You are learning because you want to learn | Student Blog

Let’s see how Alan is getting on at French in Normandy with this latest update…


Well its getting a little tougher now! We have begun to look at ‘au present simple’ and ‘passe compose’ – in other words present and past tense! When they start discussing ‘conjugasion’ and reflexive verbs, I struggle. I never learnt this in English let alone in French! However, I’m not feeling too bad about it as although it is taking some concentration it is beginning to register slowly in my very small and very old brain!

The other interesting change is the way that within only two weeks this small international fraternity of students begin to mould into small friendships. Mind you, every now and then someone new appears – a new starter, and someone disappears – either finished and off home, or worse for one’s self-esteem they have been moved to a different group, presumably because they are too good for us beginners. At first, you feel a little piqued and then as Eleri, our seat of all wisdom, remarked “Well, how long did it take you to learn your first language?”. You then realise it’s not a competition here. You are learning because you want to learn, and you learn at whatever pace is right for you. It relaxes you when you accept this.

Every morning there is a little congregation outside the entrance to the school that greet each other warmly with little smiles of embarrassment in their new-found French. Each day there are new phrases added to the vocabulary that we all try out on each other, and if you happen to say something not quite correct to someone who is a couple of groups ahead of you, they gently smile and educate you in the correct way – regardless of age by the way, the other day a 17-year-old Japanese girl corrected my pronunciation, thank you Mina! Its all done with the best intentions and a far cry from the bullying aggressive attitude of my inner-city school gate; oh so, so, so long ago!

Beautiful Normandy Countryside

It’s quite sweet and makes you feel part of one big, probably slightly, dysfunctional family.

As for life ‘en France’, is it becoming easier and more familiar? Peut-être (perhaps). I visited Fontainebleau, south-west of Paris last week-end. It’s worth a visit for the palace alone. Anyway, I was quite confident as I checked in to my hotel, announcing in a strong voice in French that they should have a reservation for me? Trouble is, one should also remember that the quicker and more confident one sounds the quicker and more complex they respond. C’est une problem. This left me feeling a little awkward and embarrassed as I had to ask them to repeat their question ‘lentements, s’il vous plait!’. They then glance slightly despairingly at the heavens and respond with near perfect English, which of course does not help me improve my French one little bit. I have to say, in a mild defence of the majority of my countrymen, it is quite difficult to learn a foreign language when you are British because a) which one do you choose? And b) everyone by now speaks near perfect English and cannot be bothered to help educate us. I don’t blame them, but it does sometimes get a little frustrating, but then the whole of the French nation is not here to teach me French. Damn my arrogance!

So another week over. I’ll keep you posted on progress.

Alan


 

french summer camp

French for Juniors in Andorra | HES Idiomas & French in Normandy

An exciting new “French for Juniors” course in Andorra


french for juniorsFrom July 2018 HES IdiomasRialp Camp, Andorra,  will be offering French language courses as well as Spanish and English for Juniors.

« This is an exciting new departure for us » said HES Idiomas CEO, Ferran Casas. « We had been thinking about teaching French, because it is such an important language and one that is so essential on the international stage. With the arrival of Macron and the increased popularity of the French language, we thought that 2018 was a great year to launch this project

Prior to this new addition, HES IdiomasRialp Camp had offered language courses in English and Spanish for Juniors aged 6-17 in Andorra, France’s neighbour. French is used widely day to day in Andorra, where education in French and French Culture are heldin high esteem.  « Working in Andorra, it seemed only natural to add French as an option, but we wanted to offer the best possible French language courses and so looked around for an expert who would be interested in joining us. I am pleased to announce that French in Normandy, our first choice as a partner for this project, is now on board » continued Casas.

 Ferran Casas and Eleri Maitland met in Malaga thanks to the ALPHE conference there and have put together this exciting new offer « French in Andorra ». 

Eleri took up the story : « Our junior programme was very small and in homestay. We could not find suitable residential accommodation in line with current safeguarding legislation in Normandy, so the whole programme was in question when suddenly, Ferran came up with this idea and it is just great » she said with a smile . « What we love is the first rate 4-star quality residential accommodation in a secure location, which corresponds to what our clients are looking for in a programme for their Junior learners and the breadth of the activity programme which is guaranteed to delight any youngster, even the most recalcitrant teenager.»

Rialp Camp Andorra offers language courses in the morning, and then a choice of 15 activities such as pony trekking, football, basketball , rafting, karting etc. plus a full and diverse evening social programme to cater for all tastes. Students can either choose one activity for a whole week or opt for a programme with a different activity daily. The level of qualified supervision, accommodation and catering has made Rialp one of the most popular Junior Campuses on offer.

HES Idiomas Rialp Camp Andorra is open from July 2 to July 27, 2018 and full details about the language courses or language and activity programme can be obtained from either Ferran Casas : [email protected] /www.hescamps.com or Eleri Maitland: [email protected]frenchinnormandy.com

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


1ST WEEK BACK AT SCHOOL | Student Blog

This week we invite Alan, a mature student from England, to tell us a bit about his first week at French in Normandy as part of a series on our student blog.


I wouldn’t have said I was your archetypal student, but then according to Eleri Maitland the Director and owner of French in Normandy there is no such thing as an archetypal student. I am not surprised to hear her say this, as Eleri is not your archetypal French School Teacher! For a start off, the owner of the best French language school in France is not French! She is very proudly, une Femme Galloise vivant en France. (‘a Welsh woman living in France’ for those uninitiated amongst you. Look at me speaking French already!) Eleri started the school some 25 years ago and with her excellent team have landed the top prizes in their industry. I am lucky enough to be enrolled for 15 hours of French language tuition a week in their cool and slightly chic school in the Sotteville region of Rouen. Home of such notables as Jeanne D ‘Arc and Guillaume Le Conquerant. As an Englishman in Rouen (Is that the name of a Sting track?) I should feel at home, after all we were ruled and spoke Norman French in England for 200 years. Richard the Lionheart (Coeur de Lion, as in the Camembert Cheese brand) was also the Duke of Normandy, and its true I do feel very much at home.

Right from the beginning when I had my assessment test with the friendly Vanessa I was made to feel at home. I was a little nervous I must admit, after all I am a 57-year-old returning to school to study French, the last time I was in a classroom was 42 years ago!

First of all, Vanessa sat me down with a cup of coffee and asked me to tell her a little about myself, in French of course – both the question and my answer! Now here is the thing; the key point; the point of no return, the tingling moment that you have to ‘man-up’ to when you enrol in a French language school in France – you have to get over your nerves, forget about maybe sounding a bit silly and actually talk. Even if you only know the word for Hello (Bonjour) that is enough. You just have to get over that one little hurdle.

Fortunately for me I knew and somehow remembered a few words and promptly murdered the French language with what was probably the worst grammar and worst accent poor Vanessa and the rest of France has had to endure since God was a boy! She was polite, smiles a lot and gently helped me stagger through a few sentences about where I was from, what I did for a living and such like. Then when she could bear the terrible French anymore (not that she gave anything away) I was led to the ‘ Technologie‘ room, that is to say a room full of laptops and screens, where I was asked to answer as best I could about 30 multiple choice French questions. Some of them I couldn’t even say out loud to myself, some I kind of recognised a few words and pretty well all of them I didn’t understand a single word and, so I guessed. Amazingly I scored 42%. I was obviously a language natural, a linguistic god in the making.

Not quite, it turned out after my week end break on the first proper day of school I was in class B1. I think that means Beginner 1. C’est la Vie, what did I expect? Well I did not expect Victor! He is Le Professuer. Now in England Professor conjures up images of a bald bespectacled slightly serious old man in a cap and gown, not some wacky, football loving, video game playing family man with a rather cute line in Gold lame pencil cases. From the off, we were in good hands as he digressed almost immediately from the prescribed curriculum into some hilarious expedition into the habits, loves and life of a fellow student all the way from Sainata in Japan, whose passion in life turned out to be world-wide wrestling, or as the French say La Lutte. The Japanese sounding, part English part French explanation to our puzzled French Professeur had him and us in stitches. I do not remember my French lessons at school being this much fun.

The rest of the morning flew by and at one o’clock Victor called time for lunch, that is one habit the French do extremely well and should never ever be allowed to alter. President Macron do you hear me? The French lunch-break should be sacrosanct in law.

What made this first day so weird was not so much Victor’s très bizarre humour and methods but the fact that by the end of that first morning, somehow, he had achieved the impossible feat of squeezing more knowledge of the French language into my old and small brain that in four years at my old comprehensive school. The fact that not once, in a class room full of international students ranging from ages 18 to 58 did I feel unwelcome, out of place, stupid or embarrassed. It bodes well for the rest of the week. I’ll let you know.

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.


DELF DALF Exam Preparation at French in Normandy

FRENCH IN NORMANDY

3D Dedicated DELF DALF Exam Preparation Course


COURSE DESCRIPTION: This is our VERY special and unique in France exam preparation course of 25 hours per week including:

15 hours of general group lessons + 10 hours per week exam preparation workshops + free access to our daily language Clubs.

The morning classes (09:30 – 11:00 & 11:30 – 13:00) are devoted to improving general levels of vocabulary and structures, and working on basic oral skills and listening comprehension.

The afternoon sessions (14:00 – 16:00) are dedicated to mastering the complex exam techniques required by the French. Students will receive a personalised programme that concentrates on the areas where they feel they are weakest, typically the written expression exam and the oral exam. All 4 skills are covered, and each student has a mock oral test weekly with individual feedback.

Each student has a personalised progress and task chart where they can see what it is they have to do for every skill every week.

MATERIALS

We give students a DELF or a DALF preparation book on top of the ordinary French in Normandy grammar and exercise book that all students receive. The grammar part is important as many students have some basic problems with certain rules or lexicon, and they can be helped to eliminate these by using this part of their material.

In today’s world, most of our students arrive with a lap-top, smart phone or tablet, so we encourage students to put them to good use during their stay with us and to use these as an integral part of their personalised programme. By connecting to French in Normandy’s google drive, they can receive individually prepared worksheets, comments and engage with their teacher.

However, these tools are not obligatory, and students who come without such equipment are in no way penalized. Students can ask for a personalized programme on a USB stick or for paper versions of worksheets or whatever support suits them best.

EXAM LOCATION: Students take the exam in Rouen town centre with us at a training centre “Education and Formation” and results arrive around 5/6 weeks later.

REGISTRATION: French in Normandy publishes a calendar with all the exam and registration deadline dates for the year. The school can either do the registration for you (extra cost 60€), for example if the deadline is before your arrival or we can guide you how on do it on arrival.

You will need a copy of your passport or ID, 2 photos, a stamped addressed envelope (French stamps to the value of your home address) and black pens!

COURSE COSTS: (Examination fees/booking not included)

For 1-8 weeks: 330 € per week

For 9+ weeks: 319 € per week

Registration: 60 euros and Material fee: 110 euros

Special promotion: book 10 weeks or more and we will give you the exam free.

Courses run all year round starting any Monday, and the exam calendar is in the French in Normandy DELF DALF brochure enclosed.

CLASS SIZE: A maximum of twelve students.

ORAL TEST PREPARATION: Each student has a mock oral test every week with personalized feedback

LEVELS: Most of our DELF DALF students take B2 (15%) and C1 (12%) but we always have C2 (3%) and our results are excellent with a 97% overall pass rate in 2017.

Learn more or contact us to register.


DELF & DALF Enquiry


 

Témoignage de Yui TAKEUCHI | French in Normandy Review

Témoignage et conseils de Yui TAKEUCHI, qui vient d’obtenir brillamment son DALF C1 après seulement 9 mois d’apprentissage du français à French in Normandy !

FIN : Depuis combien de temps est-ce que vous étudiez le français et pour quelle raison  ?

J’ai étudié le français pendant 9 mois au total. C’était important pour moi, parce que la langue française est utilisée dans les organisations internationales où j’aimerais travailler dans le futur. J’ai trouvé ça passionnant. De plus, je voulais l’apprendre pour être plus compétente et faire la différence dans notre monde actuel où la plupart des gens savent déjà parler l’anglais en plus de leur langue maternelle.

FIN : Vous avez commencé dans notre école… à partir de zéro ! Qu’est-ce qui aura été le plus difficile dans votre apprentissage du français ?

Évidemment, étant japonaise, la prononciation a été une difficulté, et ma connaissances de l’anglais me gêne encore lorsque je veux prononcer les mots qui sont similaires au français. Mais, au début de mon apprentissage, le problème a été plutôt le manque de vocabulaire.

FIN :  Au terme de ces neuf mois, quelle sera le meilleur souvenir que vous remporterez avec vous de votre séjour à French in Normandy ?

J’étais ravie quand je pouvais communiquer sans problème avec les Français, et les amis du monde entier que je me suis faite à l’ecole sont aussi un de mes meilleurs souvenirs.

FIN : Si vous deviez donner un conseil à quelqu’un qui débute le français et qui vient apprendre ici à Rouen, qu’il soit japonais ou pas, qu’est-ce que vous lui diriez  ?

J’aimerais lui dire qu’il faut être extrêmement attentif et sensible aux mots et expressions qu’il ne connait pas dans les phrases qu’il découvre. Il est aussi important d’essayer d’exploiter dans ses productions tout ce qu’on apprend au jour, en classe et hors la classe pour, pour enrichir ses variations lexicales. Ensuite, il est important d’établir sa propre méthode de travail et de ne pas rester passif à attendre que les profs vous disent quelque chose. Pour ma part, j’ai systématiquement noté toutes les expressions que je ne connaissais pas et que les profs utilisaient, même les mots les expressions familières, pour pouvoir profiter au maximum de chaque instant de la classe. Parce que, finalement, ce ne sont ni les profs, ni les familles d’accueil, ni même les amis qui vous font apprendre le français, c’est toujours par soi-même qu’on progresse, en déterminant ses propres objectifs d’apprentissage étape par étape.

Enseigner les langues différemment ?

Cet été, French in Normandy a animé, en partenariat avec l’Université Laval au Québec, la première formation de formateurs en France en Approche Neurolinguistique. 

Cette méthodologie d’enseignement des langues étrangères, basée sur les avancées de ces vingt dernières années en neurosciences cognitives, se fonde sur la distinction des processus qui sont spécifiques à l’acquisition d’habiletés linguistiques, d’une part, et à l’apprentissage des savoirs langagiers, de l’autre.

Le stage certifiant qui vient d’avoir lieu a ainsi livré aux enseignants en formation l’ensemble des connaissances théoriques fondamentales nécessaires à l’expérimentation pratique, au sein de classes réelles, de la série des stratégies constitutives de l’ANL. Par la visée constante du développement del’aisance et de la précision lors de la formation à l’oral, à la lecture et à l’écriture, il s’agit d’optimiser le temps des classes en les inscrivant dans une perspective pédagogique de la littératie qui soit spécifique à l’apprentissage des langues étrangères.

Cette méthodologie, dont les résultats ont été évalués en Amérique du Nord et en Asie, vient de s’adjoindre l’enthousiasme d’enseignants de France, d’Allemagne, d’Italie, de Suisse et du Monténégro ayant suivi la première session de notre stage (écoutez leurs témoignages en ligne). Les prochaines sessions de formation auront lieu du 6 au 10 novembre 2017 à Rouen (France) et du 16 au 20 décembre 2017 à Québec (Canada).

Rejoignez-nous !

Olivier Massé / Steve Mercier, formateurs ANL

How to choose the best French language school in France

So you’ve decided to study French in France. By now you’ve probably researched the destination, school size, course content and which cultural activities are offered by various French language schools in France. If you’re really serious about your language studies abroad, then considering these 5 factors will really help you to choose the best French language school and ensure you have a valuable study abroad experience.

1. School accreditation

We listed this as first because we believe that your language study abroad experience will highly be determined by the quality of the school you choose to attend and its accreditation. By accreditation, we mean the quality guarantee that covers the teacher’s qualifications, curriculum, the school’s facilities, the school’s business practice & policies and as well as accommodation and other student services. You will find that there are many national and international accreditations and quality assurance schemes in different countries.  Accreditation organizations generally have the same goal – to ensure that their members have high quality standards for their programs and services. That’s why they audit their member schools regularly. For example, French in Normandy is accredited by Qualité FLE, a government recognized certification that is awarded in accordance with a framework based on the following five aspects:

  • Teaching and training courses
  • Teachers
  • Hosting and support
  • Premises, safety and equipment
  • Management

French in Normandy has earned full awards in all 5 categories, making it a highly qualified French language school. The International Association of Language Centres is a global network of accredited independent language schools of which French in Normandy is a longstanding member.

2. Student Reviews

Nowadays you can easily find reviews online for just about anything, from best restaurants to hair salons, hotels and even language schools! There are various websites that provide French language school reviews by former students and French in Normandy is proud to have hundreds of top reviews as well as have been voted Best French Language School in France by our students on the Education Stars website. You can also always check out Facebook reviews for more opinions too!

3. Curriculum and levels of instruction

As you know, some schools teach only from textbooks while others don’t use textbooks at all. Accredited language schools such as French in Normandy have a well-balanced curriculum in line with internationally recognized standards and which covers all aspects of learning a language: listening, speaking, reading, writing, grammar and pronunciation. When choosing a French language school, be sure that you will be tested at the start of your course, throughout your programme and again at the end of your stay so that you can measure your language learning progress from start to finish.

4. Class size

Both the size of the school and class is important, but the size of the class is probably the more important factor when choosing a language school abroad. The most common class size is 15 students but at French in Normandy, the maximum class size is 12, ensuring you have optimal attention and personal instruction from your teacher. The ideal class size is 10 – 12 students, perfect for active participation and comfort, especially if you’re a beginner.

5. Awards

What many people don’t know is that there are numerous industry awards which are given annually to the top schools worldwide in the language learning industry. For example, French in Normandy is the proud 5-time winner of the Star French Language School award, given by Study Travel Magazine and voted by partners and colleagues from around the world. French in Normandy is also the winner of the UED Award in the Best FrenchLanguage School category from UED in Turkey, The Association of International Education Counselors. These awards recognized our accomplishments in French language instruction but also reflect our outstanding relationships with agent partners around the world who are happy to recommend French in Normandy to their clients as the best French language school in France.

 


If you are thinking about studying French in France, get a free quote on your language course at French in Normandy!


 

Journée exceptionnelle dédiée à l’enseignement & apprentissage du Français Langue Étrangère

French in Normandy vous invite à une journée exceptionnelle dédiée à l’enseignement & apprentissage du Français Langue Étrangère.
 
le mercredi 5 octobre 2016
10h00 à 17h00 : Rencontre sur stand avec les maisons d’édition de FLE 
Toutes les heures : Présentations des collections par les délégués pédagogiques 
17h00 : Remise des Prix des Camemberts du FLE, récompensant pour les meilleures publications de FLE de l’année 
18h00 : Table ronde « SOS FLE », animée par Sébastien Langevin, rédacteur en chef de la revue Le Français Dans Le Monde, et qui réunira Jacques Pêcheur (auteur de nombreuses méthodes de FLE, ancien directeur du département de langue française de l’Institut Français), Christine Renard (Maître de langues, de l’Institut des langues vivantes de Louvain-la-Neuve), Amandine Denimal (maître de conférences en sciences du langage à l’université de Rouen) et Olivier Massé (Coordinateur pédagogique de French in Normandy, formateur de formateur et auteur de manuels).
 
Rendez-vous à la
Librairie L’Armitière
66 Rue Jeanne d’Arc, 76000 Rouen
Téléphone : 02 35 70 57 42
 
Votez pour les publications FLE : https://www.frenchinnormandy.com/les-camemberts-du-fle-livre-de-fle/
Votre vote compte ! Plus qu’une semaine….
camemeberts-du-fle-2016-journe_-e-editeurs-a-larmitiere