‘Un très beau voyage sur la Côte d’Opale‘ by Upper II

Posted: 31st March 2017

A Feast of French

Mrs Assemat, Modern Languages Junior Co-ordinator, reports on the recent visit of Upper II to France:

‘On Wednesday 8th March 2017 we set off for ‘un beau voyage’ to la cote d’Opale France, North of France, with Upper II. We visited charming little places and drove through picturesque scenery in the French countryside. Of course, when you are in France not only do you speak French but you also ‘eat French’!  Our journey, beyond its French linguistic purpose, also led us to the discovery of some delicate and refined flavours in a biscuit factory, a chocolate factory and a bakery.

   

During this experience in France, learning and speaking French became obviously more necessary than ever and what a joy to learn it while strolling and shopping in the little market of Le Touquet.

Our girls have been extremely curious, eager to learn new French words and discover French culture. Furthermore, Upper II were perfectly behaved and therefore represented their school in a way we can all be proud.

It seems that Upper II really enjoyed their ‘French’ experience and had a great deal of fun.  I have collected and collated their comments about La Côte d’Opale. Let us hear about what they have to say:

 

Day 1!  Wednesday 8th March

The alarm clock beeped in my ear, silly thing, why did it wake me so early, wait… It was the day of the French trip!  I raced out of bed and quickly got ready for the journey ahead, the excitement rushed through me like water as I quickly checked that I had everything.  I ran towards the car, hauling my suitcase behind me and hopped in.  I finally got in the coach after lots of kisses and waves and “Be Safe!” from my mother, I waved to her as the coach leapt forward. The adventure had begun…

‘We all arrived on a Wednesday morning still half asleep but we were all really excited for the FRENCH TRIP!!!’

‘That Wednesday the class were as excited as a puppy. We were going to France! We were going to France on a coach.‘

Finally our coach drove onto the shuttle….

“I’ve never been on the Euro Tunnel before.” I said excitedly to my best friend, Francesca.

“Really?” my friend asked tiredly. “I sure have”, she yawned.

“Aren’t you exited?”

“’Course I am!”

When we reached the other end, which was France, we were all very hungry. After lunch we drove all the way to the bakery.

Our first activity was at the ‘Le Fournil’ bakery, where we watched a lady explaining how to make traditional bread in French. She explained that on Thursdays they would have a rest (by law, staff in a French bakery must take one day off a week).  We were also shown how to make croissants and tried to make some afterwards. We were taught by a very funny man – ’the famous man and the stick’!  He would ask some of us to come up and practise our French and then we would learn how to say butter which is ‘du beurre’ and yeast is ‘de la levure’ and sugar is ‘ du sucre’ and water is ‘de l’eau’ and milk is ‘du lait’ and eggs are ‘des oeufs’. Then he would ask some people to repeat the ingredients, he would say the French word and we would say the English word or the opposite. French, in action!

Afterwards, we went to a biscuit factory, in Hardelot-Plage that was right next to the fresh blue ocean and lovely sandy beaches. ‘While I was there I bought some delicate creamy meringues and some chocolate coated biscuits for my mother in England.’ ‘The smell in the biscuit factory was just incredible!’

At the biscuit factory, we observed the making of biscuits and we could try some delicious free samples. We also received free chocolate marshmallows! Miam, miam! After that we drove to our hotel which was called Hotel Kyriad.  It looked small on the outside but on the inside it was spacious and comfortable and the rooms were nice. We went to bed after a long and exciting day.

Day 2:  Thursday 9th March 2017

The next morning after a healthy breakfast – Chocapics et chocolat chaud – we went to the small market of Le Touquet for a couple of hours where we had to look for certain types of food and ask  for their prices, and bought a few souvenirs for ourselves!  For lunch, we went to a crêperie; we each had to choose 2 crêpes 1 sweet and 1 savoury. I had a cheese crêpe and a Nutella crêpe. They were really delicious.

‘I really liked the mood of the restaurant because it wasn’t like usual modern places’.

Then, we went to a chocolate factory and saw all the ways to make chocolate, they even had a 200-year-old chocolate machine.

‘It was amazing, we learnt that chocolate is made from cocoa beans and some are from Ecuador. It was lovely. We had a taste! It felt like melted heaven on your tongue and when you swallowed it felt like heaven racing down your tummy and spreading out. It was magical!’

Needless to say, we tried some delicious chocolate pieces.  ‘I have no words for how good it tasted’!  (However, Mr Alejandro gave us some cacao beans to try and they were disgusting!)

After that chocolate-tasting adventure we went to a supermarket and had to hunt for specific types of food.

‘My favourite part of the day was the supermarket where we had a lot of fun’

‘At the supermarket, we also bought sweets that we could have at the party’

‘At the supermarket. I bought a gigantic teddy, for only ten Euros!  I also bought some sweets – they were delicious!’

For dinner we had spaghetti Bolognese – my favourite!  For pudding we had ice-cream – delicious! (I’m saying delicious a lot, because it was!) Then we had a party where we ate all the sweets!

Then, sadly, we went to bed.

The party was after dinner. We were allowed to go to bed later which was 21:30 in French time and 20:30 English time.

After an action-packed day (and sweet-packed day?), we finally got to sleep!

Day 3: Friday 10th March

On the final day at la Côte d’Opale, we met new friends at the French school. We started by teaching the French children English songs and then they taught us French songs!  In English we sang ‘Head, Shoulders, Knees and Toes’ and in French we sang ‘Pomme de reinette et pomme d’Api’. We also pretended that we were French and the French children pretended they were English.  As a reward, we exchanged ‘à manger’, encore! Miam, miam! Later on, we had a lovely lunch in a hired room next to the sea!  And the sun was shining!

Finally we set off for the French World War II museum where we found out about the Second World War from the French perspective. At the museum, you had to fill out a questionnaire and if you got most of them right you won a prize. The World War II museum was very educational and tied into topics we had learnt in History. Sadly, this was our last activity and we left the Opale coast and set off for home.

We arrived at the School in the evening at 19.15, feeling both joy and sadness as we were picked up by our parents – this year’s trip to France will be remembered fondly.

Here are some quotes from girls on the trip:

‘I want to give a really big thank you to all the teachers who took us there.’

‘Our driver was called Stephen and or tour guide was called Clara. Thank you to both of them for helping make it such a special trip for everyone.’

‘What I really liked about France was their beautiful hills, landscape and countryside, there were lots of lakes too and their houses were very old and interesting.’

‘I really loved and adored France and I hope the people going on the French trip next year will have a great time!’

‘After a while we went to the Eurotunnel, boarded and came back home. I was happy to see my family, because I have to admit I did miss them… a tiny bit! It was the best trip ever! But it was nice to be home.’

‘We all really missed our families, but at the same time we didn’t want to leave France. All in all we had a good time that’s what it was all about.’

‘I loved every second of our trip to France. It was terrific. I felt disappointed when I had to leave but excited to continue my life in London.’

‘BEST TRIP EVER!’

Sophie Fung and Sofia Duffy have written a short account of the school trip as well:

Sophie Fung

At 6:15 am we were all at school; packed and ready to go. On the coach we sang lots of songs! We also played bean boozled – the teachers played as well. We drove to Dover and took the Eurostar to Calais. From there we went to a bakery (the croissant man was so funny). After that, we went to see how biscuits are made – it was awesome! At 5:30 pm (French time) we unpacked, got used to the hotel and went to dinner, the food was delicious. On Thursday we were up bright and early for our next day. Breakfast was nice but we had a packed schedule! First we went to the market, then we had lunch in a crêperie- the pancakes tasted really good. In the chocolate factory there were many different types of chocolate and it smelt divine. Afterwards we went to the supermarket. At 7 pm we had dinner and then had a party, it was fantastic. On Friday, it was our last day, everyone was tired but nervous as we were going to a French School. It turned out to be fun as the students were really kind and friendly. The next stop was lunch (ham or cheese baguettes). Finally, we went to the WWII Museum where we did a quiz and at 17:25 (English time), went home arriving at school by 7:30pm. By that time we were all very sleepy!

Sofia Duffy

On 8th March 2017 at 06:30 the school and I set off on an amazing journey to France. We went to La Côte D’Opale (in the north of France). We waved good bye to our parents then we were off. We had a two hour journey to the Euro Tunnel. When we got on the shuttle it was a 30mins journey .We had our packed lunch in the Ibis Hotel once in France and then went to the bakery. At the bakery we learnt the traditional way of making bread in France and we learnt how to make croissants. The man at the bakery was very funny.  Then we went to the biscuit factory. Later we arrived at our rooms, then after we settled in we had dinner. The fact that we were abroad gave us a good chance to learn the language more. My favourite part of the French trip was at the supermarket because we bought things and found things for our booklet. I want to give a really big thank you to all the teachers who took us there.

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