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École Centrale
River East Transcona School Division

French Immersion

​What is the French Immersion Program?

The French Immersion program is offered to students with little or no knowledge of the French language upon their entry into the program. A major portion of the courses with the exception of the English Language Arts is offered by teachers who are proficient in French. The immersion approach allows for an active and practical acquisition of the French language through subject matter.

The French Immersion program offers a special educational environment where students "live" in French, French being the language of administration and communication at the school level. The immersion approach integrates language instruction and subject area content instruction. In fact, in immersion the French language is both the medium and subject of instruction. The program is planned in such a way that the French language is learned through structure activities, interaction in groups of varying size, games, songs and contests, to name a few.

Language of Communication and Goals of the Program

The language of communication in the school is French. School assemblies are conducted mainly in French. Students are encouraged to communicate with the teacher in French as their mastery of the language increases. Communication between school staff members is in French. Communication to parents and other community members is conducted in English. English is used for progress reports and other written information directed to the parents.

The French Immersion program aims to develop, in addition to the mastery of the English language, linguistic competence in the French language. Students are thus able to communicate in both languages on a personal and professional level (Canadian Association of Immersion Teachers, 1994). In addition, the immersion approach fosters an understanding of the French peoples and their cultural diversity.

In Manitoba, the French Immersion program is recognized since 1995 as an official program by the Department of Education and Training. Beyond its linguistic and cultural dimensions, the program aims to develop "academic, personal, social and career skills, and the life management skills that future citizens need to develop their individual potential and contribute to the economic, social and cultural life in Manitoba" (Renewing Education: A Foundation for Excellence, 1995).

In immersion, students acquire the French language and at the same time the learning outcomes which compromise essential learning as outlined in the Department's 1995 document.

Time Allotment

In Kindergarten, instruction is entirely in French however, in the event of a traumatic situation, an accident or any disruption of the child's normal activities, the teacher will take the child aside and talk to him/her in English or his/her own language, since the emotional well-being of the child takes precedence in these circumstances.

In grades one to four, all subjects are taught in French except for English Language Arts.

French immersion programs are supported by CPF - Candian Parents for French ( http://www.cpfmb.com/) .

To learn a language

Is to open your eyes on a new and fascinating world.

It is to hear the music of a river which flows with a varying rhythm.

 It is to savour a variety of cultural traits and be nourished by them.

 It is to scent the fresh fragrance of an unknown flower.

 To learn a language:

 is to reach out your hand to touch new textures;

 is to travel on charming and fascinating pathways;

 is to warm your heart with captivating new knowledge.

 To learn a language:

 is to accept willingly an unfamiliar climate;

 is to understand the worth of another human being and to share it.

 To learn a language:

 is to find yourself enriched.

 Shirley Kawahara