Wednesday, March 30, 2016

French Revolution Trivia

Last Sunday, Canoe Island French Camp participated in the Seattle French Fest- a daylong celebration of francophone music, dance, language and culture. We greeted past and current campers, and introduced curious attendees to our summer French programs, family camps and school group programs. We also tested folks' knowledge of our session themes. Our French camp sessions incorporate four unique themes, and each has a rich and exciting history.

How well do you know la révolution française, les voyageurs, le monde francophone and les chevaliers? Over the next few weeks we'll ask you the trivia questions for each session! Check back the next week to see if your answers were correct.

La révolution française


The French Revolution was a time of political upheaval and change in France. In the late 18th century much of the French population was in grave poverty, even though the upperclass, les nobles, and the royal court continued to have lavish parties, paid no taxes, and seemed unconcerned with the growing discontent among the people. New taxes, rising prices of bread, and displacement of many to the cities to find work all added to the unrest. How much do you know about this time period? Test yourself with these four questions:

1. Qui était le roi français pendant la révolution française?
Who was the french king during the french revolution?

2. Les Etats Généraux étaient convoqués en 1789. Qui étaient les trois états des Etats Généraux?
The Estates General were convened in 1789. Who made up the three levels of the Estates General?

3. Le tiers états ont formés leur propre assemblée, l'Assemblée Nationale. Qu'est-ce qu'ils ont écrit pendant le Serment du Jeu de Paume?
The common people formed their own assembly, the National Assembly. What did they write during the Tennis Court Oath?

4. Qu'est-ce qui s'est passé le 14 juillet 1789?
What happened July 14, 1789?

unhappy peasants ready for a revolution!

les réponses~ 

1. Louis XVI

2. Le clergé, les nobles, le tiers états
The clergy, the nobles, the common people

3. Une constitution pour la France
A constitution for France

4. La prise de la Bastille!
The storming of the Bastille!

Monday, March 28, 2016

Join the Canoe Island French Camp Family!

At Canoe Island French Camp, we are a family. Camp activities and songs focused on French language and culture take place on our own pristine island in the San Juan archipelago and connect us for a lifetime. Just last week I posted a photo from 1986, and a camper from that summer was able to recall exactly what day of the week the photo took place. This highlights the lasting memories that are shared by Canoe Islanders. There are many benefits to sharing these experiences with your family by attending family camp.

The American Camp Association collaborated with Virginia universities to examine the impact of family camp on youth and their families in a 2012 study. The study supported the idea that residential family camps are an excellent environment to enhance family relationships through quality family time, a relaxing environment, spending time away from the stress of day-to-day routines and teamwork involved in activities or living together. Here at Canoe Island French Camp we offer three wonderful family camps throughout the year. Space is still available for our 2016 programs! We'd love to welcome you to the Canoe Island French Camp family.

families enjoy a sail at a Canoe Island French Camp Family Camp

Monday, March 14, 2016

Charcuterie Creations

Devin Lowder, chef extraordinaire, is returning for another summer at Canoe Island French Camp and we couldn't be more excited. Especially since he has started back in the kitchen and begun curing salami, sausage and black forest ham for our spring and summer programs! The large walk in fridge used for camp is currently being used for most of the charcuterie operations. During the summer Devin says he will need to do one more round of curing meats to meet our programming demand. By then the walk in fridge will be in use, and Devin will use la cave, Dr. Austin's old wine cellar, to cure the remainder of the mouth watering viande! When is the soonest you can come try these savory delights? Sign up for one of our three Family Camps this spring and you'll be one of the first to taste these fresh charcuteries!

Devin and his first round of 2016 charcuteries

Wednesday, March 9, 2016

French uproar over labor reforms

France is known for their 35 hour work weeks and ample paid vacation time. They seem to know how to balance work and leisure. A new set of labor reforms, leaked to the press in February, are the cause of recent protests in France. The reforms lift many constraints on employers including increases to maximum work hours, what time is counted while someone works 'on call' and even benefits employees in some cases by giving legal protection to those who don't check work emails after hours. For more details about the work reforms check out this article featured in 'the Local in France'. Don't worry folks, we aren't making any big schedule changes to camp this summer! Everyone still gets a daily 'repos'. What do you think of the reforms? Are the French becoming less French?

Sunday, March 6, 2016

don't become a goat by these literal translations!

Literal translations of foreign phrases don't always make sense. Here are four French phrases that make no sense when written out in English.

Enfoncer des portes ouvertes~ to break down open doors

Poser un lapin~ to leave a rabbit

Quand les poules auront les dents~ when chickens will have teeth

Devenir chèvre~ to become a goat

To discover the more sensible English equivalents of these phrases, enjoy this hilarious video. 

Enacting literal translations of French phrases could make a great set of sketches for French classes this summer! ;)

Friday, March 4, 2016

One ring to France returned

At Canoe Island French Camp we celebrate the bravery and generosity of knights of old during our 4th session, Les Chevaliers. Joan of Arc, a medieval French heroine, fought against the English towards the end of the Hundred Years War and is famous for her role in the battle of Orleans, which ended in a French victory and revived the French morale. She was eventually captured by the English, charged with sorcery, and burned at the stake. She was nineteen years old. The night before her execution, she gave her ring to an English cardinal. The ring has remained in England for over 600 years. Today, it was returned to France. The Puy du Fou Foudation, which purchased the ring for $425,000, will display the ring at a historical theme park in Nantes. For more details on its history, see the full BBC article.

Joan of Arc's ring