Hello my lovelies,
Today I’m going to be sharing with you my experiences of being a French exchange student. Back in 2014 I was an exchange student in Bordeaux, France for about one month. So, I want to share with you the comparisons between France and Australia and things you should take note of before going there.
Be prepared for long hours at French school! In Australia, school starts at 9 in the morning and finishes at 3 in the afternoon everyday. This obviously differs in year 12 when students get free periods, and they can leave school earlier.
In France school starts at 8 in the morning and can finish at either 12, 4, or 5 in the afternoon. This really ruined my system when I was there because I had to adjust to a different flow, and I found myself being very fatigued throughout the whole day. However, after a week I did manage to adjust to the flow and new schedule.
One of the main things that shocked me in French school was the fact that smoking was legal, as long as it was outside of the school gate. It was so strange to see all the French students congregate outside of the school and light up a cigarette. This is because in Australia smoking on or anywhere near school premises is the biggest ‘no, no’.
In Australian schools you get around an hour off for lunch and you can either have a packed lunch from home or you can buy something from the canteen. What I hate about Australian is the fact that we are not allowed to eat inside. It’s frustrating during the winter because no one wants to stand outside in the cold and eat their food.
In France students eat indoors in the cafeteria, and they have a hot lunch. They have a ‘plat principle’ which is a main meal, they then can choose from cheese, fruit, yogurt, and a dessert.
In France students do not need to wear a uniform to school and are allowed to wear free dress. This differs from Australia, as in Australia you have to wear a school uniform. I wasn’t really nervous when it came to wearing free dress in France…in fact I was thankful. Let me rant a little, I hate school uniforms in Australia. They are expensive, not comfortable, and are made of the worst material. Personally, I liked wearing my own clothes which I feel comfortable in.
That’s all the comparisons I can think of, and I hope you enjoyed reading this.