Litanies pour un retour

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Litanies pour un retour

Contributor: Steven Fawkes

Language of text: French
Type of text: Song lyric
Author or source: Jacques Brel
Intended age of students: Key Stage 3/4
Source reference: Clip here:

Lyrics here:

Attached files:
Page with a) the lyrics of the song
b) the lyrics gapped to focus on possessives
c) the lyrics gapped to focus on sound / meaning

File nameFile typeSize
Brel.docComposite Document File V2 Document34 kBInfo

Listen to a verse or two to establish the mood and introduce linked descriptive phrases. adjectives.
Look at the text gapped for possessives; learners predict which word is missing (mon, ma or mes), then listen again and fill the gap with either mon, ma or mes

Afte a gap - maybe in the next lesson , use the other gapped version to recal meaning and focus on rhymes / sounds.

This moving song of loss and love is simply a list based on possessive words:
Mon coeur ma mie mon âme
Mon ciel mon feu ma flamme
Mon puits ma source mon val

This means it can be exploited in several ways:
for work on grammar (choice of possessives, gender clues)
for work on phonics and spelling link
for creative writing

Identifying grammatical patterns - link of possessive word to gender of the noun

The song illustrates how a powerful, moving resource can be created from simple ingredients

Topics or themes:
Relationships theme


Adapting the text to make a new List Poem

Comparing with anothe version of the song - here is Barbara:
in order to convey that the possessive word is NOT linked to the gender of the speaker

Converting the text from Mon to Son

How much time required:
30 minutes?

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