Although the adventure in France hasn't started quite yet, I figured that I would make a quick post to recap the events of orientation, so that the parents can see the different activities that we did, and so that the stagiaires will be able to look back and reminisce.
Let's take a look!
One of the first activities required the stagiaires to tap into their creative side. After being split up into groups of two or three, each stagiaire had to draw the other, trying their best to illustrate both one interesting thing about themselves and one goal they had for the program. They then had to present their partner to the rest of the group. As you might imagine, this lead to some pretty great drawings.
2. Traversing the river of molten caramel atop magical crêpes.
For this activity, as the title suggests, the stagiaires had to face the perils of the river of molten caramel with the help of enchanted crêpes and a couple of friendly druids. Basically, the group was split into five and was then given a certain number of crêpes and was told that the entire group (that is, all five of the mini-groups) had to make it across together. Should they leave someone behind, fall into the river, or even talk ('twas a silent activity!), they would be magically transported back to the start line and would have repartir à zéro.
After a couple unfortunate dunks in the caramel river, the stagiaires succeeded, learning that, just as it was important to work together to cross the river, they will need to work together this summer in order to make the program a success. (They also learned that they have to be really careful not to let go of the crêpes, lest they be carried off by the caramel river's strong current!)
3. Parler français, c'est s'amuser!
The final activity involved the creation of the slogan above. Basically, aside from sounding really neat, the idea of this activity was to create a small phrase that would serve as a reminder of the importance of taking full advantage of the program while in France, as well as the importance of sticking with the Honor Code while abroad.
Although the summaries and pictures above are certainly representative of what we did during orientation, it should also be said that we spent a fair amount of time discussing the trip (more specifically, what concerns the stagiaires might have and how best to approach certain situations), hearing from our veteran stagiaires (Thanks Mina, JZ, Dixie, Rachel, and Cecily!), and getting a glimpse of the transition from English to French.
Wrapping up this post, let me just say that we truly had a great time meeting everyone (both stagiaires and parents alike!) and cannot wait to get to know everyone better in the coming months (only a month left before the start of the program!!!). We've no doubt that this summer is going to be a blast!
p.s. In an attempt to keep the blog as clutter-free as possible, I've decided to upload the remaining photos to Picasa: Follow this link to see more pics!
p.p.s. If you haven't joined the Facebook groups yet, what are you waiting for!? Just follow the links below and join!
p.p.p.s. We also have a team Facebook account if you'd like to add us: Équipe St. Brieuc
p.p.p.p.s. As Larry said during orientation, we also have an Instagram, which I will do my best to use while in France: http://instagram.com/iuhpflstbrieuc2013