Learning Beyond Classroom, Student Immersion program at RBKIA

Ms. Sagareeka Bhatia | 20th November, 2015 Back to Blog
Learning Beyond Classroom

A student immersion program is an opportunity given to learners to immerse themselves in a different culture and have a firsthand experience of the same. At RBKIA we recently held a student immersion program at France where the students learning French as a foreign language as well as other interested students took up this opportunity of having hands on experience of the French culture. Following are the areas where they involved and themselves

Visit to a French School where they interacted with the secondary students and spoke to them about the Indian culture, Festivals, Traditions, Political system, world famous leaders, education system, marriages etc. They explained the presentation in Hindi, English & French (by the French students). This was followed by a Q& A session where the students from the French school had lots of queries answered and they were very happy when we shared some Indian currencies with them.

Living in a School hostel facility & eating in the school mess gave our participants an experience of the discipline on campus, staple, balanced food of the French being served at the canteen, various deserts, fruits etc. They had their breakfast & dinner at the hostel dining hall and the self-service and self-waste disposal system which is prevalent in their country unlike RBKIA where they are served every meal was learning for them.

Spending evenings with the Local students of the hostel, involving themselves in recreational activities with them, helping them finish their homework etc. was a part of their evening schedule for couple of days.

Visiting local market places gave the students an exposure to the local products and day to day consumables. They visited bakeries, stores like ‘Monoprix’ etc and gathered facts about European economy while paying the bill in Euros and converting the same into INR. It was hilarious to watch them do that. Shopping for local brands and International brands like H&M, Zara at Champs Elyseé, Aix au provence etc was quiet an eye opener for them when converted to INR.

Experiencing their transport system like the public buses, Metro trains, TGV etc gave them an insight into how well and systematic the whole system works and how the French respect their country’s resources by not only littering the bus and train stations but also the interiors of the trains, buses & metros.

Tasting Authentic French Cuisine in a typical French restaurant was a part of their experience where they began with starters followed by ‘Plat Principal’ ( main course which ended with a Desert. Some found it palatable while wrinkles on the forehead displayed the discontent the vegetarians expressed.

France’s contribution to Science & technology was seen at Toulouse at the Space museum & amusement park. They were so enthralled by the simulation games and the 3D exposé at IMAX that they missed visiting the ‘Airbus factory’ at Toulouse. At Camaraderie they visited the ITER project where scientists from 35 countries including India are at work. It was a thrilling experience for our learners to see a model of the ‘TOKOMAC reactor’ and to know facts as to why France has been chosen as the best destination to host this nuclear reactor.

Famous destinations of France were a part of the itinerary. Marseille, Toulouse, Aix-au –Provence, Gorge du Verdon, Menosque, and Paris. At Paris, going to the 3rd stage of the magnificent Eiffel tower took their breath away. They couldn’t stop clicking pictures of the themselves and the view around. The River seine cruise showed them all the important points like Notre Dame, Louvre etc. We hopped in and hopped off the cruise liner to visit places.

Lastly the return after a Rendez-vous with France bears a special place in their heart where they are often nostalgic about in school when they meet their camarades in the school corridors. No doubt they have captured their memories in photos but an immersion program is a best way to learn and be part of a culture. They returned as evolved global citizens.