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My Favourite Things!(yes, from the sound of music)

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I did this theme "My Favourite Things" with my adult ESL class in Brockville, Ontario, CANADA, during our drab February in '99 and I used it as my opening exercise for the group each day. On Monday, I showed the clip of the song "My Favourite Things" from the Sound of Music. Then we studied the lyrics of the song. It's full of commonly used vocabulary and verbs (with the exception of "Schnitzel" ! ha ha), like "dog" and "bites", "bee", "stings" etc. and it's also got good idioms in there! After we studied the lyrics, we watched the clip again and some of them even sang along with Julie Andrews! (We're looking into releasing a CD... ha ha) We followed up with a discussion about what soothes us or makes us feel better when we're down. Next came a study of some idioms like "cheers me up" and "gives me a boost" , "feeling down" etc. and finally some grammar exercises and sentences with new words and verbs from the song.
The theme continues all week with each day focusing on a different favourite. ie: Favourite Recipe Day. Each student brings in a copy of their favourite and SIMPLE recipe to exchange. I prepared a fav. recipe for them to "taste test" and some of the students did too.

Another day was fav. Outfit Day. They wore their fav. outfit- even if it was their flannel jammies!) and described why they liked to wear it so much. The other students gave me a description of what that student was wearing. (great for beginners to review clothing items and adjectives!)

The grand finale was "Fav. Keepsake /Possession Day". They each brought in something that was special to them and talked about how they got it, who gave it to them, why it is so special. This was a wonderful class and at the end of the school year a lot of my students listed this particular activity as one of their highlights. They were thrilled to have a chance to talk about something so special and to learn about the cultures and personal histories of other students. The possiblitlies for Favourites Week are endless! I wish you as much success with this as I've had! Happy singing! (Don't panic at my "Canadian spelling" for favourite that includes the "u"!!!!!)

Susan Thomas
Brockville, Ontario, CANADA

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