The Marc Garneau Collegiate Institute French Club was founded in 2018 with the purpose of fostering interest in French language and culture outside of the classroom. This year, despite being relocated virtually to Discord, the French Club continues to offer an environment where students can enrich their knowledge of the French language through a variety of different activities.
The French Club has grown to include over 25 members, with two executive members, one vice president, and two co-presidents, Andrew Wu and Rena Liu.
When asked about the French Club’s goals for this year, co-president Andrew Wu said, “MGCI French Club strives to give students a fun and welcoming environment to interact with each other in French. We also plan to offer a variety of activities for students to familiarize themselves with French culture and hone their French skills.” Andrew added, “We are always on the lookout for new activities that students can engage in. This year, in particular, we are aiming to add volunteer work and tutoring to the list of our club’s activities.”
As of 5 November 2020, meetings for the French Club occur every Friday at 4:00 PM through the use of a Discord Voice Channel, but the meeting time may change to accommodate more members. The executive members and presidents usually start the meetings by holding a small presentation to introduce some new French vocabulary for the “activity of the day” which takes place after the presentation. Club members are encouraged to speak in French throughout the meeting and to participate in the weekly activities which range from Escape Rooms to Among Us.
The French Club also hosts special events for holidays, such as a Halloween-themed meeting, which took place on 30 October 2020. For this meeting, the French vocabulary words covered were all related to the subject of Halloween, and the activity for the week was a virtual spooky French escape room. Going forward, co-president Rena Liu said she believes that the French Club will continue to host meetings for special occasions, such as Remembrance Day and Christmas, and she hopes to introduce virtual tours of well-known Francophone locations using Google Maps.
Many students see the French Club as an educational and enjoyable extracurricular, where they can improve their French skills as well as interact with other students. Olivia Huang, a new member to the club, commented, “I decided to join French club because it’s been such a big aspect of my life since I was young as I went to a French Immersion school. I’m not taking any French courses until the last semester and this would be a great way to meet others interested in French and keep speaking and listening to French.”
In response to the success of the virtual French Club meetings, Andrew Wu said, “We are very pleased that numerous students have shown interest in practicing their french skills. We will continue to improve the quality of our virtual meetings.”
Students interested in joining the MGCI French Club this year are welcome to join the Facebook group and Discord channel to participate in the weekly meetings.