Here’s something you might not know: I’m a frenchie. French Immersion since grade 1. In Canada, it’s not really a big deal, but some people are really surprised to know that sometimes. So anyway, I’m writing this post because I wasnt to reflect on being in immersion after finishing my exam this morning.
In elementary school, french immersion is loads of fun. You get to experience a new language that you don’t speak at home which means that for people with siblings like me, parents will never figure out your secret conversations even as you yell across the house. Grade 1, 2 and 3 are full of awesome activities like singing and dancing to educational songs. The songs are so catchy no one realizes they’re learning.
Then comes grade 4-8. These years are less fun because you actually have to learn stuff. Suddenly a ton of grammar flies out of your teacher’s mouth and you suffocate on conjugating verbs left and right. No one enjoys it. And on top of that you start having English lessons. I enjoyed it because I’m a book nerd, but still, spelling tests are the worst.
High School is no a whole lot better. I’m not going to touch on grade 9 because that’s all a blur to me. However, grade 10. Grade 10, this year, french immersion is a mixture of laughable and hellish. Laughable in history classe because the names of everything are just hilarious. Laughable because all you do is have a good time writing songs and dressing up like kids from the 60s. Actual french class though? Hellish. There’s so much grammar no one has ever heard of but the school board somehow expects you to cram it into your brain when it’s obvious come summer it’s melting on the ground like a forgotten grape popsicle.
My final project, which took a moth of going to bed after midnight and staying up until 2 am the last night, was the craziest thing I’ve ever done. In any class. Ever. But after all the hard work comes success. I saw my mark today and I am so happy about it. Knowledge: 100 Application: 100 Thinking: 100 Communication: 95. 5 marks off because of the aforementioned grammar.
The exam this morning was a lot harder than I expected. The grammar was unbelievably difficult though I tried my best. And the analysis of the french article and poetry was okay, but I don’t think I pout enough detail. Exams are only supposed to last 90 minutes but my teacher gave the class two hours, so that was nice. I wrote almost to the very end, with only 10 minutes to spare.
The real point of this exam is to test our knowledge of the things we learned all semester but in essence it’s a memory test. I cannot change the school system, but if I could, crazy exams are not the way to go about it. I wish I could compare my schooling experience to someone in English track but I don’t have anyone to ask. Maybe I’ll get one of my friends to do a guest post one day.