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Making the most of the bilingualism of our school, the premières ‘bilingues’ and the premiere IB students had a linguistic exchange in order to speak French and English and learn about each other. Both classes are nearly half way through their final two-year course and had a go at using their language skills to prepare for next year’s assessment. The IB practiced themes in their immediate environment such as sports, school and the house. The bilinguals created a quiz about immigration facts to introduce a rather controversial activity: with a list of stereotypical words such as : delinquents, women, suburbs or foreigners, students had to write down associated words as it came to their minds. Then discussions occurred, giving an opportunity to break down prejudices, thanks to research and talks the bilingual students had had in previous classes. Here are some of the students appreciations of the experience:

  1. Fabio : “This was a way of getting to know the IB students better. They have a different culture and language but they are like us.”

  2. Maguette : “It was nice to exchange ideas between different sections and learn what prejudices others have. Our prejudices are different but they seemed to agree among themselves. As we changed groups, the same words came back, which we hadn’t mentioned when we did the activity. For example, for black people, most of them said « rappers ».

  3.  Scotty : “When we did the French speaking class, I noticed that the girls groups asked us about cooking, and the boys asked about sports. To me, this is already a cliché, so I was glad, the following week to have a debate on prejudices.”

  4. Dimitri : “We sometimes disagreed but mostly, we shared the same opinion.”

  5. Leo and Allan : “It was a great experience. We had never spoken to these people before even though we are a small school.”

  6.  Justine and Sarah : “It was a really nice and open minded experience and it showed that different cultures can think together.” Thank you to the students for their enthusiastic participation and to the teachers for organising!

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