20% French Project Check-In Questions
(Kuddos to Mr. Vincent Kane who conceptualized his 20% project and passed onto me his insightful knowledge)


1. What essential question are you researching?
Ex:  Why did the chicken cross the road?

2.    What is your thesis?
Ex:  The chicken crossed the road to get to the other side and rejoin its flock.

3.    How did you arrive at your thesis statement?
Ex:  First, I decided to consult many sources related to this topic. I visited a website that describe the social habits, anatomy, and physiology of chickens.  After establishing that chickens like to spend their time in flocks, I looked for a source explaining the dynamics of a flock of chickens.  I looked for a source explaining the dynamics of a flock of chickens. Apparently chickens have a strict social hierarchy and tend to stick together, often following stronger members of the flock.  Ultimately, I found two primary sources consisting of first hand accounts related to the chicken who crossed the road.  Both people interviewed agreed that the chicken’s flock was on the other side of the road.  Therefore, I have been led to believe that the chicken most likely crossed the road in order to rejoin its flock on the other side.

4.    Can you explain the evidence that you will use to support your thesis statement?
§  I have picture proving that the chicken definitely crossed the road and arrived safely on the other side.
§  Chickens are not solitary animals. They live in flocks and like to stick together.
§  Chickens that are lower on the social hierarchy often stay close to stronger chickens.
§  Several firsthand accounts verify that the chicken’s flock was on the other side of the road at the time of its crossing.

5.  Can you explain how this is related to French Class?
Absolutely!  The chickens I researched are prized in French Cuisine in the preparation of “Coq au Vin” which I found is a traditional French stew made of chicken, carrots, lots of mushrooms, but probably not the truffle kind that sell for $1,000 to $2,200 per pound, and red wine.  Interestingly, the price of the truffle is high because before it is harvested, preserved from dehydration, shipped and consumed within 36 hours, a truffle hunter must train a dog to sniff the testosterone the truffle smells like.  Since those dogs can only sniff about a quarter of a pound of truffle per “hunt”, it takes a lot of hunters to gather truffles.   In the olden days, a female pig, the swine, was hired to sniff the truffles.  But hunters found out that the swine did not want to give up the truffles.  So the hunters fired most of their swines to replace them with dogs. In addition, when the truffle is harvested, a portion of it must be removed and put back into the earth to grow more truffles.

6.What larger understandings about (insert your subject here) have you gained from conducting this research?
Ex:  I learnt that chickens live in flocks and operate under a strict social hierarchy.  Upon conducting further research, I learned that many domesticated flock and herd animals have social hierarchies that are an important part of their behavior and survival techniques.

7.  How will you apply the information you have learnt during this project to other aspects of your life?
Ex:  If I ever own a flock of chickens, I will make sure that they are not alone.  I also now realize that chickens will put themselves in danger to stay with their flock, so I need to monitor their whereabouts carefully.

8.  What skills are you developing while working on this project and how will they assist you in the future?
Ex: Conducting such a substantial amount of research has helped me develop skills that I will use throughout my college career when I am assigned essays and discussion topics. This will help me form opinions based on facts, others perspectives, and the unbelievable. Furthermore, The “Cluck-Cluck” chicken sing along soundtrack that I am developing is encouraging me to step outside of my comfort level and perform for others.  I know that I will need to talk with others about a variety of topics throughout my life, so working on that will really help me in the future!

9.  Can you tell me what was your biggest challenge?
Well, I think keeping the fox from getting into the chicken coop and eating my “actors” was my biggest challenge.

10.  Can you explain what you are making and show me your progress so far? Then, explain the steps you still need to complete?
Ex: Absolutely!  So far I have developed the album cover for my sing along CD (presenter holds the album cover up for the camera). If you look closely you’ll notice that I decided to put a picture of a Buff Orpington on it.  That is a very docile breed of chicken that I learnt about while conducting my research.  I also chose to use big bubble letters for the title because my CD is designed for children and that will appeal to them.  Now I am going to perform a clip from one of my “Cluck-Cluck” sing along (presenter begins to cluck).  I have four more songs to go, but I have accomplished a lot so far!

Bonne chance!  Madame Provencher :)