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MFL Trip to Northern France for Senior Manor House School pupils

Posted: 11th March 2024

Girls in Year 9 and 11 from Manor House School in Bookham, studying French enjoyed a long weekend in Northern France in January.

Despite the early start for everyone involved they were treated to beautifully clear and crisp weather and a smooth ferry crossing to Calais.

Having arrived in France they headed straight to the seaside town of Boulogne-sur-Mer where they visited the old town and walked around its medieval walls, enjoying the beautiful interior of the cathedral and the picturesque old streets. They all had some time to wander the high street and do some shopping, all in French of course!

The girls got to test their vocabulary when they checked-in at their hotel and they enjoyed a first meal together in their French bubble. Split into teams, they later amused themselves with a French “treasure hunt”.

On Saturday morning, they enjoyed a traditional French breakfast of bread, jam and croissants followed by a visit to a local artisan bakery. The girls had a fascinating demonstration in French from the baker and rolled dough to make their own loaves.

They headed for the seaside town of Hardelot and had a tasty picnic on the seafront followed by games on the beach with our “animatrice” Justine. The weather was beautiful and clear and we all enjoyed the fresh air.

An obvious highlight was a visit to a chocolate shop “Chocolats de Beussent”, where they were treated to a fascinating tour of the chocolate making process, followed by a tasting session and opportunity to visit the shop.

Snails were on the menu too with a few brave girls who stepped up to try them.

On departure day they headed for the countryside between Calais and Dunkirk to a place called “La Coupole”, a massive underground bunker built by the Germans during World War 2 to launch their V2 rockets. The old bunker housed fascinating exhibitions about Germany’s secret war weapons and life in occupied France. The site also hosts a planetarium and we all enjoyed a fantastic “3D” screening of our solar system.

Everyone enjoyed the trip and Mrs Miller, Miss Boxall and Mr Jones were very impressed at the girls’ willingness to speak French in different situations. Everyone involved benefitted from the visit and the opportunity to hear natively-spoken French in context, as well as practising their own language skills. A glimpse of French culture added to what the girls took away with them.

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