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Year 8 French Trip to the Opal Coast

Friday, 24 June 2016

130 Year 8 pupils and 15 members of staff recently took part in a very successful and extremely enjoyable four-day French Trip to the Opal Coast.

Three coaches of pupils and teachers left Presdales School very early on Monday morning and, after taking the Eurotunnel from Folkestone to Calais, arrived safely at their destination in Boulogne-sur-mer in time for lunch.

In the afternoon, each coach group made a visit to ‘Le Fond des Communes’, a goats cheese farm close to the village of ‘Montcavrel’, where they had the opportunity to ‘meet’ the goats and all the other farm animals. They then learnt how the goats cheese was made on the farm and even got to taste some in the farmhouse. Once we arrived at our accommodation, we unpacked, settled in and had dinner. Later in the evening, girls grouped together to write their diary entries in French in their trip work booklets, and did some language work in preparation for the next day’s activities.

The second day began with a visit to ‘Nausicaa’, a sealife centre in Boulogne which specialises in educational and entertaining insights into the world of the oceans. Pupils enjoyed walking around and looking at the many tanks of freshwater and seawater life. The afternoon was spent completing a town trail in the beautiful, historical town of ‘Montreuil-sur-mer’. Many of the girls took time to do a bit of shopping or order a drink in one of the cafés, taking the opportunity to practise their spoken French. The girls then visited ‘Les Escargots du Bocage’, a snail farm, situated in the nearby countryside. They were firstly given a tour of the farm and then they were invited to sit in the shady courtyard of the farm to taste snail paté on toast, snails prepared in garlic butter and home-made jam, made from a variety of fruit grown on the farm. Despite reservations, almost everybody tasted the snails and many were pleasantly surprised, with some even going back for more. The day ended with a visit to the local beach after dinner where everyone enjoyed fun and games in the sand as the sun began to set.

The pupils were very excited about the planned activities for the third day which began with a trip to ‘Aqualud’, a big water park with waves and slides in the pretty coastal town of le Touquet. This was followed by a picnic lunch on the beautiful sandy beach of le Touquet and then some free time to wander around the seaside town. Later that afternoon, the girls were given some Euros to complete a shopping task in the huge hypermarket, ‘l’Auchan’ in Boulogne. This involved buying something typically French to share with their families when they returned. On their final evening, the girls were treated to an icecream, which was generously given to them by the staff at the hotel, as they did a ‘show and tell’ in French about their shopping task purchases and wrote last diary entries.

The teachers and the staff at the hotel were extremely impressed by the excellent attitude and behaviour of the Year 8 girls throughout the trip. The polite and friendly way in which they conducted themselves and their commendable efforts to practice their French during their four day stay in France meant they were a real credit to the school and a pleasure to take.

Madame Rowe