I wanted to offer my students a craft that they could do at home, no matter what kinds of craft supplies they have. But of course it had to be something German, too! So I thought about making a gingerbread heart out of paper. The kids can decorate it with whatever they have at home. Maybe they will even give it to someone special!
I always think of gingerbread hearts at Christmas markets. All those colorful, decorated hearts hanging from one of the stalls! And what a treat when someone gives you one with a special message!
Here is a link to the video instructions:
You can download the free PDF with bilingual instructions as well as templates. There are two heart templates. One has decoration on it, and one is plain.
I have been thinking a lot about my students and how they are coping with home learning. It is such a challenging situation. My own kids are in 1st & 4th grade, so I know what is being asked of my elementary German students. We have good days and bad days. Mostly my kiddos get their class work done, but it’s usually too much to ask them to do the specials work, too.
So I wanted to create something that would add an element of fun to my German lessons. And I wanted to be able to let the students CHOOSE. I had been sending out lessons each week with 3 or 4 options. But that gets overwhelming. So I started thinking about making a bingo board! Then I just happened to see a blog post on how to make a choice board, and I knew this is what I was going to do!
As the instructions told me, I created the board in Google Slides. Then I started adding one slide per activity. I already had many of the activities prepared, so I just had to write them up and create the links. Here is what the main board looks like:
I’m sorry I can’t share the actual board. However some of the files are private or copyrighted. But here are a few of the slides:
There are 16 activities in all. I had started with 25, but then I realized we only have a few more weeks of school! So I made it smaller. The activities in order from left to right, starting at the top, are:
Learn the song/dance “Fliegerlied”
Learn some sports and complete a crossword puzzle or word search
I intentionally left a box blank! I wanted my students to have a chance to give suggestions. I also have not yet created the crafting activity.
I’m so excited for this project! I had such fun putting it together. I hope my students will be inspired. If they don’t get to the activities now, I’m wondering if they might try doing some of them after school is officially over for the year?? We are still homebound in our area, so I imagine kids – and parents – will be looking for things to do!
As I was preparing this week’s lesson on farm animals, I came up with the idea of having the children make puppets with the farm animals. It’s simple enough! Download the PDF, color and label the animals. Then cut them out and glue them to craft sticks!
For the past two years, I have been singing the song “Mh mh macht der grüne Frosch im Teich” with my preschoolers and kindergartners. They LOVE it!
I usually do some lessons on farm animals in the spring, and we sing the song for several weeks in a row. I often bring a little canvas bag filled with my farm animal finger puppets (if you watched the video on counting farm animals, you know I have 12!), and I pull one out at a time. Then we sing about that animal.
Just because we’re learning from home right now doesn’t mean we have to skip the song! I made a video where I talk about the farm animals and what they “say” in German (yes! even animals speak differently in different languages!). Then I sing the song, using my finger puppets.
For my young students, I wanted to review numbers today. We count regularly in class, so I thought it would be a good idea to refresh the numbers. I also used farm animals to count, so that I can introduce them in a week or two.
I made a video of counting:
Then I made a counting sheet for the children to do at home. Count the animals in German, then circle the correct number below. There is a color and a black & white version.
I also found some cute clips of Graf Zahl from Sesamstraße (The Count from Sesame Street). I posted them to one of my YouTube playlists (It may look like the same video as above, but this link takes you to the playlist – you can click through the videos here or click on YouTube at the bottom of the video to go there and find the list):