A Day in My Life Going to French High School

Authored by:
Ginger S.

Ginger S.

My days start pretty early, class either starts at 8:05 or 9 depending on the day, and it takes me about 25 minutes to get to school. After I wake up I eat some breakfast and drink my english breakfast tea, and then I walk to the tram which takes me around 10 minutes. This is a nice start to my morning because it helps wake me up. And, on days when our schedules line up, I walk with my host sister. Before class everyone hangs out in the courtyard, so depending how early I am I’ll look for my friends or head straight to class.

On Mondays I have SES-Sociology and Economics first. It’s one of my three specialities that I chose. We have a two hour class but we usually have a five minute break in the middle. When I walk in I usually say "Bonjour" to the teacher and get some hand sanitizer; everyone is required to wear masks. Then we stand behind our desks until the teacher says “asseyez-vous” which means sit down. We’re currently learning about liens sociaux-social links, and we take notes while the teacher presents. We also often answer questions in our notebooks with our partner and then someone shares out to the class. Then I have a 30 minute break, so we either spend time in the courtyard and talk or go into the foyer which is a building with chairs and tables that students in première and terminale can go in. Première is the equivalent of junior year in the U.S. and terminale is senior year.

After the break I have History and Geography. The past few weeks we’ve been working on a geography unit but this week we’re starting history. Most of my classes are with the same group of people, my class is Première C. Since history is a core class not a specialty, we all have it together. After an hour it’s time for Enseignements Scientifiques-science, so we all head downstairs to the classroom together. Right now in science we’re learning about crystals. Then I have two hours for lunch. My school has two options of where you can eat. There’s the cantine which is similar to my school cafeteria in the U.S., you pick a salad, a dessert (fruit or chocolate pudding or something similar), a plain yoghurt, and then whatever they’re serving that day which is often fries and something else. Then you go sit at a free table and eat. The other option is the cafeteria, which is only for students in première and terminale. The cafeteria has three options everyday and so you pick which one you want and you can also grab a fruit. Everyday there’s a salad; I’m vegetarian and that’s usually the only vegetarian option so I almost always eat the salad. And, if you don’t want to eat at the school you can go out to eat, but you have to decide that at the beginning of the year. If you eat at school it’s called demi-pensionnaire and if you eat out it’s called externe. I chose demi-pensionnaire because a lot of people eat at school most days and you have to pay an extra euro each day if you’re externe, but I have the option to eat out on Wednesdays.

After we eat we often hang out in the foyer and talk, and sometimes people work on homework. My last class of the day is Français-French, and since it’s a core class it’s with the same group of people and in the same room as history. Our current unit in French is on Fables de la Fontaine which is a collection of fables, right now we’re talking about one called "Le Héron." Then my school day is over and I head to the tram. Before leaving the school I show my Carnet de Correspondance which has my schedule. When I get home I usually try to work on homework. I often ask a classmate to send me pictures of their notes from the day since it can be pretty hard to keep up in class, and I try to look up and translate words I was confused about. A lot of my days are long, 2 days a week I finish at 6, so I make sure to get lots of sleep!

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