See Reviews of Instructor Sally Barstow
This course is structured around studying several in depth themes interspersed with shorter units of art or literature. Using themes from the AP French material, units are built around activities that guide the students to explore authentic material (blogs, infographics, videos, magazine and news articles) finding the language they need to know in order to respond to various prompts.
Unit assessments include:
- Cooperative projects
- Video responses with replies
- Letter writing or created Power Point presentations.
Students are able to develop and advance at their own pace. Grammar review is woven into the weekly assignments. Typically, three levels of students might be in the class – French 3 (advanced), and 4/5 (and higher). Each year is designed with new material allowing for students to continue taking this same course.
Class size is limited to 12 to allow for optimal communication in class.
Tuition for this course also includes membership in the French Club, where students have the opportunity to serve in leadership positions.
Students will also be given the opportunity to participate in ‘Le Grand Concours’. This is an annual test/ competition sponsored by the American Association of Teachers of French. For a minimal fee ($10.00) students can see how they rank among other American students of French. This will take place in March. Many Aim students have received gold, silver or bronze awards!
The class is structured around the weekly face to face live meeting. Students can expect to have about 3-4 hours of homework each week. Five weekly assignments are posted that build on what was presented in class, preparing the student for the upcoming meeting. In class, students can ask and answer questions based on the weekly assignments. Language structure is provided to guide the interaction in class.
The units last 6-9 weeks with an assessment project/test at the end of each unit. In addition to regular weekly assignments, students will keep a weekly written journal. Contemporary music selections will be presented each week with activities to explore the lyrics.
Who should enroll?
Students in grades 10-12 may enroll in this class. Please contact the teacher if you have any questions.
- A quiet environment for live class (i.e. not in a noisy area like a coffee shop)
- High speed, broadband Internet
- Sound card and microphone (for live sessions)
- Streaming video capabilities to watch recorded lectures
- A scanner is helpful for turning in assignments
Evaluation and Feedback
Weekly assignments receive the complete score, unless some correcting is needed. So, if students do their work, including the corrections, they will get a perfect score for their weekly assignments. On the assessments, more details are taken into consideration. If a student is working well and within their abilities, I give high marks.
Most weekly homework is graded the week it is turned in. Unit projects sometimes take longer, but I am patient when students have technical difficulties (which often show up with the bigger projects). I aim to give feedback and corrections in French on the assignments. Should students have trouble with any assignments, I am available during the week.
I encourage parents to reach out to me as they have concerns or questions. They can anticipate a note from me should their student get behind in their work. If I communicate with the student about their work, I always send a copy to the parent so that they can keep up with their student’s progress. Progress reports go out at the end of December; the final grade goes out in May once the final test has been graded. I have a Facebook page where I post random information about French: “All that’s French”.
Amanda Finn (verified owner) –
My son is excited to join Mme Barstow for another year of French. After beginning French with another company, we were happy to experience how engaging and organized her classes are. This advanced French class was the perfect balance of challenging and authentic activities.
Sofia Ferrer –
This French 4/5 class with Madame Barstow is anything a student could ask for—fun, engaging, valuable. The homework is really helpful in reinforcing French skills; I especially enjoyed the various French music, authentic French articles, and project/essay assignments that Madame Barstow provided. The workload is very do-able and is not at all overwhelming—you could probably expect to work around forty-five minutes per day on average on this class. The live lessons are a very special feature of this class and something I always looked forward to. Madame Barstow made sure to make the live lessons as interactive and engaging as possible, encouraging all students to practice their French-speaking with fun activities. Definitely take this class if you’re looking for a high-quality French learning experience!
Sarah Peterson –
My daughter and I have been thoroughly impressed with Sally Barstow’s French 4/5 class. She is encouraging and kind and her assignments keep the students engaged listening, speaking, reading, and writing in French. She also facilitated the students taking the National French Exam. We’d tried foreign language classes with videos at home and even with a private tutor. The live online class dynamics and stucture is far superior. What a blessing to our homeschooling family!
Nan Kim-Paik –
Sally is a gifted teacher, and we’re so glad that our son had the chance to study French with her. She manages to keep things fresh in a way that is clear and accessible. To generate a higher level of engagement among the students, Sally integrates a variety of creative approaches into her teaching, so her class would work well for all kinds of learners. Our son took Sally’s class when he was particularly isolated during the pandemic, and he really appreciated the chance to interact in real-time with both his teacher and fellow students as he practiced and expanded his abilities in French. On top of all of that, Sally is such a kind, supportive, and compassionate person – someone I myself would love to study with someday if I ever get the chance to learn French!
Felicity Johnson-Ronald –
Madame Barstow was quite easily one of my favorite high school teachers! I enjoyed every single class I had with her and will miss them immensely now. Due to the time difference of living in New Zealand, I would have to get up in the early hours of the morning to attend class, but every class made it worth it. Madame is extremely knowledgeable in the subject she teaches, she has an endless supply of patience, and her style of teaching is never boring. She makes sure to challenge all the students at just the right pace, and wants each of us to succeed. The learning environment is fantastic, and even though it is online, you get a great sense of camaraderie with your fellow classmates, even getting to work on projects together! I highly recommend this class to anyone who is interested in French – you won’t regret it! Merci beaucoup Madame! xx
Anne Wiedenheft (verified owner) –
My daughter has just finished 4 years of French with Mme Barstow. She really enjoyed the class and did very well. Mme Barstow is wonderful to work with for both parent and student. She utilizes a variety of teaching methods-book, video, projects, drama–which keeps the class interesting and fresh. There is a good mix of book and interactive work. The amount of work hit the sweet spot for us–not too much, but not too little and not busy work. I would recommend any of her classes without hesitation.
Stacey Kelly –
If you are comparing French 4/5 classes available online, this class is the best one available-by far! Sally is an extremely patient and kind person, and this makes the students feel comfortable to practice their French. The custom curriculum she uses keeps the students engaged, and it encourages class interaction without fear. Sally’s French background has helped my daughter flourish this year. Don’t hesitate to sign up to take a class with Sally!