How can a school get students more interested in learning French? Send the kids to Quebec! At least, that’s the hope of the staff at George Greenaway Elementary.
In May, 19 students and three staff members (including teacher Kristen MacDonald and educational assistant Marcia McNaughton) will be travelling to La Belle Province in hopes that the Grade 6 and 7 students can come back with a greater appreciation of the French language and culture.
At least that’s the goal of third staff traveller, the school’s vice-principal, Bobby Samra.
“So many students see French as just another class,” Samra said.
“It is our hope that the students can go to Quebec and recognize the huge benefits of being a bilingual country with such a diverse history. We’d love to have them come back and be excited about studying the language even more.”
The students have been preparing for the trip for about a year. In that time, they have been fundraising and presenting and attending seminars on Quebec, its history, and the French language. “If the students go into the trip with pre-knowledge, they will have a better appreciation for what they see when they get there,” Samra said.
The George Greenaway contingent will be staying in hotels in Montreal and Quebec City (with a couple of groups from Manitoba) for one week.
The organizing company, EF Education First, has helped with the logistics of the whole trip. If all goes to plan, Samra hopes this trip will become a tradition at the school.
“I would love to see our school send kids every two years. That would generate a lot of excitement about French.” And hopefully, he said, students will see French as more than just another class.