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Le soleil, la lune et les étoiles: An example of using blogs to motivate the learning of French in Ireland

Author(s): European Schoolnet
Institution/Organisation: St. Michael’s, Loreto Secondary School, Navan (IE)

Summary

St Michael's is a Catholic, secondary school for girls (lower and upper) in Navan, a commuter town to the north west of Dublin. As part of her regular teaching the French teacher devotes one class period a week with her 5th year class (16 years) to the development of a website and the writing of blogs – in French. The aim is to re-invigorate students’ love for French and to encourage learner autonomy by adopting an innovative and exciting new language learning approach by harnessing a technology, blogging, already familiar to the pupils. They are free to develop this to their taste but there is supervision by the teacher and technical help is available from the ICT department. The fact that any random Internet surfer, including classmates and parents can read their blog proved to be an important motivational force for the pupils, as well as a reason for care with presentation and the correctness of their French. Also a number of new web-based French resources became readily available to the pupils. The initiative won an award in the annual European Languages Award scheme in Ireland for its innovation and fun approach.

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