Bonjour tout le monde! Maintenant c’est moi, Debbie, qui prends le relai pour le blog de notre visite et service à Guebwiller!
Yesterday (Tuesday) Marie Laure and I visited the four service sites to drop off evaluation sheets for the students, to speak with their supervisors, and to see how they were doing. We were able to see GS in action. We were encouraged to hear each maîtresse comment on the willingness of the students to get involved in the class activities, to lend a hand; whether it be Abby, Christina, or Shannon reading a story, Abby zipping up a coat, Kinsey trying to comfort a little girl during recess, or Nathan playing a game with a group of boys, it was clear that even if speaking French did not come easily to some, their desire and ability to be of help were strong and true.
After our visit to our service sites, we met up with a retired English teacher from the Lycée Kastler, Suzanne Thuet. She participated in the exchange in the late ’80’s, staying with my family in Newtown. In the ensuing years, we have remained in contact, and she has often hosted me when I have helped lead the service/exchange trip in the past. We visited the picturesque towns of Riquewihr and Eguisheim, both with old town centers with houses built in the 15th and 16th centuries. Interesting random fact: Both of these towns escaped destruction during the liberation of Alsace in 1945….largely because they weren’t on any maps at the time. Lucky for us today.
Today (Wednesday) the students spent the day with their “correspondants” accompanying them to classes at the Lycée Kastler. One of the classes that I attended was a senior literature class of 23 students. The French system is one where the students have classes that last one or two hours, but they do not have as much homework as a typical GS student. Tomorrow the students will return to their service sites for two more days of work. A bientôt!