Hello again parents, guardians, friends, and family!
We finally arrived in Saumur yesterday around 15:30 (around 10:30am for those of you in Indiana). The plane ride was long and I don’t think much sleep was gotten by any of us, so the three-hour bus ride was quite short in comparison as everyone slept most of it.
We were delighted to see the students’ host families waiting for us when we arrived in Saumur. They were so excited to meet the students and seemed to welcome them warmly into their homes for the summer.
Our first day today at the Institution Saint-Louis (a local middle and high school at which we are using classroom space) went very, very well! We had some orientation activities to help the students get to know the school, their classes and other activities, the director Monsieur Jean-François Boivin gave a welcoming introduction to the students, and we played some games and hung out in the beautiful courtyard. The students were still pretty tired from traveling, but they seemed fairly energetic and excited to get started.
During our support group meetings this morning we asked the students what they had eaten with their host families the night before. Some students tried many different types of cheeses they had never had before, while others enjoyed such traditional French delicacies as croque-monsieur (a grilled ham and cheese sandwich with cheese on the outside and mustard and ham on the inside) and quiche lorraine (a baked egg dish with a crust and various vegetables). We had a wide variety of answers for what the students were able to try and an overwhelming consensus that everything was delicious, so know that they are being well-fed in France!
So far, the instructors have also been so impressed by your students’ French! They are strong speakers because they know how to ask questions and talk around what they wish to say for help with the right vocabulary words. Everyone remained in French all day today without much difficulty! They are only going to get better and they are already so strong so I am very excited to see them progress!
Tomorrow we will have our exam in the morning – the same exam the students took last fall in preparation for the program – so we can gauge how they’ve progressed since last year. I just know they are so excited about it, haha. But in the afternoon, after lunch, we will go on a “photo-randonnée”: a hike/walking tour through Saumur where there will be plenty of time to take pictures and see the city.
I hope you enjoy the photos in this post – you can click on any of them to look at them in a larger format or to download them. There will be many more to come as we will continue to stay busy and have fun!!