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Hello, how are you doing?


Group 2 – non subject-specific activities
Group 3 – specific subject – language animation


students aged 10 to 18


  • To acknowledge and value the multilingualism within a group of people
  • To lose the fear of speaking a foreign language
  • To convey some elements related to the mother tongue
  • To learn some basic vocabulary in foreign languages
  • To discover cultural elements in languages


25 minutes


All the students sit on chairs in a circle except one person staying in the middle without a chair. This person is going to ask randomly someone sitting the question “Hello, how are you doing?” According to the answer, something will happen. If the questioned person answers “Fine, thank you” his or her neighbour sitting right and left from him/her have to swap places and the person staying in the middle tries to sit down. If the questioned person answers “Not so well”, all the people sitting must swap places with each other and the person in the middle tries of course to sit down. If the questioned person answers “I’m OK”, nothing happens and the questioning person addresses to someone else. In order to integrate the different languages (mother tongues) which exist within a group (or the foreign languages that the people learn), the main question and the corresponding answers are translated and written down on a flip chart. Before it starts, all people shall try to pronounce the sentences in the different languages.


It is recommended to visualize on a flip chart the expressions in the different languages with different colours. It is also important to ask the members of the group if one or several people speak another language and not to assume that they do. Besides, it might be very interesting at the end to have a short discussion on the real meaning of the question “hello, how are you doing?” and its possible answers which can be very different depending on the cultural context and which can be also hard to translate sometimes because this expression, although sounding simple, is not universal.


DFJW/OFAJ „Sprachanimation in deutsch-französischen Jugendbegegnungen“, Berlin 2009
OFAJ/DFJW « L’animation linguistique dans les rencontres franco-allemandes de jeunes », Berlin 2009

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