Teaching French -er verbs can be fun and engaging, but it’s really important to make conjugation accessible to all students. For many students, this might be their first exposure to French verb conjugation, verb charts, and subject pronouns. They’ll need step by step instructions on just how to do it, but they’ll also need interesting activities that really get them engaged! Find out below how I’ve taught -er verbs.
1. Start with easy to follow notes and writing activities.
I am a firm believer that grammar does need to be explicitly taught. I know that this is a debatable topic. While I agree that students need meaningful ways to practice, I really think they need to structure broken down first so that they can practice. This PowerPoint presentation and the coordinating verb worksheets break down the concepts in small, manageable chunks so students can get adequate practice before moving on to the next topic. Many speaking activities are also included.
2. Use manipulatives to help reach a variety of learning styles.
Some students really learn better when they can physically touch and move objects. This can be done with verb conjugation and vocabulary in a way that even bigger kids love! By using manipulatives and puzzles, we are really helping students who learn kinesthetically. A bonus? Varying activities helps all students stay engaged.
3. Provide a lot of movement.
Games like Scoot are great for practicing vocabulary and conjugation while providing movement so students stay alert and retain more information. Again, kinesthetic learners will benefit, but students will also be reading and writing while playing this game, so it’s a win-win all around!
4. Play games
I’m a huge believer that games help students learn and retain information. Why? They are engaged, and they are using the language in a variety of ways. Verb conjugation worksheets do have their time and place, but a lot of kids just do NOT learn that way.
Using fun activities like Bingo or this -er board game help kids get excited about learning new words! Play the board game in groups to practice conjugation or make it harder by forming complete sentences.
5. Get them speaking!
Providing students with well-structured speaking activities is so important! They need to actually use the language if they are going to gain proficiency. We learned our first language by speaking first, and getting students to speak early and often is key in language acquisition.
You can use a structured activity like these speaking cards or provide quick and easy daily practice by asking a few questions per day.