HoW’s ThE wEaThEr ToDaY ?

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Hi parents !

The weather’s been crazy lately, so here is an appropriate song to talk about the sun, the rain, the wind or even the snow 🙂 Oh, and don’t forget to mime accordingly !

Le temps a fait des siennes ces derniers temps, voici donc une chanson appropriĂ©e pour parler du soleil, de la pluie, du vent et mĂŞme de la neige 🙂 Et n’oubliez pas de faire les gestes qui vont avec !

PS : Nous savons parler de toutes sortes de temps, n’hĂ©sitez donc pas Ă  demander Ă  votre enfant “How’s the weather ?” pour le faire parler du temps !

Enjoy !

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LiKe HisToRy ?

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Well then, here is one movie for you ! History at its best, combined with wonderful filming. People did gather to talk about it at the end of the show, that says it all ! Do watch the original version if you can, it’s worth it (but with subtitles on, please !)

“BoMbE cYcLoNiQuE” aUx EtAtS-uNis

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Ce dĂ©but d’annĂ©e (“turn of the year”) est pour le moins animĂ© ! TempĂŞte Carmen ou ElĂ©anore en France ; de l’autre cĂ´tĂ© de l’Atlantique (“on the other side of the pond”, comme les AmĂ©ricains aiment Ă  dire en parlant de nous); la cĂ´tĂ© est des Etats-Unis et du Canada a mĂŞme Ă©tĂ© visitĂ©e par un phĂ©nomène de “bombe cyclonique” ! Pas très rassurant !

Voyez plutĂ´t le rĂ©sultat en vidĂ©o …

Oh et pour ceux qui envisageraient une excursion aux chutes du Niagara, voici ce qui vous attend 🙂

If I wErE qUeEn ElIzAbEtH II, I wOuLd HaVe SaId …

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Bertrand and Véronique have been working on a speech that Princess Elizabeth could have said on the day she was crowned as Queen Elizabeth II. Here is a speech Her Majesty could have given, instead of the actual one 🙂

Today, the Kingdom of Great Britain has just started a new part of its story.

It’s a great honor to become your Queen, I’m very proud to assume this duty.

Since childhood, I have been prepared to take over my late father’s position. He set for me an example which I shall always follow.

As you know, our country was involved in the Second World War, and the role we played in the conflict is still fresh in our memory, we went through it together. We fought, we won and we survived. We showed to the world how determinate and united we are.

Now, the task to build lies ahead of us, as Queen of United Kingdom and Head of the British Commonwealth, I promise you to promote our interests in the world, I’ll work every day and every night for my country and peace, first of all in Europe, and in the other parts of the world. Active measures will be taken to achieve that goal.

I and my family will serve the British people with fidelity, uprightness and loyalty. My husband supports me. He shares my point of view on my duties and my affection for you.

I’ll work with the Prime Minister, the government to secure justice and peace in our country, the UK, the Commonwealth and our Colonial Empire.

 I’ll build contacts around the world to represent our great power, and I’ll continue to meet the heads of states, to spread the British’s influence all over the world.

A TiMe Of WaR : tO mY cHiLd In ExIlE (3)

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Last, but not least in our series on war children, here is a letter that Anne-Marie sent to her children, who were sent away in a rush. Enjoy 🙂

My beloved children,

I thought I’d write you a few words because during your evacuation I was focused on the preparation of your journey that I didn’t have time. I hope that the sandwiches, apples and chocolate were enough to feed you. You forgot your small bag for washing things and clothes in your bedroom! I suppose the labels pinned on your coats with your name, home address, school and the host family’s address were very helpful in avoiding mistakes. I hope you will not have to use the gas mask given to you by the government.

As you know it has become too dangerous to live in London which has been the target of the German Air Force, the Luftwaffe, since September. The air force flies over every night and drops bombs. And I have to tell you that London is really not a place for children at this sad moment. Life is quite difficult. At the moment, the biggest nuisance is that we’re unable to get a bath, to haircut or to visit your grandparents without being disturbed by the raids. Nearly all the main-line and suburban stations are closed. Your school has been destroyed. But you must not worry about me and your father, my sweet children. We are alright and think a lot about you!

Your host family owns a farm in Dartmeet, Davon where raids are less likely to happen. Your cousins went to Cornwall but unfortunately they have had to split. The neighbors’ children went to Canada. It is so far away!

I hope that you will return home after a few weeks, but get ready to stay as long as London is not be safe. Enjoy the country and life on a farm. You can watch cows and understand where milk comes from, and see carrots growing in fields and eaten by wild rabbits! I am sure you will make local friends and show them that the ‘townies’ are interesting to know!

I look forward to your next letter. Dad and I are proud of you and send to you our love.

A TiMe Of WaR : tO mY cHiLd In ExIlE (2)

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Today, we continue our series about the Battle of Britain, with a dialogue from Mireille to “her evacuated child”. It’s getting emotional … Enjoy !

“Hi, sugar, how was your night   ? I need you to be fit form for your travel 

– Good morning Mum, I haven’t slept very well. Actually it was quite a  nightmare  I dreamed that a  bomb destroyed our house and I wasn’t able to find you . I’m not sure I want to go to my cousins anymore. I’m too afraid   to leave you alone in London.

– I understand why you are so upset, but it’s quite impossible for you to stay in London any longer. : Your school doesn’t work anymore, the groceries shops are nearly empty, and it’s difficult to have anything else than potatoes. With your aunt Emily and your cousins, you’ll have quiet nights, good food and the village’s school is so nice. I have to remain here  because they need me in the  hospital , but as soon as I can I’ll go  to Emily’s.

– Yes, but who is going to help you if a bomb hurts you?

– I promise I’ll be very cautious, and I’ll be with you at Xmas Time. So you’ll be able to take care of me… Come on kid , it’s time to go to the train station !” 

A TiMe Of WaR : tO mY cHiLd In ExIlE

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Hello friends and students and strangers 🙂

These days, we’ve been talking about Elizabeth II, getting to know her life. Part of it involves talking about the Battle of Britain (or the “Blitz”), an episode of WWII.

Here is something to refresh your memory, if need be 🙂
(Don’t forget to add the subtitles, if it goes too fast for you !)

As you probably saw in the video, many children were evacuated from London at the time of the Blitz. They found shelter in the countryside, away from the bombings, but also from their parents.

Part of the students’ work involved writing a conversation / letter from a parent to his/her child, explaining the reasons of this “exile”. As always, they have labored hard, and the result is worth sharing.

Today, I present you VĂ©ronique’s letter 🙂

The scene takes place at the Birkins’. Mr. and Ms. Birkin are telling their daughter, Ann, that she will be evacuated.

Ann, darling, we have to tell you something, come here, and take a seat. We’re going through dark days here in London, as in the whole country because of this war. Life here is very dangerous, every night the town is bombed and every night, lots of people are killed. We fear for you, and we want to protect you. That’s why we have decided you should be evacuated with others children.

 – But you say that life is dangerous in the whole country, I don’t want to leave you, I don’t understand why I have to be evacuated, and not you ?

– Life in the countryside is less dangerous, you have to go there. We, parents, have responsibilities. First, we must take care of you, children, you are the future of Great Britain. And because we love you more than anything else in the world, never forget that, we want you to trust us, and to go there.

– We would rather be with you but we have to stay here. It’s our duty to help people. We have so many things to do to help our country, to protect freedom. We have to relieve elderly people, to assist everywhere we are useful. Some people are injured, they need us. We are committed to help our country, showing we are united.- Tell me, when do I have to leave ? I’m so sad to go far from you, I’m afraid, but I want to show you that you can be proud of me. How will I hear from you ? How long will it be before I see you again ?

Dear Ann, your school is organizing transportation of its pupils, and some teachers are volunteers to accompany their pupils. That’s why you will take train on Saturday, early in the morning. You will join Ms Kipling’s group. You won’t be alone, there will be thousands of children, and you will travel with your friends. We can’t tell you if we’ll be able to send you news, that’s why we’ll put letters in your suitcase. Then, you’ll bring our words with you, and we hope they will help you to remain the same positive and cheerful girl. You’ll stay far from us until we’ll be sure that you are completely safe here, in town. It might take weeks, maybe months … at the moment, we don’t know, unfortunately.

– I love you dad and mom, and I’ll do my best, and I’ll count each day before seeing you again, and I’ll pray for you and for my country.

Well done VĂ©ro !

oN sChOoL uNiFoRmS (3)

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Aujourd’hui, c’est le tour d’Anne-Marie de nous donner son avis. Encore un autre style 🙂


My opinion about school uniforms

I am the mother of two children who are now adults. But I have an experience about school uniform because my children were in the same catholic private high school in Marseille. I remember that they would wear a uniform when a special event was held: Christmas and Easter parties, award celebrations, end-of-year celebrations…They were very proud to wear their school uniform on these occasions despite its bad quality. The jacket was made of a rough fabric, and girls and boys wore black trousers and a white blouse or shirt. I think for them it was a way to show that they belonged to a community with good values.
However I don’t believe that a mandatory uniform prevents social discrimination. School is a way of socializing for children who hail from different social classes. At school pupils get the chance to discover and get to know others pupils that are very different from them. They have to deal with that and to open their mind to other life habits. This confrontation is not only necessary but also very useful to live together in a society. If the uniform is mandatory, the children don’t compare their clothes but they compare other items such as school supplies, schoolbags, shoes, watches, hair styles…as well as parents’ profession or cars, holiday resorts/destinations and so on… For me, the most important thing is to accept the differences between people.
In my opinion the right to wear clothes that/what we want to wear is an essential liberty, particularly in France, the country of secularism.

oN ScHoOl UnIfOrMs (2)

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Toujours sur le thème des uniformes, voici à présent le point de vue de Véro.
As usual, feel free to leave your comments, she (we all) would love your feedback !


If a debate on school uniform was held, I would find advantages for students and families.

First of all, the advantage of the uniform is decency. Everybody will agree. School policy usually states that pupils have to come to school in decent clothes. But being decent doesn’t mean the same thing for all of us.

Can we show our belly button, our underwear, can we wear torn clothes ? All these questions meet different opinions. School policy anticipates these scenarios, but there are a lot of situations which are not expected, and which can be the first step toward disagreements.

I remember a headline about a pupil who came to school with blue hair whereas the day before, she had blond or brown hair. The school forbade her to come in, and the parents were very surprised and angry with the school. Ok, school uniform will not resolve this problem, but it can give a picture of dissenting views.

Moreover, I think that a school uniform should be less expensive for families. Lots of teenagers are drawn by brands, buying new clothes even if they don’t need them. School uniform could cut down clothes consumption. On the other hand, teenagers may feel frustrated not to have a full dressing room, enabling them to impress their friends and others teenagers.

Teenagers may think they choose clothes that are different, but they all look alike and actually, follow the same dress code.

Then, a school uniform may meet this need, and may be a good way of relieving kids from “clothes stress”.

A school uniform could help pupils not to feel judge by the others and instead, focus on their attitude and work.

Wearing a school uniform could allow pupil to come in a new skin. They are not judged about their clothes, but they can also adopt another way of being, because a uniform inspires respect. Self-respect, and respect for others. We won’t have the same behaviour if we wear a uniform or basic clothes. First, because a uniform is fit for a good posture and also as when you wear a uniform, you are representing an organization or your school, and you belong in your place. A school uniform could increase pupil’s sense of pride in the school.

This said, I can tell about the flip side of the issue.

First, what about parent’s responsibility ? Why are parents unable to tell their children that they can’t go to school carelessly or with inappropriate clothes ? Do we need government help ?

If we erase the difference between pupils with school uniforms, aren’t we sheltering them from the future? Differences exist, and we have to deal with them.

What about teenager’s feelings ? Do they want to be identified as belonging to le lycée Raynouard, or Jeanne d’Arc, in Brignoles ? Sure, we’ll see these children belong to a group, but we’ll also see the boundaries, and these boundaries set the children apart according to their school. Some of my neighbours go to Jeanne d’Arc, I think they are the same as my children, and I don’t want a uniform creates two foreign worlds.

At last, I think that choosing and wearing your own clothes to go to school is comforting, as your clothes reflect who you are, what you like, you can chose something comfortable or fancy, depending on your mood, the day, the weather ..

It’s like saying a poem : some children can say a poetry without moving, but some children need to balance their body just to be concentrated.

The first case is ideal : good pupil, staying motionless, saying his/her poem.

In the second case, what is better ? Being able to say the poem balancing his body or having to stay immobile, but unable to say the poem because he/she doesn’t feel at ease ?

I’m not sure that wearing a school uniform is a good answer against antisocial behaviour, academic failure, absenteeism…

It could look like a failure for modern society.