A group of 18 students from Bordeaux have arrived in Orange to spend a week at James Sheahan Catholic High School brushing up on their English and exploring parts of Australia they might not normally have the chance to visit.
The French students, from Jeanne D'Arc Assomption school, landed in Sydney last Monday and spent three days in the Harbour City before making their way to Orange for the first exhange between the schools.
Each of the French students has an Australian buddy to stay with.
French coordinator Helen Clarke, who organised the trip from the James Sheahan end, said it was “very exciting” to have the students here for the first time.
“It’s very exciting, it’s the first time we’ve been able to welcome students from France so we’re excited about it,” she said.
The connection between Ms Clarke and Sébastien Bodin was made online through the NSW French Teachers’ Association, and Ms Clarke said Jeanne D’Arc “ticked all the boxes”.
Mr Bodin said
“What is interesting is to go inside the country, not to stay in the tourist places, to see a bit of authenticity,” he said.
Jeanne D’Arc student Adele Pariente said the trip had been “really fun”.
“It’s been good going to different places and different environment and different animals,” she said.
Classmate Hortense Paquet said she was “really happy to be here”.
“I’ve wanted to go outside the big city and see how people live and not just touristy,” she said, adding her English had improved out of sight.
“We think in English sometimes, because we’re always speaking in it.”
James Sheahan year 11 students Ella L’Estrange and Hannah Robinson both said they’d enjoyed hosting Hortense and Adele respectively.
“It’s very different, it’s a little bit strange sometimes … it’s been a little bit strange sometimes but it’s been really different and really exciting and really good,” Hannah said.
Ella said her language skills were improving as a result of the visit.
“We’ve been speaking French to them and if there’s a word we get wrong or a phrase and it’s really shown us how different formalities are used, like little phrases we might not use, that’s been really cool,” she said.
James Sheahan students hosting French students will make the return trip to Bordeaux during the October school holidays next year.
DO YOU WANT MORE ORANGE NEWS?
- Receive our free newsletters delivered to your inbox, as well as breaking news alerts. Sign up below ...