SUNY Cortland
Department of International Communications and Culture
FRE 504-001 Teaching French Civilization
Bob Ponterio

Spring 2007
3 cr. hrs
Tuesday 4:20-6:50
Main 224

Tel: 2027
Office: Main 228
Office hrs: T 3:00-4:00 & after class
MW 9-11:30

Textes (available from

Recommandé :
Ross Steele & Suozzo, A., Teaching French Culture: Theory and Practice
Polly Platt, French or Foe?: Getting the Most Out of Visiting, Living and Working in France
Jean-Benoit Nadeau, Julie Barlow, Sixty Million Frenchmen Can't Be Wrong: Why We Love France but Not the French
Clotaire Rapaille, The Culture Code

Revues : Historia, Histoire Médiévale, Cahiers de Science et Vie
Extraits (exemples):
Teaching Language in Context - Alice Omaggio
Classroom Techniques: Foreign Language and English as a Second Language - E.D. Allen & R. M Valette
La Civilisation française - Blancpain et Couchoud
The Splendid Century – W. Lewis
La Mentalité révolutionaire - Michel Vovelle
Mourir autrefois – Michel Vovelle
L’enfant et la vie sociale sous l’ancien régime - Philippe Ariès
National Standards document
Classroom Techniques – Allen & Valette
Doing the Unthinkable in the FL Classroom – Crawford-Lange & Lange
Acquiring Cross-Cultural Competence – Nostrand et al.
J-J. Rousseau - Emile, Contrat social
Colin Jones, The Cambridge Illustrated History of France
La Société Française: Données sociales 1993 – INSEE

Course Description :

France and the modern francophone world. In-depth study of various aspects of French and Francophone civilization, with particular focus on the development and integration of materials for use in the public school classroom.

Attendance :

Courses in French at SUNY Cortland serve no only to provide exposure to the course content but also to help students achieve communicative goals through active participation. For this reason attendance at class meetings is essential. Therefore, if you have more than 1 unexcused absence by the end of the semester your grade will be lowered by 5/100 for each additional absence. (Only serious illnesses and problems at home, religious holidays and sports competitions are considered excused absences. A doctor's note will be required.) It is to your advantage to inform me before any class which you must miss. Contact ICC or my office. Work missed whether from an excused or unexcused absence must still be completed, and it is the student's responsibility to see that this is done quickly.

Evaluation :

A scale of 0-100 will be used as follow: A+ 97 - 100

In this course we will examine what we mean by teaching civilization in the standards-based language classroom and explore what goals this study might help us meet.


Two 5-page papers will be written for this class illustrating techniques for integration of civilization topics in class and supported by the readings done.

Class presentations: Students will present reports on particular assigned topics or readings and examples of lessons prepared.


Syllabus (programme tentatif): (NOT YET UPDATED)

(1) 25 jan. Présentation, culture & National Standards.
(2) 1 fév.

Culture générale; W+B ch. 1-4 (14-85); présentation d'activités.
Standards for Foreign Language Learning, Culture standard
Généralisation vs. stéréotype
History overview

(3) 8 fév.

W+B ch. 5-6 (pp. 86-111) - chaque étudiant mène la discussion sur un sujet.
Perspective: pain, toilettes, bac ;
Polly Platt, French or Foe, chapt. 1
Allen & Valette, Classroom Techniques, Teaching Culture.

(4) 15 fév. Omaggio “Teaching for Cultural Understanding.” Créez un “Culture Capsule.” W+B ch. 7-8 (pp. 112-142)
Ariès - L’enfant et la vie sociale sous l’ancien régime
(5) 22 fév.

W+B ch. 9-11 (pp. 143-190);

(6) 1 mars

Nostrand, Acquiring Cross-cultural Competence, Introduction.
Crawford-Lange, Doing the Unthinkable;
W+B ch. 7,8,9,10,11; chaque étudiant sera responsable de mener la discussion pour un chapitre;
choix de biographie – pourquoi; biographie & enseignement de la culture;

(7) 8 mars W+B ch. 7-11 cont.;
Francophonie et le monde francophone
- 15 mars Spring Break - no class
(8) 22 mars Paper I topic : NYS sylabus topic : sujet au choix mais basé sur qq’ch. que nous avons étudié ; Culture Standard : Quelle est la perspective ?
(9) 29 mars Badinter - L’amour en plus.
W+B 12, 13 (enseignement )
(10) 5 avr.

Vovelle - Mourir autrefois;
W+B 14.
Shrum & Glissan: Interactive model

(11) 12 avr. No class - NECTFL
(12) 19 avr. W+B ch. 16;
éléments culturels d'une époque: musique, art, histoire, économie, philosophie, etc.
(13) 26 avr.

W+B ch. 18-19.
Présentations biographies; Paper II.

(14) 3 mai

W+B ch. 21.
Présentations biographies;

Examen final. Vendredi, 11 mai. 4-6. We should be able to use the class period, 4:20-6:50.

Obscurs - From Wikimedia Commons