Le Défi de Strasbourg et le Quiz

Bonjour, encore une superbe journée aujourd’hui!

We started our day with some preparation for the parliament. We thought about questions that we may wish to ask the MEP tomorrow and made sure we knew how to ask perfectly in French.

Then, we had to use our creativity and acting skills in ‘le défi de Strasbourg’. We were challenged to create documentaries about Strasbourg in French under a given theme. We also had to include a lot of different tenses (présent, passé composé, imparfait, futur simple, subjonctif). We first went for a coffee with the teachers in small groups and they helped us to plan and write the start of our scripts. They made sure we had some subjunctives!

Once our scripts ready, we headed out with iPads to film and interview. We spent lots of time exploring Strasbourg’s touristic and historical sites, some even went all the way to the European parliament. Everyone really dedicated themselves to the projects with lots of footage and even blooper reels.

We then went back to the hotel to edit our documentaries and Thomas gave us some help if we wanted to add voiceovers, music and text. We worked really hard and the finished documentaries look amazing! We can’t wait to watch them tomorrow night.

Dinner tonight was a huge hit! Spaghetti bolognese went down super well and everyone was pleased with what was on offer.

Then we had our French and European quiz with lots of interesting rounds, including a film quotation round, a music round, a geography round and even a round about our teachers. The winning group were delighted and will receive their prize on Friday.

We have all headed to bed early tonight as tomorrow we will have a very early start and a long but exceptionally exciting day. We feel prepared and can’t wait to meet young people from across Europe and express our opinions on the European stage.

Some Schnitzel and our Sondage

‘Bonjour’ or maybe we should say ‘guten Tag’! Today was once again a very exciting day in Strasbourg… and Kehl!

We started the day with some preparation for the Euroscola day. We worked in our topic groups and discussed the feedback we got from others the night before. We were also given our ‘sondage’, our street survey, to practise and create our own questions which we would later ask to the citizens of Strasbourg.

In the morning we went over the “Pont de l’Europe” and went to Kehl, a city in Germany. Kehl is located just over the border so it was so easy to get there and we took the tram all the way from Strasbourg’s city centre. Thomas taught us about the French and German history of the region and some basic words in German to help us order lunch. Many of us had Schnitzel for lunch along with other German specialities. ‘Ich möchte ein Schnitzel bitte’.

We then walked back over the pedestrian bridge, ‘la passerelle des deux rives’, to France. Of course, we stopped in the middle with one foot in France and one foot in Germany. It was cool to be in two different countries, which have two different languages at the same time!

Then it was time to get back to Strasbourg for our street survey, our ‘sondage’. Our teachers took us to two of Strasbourg’s busiest squares to speak to the locals. Our questions were about Scotland and Europe and there were certainly some interesting answers! Someone thought that Scotland was in the Mediterranean, that Dublin was our country’s capital and we are infamous in Strasbourg for our ginger hair, whisky, bagpipes and of course, the rain.

We then had some free time to buy souvenirs and then headed back to the hotel to discuss our survey answers and share what we found out with the others.

After dinner, we took a long walk to “la Petite France”, the old part of the city which is a UNESCO world heritage sight. Thomas told us lots of more information about the area with some of his ‘fun facts’.

Again, we are all exhausted after a day full of languages, politics and great food. Le marchand de sable va bientôt passer, bonne nuit tout le monde!


Our Euroscola Day

This morning was an early 6am start as we were headed to the parliament. We all looked very smart and ready to be MEPs for the day. We went to the parliament on the coach and then arrived with plenty of time to pass through security.

We were welcomed at the parliament by the ‘animatrices’ and then headed off for coffee and pastries with our fellow students from across Europe. We got the chance to have an informal chat before we headed to the hemicycle.

Beth and Blair presented our group to the other schools and told them a little about our time so far in Strasbourg. They did an amazing job and presented completely in French.

It was then time to pose our questions to a Spanish MEP. What an opportunity! Rowan asked a question about climate change in French. Amazing!

It was then time to head off to lunch and do our Eurogame where we had to team up with young people from other countries to form multilingual European teams of 4. The question were challenging, and even harder because they were in over 17 languages!

Then we went into our discussion groups. We had already researched and prepared our French, Spanish and Italian vocabulary for the different topics and we were ready to go. The discussions were really interesting and it was great to hear different opinions from many countries across Europe.

When we all returned to the hemicycle, we heard from the ‘presidents’ and the ‘reporters’ in each group. They reported back what was discussed in each group and we got to vote on the final proposals.

It was then time for the Eurogame finals. Kyla was one of the finalists and got changed into her lovely blue hoodie and skip cap. Unfortunately she didn’t win but we are super proud of her for making it so far!

It was an exhausting, but amazing day in the parliament and we were ready to head back to the hostel for some time to relax and have dinner.

Them we ceilidhed! We were even joined by some of the French teachers from our school visit yesterday. It was great to celebrate our achievements over the past few days and enjoy ourselves while sharing some Scottish culture.

To finish off, we watched the photos from the week!

It’s been an amazing trip to Strasbourg and we are ready to begin the long journey back home on the coach. À demain!

School Visit and Documentaries

We started the day early and headed on the coach to the small town of Bischwiller, just outside of Strasbourg. We headed to Lycée Jean Maurois, a secondary school linked with Glasgow City Council.

When we arrived, we had a lovely little reception waiting for us with cakes, coffee and tea. We had taken shortbread and Irn Bru for the French students to try too. We got chatting and began to make some new friends.

At the interval, we performed the Gay Gordons with the French students, teaching them all about the Scottish ceilidh dance and performing in front of all the school’s pupils.

Then we got to work on our Strasbourg challenge. We had prepared questions on our themes – Strasbourg, une ville européenne, Strasbourg, une ville touristique, Strasbourg, une ville gastronome, Strasbourg, une ville historique and Strasbourg, une ville multiculturelle. We used the iPads to film our interviews and got some great information from the French students.

The French students had some questions for us too. They wanted to know all about Scotland and had prepared some interview questions for us in English.

Then we headed off to experience a French class. We were in Spanish classes, English classes, geography classes or even philosophy classes. It was really interesting to see how different school is here.

Then we had a traditional Alsace meal of choucroute in the school canteen. The school made this lunch especially for us and it was great to try something traditional from the area. We had lunch with the French students and exchanged numbers and email addresses. Some of them will hopefully join us at our ceilidh on Thursday night at the hostel too! It wasn’t goodbye, it was ‘au revoir’.

Then we headed into the town centre of Strasbourg to finish our documentaries. Everyone took the challenge very seriously! Shooting on location, we interviewed bakeries, restaurants and even spoke to the guides in the tourist information centre. We also had to get as many subjunctives as possible into our films and we got very creative! Our finished documentaries look amazing and we’ll be showing them to one another tomorrow night.

We also had some free time to do some final souvenir shopping and have a last chance to look around the city. The Christmas markets are so beautiful!

This evening, after some Euroscola preparation, we headed to a little bar for our quiz night. With rounds on geography, movies and even our teachers, it was challenging and lots of fun!

Now we have headed to bed early as we will be up bright and early tomorrow for our Euroscola day. We all feel prepared and can’t wait for the trip’s main event. À demain! ¡Hasta mañana!