Francophone Culture in an FSL Classroom

Francophone Culture in an FSL Classroom

With the release of the new Ontario Curriculum and its imminent implementation, we have been receiving a lot of PD with regards to the changes. One of those changes that I have been trying to start to prepare myself for, is making better cultural ties in my classroom.

In looking at the new curriculum, it lays out for us, what cultural connections can be made in core French from grade 5 through grade 8.

Grade 4: French-speaking communities in Ontario
Grade 5: French-speaking communities in Québec
Grade 6: French-speaking communities in Eastern, Western and Northern Canada
Grade 7: French-speaking communities in the Americas (outside of Canada)
Grade 8: French-speaking communities in Europe

I liked this because it gave me something to start with and will provide some consistency in my program.

As June quickly approaches, I was trying to find ways to continue to engage my students for the last month, but in a way that is still productive and where they can learn.  I decided we are going to start one last project.  I realize that many people might think I’m crazy for trying to undertake a project at this busy time when classes are on field trips, there will be one hundred and one assemblies and it will be pure chaos as warmer weather and summer get near.

But I say, ‘Challenge accepted!’

So here are the tasks they will undertake, followed (at the bottom) by the different communities/regions/areas that I found so far.  These lists are not exhaustive.  If I am missing something, please let me know.  My hope is, with the help of my students, to do more research to verify the information and hopefully gather a variety of authentic links for the different places as well.  (stay tuned for that).

Grade 5:

You have been asked by your principal to create brochures to teach the primary students about the different regions of Quebec.  Each group will have a different region to complete.  Use the resources provided to you to help find the information that you need.


Grade 6:

The government of Canada is having a contest to see who can make the best kid-friendly travel brochures about different Francophone communities. You and your partner will create a brochure together to submit to the contest about your designated community.


Grade 7: 

The government of Canada is collecting promotional tourism commercials for different Francophone communities/regions in North and South America (excluding Canada). Research the community/region you were given, find and use accurate resources and create a travel commercial for your community.


Naturally, I have set up introductory lessons where the students and I will create the success criteria and discuss what types of information that they can include in each type of task. Either way, I look forward to seeing the end result.  I find my students never cease to amaze me.  This is just one way that I have wrapped my head around the cultural connections, as I am very passionate about traveling.

How do you incorporate Francophone culture into your lessons currently? Or how do you foresee yourself incorporating it in the future?



 Grade 5 – Regions in Québec

01 Bas-Saint-Laurent


02 SaguenayLac-Saint-Jean


03 Capitale-Nationale

04 Mauricie


05 Estrie


06 Montréal


07 Outaouais


08 Abitibi-Témiscamingue


09 Côte-Nord

10 Nord-du-Québec


11 Gaspésie-Îles-de-la-Madeleine


12 Chaudière-Appalaches


13 Laval


14 Lanaudière


15 Laurentides


16 Montérégie

17 Centre-du-Québec


Grade 6 – Communities in Canada – except Ontario/Québec

British Columbia

  • Vancouver & Victoria have the highest French-speaking populations, therefore we might research different festivals, events and the ways that they celebrate Francophone culture in these regions.



  • Edmonton – Bonnie Doon is the French neighbourhood
  • Calgary (has a percentage of the population that is French-speaking)
  • Beaumont
  • Saint Albert
  • Morinville
  • Legal
  • Rivière la Paix
  • Bonnyville
  • Saint Paul
  • Plamondon
  • Lac La Biche
  • Falher
  • Girouxville



The neighbourhoods of

  • Saint-Boniface
  • Saint-Vital
  • Saint-Norbert

Other Municipalities – links to these municipalities can all be found from )

  • Alexander
  • De Salaberry
  • Ellice
  • La Broquerie
  • Lorette
  • Montcalm
  • Notre-Dame-de-Lourdes
  • Powerview / Pine Falls
  • Riel Quarter
  • Ritchot
  • Ste. Anne
  • St. Claude
  • St. Laurent
  • St. Lazare
  • St. Leon
  • St-Pierre-Jolys
  • Somerset



  • Batoche
  • Duck Lake
  • Saint-Isidore-de-Bellevue
  • Saint-Louis
  • Saskatoon
  • North Battleford
  • Prince Albert
  • Saint-Denis
  • Vonda
  • Prud’homme
  • Zenon Park
  • Saint-Brieux
  • Debden
  • Delmas
  • Bellegarde
  • Cantal
  • Alida
  • Forget
  • Montmartre
  • Gravelbourg
  • Ponteix
  • Val-Marie
  • Saint-Victor
  • Willow Bunch



  •  majority of Francophones from Nunavut live in Iqaluit (310 people)


Northwest Territories

  • Hay River
  • Fort Smith
  • Inuvik
  • Norman Wells



  • 82% of the francophone people live within Whitehorse and its surroundings



  • Port au Port Peninsula (St. George, La Grand’ Terre, L’Anse-à-Canards)
  • St. John’s
  • Labrador (Labrador City-Wabush, Happy Valley-Goose Bay)


Nova Scotia

  • Parts of Cape Breton Island, such as Île Madame and Cheticamp (north of Inverness)
  • Halifax


Prince Edward Island

  • Prince County
  • Evangeline area – some villages include: Wellington, Abram-Village, Mont-Carmel
  • Summerside
  • Miscouche
  • Tignish
  • Palmer Road
  • St. Louis, PEI


New Brunswick

  • Madawaska
  • Acadian Peninsula in the northeast
  • Gloucester
  • Kent
  • Northumberland
  • Restigouche
  • Victoria
  • Westmorland
  • Edmonston in Madawaska
  • Campbellton
  • Bathurst
  • Moncton/Dieppe


Grade 7 – Francophone Communities, Countries, Regions In the Americas (Outside of Canada)

  • Madawaska, Maine
  • Frenchville, Maine
  • Van Buren, Maine
  • Fort Kent, Maine
  • French West Indies
  • St. Martin
  • Haiti
  • French Guiana
  • St. Lucia
  • Martinique

St. Pierre et Miquelon

  • Saint Barthélemy

6 Responses

  1. Thanks so much for sharing! Can you tell me a bit about how you address francophone culture in grade 4? Which areas of Ontario do you focus on?

    • Hi Kirstie

      In the past, I have addressed this by having students research what ‘francophone towns/cities’ we have in Ontario. (Depending on the level of students, I might give them this, and we might explore them together). Either way, we look at where these places are on a map, sometimes we go onto Google Maps and look at the street view to see the street signs and store signs. We talk about the name of the town/city and where it came from if we can find the origin. In the future I would like to maybe research the origins of why those cities have Francophone (and why nearby towns/cities don’t have as much French influence). I also heard recently about a program that parents can run at home where kids receive ‘passports’ and get letters to learn about different cultures from around the world. This might be a neat way to learn about the different Francophone cities from around Ontario. If a group of teachers got together (even virtually) to write letters to students that are coming ‘from people who live in these different cities’ and that address the cultural side, students could keep a map in their classroom and put pins in when they have heard from a city, they could discuss what they learned, compare and contrast different cities in Ontario, all over the course of the year. Hope those ideas help! I am also going to contact my teaching partner to see what she has done in the past. Best of luck, and definitely let me know what you decide to do and how it goes! I LOVE hearing about others’ ideas as well!!

  2. Hi there,
    Was wondering also if you could share a little more about what you do with the Grade 8’s. Do you have certain regions they focus on? What expectations do you give students.
    Any information would be helpful!

    • Hi,
      In the past I have given students the opportunity to select something from a European region that was of interest to them. It was kind of like a genius hour for us, because I wanted them to be interested in what they were exploring. THere were successes and challenges to this. Success, students were engaged in what they were learning about. Challenge, much of the research was done in English because students are limited in what they can understand in full French texts online and how they can then express their own thoughts when it is not around a “topic” or “context” we have studied together and scaffolded the language. I am not sure where you are located, however for us in Ontario, in Grade 8 the focus for Francophone culture is around French-Speaking Communities in Europe. THis is the context that I then use for my students to build their projects. I hope that helps with some clarification. In the future I might also have students explore French-Speaking Communities in Europe through advertisements, or other online venues such as connecting via twitter. The opportunities through technology are endless! Thanks for the comment!

  3. Thank you so much for sharing these activities! Any specific details for what you expect from the Grade 6 and 7 projects, or suggestions for a model? Do you create the success criteria with your students?

    • Hi Sarah, Thanks for the comment. Unfortunately I don’t have any specific ‘French’ examples or models that I used for these specific activities, however we would as a class ‘deconstruct’ the form. For example, for the grade 7 activity where I am looking for students to create a promotional tourist video, we went onto Youtube and watched some of the Newfoundland commercials that have been airing the last few years. We then had discussions as a class as to what made the video effective in order to create our anchor charts and success criteria. From there, students would begin their research and use the criteria as a reference throughout the creation of their own video/brochure. Hope that helps, let me know if there are any other questions or ways I can help! 🙂

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