Year 7 French Trip
Year 7 French Trip
The unearthly hour of departure under leaden skies did not foretell the pleasure of what lay ahead for children and staff alike. Having collected Malcolm, our legendary bus driver, from Cobham we made good progress down through France before arriving in Méluzien. There we were greeted by the Maison Claire Fontaine team and tucked into a delicious supper and the usual round of beat-the-clock puzzling. Weary heads hit the pillow that night but then we woke to the setting for almost every day that week: crisp mornings followed by strong, warm sunshine.
With the entire group quickly finding their feet both linguistically and pastorally, we launched ourselves into a week of fun and French, and sometimes both happened at the same time! Lessons in the morning interspersed with table tennis and table football in break times, followed by outings to markets where questionnaires were done. We also visited the beautiful village of Vézelay with its stunning views of the Burgundy countryside and even more impressive basilica.
In the evening the children might write a French diary, play lotto or head out to a local restaurant to sample the culinary delights of the area. We were also treated to an afternoon in the stunning setting of Beaune where we learned about the founding of the Hospices and how that led to the establishing of the world famous wine at its annual auction. As the week drew to a close the children bought their own lunches at a local market and presented them with great flair and imagination. And finally they launched themselves with great gusto and a distinct lack of fear around the high ropes of a local forest as three rather wobbly-kneed staff looked on.
This was what we did but so much more was achieved. For many it was the longest time they had been away from their parents and they were brilliant. Such good fun was had, with all looking after one another with great care and enjoying their time enormously, making the most of the opportunity. For the staff we had the pleasure of watching this lovely group grow in confidence as they strengthened their French, friendships and independence. A real pleasure.