Our intrepid French Immersion students return home to Dawson on Thursday! Here are some final thoughts they had on this amazing experience:
What have been some of your favorite moments of this experience?
* I really enjoyed going to a movie in French with Raouda, Isa and her host, and one of their friends. It was a cool way to expand my vocabulary. I’ve also liked PE and getting to make friends on the bus rides there and then run around in the woods with them for an hour. (Lucy)
* My favorite moment in France was probably spending Sunday at my host sister’s grandparents' house. I liked this because her grandmother makes incredible food, and after we ate we just watched French TV and it was super fun. (Maddy)
* So far, my favorite moment was having a sleepover at my friend’s house that goes to Notre Dame La Riche with my host sister. This was my favorite moment because no one in her family spoke very good English and so I was able to practice my French a lot, given she had a lot of siblings who wanted to talk to me. It was also fun spending time outside of school with someone other than my host sister. (Elizabeth)
* My favorite moments have been going to the Eiffel Tower, the Champs Elysees and, now in Tours probably being able to teach French kids to play baseball and then being able to have a complete conversation with them. I love being able to see the different chateaus here and learning the stories behind them. (Tommy)
* My favorite moments have been when I actually have a full conversation with somebody or when I’m out in public and someone assumes I’m French and starts talking to me in rapid French and I try to hold my own. I had a guy come up to me and talk to me about my FC Monaco jacket and I got through the conversation without (from what I can tell) him being able to tell I wasn’t French. Other great moments have been with friends I have made through school, like teaching some french kids how to throw and catch a baseball. (Nate)
* My favorite moments have honestly been every moment I’ve been here. From every class at school, to going into town after school to get Nutella paninis, to going out with family and friends and exploring the city and drinking Orangina until midnight, to making a new best friend. I’ve honestly loved every moment here. (Isa)
* My favorite moments are when they took me to see the chateau d’Ussé and when we went to the island of Ré. (Margo)
How do you feel now in comparison to when you first arrived in France?
* When I first got to Tours I was terrified and barely spoke for like the first day home and the first day of school and I thought that French people were mean and scary. Now I am a lot more open and go out of my way to start and participate in conversations with my French friends and family. (Lucy)
* When I first arrived I didn’t understand even half as much as I do now. I would zone out in classes just because I didn’t understand what the teacher was saying, the only words I would say were, “oui, non, merci, and quoi?” And now, I understand at least 95% of what people say to me. In class I no longer zone out because I actually comprehend what the teacher is saying to me, and I’ve learned a lot of new things from that. I can now actually carry a casual conversation with people in the halls. My ear has adapted so much and I not only understand more, but I speak more too. (Isa)
* I’m feeling much better, in fact I’m wishing I could stay longer, as I’m having lots of fun. At first I was hesitant and was looking at the downsides, but now that I have acclimated I love this place. There are so many new things to see and new foods to try! (Nate)
* I feel much better this week than when we first arrived. My ability to understand French is much better and I feel very comfortable with my host family and sister. I think this whole experience has made me understand that there is a much bigger world than just Colorado. I am very grateful that I got to have this experience. (Maddy)
* I feel a hundred more times comfortable speaking with people, today in school I had multiple conversations with kids where I understood their questions responded and didn’t make a fool out of myself. (Tommy)
* The first week was rough, I struggled with my French and socializing with the others. Now everything has kinda smoothed over, my French has improved and I am comfortable with everyone here. (Margo)
* In comparison to the first week, I feel much more comfortable with not only speaking French but also with the people here in general. I have also adapted well to the environment at school and at home. (Elizabeth)
What are the most important things you want to do before you leave?
* I want to really go out of my way to talk to my host family and friends before I go even if I’m exhausted or really not in the mood. There is a chance that I will never see some of these people again so I want to make the most of the time that I still have with them. (Lucy)
* These last few days I want to make sure to make the most of it. I’m making a video of my trip so I want to make sure to get lots of footage. I also want to take pictures with the friends I’ve made here. And I want to be able to say thank you to the people here for making me have such an amazing time in this new country. It’s going to be a hard goodbye. (Isa)
* With less than a week left, I feel that I have used these last few days to my advantage by talking to more people. However, I think I can use these few days to take more pictures because I will want those memories once I’m gone. (Elizabeth)
I just want to enjoy my last few days here and make sure I make the most of them. (Maddy)
* With less than a week left I want to make sure that I leave with solid relationships with the people here. I want to also make sure that I have gifts for my family back home. (Tommy)
* Before I go home I want to make sure I can communicate with my host family after, and I want to see my former host. (Margo)