Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Le défi lecture

Last week, after a few months adventure, the 4 groups of children met for the final questions and exercises on the three books they had to read for the défi lecture. The three books were Le Chevalier qui cherchait ses chaussettes de C. Oster, Le Jardin de Max et Gardénia de F. Bernard et Le mystère de la chambre jaune de G. Leroux.
The students took a few meeting sessions to solely read the books and then started to work on different activities, based on reading activities they had encountered before : questions, true/false, actions to put back in order. We kept the last session to guide them and help them build more substantial activities.
For about an hour and a half last Monday morning, they worked very hard in teams to answer all the questions and did a fantastic job.
Congratulations to all of them for such a tremendous défi lecture and especially to the winning team!
We are excited to start it again next September !

Friday, June 10, 2011

Normandy Day

Students attended Normandy Day International Picnic at Winslow Park. The event was well attended, friendly, festive and convivial The objective was for our students to kindle and strengthen the memory of June 6th, 1944 and celebrate freedom, peace and democracy while sharing a picnic at the beach. The school chef Emilia prepared a French Flavored lunch with Pan Bagna, Piemontaise salad and cascading watermelon. Following this delicious meal, students enjoyed games planned and coordinated by teachers. In class, students discussed the values that characterized D-Day : courage, determination, cooperation, honor and ambition. Special thanks to Jeremy and Hal who helped decorate the shelter and to the Winslow Park staff for their help and support. L'Ecole Francaise du Maine was the first American school to officially participate in this event and partner with Normandy Day organization in France which provided the school with the official table cloths.This year marks the 67th anniversary of D-Day, the Allied invasion of Normandy, which was the major turning point of WWII in Europe. Early in the morning of June 6, 1944, the largest military operation in history began as 135,000 Allied soldiers landed on the beaches of Normandy, to begin the liberation of Europe, and change the course of history. With Normandy Day, l'Ecole Française du Maine expressed its gratitude and appreciation for the sacrifice of so many for today's freedom.

Les Petits Chefs

This semester, School Chef Emilia started an after-school club " Les Petits Chefs" which has become very popular. As parents noticed, not only do students learn about table etiquette, good nutrition and dietary choices, they also learn how to prepare their favorite dishes. Students can take their delicious creations home or sometimes even eat them directly following the activities. A special thanks to Adrianna, Emily and Miriam who helped supervise the cooking classes.

University of Bourgogne at Dijon-France

L'Ecole Française du Maine has partnered with the Teacher Training Institute (IUFM) of University of Bourgogne at Dijon, France. This year, the school was glad to welcome four intern teachers looking to complete their student teaching experiences. After four weeks spent in Maine, graduate students Aurore Blouet and Aline Michelin went back to Dijon, to the dissapointment of all the children. We wish them good luck with their studies and futures.
A special thanks are extended to the host families who graciously and generously opened their homes and who made this exchange possible.

Mountain Bike Trip

Students loaded their bikes onto the trailer especially built by Thornton Ring, and headed to Recompence Shore for mountain bike activities planned by Didier and Valerie. A special thanks to James DeGrandpre, Manager of the campground at Recompence Shore near Wolfe's Neck farm. Students enjoyed the games and the long loops following the sea shores. Great vistas and a lot of fun!

Les chansons de la chorale

Music is a very important part of the school life at L'Ecole Française du Maine. All the children have music lessons and most of them learn to play an instrument. All the children also sing in the 'Chorales'. La chorale des petits is made of the Pre-K & K-1 classes, and the students of grades 2-3-4-5-6 sing in La chorale des grands.
Peter Nenortas of Satronen Sound professionally recorded both chorales on May 26 and compiled their performance in a wonderful CD. It features songs learned this year:

An ideal gift and a great souvenir of our students' musical achievement.
To order a copy: 207-865-3308 or info@efdm.org
Here is an extract of the CD:

Teacher Appreciation Day

The Parents' Association of L'Ecole Française du Maine prepared a special reception to show teachers the appreciation they deserve every day. Flowers and Emilia's croissants and pains au chocolats welcomed the teachers as they arrived at school. Also, in the office we have a beautiful souvenir of the day, a drawing created especially for this occasion by the children to thank the teachers. This event was deeply appreciated by the whole staff - Merci beaucoup!

Suzuki Guitar Graduation

Congratulations to our students who graduated respectively from book 1; Book 1 + and Book 3, representing rewarding accomplishments after a year of steady progress and practice. More graduations are coming soon from Nathan's students at l'Ecole Française du Maine.
A special thanks to Nathan Kolosko for his pedalogical approach which is dynamic and varied. Our students have grown musically through performance, technique and music appreciation.
When not teaching at the Portland Conservatory, his private studio or at l'Ecole Française du Maine, Nathan is a prolific composer and performer.

Au menu cette semaine:

Wednesday, June 8, 2011

Mock Trial à l' école

On May 18th, after studying persuasive writing and debate in English class, we were lucky to have an attorney, Chris MacLean, visit the 4-8th graders to talk about his job and how he uses debate in it. He specializes in criminal defense and family law. The presentation was informative and interesting, and the students had a great time listening and asking questions, which Chris was happy to answer.

For over a month, two of the students, in 6th and 8th grade, had been learning to debate in English class. They did a few debates opposing each other, but to end the unit, they collaborated on a final debate against the visiting lawyer. On the day of his visit, as the debate started, they revealed to him what the debate topic was. For while they had spent two weeks preparing, he did not yet know the topic, or what side he would argue. The topic, selected by the students, was "School Vouchers Should be Allowed." Chris was to argue the opposition, that is, why school vouchers shouldn't be allowed.

Everyone had fun and all the speeches, both prepared and not, were very well done. Each person made a five minute speech and a rebuttal. The Great Debate was filmed, which was much appreciated by all. The exciting afternoon finished with a short reception in the office with delicious chocolate cake. Chris talked a bit to the students about Mock Trial, for he has served as attorney sponsor at his local high school. Thanks to everyone involved!

Respectfully submitted by the 8th grade participant

Tuesday, June 7, 2011

Ciné-Club June 15 : La Chèvre

Please join us on June 15 at 6:30PM for our last Ciné Club of the year !

Un film de Francis VEBER, 1981, comédie, 1h30, avec Gérard DEPARDIEU, Pierre RICHARD…

Synopsis : One the best, most serious detectives in France (Gérard Depardieu) is teamed up with a luckless stumble-bum (Pierre Richard) and sent off to Central America to search for the klutzy daughter of a powerful magnate in this fast-paced and funny French farce.


By Frederic and Mary Ann Brussat

There are plenty of laughs to be had watching La Chevre, a French film written and directed by Francis Veber. When the very accident-prone 21-year-old daughter of a wealthy industrialist disappears while on vacation in Mexico, Campana, a veteran detective, is dispatched to find her

His search turns up nothing, and a psychologist working for the industrialist suggests they turn the investigation over to Francis Perrin, an accountant in their firm. The reason? Since Perrin is as accident prone as the missing girl, he may bumble his way into some clues.

La Chevre ("The Goat") moves forward with comic verve as Perrin leads Campana into one mishap after another. But each blunder turns up a new clue. Fans of slapstick will appreciate the screen camaraderie and humorous interplay between Pierre Richard as the bumbler and Gerald Depardieu as the rigorously logical detective who at last comes to see the magic in his friend's madness.

Ken Hanke

Francis Veber is probably better known for his writing than for his direction -- and best known for having penned La Cage aux Folles, which spawned the U.S. remake The Birdcage. (Hollywood seems to like remaking Veber's scripts and films, having annexed The Tall Blonde Man With One Black Shoe, The Toy, Les Comperes and now, it seems, his Le Placard, which is to be retooled for a doubtless-inferior U.S. version.)

La Chevre (The Goat, aka Knock on Wood) was only Veber's second directorial effort. It nonetheless marked his real breakthrough, thanks to the inspired teaming of Pierre Richard and Gerard Depardieu -- and a brilliantly simple concept that doesn't stand up to (or ask for) very much scrutiny.

When the cosmically clumsy daughter (Coryne Varbit) of a French industrialist (Michel Robin) is kidnapped in Mexico, traditional detective methods (practiced by Depardieu's character) fail, and the company psychiatrist (Andre Valardy) comes up with a notion that can only be called screwy. It's his contention that a gumshoe as luckless and accident-prone as the girl is the only hope for finding her. Enter Richard, who, much to the chagrin of Depardieu, becomes the "official" investigator. From there the film chugs along as a series of great gags based on this concept -- while a weird, and finally touching, camaraderie develops between the leads.

Not brilliant filmmaking, but it's perfectly serviceable to the story. Which is as it should be.

Thursday, June 2, 2011

Capital Strings Concert in Portland on June 10, 2011

Capital Strings Spring Concert
Stephen Keskemethy, Conductor

Friday, June 10, 2011, 7:30 pm

Woodfords Congregational Church
202 Woodford Street; Portland, Maine

Donations accepted for Pineland Suzuki School and Woodfords Church, Reception following

Music of Tchaikovsky, Hindemith, Haydn, Corelli, Mozart

Brahms double concerto with
Alex Smith, violin; Jon Moody, cello; Chiharu Naruse, piano