Saturday, 25 January 2014

Oral Communication Strategy: Qui Suis-Je?

Qui suis-je in action with one of my Grade 4 classes.
This week I introduced a new strategy to my students.  Right now we are working on the CEFR focuses (foci?) of "Je pose des questions,"  and "Je decris les personnes and les places."  I thought a good way to bulk up their vocab for description, and get them used to asking questions was to play Qui suis-je?, a game not unlike the game "Headbandz."  There was quite a bit of preparation for students to get the the independent practice level in this game.  We played this game for a while as a class, and the shared practice was something that the students really enjoyed.

Anchor charts for support
In order to set my students up for success, the preparation for this game was pretty involved.  I had created anchor charts that had pictures of celebrities, and asked questions about a personality.  We created the questions as a class based on the anchor chart of celebrities that I introduced first.  One lesson that came out of this game was the mini lesson I had to teach on inversion and intonation. The students grasped the concept pretty readily-- they made great connection.  One student noted that we use the question "comment t'appelles-tu" and asked if that was inversion.  It was a great mini-lesson!  

After we created the list of questions, I created a scorecard for the students to use: not only to organize their thinking, but to get them reading the questions without the support of the images I added for comprehension.  The scorecard was a table that I filled with the questions, and a box to check or "x" depending on the question and answer.  We had 2 answers for the grade 4 classes (Oui ou non), and 4 for the grade 5s (oui, non, peut etre, et parfois.)

For the "headbands," I used some dollar store sunglasses with velcro dots attached to them.  Then each of the pictures had velcro on the back so students can swap the pictures in between turns.   

Glasses  instead of headbands.  We have a critter problem at our school .
The shared process was fun for the class.  I modeled one turn, by having the students pick the picture for my glasses.  I modeled how to use the scorecard on a giant version that I created for modelling.  There were only 12 pictures to choose from, so all the images were hanging up for students to consult.  We played a class version of the game each class for a while.  Until the students were really used to the questions.  Some students started creating their own yes or no questions, which was fabulous!  

When we moved to the independent practice, students played the game in groups of 4 or 5.  There was quite the buzz in the class, students were really enjoying it!  While the students played the game, I circulated and assessed their progress.  

Again, it was great to see the students using gestures, and other speaking strategies that they had learned earlier in the year!

Scorecard for student book
The great thing about having created this game is that I can use it again when we meet the new characters for our next unit on mysteries.  I have some grand plans for that unit! 

I have used post-it notes to play a version of this game with some of my older classes.  I opted for this picture-based version for my younger students to ensure a level of success.

See the bottom of the post for download links to my resources!


If you would like to make your own, here are the files that I made for the game.  Feel free to download and print!

Celebrity cards: (I printed two sizes, 1 collage per page for the anchor charts and 2 collages per page for the playing cards.) Download here (page 1). And here (page 2).

Scorecard worksheet: I printed it for the students to consult when they played and to track their thinking. Download here (PDF).


  1. Beautifully set-up and wonderfully executed! I hope that your colleagues and administrators had a chance to see this activity in action.

    1. Thank you so much for your comment! The kids had a lot of fun doing it!

  2. Love your ingenious tip about the sunglasses & velcro dots! Merci!

    Mme Aiello @ Teaching FSL

    1. Pas de probleme! The kids liked wearing the glasses for their turns. I can use them again and again, and it only cost me about 5 dollars. Perfect!

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  4. You are so creative! I'm so glad I found your blog! You definitely have some great ideas!

  5. These are some great ideas! Thank you!

    There is a typo on the scorecard -- it says "devenez" instead of "devinez"