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Classe bilangue sixieme.

(14 Posts)
pinkhousesarebest Mon 21-Jan-13 22:31:41

We are trying to chose between two colleges for ds1, and would be grateful for some advice. One offers German and French from sixieme. The other ( our preferrred option as very academic ) only offers English. We speak English at home and ds is reading Alex Ryder etc like his cousins in the UK though his written English is behind. He has a good level of German having done four years in primaire.
I would like him to continue with German, but it seems ridiculous to throw away the natural advantage that he would have by dispensing with English altogether. But then, would he be wasting his time in English, and should I just do a bit with him at home myself ( am a teacher ). Or just go with the less academic option and then he can do both.

Sorry, this is a stream of consciousness. Must go to bed..

laptopwieldingharpy Tue 22-Jan-13 00:07:59

depends on so many factors…where you are, where you'll be for the next 8 years and where he is likely to go to Uni…..

Are you likely to be there for the long run? Are you happy to give him support at home for English?
There is also a cultural component to studying in either language no? how do you feel about that?

pinkhousesarebest Tue 22-Jan-13 11:47:32

We have been here a loooooong time. Kids were born here, and they will do their third level education here. Only four hours of language teaching per week anyway, but I would prefer him to have somthing interesting to do in thoses four hours.

frenchfancy Tue 22-Jan-13 21:15:37

If you are in France then I am very surprised that English isn't offered. I thought it was obligitory. Normally LV1 is Enligsh then LV2 is spanish or German. Some colleges don't offer LV2 until 4eme. I guess if you are near the German border then German might be LV1

I certainly wouldn't use it as a reason to chose one college over another. Chose the best college for your DS then work with the languages.

jenpetronus Tue 22-Jan-13 22:12:17

It's tricky. I think English is the more important language, but to what level he needs it really depends on his future plans. If he went to the college that offers English & French could he maybe have extra German lessons or a tutor?

I'm in a similar position - my DS1 (2 when we arrived) is also heading to sixieme at the rentree - his English (reading & writing) is very good (KS3) but he's expected to do Breton instead shock I think any language is of benefit, but you have to weigh up what will be most useful long term imho

Bonsoir Wed 23-Jan-13 08:23:04

Difficult. Your DS will be bored stupid if he goes to English class for beginners in 6ème but IMVHO those Anglophone/bilingual DC who go through the French system and never taking English classes often read English fluently by Terminale but their writing leaves an awful lot to be desired (and parents can be quite naive about this).

pinkhousesarebest Wed 23-Jan-13 08:55:50

Thank you all for your responses. Jenpetronus, I feel your pain, we had to take Irish up to O level ( old).
frenchfancy English is offered, as is German. He would have an option to take up English again in quatrieme, I think, if he opted for German now.
Bonsoir yes I agree about the quality of his writing. I worked a lot with him until the end of CE2, and then I stopped, as I thought that if he was perfectly literate it would be even worse in Sixieme. I think we may go with the option of German now, English later.

Bonsoir Wed 23-Jan-13 09:20:49

I am going to have similar issues in a couple of years from now, as I want to move my DD from EaB Monceau after primary. My top choice school does offer bilingual English, but my second choice school (and, realistically, her chances of getting a place there are higher than at my first choice school) does not. I tend to think that the most important thing in secondary is academics and pastoral and that languages, perhaps more than any other subject, can be learned well (better) outside school.

pinkhousesarebest Wed 23-Jan-13 10:29:39

Ah pastoral care, another can of worms here. This school asks pupils likely to do badly in their Bac to enter themselves independently to preserve their 100% status.

Bonsoir Wed 23-Jan-13 10:34:40

Hmm. My DSSs' school (my second choice for DD) has fabulous pastoral care. But it is a very small Catholic school - not a huge state lycée, most of which are dire when it comes to pastoral care.

pinkhousesarebest Wed 23-Jan-13 10:40:23

Our second choice is like that exactly. Results are not as good, but maybe because they are more honest in their approach, ie don't jettison.
I am actually hoping that the decision will be taken out of our hands, and that he will not be selected... also have to think of dd trundling along behind as ideally would want them in the same school.

Bonsoir Wed 23-Jan-13 10:45:01

You definitely need to explore how schools get their results - a lot of culling goes on in some lycées. And you need to know what school leaver destinations are, as that says a lot about them too. Lycees without a prépa or where no pupils go on to prépa are to be avoided, IMVHO.

pinkhousesarebest Wed 23-Jan-13 10:56:11

How to get this information though. Even getting the results of the brevet was a challenge.

Bonsoir Wed 23-Jan-13 11:57:10

Talking to parents who have already had several children at or go through a school is the best way.

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