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Château De La Baudonnière
On Sunday 6th September the Year 7 pupils set off for our annual visit to the Château de la Baudonnière. Set in nearly 100 acres of beautiful Normandy countryside, the Château is an old manor house that has been converted into a year-round study and activity centre for UK school groups. As in previous years, our pupils undertook a wide range of hands-on activities: orienteering, bread-making, assault courses, aeroball, climbing, canoeing, circus skills, archery and French lessons. The instruction is entirely in French, so every activity and every meal is in fact a French lesson! The adults never cease to be amazed at the progress the children make in terms of confidence and understanding.
We also visited the lively and colourful market at Dinan, explored the abbey at the amazing Mont Saint Michel, and dressed in our best comedy French outfits to try snails at the traditional “soirée française”. We enjoyed a wide range of beautifully prepared French food in the Château’s main dining room, a wonderfully atmospheric space with vintage posters, chandeliers and exposed beams. We sang songs and ate toasted marshmallows while sitting around a campfire and watching the sun go down. And we were blessed throughout the entire week with the most perfectly warm and sunny weather you could wish for in September.
Since returning to school, the children have been exploring exciting ways to use their new iPads, using a French keyboard layout and spellchecker to create and refine their trip diaries, which they have been able to send to their teachers for marking in electronic format, prior to using them as a basis for their projects.