Friday, September 9, 2011

La Rentrée - Week One

Fiacra and Ailbhe have finished their first week back to school, Fiacra in CE1 (cours élémentaire 1) and Ailbhe in la grande section. They both had a great week. We haven't fully adjusted sleep-wise to the school schedule yet. Fiacra and Ailbhe didn't fall asleep before 9 any night this week, which then meant that we had to wake Fiacra each morning. This morning when I woke him at 8 (school starts at 9), he said "thanks for waking me Mum, but I'm actually still tired so I'm going to sleep more". I don't think so buddy!

Last year, Ailbhe's teacher was also the principal of the school and Ailbhe always referred to her as "My teacher, the principal". This year Ailbhe's teacher is a guy and she calls him "the man teacher". Ailbhe's class will start to write in script handwriting this year. Ailbhe is very keen and has been practising.

There are definite curriculum differences between France and Canada for Fiacra's age, script handwriting for one. Another that I have particularly noticed is the lack of creative writing in France. I don't think I've seen a single sentence that Fiacra constructed himself. They do read a lot of poetry here which is great but even in JK in Canada, Fiacra's class was drawing pictures and attempting to write a sentence underneath to describe it. I think Fiacra, who has never been a fan of reading or writing by himself, will get a shock when he returns to school in Canada.

It's a bit inconvenient having Fiacra and Ailbhe at different schools. We did have the option of moving Ailbhe to the Ecole Maternelle beside Fiacra's school this year, but she loves her school so in the end we decided not to change her. Finian and I always walk Fiacra to school, while Connell and Ailbhe bike. I really like the time alone with Fiacra. Connell feels the same.

The kids were off school on Wednesday. We went to Finian's doctor in the morning to get medical certificates for Fiacra and Ailbhe, which they need for their Wednesday sports programs, as well as for swimming with their schools. This was their first time to see a doctor in France. In the afternoon, the kids and I biked to the pool in the rain, with surprisingly little complaining.

Today, Connell and I (and Finian) had our first Friday lunch since the beginning of the summer; it was delicious as usual. It was really hot this afternoon, so after lunch, Finian and I went to the water mirror to cool down.

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