We’ve found that intensity is the key to success, particularly for Sixth Form students, so we work with small groups. All our Sixth Form courses have a 100% French input, with the main focus being on oral work.
This can include mock oral exams if you wish.This is a unique French language and cultural programme that can really improve exam performance. Oh, and the students have a great time too! Naturally, we offer party leaders the chance to visit us as our guests, meet our staff, sample what we have to offer, and plan your own programme with our management team. To find out more just call us on 01273 560449.
Learning by experience
Your students will speak French the whole time with our team of 15 French animateurs throughout the day, whatever they’re doing. In the evenings we invite a local figure, from farmer to politician, to speak at dinner.
Students are constantly confronted by political, social and religious issues, and are naturally stimulated to ask questions and exchange ideas, speaking and even thinking in French. Students can use tape recorders for interviews so they can study them later in detail.
Day trips and local visits
Cultural and historical excursions are an integral part of our Sixth Form programmes, and in Normandy we have a host of inspiring venues to visit – cultural, historical and civic. Popular visits include:
School Exchange – which can include taking part in lessons, being paired off with a French pupil for lunch, and debating in small groups on a prepared subject.
Tourism Office and Town Hall – with the opportunity to talk to many different people, and discover how the French system varies from the English.
Police and Fire Stations – experience a typical day at a police station, explore the difference between the Police Nationale and the Gendarmerie.
The Court – includes seeing real cases and hearing the verdict. The perfect opportunity to see how the French legal system differsfrom the English.
Local Farms – discuss production problems and milk subsidies with a traditional Normandy milk farmer. Explore ethical and practical issues of mass production on your visits to the local pig and chicken farms.
You’ll find a long list of other visit options on our website including: post office, bakery, vet, bank, social security office, hotel, hypermarket, even a stud farm. We supply worksheets and any additional information needed. Some visits may require entry fees to be paid.
Options include Archery, Assault Course, Canoeing, Fencing, Climbing, Bread Making, Orienteering and Initiative Exercises.
In the evenings
We have many tried and tested options that work well, including a Cheese & Wine soiree on the first evening to meet and mix with our staff team; bowling and pizza evening; cinema and creperie; French fancy dress disco; and sports tournament with football, volleyball and basketball.
The programme centres
You will stay at one of our two Sixth Form centres, the Château de la Baudonnière and Le Fousseau. Both offer comfortable rooms for both students and staff, and hearty French fare! We accommodate Sixth Form groups of all sizes. Often these are small or very small groups.
In these cases our prices are for travel to and from Portsmouth rather than school. Use of school minibus or minibuses to shuttle your group to and from Portsmouth often is the key to making these trips viable. Sixth Form weeks run from Sundays to Saturdays.
A teacher’s perspective
“For eight years now I have run various trips to the Château de la Baudonnière. Initially I would take up to 90 Year 7 students for a week in July and I remember fondly my first visit, and how impressed I was with all aspects of the Château and its fantastic staff team.
Every Easter I have continued to take Sixth Form students to the Château, and it remains an incredibly popular and integral part of the course. Students have undertaken visits to local lycées, les mairies, regional hospitals, the law courts, the university of Caen, radio stations and homeless centres. Whilst at these places they have had the opportunity to conduct questionnaires or ask specific questions applicable to their presentation work.
I have always set aside the last day of the trip for a full blown mock oral examination. With the help of the Château staff it is possible to devote anything up to an hour with individual candidates. Students would prepare for the exam just as they would for the oral proper, be examined for 15 minutes and then receive up to 45 minutes individual feedback.
When we return after each successive trip I am constantly surprised how every aspect of my students’ understanding has improved – their confidence in oral work, their projects, their exam results. It is this level of proficiency in extending students’ performance which brings me back year after year.”
Conn Anson-O’Connell, Head of MFL, King Henry VIII