This year when Deutsch II was learning sport-related vocabulary, I decided to work with our Physical Education Department at Glenelg to give the students a day to play a sport of their choosing. I got them the gym for a whole period on a Friday - they chose a game and we took it from there.
First I started with some Piggeldy und Frederick. We watched the video on Schlittschuh laufen in which Frederick has to explain skating to Piggeldy.
After viewing and discussing this video, I divided the students into groups and assigned each group one of the following sports: Basketball, Fußball, Hockey, Volleyball, Baseball, Tennis, amerikanischer Fußball. Each group needed to come up with a German explanation of the game for Piggeldy. They had to find the vocabulary to describe things like how many players were on a team, different positions (ex: goalie) and equipment (tennis racket), and the different rules/actions involved ("don't touch the soccer ball with your hands" and "kick the ball"). Then each group reported out what they had come up with.
At this point, I revealed that they were going to get a chance to play ONE of these sports during class. They had to pick which sport, though, based on how easy they thought it would be to get the materials necessary and if they could get a big enough team. After some voting and finagling, they agreed on Fußball.
The next step was I gave them the option of "inviting" (read that as "challenging") Deutsch III and Deutsch IV to the match. They whole-heartedly wanted to challenge the upper levels.
Of course, it's one thing to have your own class go to the gym and play a game during the period that they have you. It's another thing to pull students from other classes for a game. I told the upper level German classes about the match and gave them a permission slip. It was really more of a way to let the other teachers know what was going on.
A lot of students wanted to participate but most couldn't get out of class that day (we had had several snow days in a row which undoubtedly had something to do with it). It was definitely fun to get a few new faces. I hope to be able to do this game again in the future - I want it to be something that builds up and the kids look forward to playing as a team against another class.
As an alternate activity for students who, for whatever reason, didn't want to play, I gave them the chance to take pictures of the game instead. This is German, not Gym, after all and I didn't want to force the kids to play - it's supposed to be fun!
The game itself went well. The Phys Ed teachers were super supportive - they gave us pinnies and equipment and (most importantly!) the space to play in. I think next year, though, I would invite another teacher to help moderate the game. The kids were well behaved, the issue was more that I'm not personally very familiar with the rules and game play of soccer. I'm a hockey and football girl, so when we play a game I don't know as well I feel I should ask one of the school coaches if they'd be willing to ref for us.
Now as fun as it was to take a day off and play a game, there's no way we stopped there! The kids had, after all, spent all that time looking up soccer-related terms and we had all these pictures. There was a project to be had out of this!
One of our media specialists had talked to me earlier in the year about Animoto, a website that makes you put together videos from your own photos or video footage. You can get a free account, which does limit you to 30 seconds of footage and you don't have as wide of a selection in animations, music, etc, but the length was actually perfect for what we needed. Check out one of the student videos!
Sporttag was a lot of fun and I can't wait to do it again next year!
- Frau Leonard