New Caledonia Tour

A group of 28 students and 3 teachers enjoyed eight days in New Caledonia at the end of Term 3. New Caledonia, only a short 4 hour flight from Melbourne, is a French speaking island nation, known for its beaches and love of water sports.

The aim of the tour was language and cultural immersion. The students stayed in host families, communicating in French and experiencing life as a Caledonian. They also attended a French language school every morning where the lessons were conducted entirely in French, carefully pitched at the students' level. Each afternoon, we visited different parts of the island, taking in the sights and speaking with the locals in French. We went on a 'Tchou tchou' train tour around Noumea, visited the Jean Marie Tjibaou Cultural Centre to learn about the Kanak (indigenous New Caledonians) culture and history and spent an afternoon at the beach. One afternoon was spent learning how to play petanque (the French version of bowls or bocce) along the beach where some generous locals offered their time as coaches

One highlight was the day spent on Amedee Island, a tiny islet a 45 minute boat ride from Noumea. The scenery was incredible. The students climbed the lighthouse for an incredible view, went on a glass bottom boat ride looking at the fish, turtles and coral. They even swam and snorkelled with turtles. There was a delicious buffet lunch and a show of traditional dancing and music.

The trip was a great success and the students learnt a lot: about French language, about New Caledonian culture and history and about themselves as they stayed with a different family in a different country. Thank you to Ms Antal, Mr King and Ms Dickson for accompanying the group and ensuring the tour could go ahead. We look forward to travelling with next year's Year 9 students of French!

Ms Kellie Dickson
French Teacher

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