ARTIGAL METHOD: “STORYTIME”
The purpose of my English class for children from P3, P4, and P5 is to get them familiarized with this new language as Castellano and Catalan.
The method that I use, it’s one created by Josep Maria Artigal. According to him, we learn a language when we do interesting things with others; it’s the intensity and emotion what makes us subjects of learning.
Learning is accomplished through stories that children represent in class.
At the beginning the story doesn’t need visual support. They are stories of two characters, the right is the main and the left is the secondary and the centre is the narrator. In the beginning the teacher is the one that represents all the characters, standing right, left or centre depending on who imitates. What is important is the tone that is given and the accompanying gestures, which always must be equal for each oral expression. The child memorizes everything, and before the teacher says anything, just for the gesture he made, he knows what he has to say in English. The child feels himself as the main character, he feels important. The language used, in this case English, is no longer a problem, it becomes a tool to express themselves.
I use “PEGGY” for P3 and “READY FOR A STORY” for P4 and P5 both edited by sr. Artigal.
Once children know the story, they start working it with pictures, flashcards and some material to draw or cut and glue to support the learning process.
The children bring at home a “Puppet Theatre”, where is drawn the setting of a particular story and some stickers that represent the characters, that are easy to move while the child puts them voice. It’s very important to listen to them, since as Josep Maria Artigal says “Languages are acquired when you use them”
At this moment we are working “Peggy and Daddy” in P3, “Peter” in P4 and “Cake” in P5. The children dare to tell and represent the first part of the story (In P3 the whole story). These videos are a little demonstration of their achievement.
These stories allow me to link with other issues as “What can I do in a city”, “The food and the drinks”, “What I like to do”, “The house”, “The family”, “To be polite”…
“Peggy and Daddy”
When Peggy wants to watch her favourite cartoons on TV and Daddy is watching his football game, she finds a way to be the centre of attention.
Nowadays we are working a new story:
“Peggy and Grandpa”
When Peggy, Munchy and Grandpa are playing “Tommy Thumb” somebody does a pooh-pooh and Grandpa asks who did it.
Munchy is a puppet that appears in class from time to time and talks with the children.
Peter is playing at home when mummy says, “Peter dinner is ready!”. “OK Mummy, I’m coming” Peter answers. But he goes on playing.
Mummy keeps calling him, “Peter dinner is ready!” Peter answers “OK Mummy, I’m coming”. But he always goes on playing.
Then Mummy goes to Peter’s room, and very angrily says “Stop playing and tidy up the room”. This time Peter sits at the table to have dinner. After checking that Peter’s hands are clean, Mummy gives a bowl of soup and some fish. Peter loves soup but hates the fish. Mummy says “Peter, eat the fish” and she goes back to the kitchen.
Peter can’t eat the fish, then he has an idea “Cat, come here and eat the fish”. The cat comes and eats the fish. When Mummy comes back and sees the cat, she asks “Who ate the fish, you or the cat?”….
Emmy asks her Mummy to make a cake. Mummy says “OK, let’s make a cake”. They put in yoghurt, eggs, chocolate, flour and sugar. They mix everything with the mixer, and they put it in the oven and wait for a while.
Once the cake is ready, Emmy asks Mummy if she can eat the cake. Mummy says “No, I’m going to do some shopping. When I come back we will eat the cake”.
When mummy has gone, Emmy gets the cake and eats it.
In the end, Mummy comes back and sees that the cake is gone. Mummy asks, “Emmy, did you eat the cake?”. Each pupil decides whether Emmy is going to answer “yes” or “no”.