In between vocabulary lessons, music and shadow puppetry, Rebecca Anderson introduces her students to snails.
During a field trip to Del Ray Café, students in Anderson’s French class (ages 6 and up) practice their language skills by ordering in French with the French-speaking staff and exploring the country’s prized dishes. “Most of the kids ordered escargot,” says Anderson, who has been teaching French for 15 years as well as math and science in Fairfax’s French immersion program.
The owner of Old Town French recognizes food as the encouragement her students need to memorize menu items and dinner etiquette. “I just tried to go with what the kids are motivated by—and they love food.” In the 11-week session (classes start again Sept. 20), Anderson also leads baking instruction with French pastries and desserts (madeleines, galettes des rois, crepes) as a way to incorporate math, science and chemistry—and, of course, to expose them to one of the world’s most historic cuisines.