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French in Normandy + Rouen Handball Club

rouen handballFrench in Normandy is really pleased to announce a partnership with local sports club Rouen Handball.

Alexandre Briet, Responsable du développement at Rouen Handball Club signed the agreement with Malika Bezzou. “We think that by joining forces with another dynamic Rouen business we can be more effective,” said Briet. “And as the Club’s motto says – On n’avance jamais seul ! (You can’t do it all by yourself.) This sort of partnership fits perfectly with our Club philosophy.

Malika Bezzou, French in Normandy’s Manager said ‘This sort of partnership is just great for our students and it helps to enhance our visibility here in the City of Rouen as although we are really well known all around the world, locally we do not have the same coverage. We look forward to taking our students to matches as part of our social programme, there will be opportunities for our students to learn to play handball and we can all benefit from the Hand fit sessions that the Club offers !

School owner, Eleri Maitland commented, “I am really enthusiastic about this partnership which offers benefits for both our staff and students and adds a new dimension to our school. French in Normandy is keen to open as many doors as possible for our students to integrate French life and to have meaningful contacts with local people outside of the school. Thank you so much Rouen Handball we all look forward to this new venture.”

Pourquoi réaliser son séjour linguistique à Rouen ?


Ah la Normandie, l’une des régions de France les plus visitée ! Ses atouts sont nombreux : paysages variés à couper le souffle, architecture typique, histoire riche et une culture fascinante… Vous l’avez compris, c’est un incontournable lorsque l’on souhaite découvrir la France.

Rouen, sa capitale, bénéficie ainsi de nombreux avantages ! Si vous cherchez une ville française intéressante pour réaliser un séjour linguistique, laissez-moi vous donner cinq bonnes raisons de choisir Rouen comme destination !


Première raison : son emplacement géographique.

Rouen profite d’une excellente localisation géographique, située à mi-chemin entre Paris et les plus belles plages de Normandie, vous aurez la possibilité de faire de nombreuses excursions pour profiter de la capitale française ou bien de la nature normande. séjour linguistique à rouen

La Normandie est l’une des régions les plus célèbres de France et à juste titre ! Sa renommée est due à plusieurs facteurs : histoire riche, architecture propre à elle, gastronomie, foyer de l’impressionnisme, artistes célèbres…

De ce fait il y a une multitude de lieux merveilleux à découvrir en Normandie : les falaises d’Etretat, le port d’Honfleur, Giverny, Bayeux, les plages du débarquement, la cathédrale de Rouen sans oublier le célèbre Mont Saint-Michel… Vous n’aurez pas le temps de vous ennuyer !

Deuxième raison : la beauté de la ville.

Rouen est une ville marquée par l’histoire et cela se voit à travers son style architectural et ses monuments. Dans le centre-ville, vous aurez la possibilité de parcourir des rues pittoresques au style médiéval. Prenez du temps pour vous y perdre et découvrez ainsi les petits commerces de la ville, Rouen possède d’excellents bars et restaurants. La rue du « Gros Horloge » est probablement la plus belle, si vous montez en haut de cette horloge, vous aurez l’occasion d’admirer de magnifiques panoramas de la ville.

séjour linguistique rouenDans bon nombre de classements, Rouen figure dans le top 10 des villes françaises les plus jolies. De nombreux peintres et photographes y viennent pour immortaliser certaines vues. Ce fut par exemple le cas du célèbre peintre Monet !

Troisième raison : un grand centre de culture !

Rouen, lieu de naissance de l’impressionnisme ! Au musée des Beaux-Arts, vous trouverez une vaste collection de peintures, la deuxième plus grande du pays ! Si vous aimez l’art, vous ne serez pas déçu.

Le célèbre peintre Pissaro aurait lui-même déclaré :“Le paysage le plus splendide qu’un peintre puisse rêver : la vue de Rouen dans le lointain, avec la Seine se déroulant calme comme une glace et des coteaux ensoleillés.”

Grâce à ses grands artistes, les musées de Normandie détiennent la seconde collection impressionniste de France ! Le Musée des Beaux-Arts de Rouen présente tout un ensemble d’incroyables peintures impressionnistes réalisées par les peintres les plus célèbres. Vivre à Rouen, c’est donc approcher cette sensation de rêverie ! Si vous êtes passionnés par l’impressionnisme, vous pouvez découvrir l’ensemble du patrimoine normand lors du Festival Normandie Impressionniste. Vous aurez l’occasion de faire des sorties, assister à des conférences et des lectures pour suivre les traces de Monet et autres célèbres peintres.

Quatrième raison : les activités à faire dans la région !

Non seulement Rouen est une ville qui a du charme et un certain art de vivre, mais c’est aussi un lieu idéal pour les activités sportives ! Si vous aimez les balades à vélo et les randonnées, vous passerez sans aucun doute une grande partie de votre temps sur les bords de Seine ! C’est un endroit idéal pour pratiquer ce genre d’activités ! Rouen possède également des parcs et des jardins reposants, comme le Jardin des plantes, idéal si vous avez envie de lire ou de vous reposer dans un endroit calme !

Si vous sortez de la ville, vous aurez accès à toute la nature normande ! Non loin de Rouen se trouvent le Parc Naturel des Boucles de la Seine Normande ou encore le parc animalier de Roumare ! Vous pourrez également pratiquer des loisirs comme le paintball, l’acrobranche et l’équitation ! Nul doute que vous aurez grand plaisir à découvrir tous les merveilleux panoramas normands !

De plus, sachez que Rouen est une ville très sportive ! Il y a de nombreux clubs de sport dans le centre-ville et de nombreux événement sportifs sont organisés tout au long de l’année, venez donc pratiquer votre activité favorite !

séjour linguistique rouen

Cinquième raison : une ville idéale pour étudier !

Eh oui ! Il y a une grande université et de nombreuses écoles de formation à Rouen ! Si vous envisagez de faire des études en France, vous trouverez très probablement la formation idéale ! Il y a notamment l’INBP (Institut National de la Boulangerie et de la Pâtisserie) si vous voulez devenir un expert en pâtisseries françaises ! séjour linguistique à rouen

Rouen a de ce fait une vie étudiante active, de nombreux événements sont organisés pour faire connaissance avec d’autres personnes ! C’est également une destination Erasmus prisée, vous pourrez rencontrer des étudiants du monde entier !

Enfin, pour apprendre le français, il y a la célèbre école French in Normandy ! Décorée de nombreuses fois, c’est certainement le meilleur centre de formation pour apprendre la langue française ! L’école a une excellente réputation et offre des cours de qualité, le tout dans un endroit convivial et agréable ! Si vous souhaitez améliorer votre niveau de français, vous avez maintenant la bonne adresse ! Sachez également que French in Normandy peut vous aider à vous insérer dans un cursus universitaire français, si vous désirez poursuivre vos études à Rouen ou dans une autre ville française.

Vous avez maintenant cinq excellentes raisons pour venir faire votre séjour linguistique à Rouen ! Vous l’avez compris, c’est l’une des meilleures villes françaises pour découvrir la culture française ! Nous vous attendons avec impatience !

learn french quickly

How to learn French quickly and with ease

Everything you need to know to learn French quickly and efficiently


Would you like to speak French fluently ? Do you feel ready to start learning the language of Moliere? I am sure you are ! But maybe you are not sure about how to go about it… No panic ! In this article I am going to give you some tips and explain step by step how to learn French quickly and with ease.

learn french quickly


To learn a foreign language, there are mainly two possibilities :

  • Studying by yourself, with a private teacher if possible.
  • Going to the country where the language is spoken and preferably taking courses in an accredited school.

Of course you can do both ! For example you could add one or two weeks of French courses in France to your personal training. In any case, to learn a foreign language efficiently, be prepared to be consistent with regular learning sessions. There are some habits you will need to acquire.

Habits you need to get into :

  • Be disciplined, probably the most important one, it could be difficult to master in the long term but if you want to progress, you have no choice ! Certainly you are motivated to learn French right now, but like sporting activities, it is a temporary feeling. After several weeks of training, it is highly likely that you will feel discouraged, when that happens only self-discipline will give you the strength to continue ! You will just have to bite the bullet. Tell yourself : « Every day, I will study French for thirty minutes, period ». Moreover, you new found ability to stick to your guns will be very useful in other parts of your life ! Several scientific studies say that the human brain needs 21 days acquire a new habit, so beginning will be the most difficult time but after three weeks i twill become part of your routine!
  • Be clear about your goals, plan step by step your progress. For example : « I have four months to reach A2 level. »
  • Be consistent, you will learn much better by studying thirty minutes everyday that four hours once a week. That is how human brain works ! Of course you have to be disciplined to be regular.

To sum up, bear in mind these rules : Regularity, organization and self-discipline. Now that you have understood the importance of these rules, let’s start learning French ! Here I tell you how to proceed step by step.

First step : Learn the basics. (A1-A2 level)

As I told you before, you have two possibilities to learn French quickly : you can study in a French school in France or you can study on your own. Obviously the first option is the most efficient, but also the more expensive. If you can afford this, do not hesitate ! Another solution is to buy a short course (one or two weeks). Even a short trip to France is ideal to put your language to good use and practice. This will also help you keep motivated.

I will talk about it at the end of this article. First let’s see how to organise your training. Here are my suggestions :

  • Learn the French alphabet. This is the first thing you have to do ! Try to pronounce each letter out loud. Repeat several times.
  • Study minimum thirty minutes every day, find a method which is not focus only on grammar, it is better to start by learning whole sentences. By doing this you will memorize vocabulary and you will be able to talk about simple topics. I would suggest the Assimil method, Teach yourself, books and online material…
  • Learn the common, everyday words.
  • Try to listen to the French language every day, a huge amount of content is available on the internet : songs, tv channels, audiobooks… Try them all ! Little by little you ear will get tuned. The BBC has several excellent programmes too.

Learning the basics alone requires several months. If you follow my suggestions, you should progress fast !

Step Two : Strengthening. (B1-B2 level)

You can be proud of yourself ! You have been learning French for several months and now you can talk generally about a few of your favourite subjects! For the following period, proceed like this :

  • It is time to study grammar ! You have learned a lot of words but now you need to understand the logic of the French language. Find a good method that focus on grammar and a dictionary of verbs and how to conjugate them (there is a good one called Bescherelle).
  • Keep listening to French ! Try a website such as Lyrics Training. You will have to listen and complete the lyrics of French songs, that is a fun way to improve your comprehension skills.
  • Sign up to a website like italki where you can find a teacher or a native pen pal. This is a way to keep motivated. Just one class a week would be very effective !
  • Start to watch French movies or series with subtitles.

Step Three : Advanced training. (C1-C2 level)

Congratulations ! Now your French is really getting good ! Let’s continue studying at an advanced level ! There is much to do now:

  • Read books, press articles, websites… You will learn more and more vocabulary and you will master the syntax. Do not translate words, only those which stop you from getting the gist. Read topics that you are interested in.
  • Watch television, movies and French series. It is quite easy to find content online. For example Netflix is available in several languages.
  • Continue keeping some classes on Skype if possible.
  • Travel to France ! It is time to put your language into practice ! You should really try to do this, you deserve it !

learn french in france

To conclude…

I would like to stress that nowadays the best way to learn a language is to go abroad. When you experience full immersion, you learn very quickly and it is always interesting to discover a new culture. If you can afford to do this, you will also understand how important is to choose the right language school. To progress quickly, choose a French school that has the French government quality label. I would strongly recommend French in Normandy in Rouen because it offers : quality courses, a super cosy, friendly atmosphere, it is easy to get to Paris and Rouen is a very beautiful French city… This article will help you to know how to choose the best French language school.

Last but not least, do not forget that you now have everything you need to succeed ! Good luck ! Bon continuation !

séjour linguistique en France

5 raisons de faire un séjour linguistique en France

Vous apprenez le français ? Vous envisagez de faire un séjour linguistique en France ? Vous hésitez à franchir le pas ?

Dans cet article je vous donne 5 bonnes raisons de réaliser un séjour linguistique en France ! Embarquez, l’aventure vous attend !

séjour linguistique en France


Premier avantage : L’immersion linguistique.

Eh oui, une fois en France vous serez plongé dans un monde totalement francophone, ce qui aura un effet particulièrement positif sur votre cerveau. En effet, le fait de perdre ses repères va forcer ce dernier à s’adapter, l’apprentissage de la langue se fera donc beaucoup plus rapidement. C’est pourquoi plusieurs professeurs de langue conseillent de se créer une « bulle » dans laquelle vous pouvez simuler cette immersion linguistique. Par exemple vous pouvez mettre votre téléphone en français, écouter la radio et la télévision française sur internet, etc. Tout ceci contribue à forcer le cerveau à enregistrer avec une plus grande efficacité la langue. Ainsi, lors d’un séjour linguistique, vous serez entièrement plongé dans un monde francophone, ce qui aura pour effet un apprentissage beaucoup plus rapide.

Conseil : ne soyez pas tenté de vous tourner vers vos compatriotes, sinon votre cerveau aura beaucoup plus de mal à s’adapter !

Deuxième avantage : L’immersion culturelle.

Apprendre une langue, c’est aussi s’intéresser à la culture locale ! Durant vos cours, de nombreux thèmes seront abordés afin d’enrichir vos connaissances en civilisation française. Le fait d’étudier certaines périodes historiques, le cinéma, la gastronomie, la littérature, les célébrités et même plusieurs coutumes et traditions vous aidera réellement à penser comme les français. Chaque langue est unique et transmet une vision du monde différente, vous avez donc l’occasion d’apprendre à réfléchir autrement. Certaines études démontrent même que les langues influencent l’humeur et la personnalité !

Conseil : Il est quasiment toujours possible de choisir un hébergement en famille d’accueil, optez pour cette formule afin d’en apprendre plus sur la manière de vivre des français !

Troisième avantage : Partez à la rencontre des natifs !

Vous aurez bien évidemment l’occasion de faire connaissance avec des français. Le fait de développer un réseau social est excellent pour vous faire progresser considérablement dans votre apprentissage. Vous apprendrez le vocabulaire de la vie courante ainsi que de nombreuses expressions ! Si possible, sortez et participez à un maximum d’activités (sport, musées, bars…). Ainsi, vous allez rencontrer des gens avec qui vous partagez des passions communes, ce sera donc plus facile de nouer des liens d’amitié !

Bonus : si vous êtes célibataire, qui sait, peut-être allez-vous rencontrer un(e) petit(e)-ami(e) français(e) ! Idéal pour pratiquer, non ?

Quatrième avantage : Vivez une expérience incroyable !

Lorsque vous choisissez une école de langue réputée, vous avez la garantie de passer un séjour inoubliable ! Pourquoi cela ? Plusieurs raisons :

  • Vous allez bénéficier d’une excellente qualité de cours, vous apprendrez donc plus vite.
  • L’ambiance est toujours très agréable, c’est un endroit idéal pour faire connaissance avec des apprenants du monde entier.
  • Des activités sont quasiment toujours proposées, vous aurez donc l’occasion de découvrir les plus beaux endroits à proximité de la ville. Veillez à choisir une école qui propose ce genre d’excursions !
  • Le tourisme ! La France est le pays le plus visité du monde, vous aurez l’occasion de parcourir ce beau pays !

Conseil : si je devais recommander une école en particulier, je choisirais French in Normandy à Rouen, la capitale de la Normandie. Outre le fait qu’il s’agisse d’une école de haute qualité, garantissant un apprentissage rapide, elle est très bien située géographiquement. Vous y aurez l’occasion de découvrir Paris, le Mont Saint-Michel, les falaises normandes ainsi que le centre-ville de Rouen ! De plus, la Normandie est l’une des régions les plus célèbres de France !

Mont-Saint Michel

Cinquième avantage : Une occasion de passer les examens officiels, le DELF ou le DALF !

Il vous sera beaucoup plus facile de passer un examen officiel reconnaissant mondialement votre niveau de langue. Les écoles de langues sont des endroits où il est possible de passer ce type d’épreuve. Décrocher un tel certificat apporterait un sérieux atout à votre CV !

De plus, si vous validez un niveau B2 ou C1, vous aurez même l’occasion de pouvoir faire vos études en France. Les écoles de langues étant souvent partenaires avec des établissements d’enseignement supérieur, vous n’aurez aucun mal à vous insérer dans le cursus universitaire français. Plusieurs écoles et universités sont très bien réputées internationalement.

En conclusion…

Désormais, vous n’avez plus aucune excuse pour ne pas faire un séjour linguistique en France ! Ce projet peut s’avérer couteux mais c’est vraiment un achat utile ! Vous investirez ainsi sur vous-même et le fait de parler français vous servira durant toute votre vie. Réaliser un séjour linguistique dans une bonne école, c’est avoir la garantie de progresser rapidement et de vivre une expérience enrichissante et inoubliable ! N’attendez plus, commencez dès maintenant à planifier votre séjour !

35 kg 210 g de nourriture | LES RESTOS DU CŒUR


Merci pour votre générosité !

35 kg 210 g de nourriture récoltes pour les Restos du Coeur. Merci aux étudiants de French in Normandy!

LES RESTOS DU CŒUR

Fondés par Coluche en 1985, les Restos du Cœur est une association loi de 1901, reconnue d’utilité publique, sous le nom officiel de « les Restaurants du Cœur – les Relais du Cœur ». Ils ont pour but « d’aider et d’apporter une assistance bénévole aux personnes démunies, notamment dans le domaine alimentaire par l’accès à des repas gratuits, et par la participation à leur insertion sociale et économique, ainsi qu’à toute action contre la pauvreté sous toutes ses formes ».

Presque 30 ans plus tard, ce sont 130 millions de repas équilibrés qui sont distribués par l’association (2012-2013). Les Restos du Cœur ont malheureusement largement franchi la barre d’un milliard de repas servis depuis leur création…

Aujourd’hui, les carences alimentaires les plus graves ont presque disparu, mais la pauvreté a pris un autre visage : accidents de la vie, contrats précaires et travailleurs pauvres, jeunes de moins de 25 ans ne disposant pas du RSA, retraités disposant du seul “minimum vieillesse”…

En France, plus de 8 millions de personnes vivent sous le seuil de pauvreté. Source : Rapport INSEE sur la précarité en France du 30 août 2011 (chiffres INSEE 2009)

Au-delà de l’aide alimentaire, les Restos du Cœur ont très vite étendu leurs actions à l’aide à la personne et à l’insertion. Car pour sortir durablement de l’exclusion, un repas ne suffit pas. Il faut aussi résoudre toutes les difficultés (retrouver un emploi, avoir un toit,…) pour une insertion durable.

La plus grande partie des ressources de l’association provient des dons et legs (46.1 % en 2012/201). S’y
ajoutent les produits des opérations Enfoirés (12.3 % en 2012/2013) et les subventions des collectivités publiques (en 2012/2013, 17.4% pour les organismes nationaux, 11.7 % de produits en provenance de l’Union Européenne et 9.1% de produits divers et financiers).

Les Restos du Cœur sont très soucieux d’utiliser au mieux ces fonds publics et privés : les frais généraux sont réduits (7% en 2012-2013) et les dépenses superflues éliminées. En conséquence, plus de 93 % des ressources sont consacrés aux actions de l’association.

L’activité de l’association ne s’exerce que sur le territoire français métropolitain. Il n’existe aucune association agréée en dehors de l’Hexagone, car cela nécessiterait des structures de gestion beaucoup plus lourdes et donc plus onéreuses. Et, parce que les législations et les règles fiscales sont différentes, aucune association basée ou opérant à l’étranger ne relève de l’association française.



 

A Good Test of my French | Student Blog

Back to England and an unexpected French lesson for Alan


Bonne Année mes amis,

J’espère que tu as passe de bonnes vacances ?

I did, but not until after a little French adventure! It’s Friday 22nd December and after a few lunchtime celebrations and Joyeux Noels at the school, all the little elves were rushing home for Christmas. Including me who had left French in Normandy and taken a leisurely drive to Ouistreham, near Caen, to catch my overnight ferry back to England to see family and friends and astound them with my linguistic excellence over the Christmas period. I arrived at the port early, 4.45pm, chilled and ready to have a relaxing dinner before boarding at 10pm; but then disaster struck! I noticed a red battery light on my dashboard had come one; then while I am staring at it wondering if I can make it across to England to deal with it, the rest of the dashboard lit up like a Christmas tree; as pretty but not as welcome I can tell you. Then the engine stopped.

It’s now 5pm, the last Friday before Christmas, it’s raining heavily, my emergency breakdown insurance had lapsed, and I had not renewed it, silly boy. It is now that a little extra French language practice was going to begin. I noticed a gendarmerie van with three officers in it parked nearby. I walked over and politely ‘frappe la porte’ and in my best French asked if they could help me as my car had “…ma voiture est tombée en panne…”. They asked if I had insurance cover and gave a little gallic shrug when I said no. I took this to mean you’re on your own mate; so, I trudged back to the car wondering what to do. However, I did the French police a disservice as a few minutes
later they walked over to say in a mix of French and English that they had found and called a breakdown truck. I was very grateful and even broke open some Christmas chocolates to say thank you, which being good policeman they politely declined. Anyway, less than 30 minutes passed, and the breakdown truck arrived with a lovely man called Jacques to look after me. He spoke not one word of English, so off I went again, explaining the batterie est mort. He popped the bonnet and within 30 seconds had discovered the problem, le courroie de ventilateur est cassé. A broken fan belt to you and me. I was going nowhere tonight and nowhere for the next week in my car!

Donc…now I had to organise the car to be towed to the garage in Caen, for them to keep it safe until I returned and to organise the repair. In the meantime, I had to reserve a hotel for the evening, change my boat reservation, book a hire car for me to collect from Caen railway station, arrange to collect my suitcases from my car in the morning and arrange a taxi to collect me to take me to Hertz office in the morning. All of it in French! By the time I had sat down in the hotel restaurant that evening and hit the carafe du vin rouge that was essential if I was to remain sane, I felt exhausted but also a rather smug sense of satisfaction at what I had achieved. I guarantee I would not have been able to have organised all of this in French just six weeks before. To complete the tale, off I went in my little Peugeot rental car for two weeks and I had a lovely Christmas with family and friends. I had to, of course, alter my return crossing on the telephone from England because I needed to arrive on the Saturday to collect my car and return the hire car (another successful conversation). By the time I arrived back and returned the hire car and picked my repaired vehicle up, I was speaking like a native. Well, not really, but certainly my confidence was high even if my French was pretty lousy.

At this point I’d like to tell my English friends that the rumours about French people not talking to you unless your French is perfect is utter rubbish. Every person I met could not have done more to help me. They spoke slowly, they repeated words and sentences, so I could understand, and they even chipped in with the odd phrase in English. I even had a conversation with the hotel patron about it and he said the problem is “you Eengleesh, you ask me if I parler anglais and if I say a leetle, you begin talking to me as if I am fluent…”. I think us Brits need to try harder.

Anyway, that was that. A very handy little exercise in French and a large reminder to renew one’s breakdown cover on one’s car. I dare not tell you how much it all cost me!!

So, its January 8th, first day back at school and this week we are under the watchful eye of the senior Professeur, Olivier. I was a little apprehensive this morning I must admit. The morning period was spent huddled in a circle having a little conversation about names and introductions and where we lived. Basically, a little refresher and my goodness it was needed by all of us. Lots of blank looks and painful frowns as we struggled to recall vocabulary and grammar but by break time it was gradually seeping back into our befuddled brains. By close of day today we were back on the ball and learning new stuff. Prof Olivier’s bad-boy reputation is unjustified as he turned out to be as much fun and laughter as the rest of his colleagues, and he wears a natty line in checked trousers as well!

I’ll keep you posted.

Alan


 

Even the grammaire is fun | Student blog

December recap from our friend Alan


Well as you can tell by the date my blog kind of got forgotten, I’m sorry but it has been a little busy. In the last 3 weeks we have had 3 different teachers – Christine of course, Diane and Selma. Each one of these great teachers brought a different complexion to the lessons. It provides great variety and keeps you on your toes. As for subject matter – phew – we have done everything!

We have discussed daily what each of us has been getting up to in the evenings after school or at the week-ends ……Qu’est-ce que tu fait hier soir? Week-end?…..the answers as you may imagine have been hilarious as we each try and explain the bewildering variety of activities in our less than perfect French and with a severely limited vocabulary. I mean what is the French word for chasing after runaway dogs; cooking Korean noodles in your bedsit, or getting lost in the back streets of Rouen?

Once the mornings hilarity subsides we get down to the serious business of learning, you know things like grammaire, dictée, et écrive. In actual fact, even the grammaire is fun although it still pushes ones little grey cells.

We are put into situations using all kinds of media – the internet, Youtube videos and photographs and have to use the lessons of grammar, the new vocabulary, reading, listening and writing to either describe what we are seeing or conduct a little role play. We have each described and presented about our hometowns – describing a haunted house tour in Stratford upon Avon was very funny.

We have all travelled to Paris by train and organised the return journey, even discussing first or second class; we have visited all kinds of shops and discussed minor and major ailments at the doctors – the use of a bad head from over imbibing seemed to be used and remembered a lot!

We have covered a little French and world geography which is interesting as where Canada is depends very much upon where you come from in the first place – from France it is definitely in the l’oest but if you come from Japan its definitely from l’est! The aural difference between the two is miniscule. (On the subject of miniscule, did you know majuscule was french for a capital letter?) I now have a working knowledge of Carcassonne which a very historic town in the south east of France. So much of this geography is useful and role playing being in a tourist office is extremely useful. Regrettably we have not actually visited these places but we have done other things.

One evening we made la carte noel – complete with glitter and glue. We all, yes including me, got roped in to some kind of cabaret dance routine whilst working in the technology room – I still don’t know what that was all about? We learnt each others ‘surnom’ which to my English speaking friends is not the family name when in France but is in fact your nickname. Meg, Essissimo, Arri’ Professeur D’amour and Shep have all been used extensively since.

We said a fond and a sad farewell to Dayze and Arrianne from Sao Paolo, Megumi from Tokyo, Elly from Bonn and Patrick from Gieswil. We shall miss them next week, its strange how quickly you become friends in the face of collective adversity!

Finally to close this week we had a dégustation d’huîtres – oyster tasting – hosted by the ever effervescent Vanessa , Cri-cri (nickname of Christine) and supervised by mini-Christine her beautiful little girl. A great couple of weeks and oddly I do seem to be improving. I have been to the post office, the boulangerie, the supermarche and a restaurant and held successful conversations in each without having to revert to ‘Je suis desolé, je suis Anglais’ at all.

More to follow, keep reading. A bientot mes amis!

Alan


First week back at school – Part Deux | Student Blog

We’re back with Alan, from Stratford upon Avon, Home of William Shakespeare. Alan is a young 57 year old student who has come to Rouen to learn French before a) embarking on a 1000 mile horse trek on the Route D’Artagnan through France and into Italy and b) with a view to living in France permanently. Read on to learn more about his first week as a student at FIN…


Salut, everyone! It’s now one week since I started at French in Normandy. I confess to being really tired at the end of each days lessons which seem to fly by. For the first time ever I have been able to understand NUMBERS in French! I always used to know how to count to about fifty, after that I could never work it out but I now know, understand and can calculate the numbers. That said, when you finally manage to understand how they build the numbers up in the language it seems very bizarre as an Englishman. Basically, they say for example; for seventy-seven – sixty plus seventeen! Which is soixante-dix-sept. Eighty is four times twenty – Quatre-vingt and ninety is four time twenty plus ten, in otherwords Quatre-vingt dix! I’ll let you work out what sixty nine is! Now I bet that has confused you all but our excellent Professeur, the slightly mad Viktor, makes it seem so normal and easy. Literally within one lesson I could understand and work out the numbers and even understand them when they were being said to me. Brilliant.

This week has also explained simple stuff like asking for someone’s email address and business card. Where they live? What they do for a living? Do they have a mobile number? Basically all the things you need when you want to start to exist and talk to someone in France.

What I think is very cool about the way we are taught is that it all comes mixed up within building the conversation. You learn to listen, to pronounce; then get to read it and then write it. By the time you have done that the phrases and words you have learned stay stuck in your brain without you realising it.

The best bit is that although Viktor has a structure to the lesson, if the students (étudiant(e)s en français) start to converse in French on a different subject he lets the subject run, interjecting and adding to our knowledge, using the internet in conjunction; to help us grow our vocabulaire and our comprehension. Just so unlike the school lessons I used to have!

I also went on a trip this week, with some of the students and a teacher, the lovely Christine, to Honfleur. It’s a beautiful port just thirty five minutes drive from Rouen. I had been there before years ago but going with fellow students and a French Professeur made it all seem slightly less like a tourist town. I’m sure I spotted some fellow Brits so I ducked my head and avoided eye contact and spoke French loudly so they didn’t recognise me as a brit as well. Nothing could be worse!

The weekend for me has been spent exploring a few French villages and enjoying very tasty French food and ‘les vins‘ – in the words of the advertisement – “le pain, du vins et le Boursin” except it was infinitely better local “fromages des pays“. All in all a very happy and satisfactory first week ‘en france‘. I’ll keep you posted next week.

Alan


French in Normandy Review: Mia & Sinead talk about studying French in Rouen

French in Normandy Review

Mia & Sinead are from Dublin, Ireland and are studying the French language at French in Normandy in Rouen before starting classes at a French lycée. In this video they talk about how studying at French in Normandy is helping them achieve their goals, which activities they like and what it’s like living with a French host family. Check out this French in Normandy review video.


3 reasons why you should do it | My Internship at French in Normandy


“Opportunity never knocks twice”

By Christina Mitzali


One of the greatest experiences of my life has come to an end. Many memories flood my mind while I was packing my stuff to travel back in Greece and so here I am writing this article, even if I don’t usually write, for an experience worth sharing. Once I read on a wall : ”Opportunity never knocks twice”. Well there are many reasons I am glad I didn’t let this opportunity go and to sum up here are the three reasons one shouldn’t loose such opportunity.

The vastness, the beauty of Normandy

Normandy is a very impressive region. In my opinion there is none who wouldn’t feel impressed by its huge green fields, the sea and the history that is written on this land. And of course I have to admit that I never saw so many cows before in my life, well that’s how all this variety of cheese is explained. If you are a cheese lover you should definitely spend some months in Normandy, trust me you won’t regret it! Another thing that you should see at least once in your life is the traditional houses of the region , with their beautiful gardens and their exceptional architecture that makes you feel like you are participating in an ”Astérix et Obélix” movie. You wil find many of this houses in your way to
Etretat, I am sure you wouldn’t miss such an incredible landscape. It has been a while since I visited the ”Falaise d’Etretat” but this image always remains in my mind, proving the majesty of mother nature. But that is not the only proof. There is no doubt that mother nature has been generous to Normandy, that was my thought when I saw Mont Saint-Michel a tidal island included in the UNESCO list of World Heritage Sites, because of its history and its natural beauty combined with the exceptional architecture people created to reach the peak of the beauty of the island. One more thing I wouldn’t forget to include in this section is ”Les plages du débarquement” the beaches of Normandy where the D-Day Landing happened on 6th June 1944. And the best thing is that all these destinations are easy approachable from Rouen! Thank you French in Normandy for your perfect location.

In French in Normandy you feel well

“En Normandie il fait froid mais les gens sont chaleureux” this is what locals say and to sum up it means “a cold region but with warm people” . Well you can’t be sure about this until you meet the people in French in Normandy. Each of them will stay in my heart and I hope while reading this they will know how much I have appreciated their hospitality and their kindness. The things they taught me and the motivation they gave me to discover my strengths and develop my skills. The best thing about the team of French in Normandy is that everyone’s opinion matters, even if you are an intern, an administrative employee,an accountant, a teacher or a manager. Sharing is caring so don’t be afraid to share your ideas with the team! What you will love also there is the intercultural environment. In my case I am glad that i met people from all around the world and together we practiced our French while we were learning for each others culture. Last but not least, French in Normandy is Erasmus+ friendly. I have to admit that making an internship in lovely France with lovely people and having in the same time the help of Erasmus+ is like a dream. This internship will be well recognized in my diploma and will give me a strong advantage in the job market.

Because in France… La vie est belle!

Who hasn’t imagine a to spend a day in the city of lights? Who hasn’t wish to speak the language of love?

Who doesn’t dream to taste the real French cuisine?

These and even more I had the chance to experience during my internship and certainly are some of the best experiences of my life. After these experiences I have no choice but to agree with Audrey Hepburn who supported that Paris is always a good idea. Well the Eiffel Tower, the Louvre, the Avenue des Champs-Élysées are always a good idea. But there are more things to do in Paris. For Disney lovers let’s not forget that the one and only Disneyland in Europe is located in Paris. On the other hand if you are not so interested in Disney but you still love attraction parks you, you shouldn’t skip visiting “Parc Astérix”. This article wouldn’t be complete without festivals. Voilà, France loves festivals and I have to say thank you France for giving me the opportunity to enjoy your festivals. And of course, thank you France for giving to world the French cuisine, however I will not say anything about the cuisine and I will just invite you in France to take a real taste…


Contact us if you’re interested in taking an internship in France.