Admittedly, I didn’t make up this theme. I started out thinking I would do something about Charlie Brown, kites, and flying, and then spent some time on Google images and Pinterest, and came out with this instead:
Decorations: The cloud cutouts were really easy to make–just make a couple cutouts and trace them. The balloons and string were easy too. The house (which I also cut out of paper) could have been easy, but I decided to make it by hand, color a little with markers, and do the white trimmings with white-out. The easiest way would be to print out a picture of the actual house from “Up” and stick it beneath the balloons, but if you choose to make it by hand, I just looked online for pictures of the “Up” house and made it based on those.
Word of the Month: Nickname (あだ名). 例： “Do you have a nickname?” (あなたはあだ名がありますか？) “If you do, what is it?” (もしあったら、どんなあだ名ですか？)
- “Who am I?” Spirited Away quiz. Answer is “Haku.” (Vaguely flying-related.)
- “What’s the Japanese Title?” I showed three movie posters (Wikipedia) and gave their English titles and translations, and had students see if they could guess the Japanese titles, which are under the flap. I was originally going to give the Japanese and have them guess the English, but that’s really no fun because the titles are so different that there’s no way anyone would guess right. Students were surprised to discover that the titles are completely different–here’s what they are, if you’re curious (the titles got really long, haha):
- “Up”–カールおじいさんの空を飛ぶ家 (Old Man Carl’s Flying House)
- “Brave”–メリダとおそろしの森 (Merida and the Terrifying Forest)
- “Ratatouille”–レミーのおいしいレストラン (Remi’s Delicious Restaurant)
Thinking about this now, you could do it for Ghibli movies, anime characters’ names, or Pokemon names, too.
- “Girls’ Name, or Boys’ Name?” I tried to be tricky with “Daniel” and “Danielle,” but people I asked also got “Madison” and “Zachary” wrong.
Happy Birthday Section: Switched to profiles. Only two people this time, Johnny Depp and Aragaki Yui, with stats on their ages, likes and dislikes, etc. It takes a little time to look up their personal info (and actually, it’s harder to find it on American actors sometimes), but it’s much, much easier to focus on two people than locating 8 famous people with birthdays in June and trying to find a good picture to represent each one of them.
Comics: Used the Bing Calvin and Hobbes search engine to locate two simple comics to put up (link 1 and link 2). I thought that Calvin and Hobbes was waaay too complicated of a comic to use, but I’ve actually found quite a few simple ones to use. I plan to name each comic I find specifically here so that other people can use them and get ideas. Finding simple comics (that are still interesting) can be time-consuming sometimes.
Notes: No handouts or worksheets this time. Students weren’t taking them and my goal was never to give them extra homework, anyway. Trying to think of something interesting to use the mail section for, because it’s cute. Any ideas?
I thought this board might be a bit too juvenile, especially since the websites I use for inspiration tend to post pictures from elementary school lower-grade classrooms, but the content isn’t, so I think it’s okay. Also, since I change the board every month, I feel less intimidated by making mistakes. I really like the clouds, though–they make the classroom feel so light and cheerful!^^ You can tell where I ran out of ideas but needed to fill up the space, where I put up a paper that just says “Balloons!” on it with an arrow, haha. I thought of writing “Up, up, and away!” or “It’s June!” or some sort of phrase like that, but I felt kind of stupid doing that so I let it go.