• Blaine Pike

Some scaffolded exam prep - differentiated for mixed abilities

Hi guys! This week I've created something that grabs all the French sentences from an exam paper and jumbles up the English translations. Students then have to figure out the correct order of the translated sentences themselves.

This type of "guided translation" task can work well as a regular starter activity, but can also be used as a standalone reading and translation activity in its own right.

How to use the spreadsheet

For demonstration purposes, I have grabbed all of the sentences from the AQA 2018 Foundation Reading paper. So, if you're planning on setting this paper as a mock soon, these sentences may not be the best things to do with your group (or, depending on how you look at it, they may be the best prep to do!)

You'll see that the document is filtered by the length of the sentences, so you can jump straight in and choose some of the easier or harder sentences to give to your groups.

Alternatively you can filter the sentences by the original order of the exam paper, if you'd prefer for your students to work through sentences from the paper consecutively.

You'll also see that the document contains both French > English jumbles and English > French jumbles. The latter are harder, so these may be used with your stronger students.

How are the translations done?

To save time, all the translations into English were done automatically. If you happen to spot a machine translation error, please just tweak it for your students (or leave it out!)

You could of course use any mis-translations to show your groups that Google will never be as clever as your students. On balance, though, I'm going to say that the overall benefits of these sentences will outweigh any potential disadvantages for your groups.

What about other exam papers?

If you'd like me to jumble the sentences from another AQA paper (French, German or Spanish), please do drop me a message on the Contact page or on Twitter (@blainepike)!

Thank you for reading this and - as always - please share with the rest of your department (and any of your PGCE students or NQTs). Hope you all have a great week ahead!

Download link: MFLDataBlog - Sentence Jumbles - FR, DE, ES

(To save this file to your computer, just click File > Download > .xlsx)

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