The Spectacular Spectacle of Students!

Dear parents, guardians, family, and friends,

Our time in Saumur has come to end with a whirlwind of activities and preparations. Early this past week we had our final three classes, a guided tour of Saumur, and practiced for the farewell show. Yesterday students thanked host families for their warm welcome and put on a terrific show. Next Monday morning your sons and daughters will say their final (sure to be emotional) goodbye to their families and then we will head off to Paris for our three day excursion before returning to the USA. I’ve been asking students how they feel about their final days and I was met with many a resounding: “What! Only three more days in France for Paris? Let’s do another two weeks!”

As usual, here is a brief overview of the week that will be followed with details and pictures:

  • Final Week of Classes (Monday-Wednesday)
  • Guided Tour of Saumur (Monday)
  • Farewell Show (Thursday-Friday)

Final Week of Classes

On Monday, Tuesday, and Wednesday final classes were held at the Institution Saint-Louis. Students turned in their final projects for each class and their projects for the program magazine that we distributed to host families during the farewell show. That all sounds perhaps a bit dreary though and it wasn’t: as these pictures below can attest to the fact that students were rather amusing themselves this last week!

Students strolling into Saint-Louis - Robin gives a pose
Students strolling into Saint-Louis – Robin gives a pose
Cleome, Alex, Christina, Meghan, Cassidy, and Lydia give us a beautiful group photo
Cleome, Alex, Christina, Meghan, Cassidy, and Lydia give us a beautiful group photo
Always upbeat and cheerful, even on a Monday!
Always upbeat and cheerful, even on a Monday!
Lindsey and Julia
Lindsey and Julia

Guided Tour of Saumur

On Monday we had a terrific and energetic tour guide who met us at the Chateau of Saumur to give students a guided tour of the city. Students are already familiar with Saumur, but this tour helped to give them details and sights that they may have overlooked. During the tour we discussed the history of Saumur (a city, she explained, that in its early days was prone to flooding and attacks), saw a very old chapel for traveling knights, and climbed one of the city’s original tower defenses.

Students pose for a group photo overlooking Saumur from the Chateau
Students pose for a group photo overlooking Saumur from the Chateau
Our very nice tour guides begins with a bit of background information about the city
Our very nice tour guides begins with a bit of background information about the city
She moves along to discuss the Chateau in more detail
She moves along to discuss the Chateau in more detail
We head out into the city; here we are facing the town hall and behind us is the Loire river
We head out into the city; here we are facing the town hall and behind us is the Loire river
A group photo of students after we climbed the tower with the guide!
A group photo of students after we climbed the tower with the guide!

Farewell Show

Since the start of the program instructors have been working with students to put on the farewell show for the host families: songs, sketches, theater pieces, and a magazine. In the first few weeks students selected the songs and plays that they wanted to perform and drafted sketches and articles. They’ve made a lot of progress in French since then and this last week they were prepared to give an entire show in French! On Thursday and Friday we spent the day practicing the performance (with a cookie/candy break of course!) and then gave the show from 8pm to 10pm on Friday evening. The students did a terrific job: they amused the families with their plays and sketches and touched their families with heartfelt song performances. At the end of the show there were more than a few tears shed when the students sang Toi + Moi (You + Me) and descended from the stage into the audience to hug and dance with family members.

 

(2) The choral
(2) The choral
(3) "Art" our first play
(3) “Art” our first play
(4) "Il y avait foule au manoir" our second play
(4) “Il y avait foule au manoir” our second play
The final moments of the show. Students sent photos to instructor Michael to be compiled. The song Toi + Moi played and students came out from behind the curtain to find their families; my camera's battery died after this photo!
The final moments of the show. Students sent photos to instructor Michael to be compiled. The song Toi + Moi played and students came out from behind the curtain to find their families; my camera’s battery died after this photo!
Our first sketch entitled "The real professors"; Robin as Michael, Matt as me, Paige as Amy, Rachel as Renata; Hannah, Federica, and Cleome played the students
Our first sketch entitled “The real professors”; Robin as Michael, Matt as me, Paige as Amy, Rachel as Renata; Hannah, Federica, and Cleome played the students
Aux Champs Elysees with umbrella choreography!
Aux Champs Elysees with umbrella choreography!
Sketch two about finding the perfect student at the supermarket
Sketch two about finding the perfect student at the supermarket
Sketch 2
Sketch 2
Sketch 3 about stolen bread, murder, and mystery
Sketch 3 about stolen bread, murder, and mystery
Sketch three, the other half of the scene with Casandre, Megan, and Becca
Sketch three, the other half of the scene with Casandre, Megan, and Becca
More singing!
More singing!
More singing!
More singing!
Cassidy, Hannah, Alex, and Joe taking a short break during the show
Cassidy, Hannah, Alex, and Joe taking a short break during the show
Ian gives a great performance!
Ian gives a great performance!
Alex and Matthew look dazzling
Alex and Matthew look dazzling
Students enjoying the show during their brief breaks!
Students enjoying the show during their brief breaks!
Our 4th sketch; Joe and Lauren pretend to be a romantic couple that a professor discovers!
Our 4th sketch; Joe and Lauren pretend to be a romantic couple that a professor discovers!
Julia, Cassidy, Emily, and Hannah do their sketch: "risky business"
Julia, Cassidy, Emily, and Hannah do their sketch: “risky business”
Our final sketch of the evening; Ellen, Lindsey, Lauren, Christina, and Lydia pretend to be with a student who only says "yes"
Our final sketch of the evening; Ellen, Lindsey, Lauren, Christina, and Lydia pretend to be with a student who only says “yes”

I’d like to take a final moment to thank you all for checking out, supporting, and commenting on the blog. Your sons and daughters have grown a lot during their time in France and I’d like to thank you all for making their total immersion experience possible! It’s been a pleasure to work with your students and share their experiences – I look forward to posting pictures and details of our final excursion in Paris next week!

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2 thoughts on “The Spectacular Spectacle of Students!

  1. Thank you again, so much, for putting together these pictures and posts each week! It has become something my family looks forward to seeing and sharing. You’ve done a terrific job of showing us what the students’ lives have looked like there in France this summer. Although we look forward to your return, it gives us great pleasure to know that they have all had a fantastic time and learned so much. Enjoy Paris, have a safe trip back – and we will welcome you all home to the U.S. on Thursday night!

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    1. I’m very happy to hear that you’ve all enjoyed the posts – it’s always a pleasure to put them together to share what we’ve been up to! The students are having a terrific time and I’m sure they’ll enjoy Paris and also look forward to coming home! See you next week!

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