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French Immersion: A Key to the Francophone World

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Program #2764RJ
20 Days | 19 Nights
EasyFor people looking to exercise their minds more than their bodies. There’s minimal walking and not too many stairs.
ModerateThese programs get you on your feet and include activities such as walking up to a mile in a day through a city and standing in a museum for a few hours.
ActiveFor people who enjoy walking as much as two miles a day, perhaps to explore historic neighborhoods or a nature trail.
Moderately ChallengingFor hardy explorers who enjoy a good physical challenge, spending most of their days on the go.
ChallengingGet ready to keep up with our highest-energy group. These demanding — and rewarding — programs are for seasoned outdoor enthusiasts.
Discussion Board

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Alice Jones Apr 10, 2014 at 12:50 PM

Hello. Is it of any interest who we are, what we've seen or done?
Raji Patel Apr 10, 2014 at 01:22 PM

Raji Patel Apr 10, 2014 at 01:23 PM

Have you done this course before? How come your interest in French?
Alice Jones Apr 10, 2014 at 05:47 PM

Great! I live to travel, and French is the one language I would like to be fluent in. My background is French, but a few grandfathers ago, and I love to visit France -- which is where I've learned most of what I knwo
Raji Patel Apr 10, 2014 at 06:04 PM

I have not had any formal education in French and the little I know I have picked up during my childhood visits to the French colony of Pondicherry in India. I have traveled through France but not had any opportunity to speak or learn French there.
Alice Jones Apr 11, 2014 at 01:28 PM

Dear Mr. Patel, Although they have sent me directions from Google, I don't recognize a single aspect of them. I think they are useless and wouldn't advise using them unless you have someone with you to read them off to you one at a time. Still, I looked at the Mass,.map and the Quebec map (got it at AAA, although Michelin is always better) and it looks like a straight shot for you to take I-93 straight out of Mass and on into and through New Hampshire until it meets (or nearly meets) I-91 which goes straight up to Magog. No, I know a lot of the Eastern Townships in Quebec, but have never been to Magog. I only picked it because it was a half-way mark for me to stay in a Bed and Breakfast and get the best info on proceeding to the turnpikes right next to it. There are three and they go straight to Trois Rivieres. THEN, I will need their directions to the campus. I had 2 yrs of French in high school, most of which I slept through, so it was with absolutely amateur status that I went to France with my daughters several times, picking up what I could along the way. Had some lovely semi-conversations with people all over, and they made me feel that I could do more

Patricia Newman Apr 02, 2014 at 02:42 PM

I am enrolled in the May-June program and am a relative beginner in French and am concerned about my weak oral comprehension and conversation skills. Any suggestions for preparing for the program?
Olwen Harris Apr 02, 2014 at 09:05 PM

Hi Patricia, My suggestion would be to go to your public library to see what language CDs they have. Sometimes they have kits (rather large kits) with CDs and text book so that you can practise listening and speaking. The availability of these CDs will depend on your location, but it might be worth a try.
Susan Bodell Apr 09, 2014 at 02:30 PM

You could also look at YouTube for French language videos at various levels. One I particularly like is a series that was on PBS called "French In Action."
Alice Jones Apr 11, 2014 at 01:31 PM

I agree and usually start listening to mine in a panic a week before a trip

Raji Patel Mar 19, 2014 at 09:46 AM

Hello fellow participants,
I have enrolled for the May-June program. Is there anyone from MA/NY/NH in this program and wanting to share a ride?
I consider myself an intermediate French student.
Alice Jones Apr 10, 2014 at 12:48 PM

Hello. I'll be driving across NH en route to I-91 to Magog and after spending the night there, will go on on what look like nice fat interstates to Trois Rivieres. I think I'm sort of an advanced beginner
Raji Patel Apr 10, 2014 at 05:56 PM

I am thinking about driving from Boston and was hesitant thinking it may be too long. However, I see that you are doing a similar trip so it may not be too bad. Why Magog? Would you recommend it? On the way back, I am planning to stay the evening of Friday at Trois Riviers, perhaps I should go to Magog and then make my way down to Boston on Saturday.

Susan Willen Feb 24, 2014 at 08:33 PM

I have signed up for the May/June 2014 program. I'll be flying to Montreal from California. Does anyone have suggestions on the best way to get from Montreal to Trois Rivieres? Thanks!
Olwen Harris Feb 24, 2014 at 09:25 PM

Hi Susan. The bus company Orléans Express will be your best bet. 2.5 hours Montréal to Trois-Rivières. Here is the link:
Susan Willen Feb 25, 2014 at 09:03 PM

Thanks so much Olwen. Is it walking distance from the station at Trois Rivieres to the university?

Patricia Borden Feb 03, 2014 at 04:21 PM

Bonjour! I went to the spring program last year 2013. I found most of the people spoke English at meals and within their apartments. The dorm assignments seemed to be based on your age as they don't know your French ability before you arrive. The school has a "French rule" where you must speak French at school (halls, grounds, etc). There are MANY opportunities to speak French and MANY people in the group are willing to speak French. It really depends on who is there and who you choose to spend time with. I am intermediate and became friends with a few advanced folks who really helped my by not speaking English. And, you must take advantage of all the programs the school offers. There were other people there who only spoke English and I tended to not spend much time with them as I was there for the French. So have fun, it is what you make it. I had a great time, met some fantasic people and have wonderful memories.
Lynn Biscott Feb 03, 2014 at 10:11 PM

Thanks, Patricia. I appreciate the input!

Joyce White Feb 03, 2014 at 01:06 PM

We are tested after we arrive and are already in our assigned apartment. My roommates included a woman from my class and two who were from a lower level. None of us felt comfortable speaking French with one another. There are many planned activities that will allow you opportunities to speak French.
Lynn Biscott Feb 03, 2014 at 01:26 PM

Thanks for your comments, Joyce. That is exactly my concern. For true French immersion, one should be speaking French all the time. You get so much more out of the course that way. I'd love to hear from some others - same or different experiences? Please let me know.

Lynn Biscott Feb 03, 2014 at 11:12 AM

i speak French at an intermediate to advanced level and would want to use French extensively outside of the classroom. Can anyone tell me if most students speak French to one another most of the time when not in class? Also, does the school attempt to group students of similar ability when making dorm assignments? Thanks for any input!
Olwen Harris Feb 03, 2014 at 03:08 PM

Hi Lynn, my experience with other French immersion courses is that the members of the group have a friendly chat to make a "covenant" with each other to speak only French with each other outside of class time. Most see the value and benefit in making the effort. It is also important for the group to support each other, for example, providing a word or phrase for the person who is stuck so they don't get discouraged and slip into English. .
Lynn Biscott Feb 03, 2014 at 03:24 PM

Thanks, Olwen, that's been my experience too - either that or the school has a firm "no English" policy. But, from Joyce's comments, I'm not sure that's the case here. It's more of a problem when most of the group is at a beginner level, which is why I asked about that as well.

Olwen Harris Jan 17, 2014 at 02:45 AM

Hi Joyce, I was hoping you would reply to my question attached underneath your post below.

But maybe Luanne could expand on the comment "No problem with the terrain." I have heard the campus is hilly, meaning an uphill walk at least one way. Or is the terrain pretty level in general? Thanks.
Carol Mannchen Jan 17, 2014 at 08:31 AM

I attended the program last summer. I did have a problem with the terrain, because the dorms were downhill from where the classroom building is, and I have a heart condition. It was hard going up that hill 3 or 4 times a day. The rest of the campus and the walk into town was pretty flat, as I remember. During the first days, I could drive my car up and park in the parking lot next to the main building, but they closed that lot and tore it up -- may have built a new building there or something. This program is a great value, very enjoyable and worth every penny.
Olwen Harris Jan 17, 2014 at 11:09 PM

Thanks Carol. I appreciate your reply to my question. Yes, a hill can be a bit of a challenge. I think I read that the walk to town is about 20 minutes so flat is good to know about. I wouldn't have a car as I would be flying in to Montréal if I decide to do the program. Thanks again!
Alice Jones Apr 10, 2014 at 12:43 PM

I too am glad for that knowledge as I have a bad knee that behaves well enough on slight elevations, and level. A bicycle wouldn't help as it's still that uphill thing with a lot of knee pressure. I'm counting on my pre-trip cortisone shot....

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Our Value Promise To You

You won't find a better value.

at no additional cost on this date ...
19 nights of accommodations
57 meals: 19 breakfasts, 19 lunches, 19 dinners
28 Expert-led lectures
12 Field trips
1 Performances


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