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Belgium 2012 Gallery preview

The Belgium Battlefield trip has become an important part of the school calendar.  Over the next few weeks we will be collating, editing and posting more photos so visit us again soon.

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whole group lille

French Exchange; photos

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French Exchange Wednesday 28th March


This is the last day of the Exchange.  A very busy day for some.  A more relaxing day for others.

Departure at 8.30 from

to go to Villeneuve d’Asq ( A prize for anyone who can tell me what major building project is taking place there at the moment!) After a long detour due to an overturned lorry on the motorway, we get to the V2.  Most students deappear within minutes of arriving and will return only minutes before the deadline of 11.30, loaded with all kinds of goods:  perfume, clothes, chocolate, sweets a jar of mayonnaise and even a Budha (sic).

I give up, this photo may help you.

Lunch at Flunch is something that every British person should experience at least once.  The usual welcome was given and the food was as it should be in a fast food chain.  Good and plentiful.

The afternoon started with a little tour of old Lille (try and say that quickly!) Then, it was more shopping for those who wished to do so.  Sitting in a cafe in the sunshine with a few chosen students was/is a much better option.  (especially when Andrew gives a demonstration on how to do the Cube). Here I must thank Bruce for keeping Meg and I entertained with a flow of converstion.

By 6pm, all the students were back at school waiting for the parents to pick them up.  It must be daid at this stage that this has been one of the most pleasant week I have spent with a group of students.  Well done to them!

Au revoir

The photos and videos will be available on this site after  Easter.


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French Exchange 2012 Tuesday 27th March


A very busy day!  Departure from school at 8.30am.  A short coach trip takes us to Haverskerque ( a prize for whoever gives me the right pronunciation when we come back) to draw or to sculpt.

After a short demonstration by Francoise (known as Fanfreluche: a second prize for whoever can tell me what it means when we return)  the drawing group has a go at drawing a cartoon figure of the rat out of ratatouille.  There are obvious experts such Jack and Ailsa who show the rest of the group how it should be done.  Some find it more demanding but all have a good go at it.  Francoise congratulates them on their persistence and their determination to do well.

The second group is at the sculpture workshop.  By the time your reporter arrives, the students are well into the sculpture.  Ben, Dan and Tom are especially hard at work.  Ben will suffer the double indignity of two breaks;one self-inflicted, the other due to a mishap (Don’t forget the chocolates Laura!) but everything is sorted and Ben should be very proud of his achievement.  A good proportion of the HGS pupils made hearts which are to be given to their mums (how sweet is that!) except  for one person (who shall remain nameless but whose mother was not too far away). Your reporter was also involved in smoothing Meg’s heart!  (Make what you will out of this statement, but it worked!)

Another coach trip takes us to La Gorgue to the CCFL. The CCFL is the equivalent of a super town council which represents the 7 town which make up the Communaute de La Lys.( It had to be said!)

A few games (Gemma is an amazing athlete), a picnic lunch and into the Council Chamber.   The president of the Council makes a short presentation (well, fairly short. You know how politicians are…..!) Questions are sought.  Very quickly the questions from the Harrogate students flow.  Parents should be proud of what happened during this hour.  The president seemed very impressed with the level of questioning and with the interest the students showed in the presentation.

This is followed by a question and answer on the exchange itself.  The topic how can we make it better.  A lot of good ideas came out.  Some more practical and practicable than others.  All in all a good debate.

The day ends with a visit to Fromelles .  The site of one of the most pointless battles of  WWI during which nearly 6000 Australians and 1500 Germans died over a two day period.  The youngest being barely 16. A very moving experience.

Back to school for the buses and home.



PS.  I am going to try and upload some of the pictures.

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French Exchange 2012 Monday 26th March

French Exchange 2012 Monday 26th March

The morning is spent in school.  The first two periods are given over to following the lessons into which partners go.  After break a quick lesson with Mr Le Bourdon on how to ask questions.  After a short coach trip groups undertake either to do some orinteering, boxing or dancing.

The first nose bleed happens when an over enthusiastic French boy hits qnother on the nose reulting in a fairly good nosebleed.  The best students at boxing happen to be Logqn, Kiera and of course Gemma who must have kicked the coach very hard for him to remember. Quote ¨” Ze girl in ze green trouzers haz a good kick”  Do not approach Gemma without care!

The group then moves to an Estaminet (the local and very old French word for a Cafe) where croissants, pains au chocolat and chocolat chaud are consumed.


Back to school and home

There seems to have been a lot of laughter and hillarity during the day.  Long may it continue!

PS  We are having problems uploading the photos and the flip videos.  We will do so asap

PPS  This blooning key boqrd is hqrd to useq



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french exchange

French Exchange 2012; 23/03/12

Today we went to a bell tower/town hall, a brewery and a workshop where they made giant puppets/floats.

We also went to some lessons in a french school, they like to try and speak english to us as much as they can, but they’re not very good! :)

In the bell tower/town hall we met the Mayor of Laventie, and we went up to the top of the bell tower. – It was very high up!

In the brewery we learnt how they make the 2 different types of beer, and we had an oppourtunity to try a small amount, and to buy some to take back for presents.

We went to two workshops, one where a giant donkey and soldier was built, and another where a giant cat had been built. They showed us how they made them, how they operated them, and what they are used for. They told us that when a new giant is built, they baptise it, by having a gathering of giants, and a drinking session afterwards! The giants are operated by 2-4 people who carry the weight of the giant on their shoulders, by some poles and planks of wood with cushions on the end.

We have started recording video diaries with different students each night, that way parents, friends and family can see what we have been doing whilst in Laventie :)



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French Exchange 2012

French Exchange 2012


After a very uneventful journey, the 28 French Exchange students and the two teachers arrived safely in Laventie where they were given a very French  welcome.Wine (for the parents), orange juice (for the students) and a speech by the Principal of the College, Monsieur Thierry Chevalier.

By half past six, local time, all the students had been reunited with their respective families.  There is little doubt that our arrival had created a lot of interest on the part of all the students in the college as most of 600 or so eleves  came to watch as the British and French students were reunited.

Dover -Leaving the UK

Tomorrow, we are in school for part of the day and visiting the town for the rest of the time.

It is hoped that photos and videos will also be available.

Bonsoir tout le monde


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Introducing HGS BBC School Report:

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Feelings of violence

Violence has been in my life a lot, whether in the verbal or in the physical form.  Being a large family means a lot happens, such as when you fall out with brothers/sisters.  I know that my family are close together and that we do stuff together and that stuff may be said but it always ends up we are better again. But when someone starts name calling or inflicting stuff upon you, it hurts a lot more for me and it’s hard to block them out.  And I hate it when people say just walk away:  thoses words cause anger inside me.  I am not a person who is good with words and I resolve my problems with anger: it may seem dumb and stupid but it builds up and up until it explodes and releases the anger.  I feel that if anger wasn’t near me all the time I may be different.

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One of many wishes

I wished you were with me every minute of the hour

I wished to see you every day of the year

I wished you to be here forever and ever

I loved it when you looked at me with your proud old smile

I loved it when you’d kiss me goodnight

I loved it when you said a simple” I love you”

I wished you to be here for ever and ever

I hated it when you were angry

I hated when you were sad

But most of all I hated it when you walked through the garden gate

I wished you never left that day

but we must all keep wishing

For my hope will come some day

But for now I’ll keep wishing.

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I’ve always known there was something wrong with her.  Well, since, I’ve known her and I’ve known her since I was about five.  She worked with my gran and soon she got into debt, or something.  So my gran said she could move in with her and my auntie.  I found out when I was 11/12 that she had epilepsy.  She had a fit at work and was rushed to hospital.  She explained to me that she had epilepsy since she was 14.  Then, late in 2010, she had a really bad fit and the doctors at the hospital found that she had tumour on her brain.  Earlier this year after another fit, the doctors discovered that the tumour was cancerous.  She has a whellchair for when she needs to go a long way and a special bungalow because she can’t go up the stairs anymore.  She is only 27.

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Just take a breath and let them flow

The tears through which your strength does show

That you’ve soldiered through another day

Now, hear me out , just let me say:

Never let yourself believe

That weakness within is what you perceive

Inside you when you start yo cry

Shed just one tear from one eye

To your room and through the door

Your smiles not needed anymore

For your brave face has been so strong

Just cry, cry it all away

And with you, let this always stay:

Crying is not that you’re not strong

You’ve just been strong for far too long

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