French Study & Homestay ImmersionLocated just west of Nice, the beach village of St-Laurent-du-Var offers the best of both worlds: a central location along the French Riviera but one outside of the beaten path of mass tourism. St-Laurent has the feel of a real, authentic French community and the distinct charm of a comfortable, relaxed town. Because of St-Laurent’s close proximity to Nice, students will have several opportunities each week to visit this vibrant city and take advantage of everything the popular Riviera capital has to offer: the lively Promenade, the many world-class museums, numerous beach clubs, a great shopping district, and the exciting Old Town. St-Laurent is a great program for those students who are interested in advanced French language study and a rewarding homestay experience.
Our program in St-Laurent is designed for students completing grades 10-12 who have at least 4 years of French and who are interested in advanced French language study and cultural immersion.
The French language classes are taught by Abbey Road faculty; the curriculum combines classroom instruction, experiential learning and daily practice. Students study with experienced teachers, in small group settings, and have opportunities for individual tutoring by Abbey Road staff. This advanced language study program encourages and facilitates the exclusive use of French through daily interaction, formal and informal courses, activities and excursions, etc. All of the Abbey Road faculty and staff are fluent in the national language and many are native speakers. They strongly encourage our students to speak French. Importantly, the key to success in an advanced language study program is the student’s own motivation and effort. The St-Laurent program will also offer workshops and seminars on such subjects as art history, French cuisine, and French culture.
The language courses are complemented by the daily interaction with the French host families. Students have most of their meals with their host families, attend family events, and join their host parents and siblings during day trips and other activities. Typically, the students share a double room with another Abbey Road student or with a host sister or brother. Most families live within a 20-25 minute walk from the downtown of St-Laurent, in quiet residential neighborhoods. Our families are carefully screened and regularly visited. We believe that a rewarding homestay experience is the foundation for a successful French language study program. Therefore, we make every effort to match the students with the right family, considering their preferences and needs, and to help them adjust as quickly and comfortably as possible. The success of the homestay depends upon the student’s desire to keep an open mind and adapt to a different way of life.
During the week, students will start a typical day with the French class. After lunch, all students and staff assemble for the daily group meeting. In the afternoons and evenings, students choose from a variety of social, recreational, and artistic activities: beach days, water sports, soccer, tennis or other athletics, excursions to local sites and museums, concerts and performances, shopping, nature walks, conversation at outdoor cafés and restaurants, and dancing. Students will have most dinners with their host families and spend 3-4 nights a week participating in typical family activities.
On Saturdays and Sundays, students go on day-trips to some of the most beautiful sites of the French Riviera: Monaco, Nice and its Old Town, Cannes, Antibes, the perched village of Eze and its famous perfume factory, and other sites.