Aero: Henry Livingston – France 2018 – Life at School

Aero: Henry Livingston - France 2018 - Life at School

Aero: Henry Livingston – France 2018 – Life at School

William Livingston

Henry Livingston

My expectations regarding French public schools were previously undeveloped, owing to my homeschooled education. However, my experience at FLCC gave me a degree of comparison to which I could contrast my observations of French high schools and colleges. The experience showcased an array of differences between American schools and French ones, although there were a multitude of striking similarities.

Initially, I was struck by the schedule to which the students abided, being that it resembled a typical American college student’s agenda. Throughout the week the students were required to arrive at the school at various different times depending on their first class and were allowed to leave at different times depending on the day of the week, albeit usually much later than in America.

The school facilities themselves were not too dissimilar to those in American schools, but there were additions which allowed the students to obtain a certain degree of freedom that would typically not be permitted in American schools. The students only lounge and the ability to go outside, provided the atmosphere with a tone of respect and independence. Additionally, the school furthered this aspect by giving short breaks throughout the day, allowing the students to socialize and refocus on the material.

The classes I attended during my visit usually included some form of public speaking or student collaboration, the classes were typically less focused on lecturing and more on project work. Similar to American high schools, students were often involved with side conversations and other distractions. I did not notice an abundance of technology being used in the class room, compared to various American institutes, but they did not appear to be suffering as a result.

The structure of the educational system in France also differs greatly form the American model, with the grade numbers gradually decreasing as the students become older. The students are also required to affirm their proposed major while still in high school, which is a vastly different idea than is taught in most American high schools.

Perhaps one of the most notable differences between French and American schools is the lunch component. The meals at the school were prepared and distributed in an immensely different fashion to those commonly found in American high schools. The variety of options available to students and the quality of the cuisine was extremely high. In general, I think that the meals offered at the school were significantly healthier, despite the abundance of items like bread.

The class periods were roughly equal to those of American high schools and the subjects that they taught were similar. However, I did notice that the schools offered a larger variety of language classes in proportion to the size of the institution.

Overall the content of the education appeared to be comparable to most American standards. What really separates the French schools from the American institutions is the trust and respect they place in their students.

Henry Livingston
Study Abroad – France 2018 @ FLCC

World Languages @ FLCC: France Study Abroad 2018

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