My day as a student in Paris typically consists of taking language class in the morning, thinking about how to order gelato in French in the afternoon, and sleeping very well at night. The beauty of this Teen Summer Language Camp in France is that, while we have a scheduled plan for our trip, a typical day truly does not exist.
From the Louvre to the Champs Elyseés to the Arc de Triomphe, I can look forward to taking the metro to a new adventure every day. Life as a student in Paris is everything I had dreamed of yet nothing I could’ve anticipated. The ability to experience the culture of France is thrilling, educational, beautiful, and even a bit overwhelming at moments.
Classes take place from 9 a.m. to 12 p.m. on weekdays. The group next hops on the metro, follows through with the excursion on the itinerary, has a couple hours to explore during free time, and then we go home and have dinner with our host family.
I have also had the chance to roam my neighborhood after dinner in Bondoufle, France, and meet kids and teenagers who reside here. This is fun and beneficial, as it has helped me to better understand the community.
In class, we are separated into groups of beginning, intermediate, and advanced language proficiency. However, we all remain in the same classroom so there doesn’t feel like a divide between levels, and we are able to interact with each other consistently.
We go through lessons by using workbooks, speaking out loud, and conversing with each other. It is a great start to the day, and helps us to communicate in Paris and with our host family, which isn’t as terrifying as one may believe.
Staying with a host family can sometimes be a bit daunting at times, but it doesn’t have to be. Take everything lightly and laugh a lot. Don’t be afraid to ask if you need something.
Studying basic French phrases before arriving is very helpful; however, do not stress out about being perfect. It’s okay if your pronunciation isn’t spot on or if you miss a verb tense. Locals are most likely worried about connecting with you, just as you are with them.
Go with the flow and enjoy every moment. And pinch yourself because you’re in Paris! At least that’s what I do whenever the Eiffel Tower is in sight! Try all the food your host family makes, hang out with all the Greenheart Travel students, and mess up while ordering food. Lastly, make every day in France pure magic, although one doesn’t have to try too hard.
About the Author:
Angelique Ayoade is 17-years-old, from Asheville, North Carolina and is a Greenheart Travel Global Explorer Scholarship winner for our Teen Summer Language Camp in France! Angelique believes “interacting with people of a different culture and learning is a step towards raising up unity, empathy and love for people globally.” Follow her adventures here!