Monday, November 29, 2010

Kitchen renovation

Merci beaucoup to the Ulery family for the amazing kitchen renovation!!

The school's new chef, Emilia Ulery, and her family have transformed the school's kitchen! Husband Hal, an architect, drew the designs pictured above to maximize space and improve the kitchen's overall look and functioning. Emilia put her organizational skills into the planning, and the Ulery children pitched in to assist their parents with the installation, making it all come together. They came into the school over the weekend prior to Thanksgiving and by Monday morning, the kitchen was completely finished. The makeover includes a new counter top, many new commercial grade stainless steel shelving units, a cooking preparation table, a new microwave, a fully-equipped teacher coffee-break area, an upright freezer and many professional cooking tools and supplies from Emilia's former catering business- all generously donated to the school by the Ulery family. We are so very grateful for the skill and kindness put forth by the whole family. The result is nothing short of magnificent!! Please be sure to peek in to see the welcoming kitchen, and to thank Emilia for the mouth-watering smells permeating the air!

Getting to know Emilia, our new Chef:

A message from Emilia to the school community:

I grew up in a small town in Vermont and moved to North Carolina where I attended North Carolina State University, earning a Bachelor of Science Degree in Nursing in my early years. While raising our triplets and while my husband completed his Masters in Architecture I worked in a neonatal unit at a hospital in North Carolina. When Hal completed his internship and the children were older I decided to follow a dream to become a chef and studied at The Culinary Institute of America where I graduated with my Associate Degree in Culinary Arts. I then started my own successful catering business in North Carolina.
When Hal and I discovered that our youngest was afflicted with Cystic Fibrosis and allergy disorders that brought about Autism I began to study food as a medicine, researching holistic medicine, vitamins, nutrition and herbs to help heal my then three years old son. After receiving my certificate as a Health Counselor with the Institute of Integrative Nutrition I discovered our son's allergies to Gluten and Casein foods and began to focus my skills in those areas to create fun and good tasting foods that he could eat without losing flavor. Our family came to Maine because of Connor and his allergies. In North Carolina he was allergic to so much of the environment that he stayed indoors most of the time and received over twelve shots per month just to do that. However, after allergy panels, Maine was revealed as one of the most allergy friendly environments for Connor and now he lives and plays outdoors on our farm with only one shot per month to aid him with his allergies.
I will continue to cook for the farm stand in the summer but I feel a privilege to have the opportunity to work as a Chef for the students at L'Ecole Française du Maine during the school year. My husband and six children are my primary focus, however the school has become a great joy for me and the children have given me the greatest of appreciation and love.

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Happy Thanksgiving!

On Monday November 22, we had a Thanksgiving feast at school. Emilia prepared a wonderful meal for us. We had turkey with stuffing, a cornucopia filled with veggie sticks, and special Thanksgiving themed desserts including a turkey made of fruit, a chocolate pilgrim hat and chocolate acorns- all created especially for us. We even had special pilgrim napkin rings...with each child's picture on them! The tables were beautifully decorated with hand-carved pumpkins and ice cream cone tee-pees, which Emilia gave to the elementary students at the end of the meal. Thank you so much Emilia for the time and care spent preparing this delicious and festive celebration! It was enjoyed by all. Merci beaucoup Emilia and to your daughters Emily and Miriam who volunteered to help! Happy Thanksgiving !!

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Suzuki concert Nov.22: Violin

Please click play to watch Elise's violin performance of Handel's Sonata in F Major, played during the parent talk preceding the Suzuki concert of Monday November 22. Elise was accompanied by Leah Neuchiller on the piano. She played to show new parents where the Suzuki method can take their child in the future. We hope many families were inspired enough to get their families involved with music-if they are not already.

We also want to thank DeeDee, Nathan and Leah, the music teachers, for the interesting information they presented and for giving their valuable time on Monday morning to speak with parents and attend the concert. Merci beaucoup!

Suzuki Concert November 22: Cello

Please click play to watch Madeleine's cello performance of Allegro by Dr. Suzuki.

Bravo to all the talented guitarists, violinists, pianists and cellists and "Merci" for a wonderful concert!
Thank you to all of the parents and friends who attended!

Suzuki Concert November 22: Guitar

Please click play to watch Colin's guitar performance accompanied by teacher Nathan Kolosko.

Suzuki Concert November 22: Piano

Please click play to watch Eva play the piano at the Suzuki concert.

Monday, November 22, 2010

Les dents!

A big "Merci" to Dr. Michelle Shems for her wonderful presentation on teeth in the K-1 class on Monday, November 22. Dental hygiene is a part of the K-1 curriculum and we were very fortunate to have a French-speaking parent (who also happens to be an orthodontist) in our school community!

Michele, we loved your "dragon-dinosaur" puppet, and we enjoyed brushing his teeth. We learned a lot about our baby teeth and adult teeth! Thank you also for the bag of goodies each child received- toothpaste, toothbrush, floss, eraser and the purple tablets that show us where we need to brush more. It was fun and we learned a lot! - The K-1 classroom

Friday, November 19, 2010

Les contes de Charles Perrault

The students of 4th grade have been studying traditional tales by Charles Perrault, many of which they had heard about. The interesting part for them was to compare the version of the tale they knew with the one written by Perrault.

First, we studied together Le Petit Chaperon Rouge and Barbe Bleue and explored the structure and the morale of the traditional tale. Then, they individually worked on a tale that they presented to their peers in the classroom. We had presentations of Riquet à la Houppe, Le Petit Poucet, La Belle au Bois Dormant and Peau d’Ane.

They did a fantastic job that you can see in the classroom.

"Chez Elle"


The students of 4th, 5th and 6th grades have been working on a project collaborating French literature and art. In class, they studied the book « Chez Elle » by author Beatrice PONCELET, in which the narrator, a child, explores the different worlds of adults surrounding her, who have very different personalities.

Following the study of the book, each student wrote an essay describing their own world, their own universe with their activities, personal experiences. The project was named « Chez Moi ».

Then, in art class with Valy, they imagined and illustrated their « chez moi » very creatively and enthusiastically. You can check their « œuvres » in the hallway.

Enjoy !

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Muscular Dystrophy Association Lock-up

Willy was arrested at school this morning by Freeport Police Department and taken by Police Cruiser to the "MDA Jail" at the Hilton Garden Inn in downtown Freeport.
Thankfully, L'Ecole Française du Maine was able to bail him out with a $150 donation.
Please consider helping "Jerry's Kids".
Donations to MDA provide help and hope in many ways:
  • Clinics - expert specialized medical care
  • Research - cutting edge investigation into treatments and cures
  • Support - help obtaining equipment and coping with challenges
  • Camp - a barrier-free week of fun, friendship and laughter for kids
And so much more!
Visit for information on how Muscular Dystrophy Association makes a difference to people around the country and in your community.

Sunday, November 14, 2010

Etienne Giroire safely on board cargo ship

Etienne Giroire whose small 18 metres trimaran capsized yesterday some 1500 miles from Guadeloupe was rescued 900 miles from the Azores. The skipper is now on board the Fort St. George which is headed for the port of Pointe-à-Pitre. The rescue operation, performed in collaboration with the Gris-Nez, was conducted by the United States ship MRCC Norfolk.

Second and Third grade students from L'Ecole Française du Maine have been following Etienne Giroire 's participation in "La Route du Rhum-La Banque Postale 2010" solo yacht race across the Atlantic. Students have exchanged emails and communicated via Skype with the skipper while plotting his position on maps and learning about math, sciences and geography. Students and their teacher Didier Carribou will be contacting Etienne upon his arrival in Guadeloupe to cheer him up...more to come...

photos courtesy of: ATNinc;; AFP; La route du Rhum - La Banque Postale 2010

Saturday, November 13, 2010

Kip Stone's adventures during "La Route du Rhum"

Kip Stone was our special guest speaker Friday in the grade 2-3 classroom. Kip shared his adventures of his participation in the solo yacht race "La route du Rhum - La Banque Postale - 2006".
Kip, with his talent for storytelling, captivated our second and third graders with topics such as: how to get rid of a smelly flying fish, navigating through terrible storms, techniques for fighting sleep deprivation, and how to climb a mast in high seas. This presentation was thought provoking and inspiring for our students, who had prepared many questions about Kip' s victorious participation in "La Route du Rhum" and "Jacques Vabre" solo transatlantic races.
Kip also talked, "in French!", about the unique camaraderie and respect at sea amongst sailors and explained why a race is usually won before it has even started!
Kip described Etienne Giroire's challenges during the final stages of the race and encouraged our students to cheer him on by sending him short emails.

When not at sea, Kip Stone owns and manages "Cool as the Moose" stores in Maine and Quebec while running Westbrook printing company "Artforms". We thank Kip for taking time from his busy schedule to speak with our students. Merci!!

Etienne Giroire capsizes, skipper safe and well.

The trimaran ATNinc of Etienne Giroire has capsized at 0900 hrs (Paris Time). The Franco-American skipper is reported to be well. The solo skipper has inflated his liferaft and is alongside his boat. A cargo from Portugal has been diverted to rescue Etienne Giroire who is positioned 990 miles from the Azores.

Friday, November 12, 2010

FACCNE Kick-Off Event in Portland, ME

Thursday, November 18
6:00 - 8:00 PM

Portland Harbor Hotel
468 Fore St Portland, ME 04101

Register online now!

Meet the French-American business community of Maine!

Join FACCNE Board members, staff, and local members for a presentation and networking session at the elegant Portland Harbor Hotel downtown. Presentations by:

  • Perry Newman, FACCNE Board Member, President Atlantica Group LLC
  • Ludivine Wolczik, FACCNE Executive Director
  • Severin Beliveau, Honorary Consul of France in Maine
  • Christophe Guilhou, Consul General of France in Boston, MA

Cost: $25 for all. Walk-ins welcome. Online registration available through PayPal here, or e-mail for other forms of payment.

Thank you to our sponsors and supporters:

Youth concert

On Tuesday November 9, 2010 the students of grades 2, 3, 4, 5 and 6 went to the Merrill Auditorium in Portland for the Youth Concert performed by the Portland Symphony Orchestra. The program took the children on an exciting trip through outer space with Short Ride in a Fast Machine by J. Adams, Suite from Close Encounters of the Third Kind and three of the Planets by G. Holst: 'Mars, the Bringer of War', 'Uranus, the Magician' and 'Jupiter, the Bringer of Jollity'.
This was a fantastic concert enjoyed by everyone!

Wednesday, November 3, 2010

Nos citrouilles ont la trouille...

This year, the pumpkins of the Kindergartners and 1st graders did not scare anyone, because they are the ones being scared. Nos citrouilles ont “la trouille”, et nous aussi... mais de quoi nous méfions-nous? (Our pumpkins are scared, and we are too... but what are we afraid of?)

You can discover it by following the prints left by the 'animals' which scare us.
To check if your guess is right, all you need to do is turn the orange page of the drawing attached with Velcro. Thanks for handling our productions carefully.


Last Friday, we went the Kinderconcert in Brunswick to listen to a story told with musical instruments. In class, before the concert, we had learned to recognize and name some of those musical instruments. There were violins, viola, cello and bass.
The story told us how a young girl, a lighthouse keeper, managed to go through a big storm. We liked it a lot.
Thank you to all the chaperones!

The Pre-K, K and 1st grade classes