This year’s annual Global Education trip to France included six students and two teachers. For the third year, participants stayed with families and attended classes at the Centre Madeleine Daniélou, Holton-Arms’ sister school in Paris. An all-girls school for grades 6-12, Danièlou’s mission is to develop students’ intelligence, will, and heart. The relationship between Holton and Danièlou started with a modest pen pal project and has grown into a rich intercultural and linguistic program that offers students from Washington, D.C., and Paris the opportunity to connect and form enduring friendships. Ten students from Daniélou visited Holton in February and were welcomed warmly by their host families.
Because interaction with peers and experiential language practice are important developmental and motivational elements of second language learning, instructors from Holton and Daniélou worked together to design the language exchange program, now in its third year. During the their stay in France, students built vocabulary and language proficiency through specially designed activities and visits into the heart of Paris.
Highlights included a trip to Versailles in which students saw the opera house, formal dining room, assorted apartments and chambers, the Hall of Mirrors, and the world-famous gardens. “Thanks to Mademoiselle Selim, we were able to tag along on a tour being given by the nation's premier historian on Marie Antoinette,” explained Kat Kirkpatrick ’15. The group was also treated to a behind-the-scenes tour of the Musée Galliera, which houses 90,000 outfits and accessories from the 18th century to the present. Museum Director Pascale Gorguet-Ballesteros provided a unique look at the museum’s extensive collection. “She was very kind,” blogged Kendall Turner ’15. “It was a pleasure to have her lead us around the part of the museum not [open] for public view.”
Students toured the city, admiring countless masterpieces at the Musée du Louvre and Musée d'Orsay, shopping for souvenirs at the chic Gallerie Lafayette, touring Notre-Dame de Paris and the Château de Malmaison, and enjoying French culture at cafes and ice cream shops. Ninth grader Shanzay Khan explained, “Between Impressionist exhibits, to die for desserts, and mad dashes in the rain, the ‘French 6’ got a taste of Parisian art, food, and weather.” Mira Gill ’15 went on to say that while exploring the city, she “personally learned a lot about how France adjusts to the modern world while also maintain[ing] aspects of its past.”
You can read their trip blog online. Welcome back to the “French 6”!