Vergnuegen 2

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Vergnuegen 2

Contributor: Eva Lamb

Language of text: German
Type of text: Poem
Author or source: Bertolt Brecht
Intended age of students: Key Stage 3/4
Source reference: See attached resources - text / powerpoint (= lesson plan)

Attached files:
1. Comprehension activities for differentiated group work
2. the poem itself as a starter text
3. the power point building up to students producing their own poem with the the Brecht poem as the stimulus

File nameFile typeSize
Bertolt Brecht poem.docxNo description23.99 kBInfo
Gruppe 1.docxNo description24.5 kBInfo
Gruppe 3.docxNo description24.05 kBInfo
Gruppe 5.docxNo description23.76 kBInfo
Gruppe 6+7.docxNo description32.51 kBInfo
Vergnuegen Gedicht.pptComposite Document File V2 Document2.18 MBInfo

Starter is differentiated: the full text (without the title) is given to the students, they are asked to translate the poem into English, using the differentiated task sheets which give them more or less of the text in English, according to ability (the rest is gap fill).
We then look at the translation together (see powerpoint).
Think of a title - in English initially. Then give them the title and establish that it is, in fact, a list of things that make the author happy. At this point a bit of PSHE - how important it is to remind yourself that there are many things that can make you happy, to stay positive, that being miserable is not cool, that the company of negative / cynical people can erode your well-being ... (this part in English, I am afraid).
We then look at the author, make guesses as to what he/she might be like: job, age, personality ...
Look at text again and look at alternatives: what makes us happy? (see suggestions in powerpoint) - this is, in fact a revision of vocabulary (done in TL / German).
Then (again in English): Establish type of text, i.e. poem. What makes it a poem (it has no rhymes ...)? Establish importance of rhythm; count syllables.
Students come up with alternatives: this lends itself to discussion of grammar, e.g. if the line is one syllable short (see powerpoint: meine Katze ....), just adding an adjective won't work, as it will need an adjective ending, thus making the line one syllable over; we ended up making the noun masculine, hence losing a syllable in the possessive pronoun: mein schwarzer Kater ...
Final activity is students creating their own text, but (the more able at least) keeping to the syllable structure of the original.

The text is ideal for use in an MFL classroom for a number of reasons:
1. linguistically accessible: it is basically just a list of items (no verbs)
2. content: it is positive and can be used for developing emotional intelligence / mindfulness (PSHE?)
3. vocabulary: it encourages revision of known vocabulary and research of new, i.e. words students really want to use to express themselves (use of dictionary)
4. grammar: it provides opportunities to revise grammatical knowledge
5. creativity: students have the opportunity to express themselves within a supportive framework

all of the above: development of vocabulary, grammar, creativity, self-expression ...
awareness of target language culture / literary conventions

Topics or themes:
I used it at the end of the topic "Leisure" - but I think it would fit in quite well into other topics.

it's helpful (though not necessary) if students had already come across past participles (some are used as adjectives in the text); and awareness of gender and adjective endings would also be useful

dictionary use, knowledge of simple syntax for comprehension
text manipulation (substitution)

How much time required:
1-2 lessons

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