South East Essex Academy Trust

WHSG goes to Paris











Please see below an article written by Lexie (Year 12) covering the recent trip to Paris by WHSG students, as well as some fantastic photos.

On Friday 9th June, French students in Years 10 and 12 had the pleasure of travelling to France for an impactful weekend on not only our studies, but understanding of the sophisticated culture surrounding triumphant landmarks and iconic history there. At 5.0 a.m., we said goodbye to WHSG and embarked on a coach journey all the way across the sparkling English Channel. Upon our arrival in Paris, we excitedly checked into our accommodation and spent a cheerful evening in a restaurant discussing the events of our upcoming weekend.

The next morning, after a croissant-packed breakfast, we drove through the sunshine to the Tuileries Gardens, where it quickly became clear why Paris is the most visited city in the world! The picturesque views in the heart of the capital were followed by an afternoon of art and culture in The Louvre, where we indulged in hundreds of famous masterpieces, including the Mona Lisa and the Venus de Milo. T he famous art museum has been inspiring tourists and native Parisians for centuries, and we were very lucky to experience its impressiveness and glamour first-hand.

Being able to see famous artwork, especially the Mona Lisa, something most of us have only seen via the internet, in real life at the Louvre museum felt so surreal’- Beatrice, Year 12

Our fun-filled day wasn’t over even after we ate and recharged in a cosy French restaurant. The inviting waters of The Seine, the epicentre of Paris, attracted us to a scenic boat trip at sunset, in which we could take in views of the magnificent Eiffel Tower. In fact, the Eiffel Tower was so beautiful that we then ventured on a spontaneous rendezvous to see it illuminated: a spectacle that only occurs for 5 minutes each evening at 10.00 p.m... Our heads full with memories of artwork and sparkly lights, we went to bed, ready for Sunday’s equally cheerful activities.

The Champs-Elysées was the next stop on the itinerary: a long, chic avenue, home to many luxury shops, restaurants and monuments. This provided us a great opportunity to chat to French shopkeepers and practise our language in a real-life setting! We then travelled to the base of the Arc De Triomphe, a powerful landmark that honours those who fought and died during The French Revolution and the Napoleonic Wars, with the names of all French victories and generals inscribed on its inner and outer surfaces. Under its vault lies the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier from the First World War. Whether or not we are currently studying History at WHSG, we were all impacted by the compelling facts learnt about the war. We then took part in a self-guided, interactive tour of Paris in which we solved a series of puzzles and activities that challenged our knowledge of the French language and culture (and brought out our competitive side!). To round off the evening after a quaint Italian meal, a lift whizzed us up to the 56th floor of the magnificent Tour Montparnasse, from which we took in panoramic views of the city before the sky opened up.

On Monday, after checking out from our welcoming hotel, we rounded off our lively weekend with a visit to the Sacré Coeur Basilica at Montmartre for a final opportunity to absorb the scenery. From Calais to Dover, we were all reminiscing on our individual experiences. A big ‘merci!’ to Mrs Leroux, Miss Alexander, Miss Pérez Azpeitia, Miss Pérez Labrador and Mrs Pell-Johnson who made the trip fun and memorable. To anybody thinking of pursuing learning a foreign language- you won’t regret it!

Lexie (Year 12)