Culture & Society

Are you fond of French culture (cinema, art literature, …) or more versed into current affairs? Our wide range of lively and fun cultural courses will help you sense better the subtleties of the French culture by approaching French cultural icons, visiting exhibitions and much much more.

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Please check the available discounts here

For more information about our level structure, please see Your Path to Success.

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Study of London Exhibitions
Intermediate to Expert (B1 to C1)
3h/weeks over 10 weeks
Tue or Thu | 1.30pm – 4.30pm
£350 (£315 early booking discount)
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Up to 15 students
16 Jan - 20 Mar 2020
26 Mar - 11 June 2020

Polish your linguistic skills and enhance your appreciation of art.

For those with an interest in art and the history of art.

Tutor: The tutor has a degree in History of Art and Museology from the Ecole du Louvre, as well as a degree from the Courtauld Institute. She researches and catalogues French national collections, and has many years’ experience in teaching French as a foreign language.

Aims: You will develop your knowledge of art history: of artists and their works, of iconography, of patrons and collectors, of the techniques used in the artists’ works, of laboratory analysis and restoration techniques, and finally of the actual exhibition of these works (how such exhibitions are conceived, developed, displayed and catalogued).
You will develop your communication and debating skills and improve your listening comprehension using authentic documents.
Trips, research, conversations and debates – all of these activities will allow you to approach the world of art in an active and dynamic way.

Teaching approach:
Visits to five exhibitions chosen by students
Dialogue and discussion on the exhibition spaces
More extensive study of a subject of your choice relating to each of these exhibitions
Oral presentation of your study and coordination of the ensuing discussion
Sharing ideas on the topic being studied
Development of vocabulary and grammar in context

Course materials: The course will be based on visits to London exhibitions, the study of the artworks themselves, exhibition catalogues, presentation videos by experts and critical articles.

The course will aim to consolidate learners’ written and spoken French (specialised vocabulary, accent and syntax, discriminating between registers of language); to improve students’ listening comprehension; and to facilitate quick and fluent speaking.
Student’s involvement: The students will choose which exhibitions we visit. They will select the subjects that they would like to study in more depth and then present in their fortnightly communication – the topics which they wish to discuss in class. Students should allow for the cost of entry into exhibitions, though this will be reduced through use of membership cards.

IMPROVE YOUR FRENCH THROUGH CREATIVE WRITING
Fluent to Mastery (B2 to C2)
3h/week over 10 weeks
Tue | 10.00am – 1.00pm
Sat | 1.30am – 4.30pm
£350 (£315 early booking discount)
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Up to 15 students
14 Jan - 17 Mar 2020
24 Mar - 16 Jun 2020
No class on 6 and 13 April 2020

2For those wishing to combine language learning with creativity and imagination.

Tutor: Dominique Pourtau-Darriet began leading writing workshops at the Institut Français in 2005. She is taking a sabbatical to write a novel. Laetitia Kouzmenkov, who studied journalism and attended Dominique’s workshops, will lead the class. She has been teaching French to adults since 2002.

Aims: Be inspired to write your own French texts (fiction, poetry, plays, biographies etc.), discover writing techniques, and develop your vocabulary and grammatical knowledge in a creative and enjoyable environment.

Teaching approach: The workshop will focus on activities which promote creativity – imitation and modification of texts, the use of stimuli or ‘triggers’ (photos, short news items, extracts from published authors), literary games followed by discussions on the work produced – and which combine oral and written skills.

Course materials: Anything which can stimulate and inspire us in our writing..

Student’s involvement: Students’ progress will be assessed through rewriting tasks, completed at home and then marked by the teacher.

 

Contemporary Literature
Expert (C1)
2h/week over 15 weeks
Wed | 1.30pm - 3.30pm
£350 (£315 early booking discount)
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Up to 15 students
15 Jan - 29 Apr 2020

Learn to enjoy reading and discussing contemporary literature.

For those wishing to expand their knowledge of classical and contemporary French literature.

Tutor: Marie-Laure Balistreri is a literature expert (with a Master’s in Language and Literature) and a researcher who specialises in French literature.

Aims: This course offers an exploration of styles, themes (ideas) and diverse literary approaches.

Teaching approach: The course will be based on individual reading of the chosen novels and on active discussion of each, following a study plan which will be given at the start of the course.

Course materials for 2018: The teacher will mainly use nineteenth- and twentieth-century novels.

– “La débacle”, Emile Zola
– “Cyrano de Bergerac” Edmond Rostand
– “Le mariage de plaisir Tahar Ben Jelloun
– “La petite fille de Monsieur Linh”, Philippe Claudel

Contemporary Literature
Elementary to Intermediate (A2 to B1)
2h/week over 15 weeks
Thu | 6.30pm – 8.30pm
£350 (£315 early booking discount)
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Up to 15 students
16 Jan - 30 Apr 2020

Learn to enjoy reading and discussing contemporary literature.

For those who wish to broaden their knowledge of French through studying literary works.

Tutor: Brigitte Coudino is a graduate of Sciences Po and has been a teacher for several years.

Aims: To discover different contemporary French authors.

Teaching approach: Students will be asked to read and prepare about fifty pages before each lesson, so that certain passages can be read, analysed and discussed in class.

Course material:

Jan – Apr 2019:

1. Dans la nuit brune, Agnes Desarthe, collection Points
2. Odette Toulemonde, Eric Emmanuel Schmidt, Livre de Poche
Language & Contemporary Literature
Fluent to Expert (B2 to C1)
3h/week over 10 weeks
Thu | 10.00am to 1.00pm
£350 (£315 early booking discount)
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Up to 15 students
16 Jan - 19 Mar 2020
26 Mar - 04 Jun 2020

For those wishing to gain insight into French society while perfecting their linguistic skills.

Tutor: Christiane Di Matteo has four masters degrees: Language Engineering, French as a Foreign Language, English and Literary Translation.

Aims: To discuss various books (mostly contemporary ) & to work on different  linguistic points.

Teaching approach: Analysis and commentary of Francophone novels  & improvement of vocabulary & grammar.

Course materials : 

Oct – Dec 2019:

L’Article 353 du code pénal“, Tanguy Viel

Un Aller Simple ” (Goncourt 1994), Didier Van Cauwelaert”

Jan – Mar 2020:

Petit pays “, Gaël Faye”

L’Africain,”  JM Le Clezio

Apr – Jun 2020: 

Au revoir là-haut, Pierre Lemaitre

“La Boîte noire et autres nouvelles ” , Tonino Benacquista

Student’s involvement: Students will be asked to take part in discussions and express their point of view in a relaxed and interactive environment.

French cultural icons
Fluent to Expert (B2 to C1)
3h/week over 10 weeks
Tue | 10.00am - 1.00pm
£350 (£315 early booking discount)
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Up to 15 students
14 Jan - 17 Mar 2020
24 Mar - 02 June 2020

Do you know L’Abbé Pierre, Belmondo, Coco Chanel, Catherine Deneuve, Coluche, la dictée, Perrier, la Cocotte-minute, Canard Enchaîné, les grandes écoles,  ‘Métro, boulot, Dodo’, la 2CV, Sempé, la pétanque, la rentrée, le Tiercé, Victor Hugo?
Improve your communication with French people
Join in everyday conversation in France with confidence
Understand the underlying cultural message of your French counterparts

Aims: Enrich your cultural knowledge through reading, speaking and watching documentaries and film excerpts.

Tutor: With more than twenty years of teaching experience Cécile has had the opportunity to teach a wide range of courses both in Higher and Continuing education. After her graduation in translation (Master’s degree), she specialised in Teaching French as a Foreign language in France. She went on to further study teaching and learning and holds a Master’s degree in Higher and Professional Education (London).

Teaching approach: You will read and watch materials related to iconic symbols (celebrities, gastronomy, institutions, daily life and language). You will discuss icons with the support of quotes, opinions and questions.

Course material: Written materials, films and documentaries’ excerpts.

Student’s involvement: You will be encouraged to read and research the cultural symbols and related vocabulary studied in class, give presentations and take part in discussions.

Learn French with games
Fluent to Expert (B2 to C1)
3h/week over 10 weeks
Fri | 10.00am to 1.00pm
£350 (£315 early booking discount)
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Up to 15 students
17 Jan - 20 Mar 2020
27 Mar - 12 June 2020
No class on 10 Avril & 8 May 2020

 Learn the language via games and a variety of fun activities

 For students who have reached A2 level and like to learn while playing. You will practice your French using various games such as dominos, board games, flashcards, trivial pursuit, consequences, tabou, devinettes, and theatrical activities like role plays, mimes, interviews, and also authentic documents like comics, film extracts, videos and songs.

Tutor: Elsa is passionate about her native language and culture and regularly uses games in the classroom as a relaxed and fun way of learning. She has a Degree in English and a Masters in teaching French as a foreign language with over 15 years teaching experience

Aims: This course offers a wide range of games and fun activities to learn through play in a lively and modern way.

Teaching approach: The course will cover all the topics, grammar and vocabulary of A2 level

Course materials: The teacher will use a variety of both well known and self created games and activities

Student’s involvement: Students will be asked to interact with their peers in an active and fun environment.

Topics / objectives:

 – To introduce oneself, guess information and ask each other questions using various structures and materials

– Daily life activities and reflexive verbs

– Food and authentic situations at the restaurant and the market

– Sports & nutrition, give advice and express purpose in the context of health and wellbeing

– Accommodation and household

– Clothes and shopping

– French culture and civilisation

– Express certain feelings with words, gestures and/or intonations

– Various tenses : Present, passé-composé, futur proche and futur simple.

CINEMA AND SOCIETY
Intermediate to Expert (B1 to C1)
3h/week over 10 weeks
Sat | 10.00am - 1.00pm
£350 (£315 early booking discount)
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Up to 15 students
18 Jan - 21 Mar 2020
28 Mar - 13 June 2020

Take a French look at cinema. Explore and discuss modern releases. Enrich your vocabulary in general French and film analysis through discussion of a variety of topics.

Public: For those wishing to gain insight into French cinema while perfecting their linguistic skills.

Tutor: Master in Politics, Bachelor in cinema and INA formation in Editing.

Aims: Discover three contemporary movies that will introduce you to the French society. Afterwards, through these movies we will also discuss current topics of public interest. During this first session, topics will be education, immigration and the penitentiary system. After watching the movies, we will analyse them on two different aspects: technical (shots, camera movements, use of colours and music) and substantive (the message).

Teaching Approach: Analysis and commentary of French movies as well as working on different linguistic points. Improve your understanding in French language and practice your oral skills (vocabulary, expression, grammar, phonetic).

Student’s involvement: Students will be asked to take part in discussions and express their point of view in a relaxed and interactive environment.

Course material: 3 movies « Entre les murs » by Laurent Cantet / « Samba » by Éric Toledano and Olivier Nakache / « Un prophète » by Jacques Audiard.

Contemporary Literature
Expert to Mastery (C1 to C2)
2h/week over 15 weeks
Thu | 1.30pm – 3.30pm
£350 (£315 early booking discount)
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Up to 15 students
16 Jan - 30 Apr 2020

Learn to enjoy reading and discussing contemporary literature.

For those who wish to broaden their knowledge of French through studying literary works.

Tutor: Brigitte Coudino is a graduate of Sciences Po and has been a teacher for several years.

Aims: To discover different contemporary French authors.

Teaching approach: Students will be asked to read and prepare about fifty pages before each lesson, so that certain passages can be read, analysed and discussed in class.

Course material for Autumn 2019 :
1- “La terre qui penche Folio”, de Carole Martinez, Folio
2- “Un barrage contre le Pacifique” de Marguerite Duras, collection Folio Plus
3- “Le confident” d’Hélène Cremillon, Collection Folio
Books must be purchased beforehand at Librairie LaPage or at the European Bookshop.
Language and French Society
Fluent to Expert (B2 to C1)
2h/week over 15 weeks or 3h/week over 10 weeks
Mon | 1.30pm – 3.30pm or Fri | 9.30am – 12.30pm
£350 (£315 early booking)
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Up to 15 students
Mon | 1.30pm – 3.30pm
13 Jan - 27 April 2020
Fri | 9.30am – 12.30pm
17 Jan - 20 Mar 2020
27 Mar - 12 Jun 2020
No class on 10 April & 8 May 2020

Improve your language skills & discuss current cultural and social issues.

For those wishing to gain insight into French society while perfecting their linguistic skills.

Tutor: Brigitte Coudino (Monday) / Joelle Miguet (Friday)

Aims: To discuss various themes (news, politics, culture, education, work, leisure, etc.) to better understand the different faces of contemporary society and improve linguistic skills (spoken production and listening comprehension).

Teaching approach: Analysis and commentary of authentic audio and written materials, presentations and discussions, guided reading of literary texts.

Course materials: Press articles, surveys, excerpts from radio, TV, films, books, adverts, songs, etc.

Student’s involvement: Students will be asked to take part in discussions and express their point of view in a relaxed and interactive environment.

Language and French Society
Expert to Mastery (C1 to C2)
3h/week over 10 weeks
Tue | 10.00am – 1.00pm or 1.30pm - 4.30pm
Thu | 1.30pm – 4.30pm
£350 (£315 early booking discount)
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Up to 15 students
Tue | 10.00am – 1.00pm or 1.30pm to 4.30pm
14 Jan - 17 Mar 2020
24 Mar - 02 Jun 2020
Thu | 1.30pm – 4.30pm
16 Jan - 19 Mar 2020
26 Mar - 04 Jun 2020

Improve your language skills & discuss current cultural and social issues.

For those wishing to gain insight into French society while perfecting their linguistic skills.

Tutor: Christiane Di Matteo has four masters degrees: Language Engineering, French as a Foreign Language, English and Literary Translation.

Aims: To discuss various themes (news, politics, culture, education, work, leisure, etc.) to better understand the different faces of contemporary society and improve linguistic skills (spoken production and listening comprehension).

Teaching approach: Analysis and commentary of authentic audio and written materials, presentations and discussions, guided reading of literary texts.

Course materials :

Oct- Dec 2019 

Tuesday &Thursday from 1.30pm to 4.30pm :

L’Africain, de JM Le Clezio

Et puis Paulette, de Barbara Constantine

Jan-March 2020

Tuesday &Thursday from 1.30pm to 4.30pm :

D’après une histoire vraie, de Delphine De Vigan

Le mystère Henri Pick, de David Foenkinos

March – June 2020

Tuesday &Thursday from 1.30pm to 4.30pm :

Au revoir là-haut, de Pierre Lemaitre

Student’s involvement: Students will be asked to take part in discussions and express their point of view in a relaxed and interactive environment.

Language and French Society
Fluent to Expert (B2) to (C1)
3h/week over 10 weeks
Wed | 1.15pm – 4.15pm
£350 (£315 early booking discount)
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Up to 15 students
15 Jan - 18 Mar 2020
25 Mar - 03 June 2020

For those wishing to gain insight into French society while perfecting their linguistic skills.

Tutor: Christiane Di Matteo has four masters degrees: Language Engineering, French as a Foreign Language, English and Literary Translation.

Aims: To discuss various books (mostly contemporary ) & to work on different  linguistic points.

Teaching approach: Analysis and commentary of Francophone novels  & improvement of vocabulary & grammar.

Course materials : 

Jan-March 2020

D’après une histoire vraiede Delphine De Vigan

Le mystère Henri Pick, de David Foenkinos

March – June 2020

Au revoir là-haut, de Pierre Lemaitre

Student’s involvement: Students will be asked to take part in discussions and express their point of view in a relaxed and interactive environment.

Feminism in French Literature & Society
Fluent to Expert (B2 to C1)
3h/week over 10 weeks
Tue | 10.00am - 1.00pm
£350 (£315 early booking discount)
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Up to 15 students
16 Jan - 19 Mar 2020
26 Mar - 04 Jun 2020

Learn about key feminist French authors from the pioneers to contemporary writers.

Language & French society
Fluent (B2) to Expert (C1)
2h/week over 15 weeks
Mon | 6.30pm - 8.30pm
£350 (£315 early booking discount)
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Up to 15 students
13 Jan - 27 April 2020
Session over 28h
£310 (£294 early booking discount)

Improve your language skills & discuss current cultural and social issues.

For those wishing to gain insight into French society while perfecting their linguistic skills.

Tutor: Brigitte Coudino

Aims: To discuss various themes (news, politics, culture, education, work, leisure, etc.) to better understand the different faces of contemporary society and improve linguistic skills (spoken production and listening comprehension).

Teaching approach: Analysis and commentary of authentic audio and written materials, presentations and discussions, guided reading of literary texts.

Course materials: Press articles, surveys, excerpts from radio, TV, films, books, adverts, songs, etc.

Student’s involvement: Students will be asked to take part in discussions and express their point of view in a relaxed and interactive environment.

French through photography
Fluent (B2) to Expert (C1)
2h/week over 15 weeks
Wed or Sat | 1.30pm – 3.30pm
£350 (£315 early booking discount)
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Up to 15 students
15 Jan - 2 May 2020

Improve your French oral skills and discuss photography.

React, revive memories, debate, express impressions with… images!

Tutor: Margot is a French teacher and a photographer. She loves the way photos trigger imagination and dialogue. She has a Maîtrise (M.A) in French as a Foreign Language and in Foreign Languages Applied as well as 10 years’ experience of teaching French as a foreign language.

Aims: The course hopes to inspire your imagination through observing photographs to start exchanges and/ or to write in French.

Student involvement: Students’ imagination and willingness to interact and share ideas.

Teaching approach: Use photos as a source of expression and reflection, foster involvement of learners with playful and creative activities. You will rapidly improve confidence and prompt autonomy in expression.
Communicative approach with emphasis on using your knowledge and enriching it through practice.

Course materials: Based on the ideas of Photos-Expressions by Francis Yaiche, photographs will be brought by the tutor.

Language and Current Affairs
Expert to Mastery (C1 to C2)
2h/week over 15 weeks
Tue | 7.00pm – 9.00pm
£350 (£315 early booking discount)
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Up to 15 students
14 Jan - 28 Apr 2020

For those who have a good grasp of French and wish to broaden or keep up their knowledge of the language through studying and discussing the news and its portrayal in the written press and broadcast media.

Tutor: Isabelle Ayma has a good knowledge of socio-cultural differences, teaching French as a Foreign Language and lots of enthusiasm to help students get to know Francophone culture.

Aims: You will develop your communication and debating skills and you will improve your listening skills with the help of authentic documents. Conversations, debates and activities will be used to tackle the news actively and dynamically.

Teaching approach:
The student will present a topic of interest (economics, politics, culture, society, health, etc.) for a few minutes and other members of the group will participate through questions, quizes, etc.

Review of the written and oral language through its use in different contexts.

Development of vocabulary and grammar in context (interactive exercises: e.g. front pages of newspapers, newspaper headlines, piecing together articles)

Sharing thoughts on the topic. Discussions on French and international news.

Course materials: We will use authentic documents, newspaper articles, magazines, radio and television clips and blogs. This will consolidate the learner’s written and oral language (correcting accent and syntax, differentiating between language registers, grammar, word games) and facilitate fast and fluent speaking.

Student’s involvement: Students will be asked to do some research on topics of their choice at home to be able to give an interactive presentation on an article every week.

Language and Current Affairs
Fluent to Mastery (B2 to C2)
3h/week over 10 weeks
Sat | 10.00am – 1.00pm
£350 (£315 early booking discount)
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Up to 15 students
18 Jan - 21 Mar 2020
28 Mar - 13 Jun 2020

For those who have already mastered the French language and wish to deepen and broaden their knowledge of current affairs as they are presented in the news.

Tutor: Catherine Gaitte is specialised in teaching French as a foreign language and has extensive knowledge of French and British media.

Aims: To develop your communication, debating skills and to improve your listening comprehension using authentic documents. Through conversation and debates, you will approach current affairs in an interactive and dynamic way.

Teaching approach:

Revision of written and spoken language
Vocabulary and grammar in context
Exchanging ideas on varied topics
Diverse activities to develop skills
Discussion of French and international news

Course materials: The course will be based on authentic documents, from newspaper articles, to online magazines, documentaries, and extracts from radio and tv programmes.

Student’s involvement: Students will stay informed about current affairs. They will research topics, give presentations and share ideas in a relaxed class atmosphere.

Film et Literature
Intermediate to Fluent (B1 to B2)
3h/week over 10 weeks
Wed | 1.30pm - 4.30pm
£350 (£315 early booking discount)
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Up to 15 students
14 Jan - 18 Mar 2020
24 Mar - 02 June 2020

An easier access to French language with a different theme for each course and a selection of reference films and books aiming to an initiation into French classical works, while expanding your communication level in daily circumstances.

Tutor: The tutor has a degree in History of Art and Museology from the Ecole du Louvre, as well as a degree from the Courtauld Institute. She has many years’ experience in teaching French as a foreign language.

Aims: You will develop your communication and debating skills and improve your listening comprehension using books and famous films.

Teaching Approach: The course will be based on vocabulary, grammar, analysis, discussions, presentations, essay writing.

January to March 2020:

  • Film Cléo de 5 à 7, by Agnes Varda,
  • Book:  Bonjour Tristesse,  by by Francoise Sagan

March to June 2020:

  • Film:  Les 400 coups,  by François Truffaut
  • Book:Dora Bruder,by Patrick Modiano, Nobel price for Literature
CROSS CULTURAL TRAINING: LIVING AND WORKING IN FRANCE
Fluent to Master (B2 to C2)
2h/week over 15 weeks
Tue | 6.30pm - 8.30pm
£350 (£315 early booking discount)
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up to 15 students
14 Jan - 28 Apr 2020

Ensure a successful move to France by acquiring cultural understanding and improving your language skills.

Aims: By the end of this course, in the following domains, you will be able to:

–          General/Daily life:

o   Differentiate between tu or vous in various contexts (at work, when meeting new people, at the gym etc.)

o   Understand and use some typical French gestures

o   Become familiar with administrative procedures in France

o   Be aware of Health and Safety regulations

o   Become familiar with the French customs of holiday making (faire le pont, juilletiste/aoûtiens etc.)

o   French people’s attitude to buying

o   Understand the French media (their readership, their political trend etc.)

–          At work:

o   Understand how French people interact in the workplace

o   Write professional emails in a French manner

o   Behave and interact in a meeting

o   Understand French attitude to team work

o   Become familiar with a French management style

o   Take part in a French appraisal

o   Understand the various legal status of French companies

o   The different training options in France

Teaching approach: Mini-lectures, discussions and interactive / participatory

Course materials for 2019: Some resources provided by the tutor (you may be asked to buy a book in the first class).

Courses may be cancelled if there is an insufficient number of students enrolled. We encourage our students to register at least five days in advance.

Except for Young Learners courses, all classes are for students aged 18 and over.

Students should consider their personal commitments and circumstances that may prevent attendance before enrolment as missed classes cannot be taken at another time.