Opportunities to speak, listen to and learn French abound this fall at Penobscot School, Midcoast Maine’s center for foreign language learning and international exchange, located in Rockland.

After beginning with a Friday, Sept. 16 French retreat weekend at Blueberry Cove Camp in Tenants Harbor, weekly French courses kick off Monday, Sept. 19 at the school’s campus at 28 Gay St.

French-speaking faculty include Margot Stiassni-Sieracki from Edgecomb and Winnie Easton-Jones of Rockport, who will be teaching the level 1 and 2 courses. Sieracki’s course “ De Paris à Provence” runs for 12 Monday mornings, 10 a.m. to noon. Easton-Jones’ course “Café au Lait” runs twice-weekly, for six weeks, on Tuesdays and Thursdays, 4:30 to 6 p.m.

Joining the French faculty this term are two native-speakers, Paul Charbonneau, who grew up bi-lingually in Island Falls, R.I. and Paul Sigaud, a journalist from France.

Charbonneau is offering students of an advanced level of fluency secrets to “owning their French.” His class is called “Oyez bonnes gens”, (“Here ye good people”) and is organized as four Friday morning classes plus a Saturday. Through conversation and writing assignments, students will have the chance to solidify vocabulary and acquire a treasure trove of French idiomatic expressions.

For the past four years, he has facilitated bi-weekly French conversations at the Rockport Public Library. His undergraduate degree is from the University of Ottawa and he holds a masters degree in interdisciplinary studies from the University of Maine. His background includes more than 25 years experience working with groups in various educational settings and contexts.

Paul Sigaud (and also his wife, Armelle) are European journalists whose beat is USA. Sigaud corresponds for two dailies and two weekly journals (one Canadian). They have six children, who are home-schooled. Madame is the teacher and monsieur is the cook! Therefore, Sigaud is offering “La classe de la cuisine francaise” – a cooking class taught entirely in French. The menu, designed to be family-friendly, is: Salade nicoise (a salad of cold cooked vegetables, eggs and cheese), petits pois à la francaise (breast of chicken in peas), gratin de courgettes (baked summer squashes); Fromage Brie, and banane royale (a dessert.)

The class runs Saturday, Sept 24, 11 am. to 3 p.m. Students should have some comprehension of French language, and come prepared with aprons and to eat. Bon Appetit!

For more information about the French courses and courses in German, Spanish, Italian, Chinese, Japanese and Russian this term at Penobscot School, please call Missy or Patti at 594-1084, or visit languagelearning.org.

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