Incorporate the music and poetry of one of France's most popular and successful rappers, writers, and spoken word artists - Oxmo Puccino - into your French class while gaining a more nuanced appreciation of how imparfait and passé composé work together.
In this activity, students will first listen to Oxmo's song "J'te connaissais pas" (please find a recording of the song...or look it up on my YouTube playlist: https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PLuVGA2-POfG5lW35HjYJMKfMQGZM4BS3e) and fill in the verb conjugations they hear on the included lyrics sheet.
After checking the answers together, students will find references to time, and examples of the present tense, imparfait and passé composé, then analyze those examples to articulate why Oxmo chooses which tense to use. This will lead students a discussion of the meaning of the song - and reveal it to be a sweet love song beneath the swagger. It's a fun twist and never fails to ellicit a chorus of "awwww" from my students!
Finally, students will write their own ode to a life-changing person or thing using Oxmo's structure as a guide. Use this as a jumping off point for a music project, a spoken-word slam, or a written project. The sky's the limit!