use La grammaire du jour in Grade One, Grade Two and Grade Three to address these errors. If you’re not sure if this resource is for you, click on this link for a sample of each grade. You can also visit my Freebie Library to find other freebies!

I created this French grammar resource to gradually get more difficult as the year progresses. You can see in the photos below that there is a big difference between the September and the June activities. Click on each photo to check out the resource on TPT! I created these to be used as an interactive notebook, but I actually use them in many different ways. I start off the school year by doing them on the carpet, morning message style. In the very beginning, I write the activity on the board and we solve it as a class. After a few weeks, I get the students to solve them on white boards in groups/partners before I move to individual work sometime in October.

What kind of activities are included?

There is a huge variety of activities included and they’re not all introduced at once. Here examples of activities you’ll find in the bundles:

  • Fixing spelling mistakes
  • Writing sentences
  • Unscrambling sentences
  • Synonyms, Antonyms
  • Verbs
  • Descriptive Writing
  • And more!

I use this as morning work and once the students are finished writing their answer, we come to the carpet, discuss the question and do a French grammar mini-lesson before continuing on with our literacy lesson for the day. We also will use this time to review previous concepts we’ve learned. Once they’ve learned something new, we co-create an anchor chart and hang it up in the classroom. That way when we are doing writing activities, they can refer back to the anchor charts to help them edit their own work. Speaking of editing, did you check out my Freebie Library yet? I have a journal success criteria checklist in there that is great to help your writers edit their own work!

Now how can this resource help those fossilized errors I talked about earlier?

A lot of the grammar mistakes I used correspond directly to mistakes I commonly hear from my students. By having them see them, read them and fix them, they are learning to recognize these sayings as errors. Because you’re taking up the answers and making anchor charts, you can refer your students back to them every time they make that error. Fossilized errors are hard to correct, but with some hard work, it is doable!

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