PAHS Students Travel to France
Students travel with community group to France
This past summer, eleven Punxsutawney Area High School students joined nearly two dozen other alumni and community members on a trip to Paris, France. Though this trip was not affiliated with the Punxsutawney Area School District, French Instructor Ms. Lisa McMeekin accompanied the travel party and seized the opportunity to help offer participants an authentic learning experience like no other.
Ms. McMeekin has been with the Punxsutawney Area High School for ten years, which has witnessed a growing interest and participation among students in the school’s foreign language programs. While the school has always had four levels of French courses offered (French I, French II, French III, and French IV), this year is the first time during McMeekin’s tenure that Punxsutawney Area High School has had enough pupils to run a class beyond the level of French II.
“Though I teach French specifically, my passion is language in general, a uniquely human ability that is truly fascinating to study. While most of us here are lucky enough to grow up speaking English and will likely never need to learn another language to get by, our lives can be immensely enriched when we open ourselves to other ways of speaking, of seeing and hearing the world from another perspective. We don't have to give up or lose who we are through the process. From my experience, studying another language and culture strengthens one's understanding of one's own.” said McMeekin.
While in France, the group spent several days on walking tours of famous French landmarks and cultural sites, from visiting the Eiffel Tower to exploring the Louvre. They were also able to visit neighboring sites such as the Loire Valley castles, Caen Museum, the beaches of Normandy, and the American cemetery located at Normandy.
Back row: Jeff Dorsey, Kelly Lott, Heather Gigliotti, Alyssa Elbel, Evie Lott, Zoey Hoover, Giovani Gigliotti, Molly Smith, Jacinda Gigliotti, Sophie Wyant, Mallory Wyant, Bryce Horne
Middle Row: Vanessa Dorsey, Michaela Rentko, Emily Wisnesky, Elizabeth Depp-Hutchins, Mercy Smith, Dindre Smith, Sheri Acre, Kenzie Waltman, Aiden Cameron, Dylan Bender, Addie Hudock, Sophie Torretti
Front row: Chelsea Neal-Bouch, Jade Brooks, Danielle Siebenhuener, Kayla Bouch, Lisa McMeekin, Ella Hudock, Jamie Sierzega
Missing from photo: Mike Gigliotti, Brad Noland, and Jackson Fye