Le Grand Concours conquers Elder

When the word test comes to mind, it does not bring any joyful thoughts. Tests usually mean studying for hours, not getting much sleep, and stressing about getting a good grade. However an upcoming French test, to be held here at Elder on March 19th, might have a positive effect on Elder’s French students French students will be participating in a National French contest, otherwise known as Le Grand Concours, where their test scores will be shared and scored with other French students across the nation. Le Grand Concours is sponsored by the AATF, American Association of Teachers of French, and can be contacted by any French teacher, whether they are a home school teacher, private tutor, or regular school teacher, to enter their students into the contest. Grades 1-6 will participate in the FLES contest while grades 7-12 will take part in the secondary contest. Not being able to find anything online on what FLES stood for, I emailed the National Chair of Test Development for FLES, Elizabeth Esper, and she was kind enough to reply and tell me that it stood for Foreign Language in the Elementary School. I think it is great that the FLES Chairperson, who might be busy with the contest, to take time and answer a simple question from me. Prizes for the contest will be awarded in two categories, Chapter and National. Chapter prizes are for students who are the top scorers of their current chapter level and division. “I’ve had students place in the top 50’s and the top 20’s before,” said Mrs. Hanks, Elder French Teacher. National prizes are awarded to the top 10 scorers which include medals and certificates. When asking Jake Tiernan, Elder sophomore and French student, what his thoughts were on the upcoming test, he told me, “Hey, whatever gets me out of class. It will probably be really easy anyway, like the practice tests we did in class.” Many other French students seem to have the same attitude towards the contest, and if everyone thinks it will be so easy, we might have some contest placers here at Elder. When asking Mrs. Hanks about her opinion on the contest, she said that it will be neat to compare our test scores with all the other schools and to see where everyone is at with their French learning. Le Grand Concours should be a great experience for all French students and hopefully Elder will make some top scores.