What do you do with a student who has lost his passion for French as the GCSEs approach? Naturally, you return to the method that first inspired.
Here Carol Turner takes up the story of her 15-year-old son Samuel and how the VICI Language Academy has helped:
“We’ve known Nathalie for many, many years. We knew her when she ran Bleu Blanc Rouge before she launched VICI and our son Samuel was one of her very first clients. He was just four when he started and he thoroughly enjoyed what cannot really be called lessons, it was a fun hour of singing, and counting in French.
“Unfortunately at age eight, due to school commitments, the lessons stopped. Sadly we noticed that Samuel’s enjoyment of French over the coming years up until the age of 15 diminished. He was doing well at French, but he was not enjoying it in the way he did when he was learning with Nathalie.
“When it came to GCSE exams it became really apparent, and this sounds awful, all he was doing was ticking the boxes in French. He simply wasn’t enjoying it and we asked him what we could do to help – he recommended we ask Nathalie for lessons.
“It was the right decision. He has had eight lessons so far and immediately we saw the colour come back in his cheeks. He found fun in French again and he is enjoying it; this has had a real impact on the quality of his work and he has just taken his mock GCSE receiving an A grade!
“We hope to get some more lessons from VICI over Easter – some more fun French to assist with preparing him. From our point of view as parents as much as we want Samuel to do well in his exams, our main concern is that he enjoys the language and we want him to have the confidence to use the language when we go to France. We felt that Samuel had lost the interest in French and the fun aspect, all he was doing was learning the vocabulary, the verbs and how to string a sentence together enough for an examination paper, we found when we went to France he was not forward in using the language.
One of his lessons with VICI was walking around Newbury talking about what he could see, the church, the shops and talking about rugby – completely away from the classroom environment and using vocabulary he might not get to use in the classroom but is relevant to everyday life and means he can have normal conversations in French.
I would recommend VICI and I do! If I’m honest it is because Nathalie leads the company with a true passion, a true core passion. She absolutely believes in what she is doing and that comes out tenfold in everything she and her staff are doing in there. They are not set up with a classroom environment which anyone can see on visiting, adults too. VICI are interested in how to help you, how would you like to learn a language? And they make it fun. I have never had to ask Samuel to go to his lessons at VICI – he wants to go. People need to go along to VICI and see how they work; it is money well worth investing!