What a pain it is to be sick! And there are NEVER any subs who speak French. Here is a quick easy lesson for you.
All in one file, (in Microsoft Word) you will get
1.) A vocabulary lesson about French words that are used in English as well. Students will take a 15-word self-quiz, and then correct themselves and find out the real meanings. Then, I've given your sub instructions to follow that include four options. You can adjust the instructions for YOUR classes, and how YOU want it to be done. Students will be directed to use the vocabulary words to either write a short story in English or in French as specified. This will probably take most classes 20-30 minutes to complete if it is done as directed. Key for self-quiz in included. Chart for sub to fill in, telling how the classes went, is included.
2) A short story lesson in four versions. This is a TPRS short story, in French. The beginner level (débutant) is VERY basic and could probably be used in French I in the beginning of the year, maybe after about a month or so of class. Then, there's a somewhat more advanced French I version, a French II version (past tense) and an avancé version (more sophisticated vocabulary). The story is based on the graphic: a boy and girl sitting on a park bench. He is playing with his phone, she is listening to the birds sing. In each version , I've written a short story, given a true / false quiz (in English for the first 3 levels, in French for the advanced classes), and asked the students to finish the story on the back. Each level demands more and gives less help (vocab, hints, etc.). This would probably take most classes about 25-30 minutes, if done as directed. Sub instructions include the keys to all the T/F quizzes, and a chart to fill out telling how the day went.
These two lessons could be stretched out to cover 2 days of absence, or one block schedule long period.