On Thursday morning two boys from the college came in to talk to the CM2 class about the transition from primary school to college. This was very interesting as in Scotland, children move from primary school to high school. We don’t have middle school in between. This was also a great chance for me to assess my level of French listening. They children were obviously talking in French; however, I was able to understand a lot of what was being said. That just shows how being submerged in the French culture and language helps develop language skills. I have found during my six weeks of placement that I have definitely improved my French speaking and listening as these were the two areas I was not confident in before coming to France. I still don’t think I could have a conversation with a French person, however, I believe I have a greater understanding of the language and could form sentences more easily and understand when others speak.
The children in CM2 were very excited to be having a talk about the college as it is only a few short months until they will be leaving primary school. This is a big change in their lives and CM2 has been preparing them from the transition. When children are in CM2 they begin going to different teachers for a couple of lessons a week. This is to ensure when they go to college they have had experiences of moving classes and teachers. This is something I believe if very beneficial. I believe this is something that would be good to do in Scotland. Children in primary seven should be given the opportunity to experience what high school is going to be like so the move isn’t such a shock to the system.
I was very excited to have the opportunity to talk about Scotland once again. After break the CM1 class swapped with CM2 for an English lesson. The teacher thought this was the perfect chance to do my Scotland presentation once again as it had been such a success with the CM2 classes. I really enjoyed talking about Scotland again and the CM1 class were just as enthusiastic as the CM2 classes. I have found that each time I have done this lesson they are most interested about school uniform as this is something they do not have in France. Showing the children pictures of me in my school uniform was very interesting for them. One child asked me during the lesson if haggis was halal. I was very conscious that nothing relating to religion should be spoken about within French classrooms, therefore the teacher told the child that he could not ask that question. I am glad the teacher was there to step in as I wouldn’t have known whether it was ok to answer that question or not.
In the afternoon, I went through to the other CM2 class to do lesson two of going shopping. I did this lesson on Tuesday with my CM2 class, therefore, I was confident going into this lesson. The children in the other CM2 class are always a lot more restless and find it difficult to sit and listen. Therefore, during this lesson I had to stop and start whilst constantly asking the children to look and listen when they were getting restless. Despite this the lesson was still a success as the children were able to recall all of the vocabulary learned in the previous lesson. I was very impressed that they were so enthusiastic about containing with this topic. I played more games with the flashcards as a warm up for the lesson before giving them pictures of shops to cut and stick in their English jotters.
This was one of the hottest days since coming to France, therefore, the heat caused a bit of an issue for both staff and pupils. There is no air conditioning in the school and the classroom faces the sun meaning that the heat was penetrating through the windows. It was twenty-six degrees, this is hotter than any day I have had in Scotland. I found it difficult teaching my afternoon lesson as the classroom was so hot. This is not something I am used to living in Scotland. It made me wonder how the teachers and students cope in this weather. I found it very tiring and had to seek shade when possible.