I'm in high school here in Canada for more than one month, and I noticed a lot of differences between France’s school and Canada’s school. You can see a picture of my school above.
First of all, the canadian students have to choose four subjects called “courses” here. According to what I understood, they can choose two academics courses like maths, sciences, french, english… And two “fun” courses, for example, music, dance, drama, photography, cooking class,... They have those same four subjects during one semester and they can choose four others for the second part of the year. So they have the same schedule everyday for five months ! Each class lasts 75 minutes, which is think is pretty long, but we only have four classes in a school day so that’s finally really short for me.
The school is really different and I was so surprised at first. People can eat, listen to music and do whatever they want in class. We always use our phones or laptops to work and we are really independent. The relationship between the students and the teacher is really nice. The teachers are kindly, patients and they talk easily about their families, their lives or what they did last weekend ! Sometimes when we see some teachers in the hallway, they high-five us, talk to us and sometimes give us cookies. They want teenagers to feel comfortable in the high school. That’s why after the first few days after back to school, I went on a three days camp called “Leadership Camp” organized by the school. It was an opportunity to meet the other students by doing a lot of activities. We had some teams and we were in a really nice place where we slept in some cabins. Some games were organized in order to get to know the other. We also talked about teamwork, our goals in life and other things, that was so cool !
A few weeks ago, it was the spirit week, one day we had to dress as our best friend, another day we had to wear orange clothes and a talent show has been organized. We also spent a day doing games, colouring and the teachers brought breakfast for everybody. After that, we went for a huge walk in the town and that was really welcoming. I was also surprised to see how casual everybody dress here ! Most of the people wear sweatpants, sweater and flip-flop.
I personally chose Photography for first period. I really enjoy it because we have a lot of differents projects and we can borrow the school’s cameras which are really good. Last week, we had a field trip, it means that we leave the high school for a day because we have a project with one of our classes. On this field trip, we went to downtown Ottawa, which is an almost 25 minutes drive. There, we were put into groups and we had to take specific pictures of architecture or people. Then we had a free time to eat anywhere we wanted with our friends. We went to the mall, there’s something really cool in there, which is a place where there all the different fast food and a huge room with tables to sit and eat. This is really good idea because my friends and I could take different lunch but still eat together. Besides, teachers are really trusting with the students to let us leave by ourselves.
My second class is English, it’s really interesting and I learn a lot about the language. The lesson is always divided in differents parts: Sometimes, we start by reading silently on our own, because there are a lot of books at our disposal. Then, we read aloud one by one, a Shakespeare's play called “The Merchant of Venice”. It’s written in old english so there are a lot of words that I don’t understand, but it’s so helpful to learn the pronunciation and the accent ! We also write some essays about diverse thesis. It can be for example, our opinion about social medias or how a series sometimes give a bad representation about high school or real life in general. We usually write some essays about a specific question asked by the teacher and we have to think about some benefits and some drawbacks. It is really interesting and I love the fact that we talk about actual things.
There is also a website where we often go and we have to answer some quizzes about grammar, conjugation, sentence structures or even punctuation. The original thing is that at the beginning, when we signed in, we had to choose our favorites movies/series and I was wondering why. Actually, on our exercices we have to correct some sentences for example, and the sentences are about our favorite movie, like “Hagrid told Harry potter…” and I love how playful the classes always are !
Right after my english class, we have a break to eat our lunches, even if it’s only 10:50 AM ! We have 50 minutes until we go back to class. That was so early for me at the beginning, but now I really enjoy it. We bring our own food because the school’s food is apparently terrible. Besides, we never sit and eat on tables, we usually walk while we’re eating or we just sit on the stairs. And our lunches are always sandwiches or wraps!
At 11:35 AM, I have Civics and Careers, in this class we talk about racism, women abuses, human traffic and other causes like those ones. It’s really interesting but most of the time we don’t have to do anything and a lot of students watch some movies.
My last class of the day is Personal Fitness and this is my favorite one! I met a lot of girls (boys and girls are divided for this class) and I enjoy it a lot. We are often in a room with different machines and weights and we have some fitness circuits. Every mondays, we go run in a park. On tuesdays and fridays, we have yoga, TRX or health lesson. I enjoy this class so much !
That’s all about my school day, thanks for reading !