French Exchange

Quelle expérience! McKinnon Secondary College has welcomed home a very happy group of travellers from France. The 2017 Exchange group returned from four weeks with their host families early in January. This was the reciprocal part of the exchange, as our families had already hosted their son or daughter’s correspondant in June last year. 

Our Year 10 French students, now in Year 11, faced many challenges during their stay. (We won’t even begin to discuss the weather). Whilst they had already an established relationship with their French counterparts, it still proved to be difficult initially to make the adjustment to living with them in their own families. This was to be expected, of course, and they should be very proud of the way that they responded. Many of the French parents commented on the positive way that the Australians interacted and how they contributed to the life of the family.

The first two weeks were at school - probably the most challenging part of the experience, if you were to ask our students! - but there were some great excursions in this time, too. This was followed by two weeks of Christmas holidays, where they were able to relax a little more and get to see some different parts of France. Some were lucky enough to visit other countries. Being away from home at Christmas was tough for everyone but this was an experience that we knew we would never forget. The French families really went to a lot of effort to make their Aussies’ stay with them as enjoyable and culturally enriching as possible, just as the McKinnon families had done for their sons and daughters.

The positive outcomes of exchanges such as these can be seen in the students’ renewed enthusiasm for their language learning, the obvious improvements in linguistic skills, the confidence and resilience to tackle new and challenging situations, and the ability to communicate and empathise, to reflect and make considered decisions, just to name a few. And the bonus for many - a life-long friend.

Touring party:  Liam Atchison, Daisy Assauw, Abby Bachrach-Cox, Anna Chapman, Evie Dinkelmeyer, Alexandra Enever, Romy Greenberg, Chloe James, Josh Manning, Jesse Marlow, Luciana Martinez, Chloe Swan, Sophie Van Doorn, Julia Vitiello, Ms Ludmila Antal and Mr Daniel Casey.

Daniel Casey
French Teacher

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