International travel at Codman Academy provides a rich Expeditionary Learning experience to our foreign language students (11th/12th graders). Up to 10 students participate, having been selected through a rigorous application process. The goals of the “Live the Language” program are twofold: improve students’ French language skills, and provide them with authentic cultural experiences. Upon returning, students share their linguistic, personal, and cultural growth with the broader community.
To achieve the goal of language acquisition, students track their vocabulary development and grammar acquisition during the trip; they also take pre- and post- trip French assessments to measure their language growth. In order to provide students with authentic cultural experiences, the expedition to France balances visits to cultural sites like the Arc de Triomphe and the Louvre museum with visits to less touristic neighborhoods, such as Barbès-Rochechouart or the northern suburbs of Marseille. This leads to deeper reflection on what makes a French city and what it means to be French. Some neighborhoods we visit are severely underserved.
The most authentic aspect of "Live the Language" is when each student is immersed in a French home for a few days. Thanks to a strong partnership with Lycée Condorcet (a high school outside of Lyon), students are paired up with French counterparts who become their hosts during the visit to Lyon. Through “Franglais,” a closed social networking site, students communicate with their host families before leaving the US, and many students keep up ties with their families after returning from the France expedition.
For more information on our past and future iterations of "Live the Language," see below: