First time I’d seen mini-books Winner of European Award for Languages 2009 AST Jane Breen leader “Make your own mini-book using words learned so far” – didn’t work
Mini-books are something that I have had great success with with KS2 this year, and the piece of work that triggered this presentation. There is a lot of scope for retelling familiar stories, and there are a lot of tools around these days that you can use to help you to make stories if you can’t find what you’re looking for in existing materials. I’d found the information about how to make a mini-book, origami-style, a while ago, but hadn’t yet found a way to use it in the classroom. Until by chance I found this book on Amazon – a set of simple stories in Spanish for beginner learners. There are other more complex ones and non-fiction in the series too. There was one story in there that caught my eye and which I could see that would be useful. We were looking at nouns. What gender is all about, how you can spot which gender a noun is, the importance of un and una, and we were hanging it all on classroom objects, as they don’t appear in schemes of work and are kind of useful. I took the mini-book “¿Qué veo? And read it with the children. They each had their own copy:
Then I introduced them to the dictionary and showed them how they could use it to find nouns to put in their own story, which they would write, illustrate and put into a mini-book. The results were amazing. You can see videos of them on the school blog. All they had to do essentially was to find 7 nouns and find out if they were masculine or feminine. That’s the new language, but they were recycling their knowledge of gender and articles and also the title of their mini-book and the structure of each of the pages. Remember that at the time they had been learning Spanish for a term and a half. They wouldn’t have been half as successful if we hadn’t built it up in small steps, always concentrating on what we already knew and looking at the reusable structures. And like the post-its before, the mini-book is a nice small, non-threatening size. (Here, if time, make own mini-book)
All the best people adapt others’ models and ideas. (I can’t be the only one who goes straight to the back of the Collins Robert if they have to write a formal letter in French!) Take something you know, enhance it using someone else’s example, and you come up with something completely individual and unique, and ultimately satisfying.
Took one of the repetitive sentences from Hungry Caterpillar and adapted
Used dictionaries to complete the sentence using an appropriate plural, one table did each day
Added their sentences to the template. Enlarged to A3, made mini-book, had to use dictionaries to find out what others had written and illustrate pages appropriately. On last page, Sunday, they had to find something that the monster turned into on the last day like the caterpillar became a butterfly.