Foreign Language Week at Mater Christi School was celebrated March 14-18 when a mixture of experiences was offered to the students helping to immerse them in a variety of cultures and languages.
On Tuesday, the students and teachers were invited to wear clothes the colors of a chosen flag instead of their school uniforms. The hot lunch staff entered into the spirit of the week by dedicating each day’s menu to the culture of a particular country including Mexican, British, Italian, Irish, and German dishes. Morning intercom prayers and announcements were spoken in a different language each day by students, using the languages of their ethnic backgrounds, including Greek, Spanish, German, and, of course, French.
Mme. Giron and Mme Thomas, French teachers at Mater Christi School, not only organized the various aspects of each day’s activities but also the school-wide International Festival which took place on Friday. The entire afternoon was devoted to this project. The two French teachers invited MCS families to present either their native country or a country they have visited. Booths were set up all around the school gym and each booth included one or more adult family members who used a variety of means to share their family’s traditional culture. These presentations included visual displays, food samples, typical clothing, art, music, games, and short movies.
The afternoon began with a video created by the French teachers and Mr. Mike Early, the school’s tech advisor, which featured individual staff and teachers and their descriptions of the various countries in which they have lived or visited. A highlight and final event of this special afternoon was the performance by three musicians of thesong “Ngoma Ya Kwetu.” The performers sang the song in Swahili and accompanied it with guitar, bass drums and a dance kick. One of the performers, Bila Bogre, is a seventh grader at Mater Christi School.
One of the best parts of the entire afternoon in terms of the students probably was the opportunity to nibble one’s way around the entire gym going from booth to booth where they were actually encouraged to eat during class time!
Looking back on the week, everyone agreed that not only the festival but each day of the entire week had provided a very enjoyable learning opportunity for everyone involved. View more photos by visiting our SmugMug page.
Sister Joanne LaFreniere, RSM
Director of Public Relations and Spiritual Life