les coquelicots et les bleuets

It's 100 years since the start of the First World War and many of you will be thinking of ways to commemorate the event.
This is a real opportunity to combine target language learning and cultural understanding.Thanks to the language coordinator at St Philips CE in Warrington , Sam Snodgrass and her very simple an effective idea to generate class displays of poppies as word art (there is an example below)

I have taken this idea and created some other simple language learning opportunities.

La valse des coquelicots  is a music and picture clip of fields of poppies- just beautiful to watch and share with your classes and explain the significance of fields of poppies.An opportunity to create a dance performance too.You will be able to use this clip as a creative backdrop to some of the activities below too.......

Les coquelicots et les bleuets

In France ,people remember the 11 November with both poppies (les coquelicots) and also cornflowers (les bleuets).
Why not create both word art poppies and word art cornflowers ( blue petals and yellow centres) for a mixed display- just simple flowers likes Sam's flowers above?

And here is also an opportunity to look at the people behind the flowers and the remembrance too and to create a display that thinks about the people and what happened to the people during the first world War. How?
Well let's create a display of people represented each time by a flower either one of les coquelicots et one of les bleuets
  • Talk with your class about the families and the impact on families during the First World War.
  • Share with the children pictures of people from the period- children,women,men,soldiers.The pictures in this video below gives children the sense of life for the soldiers and the women and children of Paris during the first World War .You could use the clip and pause the clip on a specific picture from which the children can then take their inspiration and select a person to write about. Each table is responsible to create a family unot of people

  • Ask the children to work in pairs and to create the character of the person behind the picture. Can they give the person an age, a role in the family (e.g mum,dad etc), a profession if the person is an adult and can they decide if the person is a soldier.) 
  • Give each child a flower to create either a poppy or a cornflower. For each flower ask the children to generate a face of the member of the family,drawn as a free sketch from the photo of the person   from which they have created their character.This is the centre of the flower
  • Around the centre they must draw four flower petals and in each petal in the link colour (so poppies read and cornflowers blue pen) ask the children to write a fact about the face - name/ age / profession/ role in the family.  
  • Why not take the music from la valse des coquelicots and play this as gentle background music whilst the children share their flowers and the personalities they have created with other members of the class.They simply walk around and quietly share their target language information whilst the music plays in the background.
  • And now you have your display- just add the photos of the people as a background and over the top add the flowers your children have created as a mixture of the poppies and the cornflowers in a field of remembrance!