Saturday, November 30, 2013
Students broke bread together at HRVHS just before the Thanksgiving break, but it had nothing to do with pilgrims.
They literally broke bread, passing around baguettes sold as a fundraiser, and then adding cheeses, jams and other condiments to the quintessential long loaf French bread.
The occasion was part of French Week, celebrated by the HRVHS French Club and friends.
The students ate baguettes with brie and listened to classic French music, under the tutelage of French teacher Jennifer Stevens.
Every year the French club thinks of creative activities to celebrate French Week, but dressing up each day is always essential. Some of the dress-up days this year included scarf day, barrette day, blue white and red day, and famous French person day.
“Vive la France,” said senior Myrna Najera, who has saved up for four years for this spring’s French Club trip to Normandy and other points in France.
“It’s something I’m really looking forward to,” said Najera, the French Club president.
Students at Hood River Valley High School are required to take two years of a foreign language in order to graduate; classes offered include Mandarin, French and Spanish.
“I think this whole week was about more than the language,” said Maddy Graham, French Club vice president. “Culture is a big part of what we learn; not just grammar but the way they speak in other areas.”
Students became familiar with French Impressionist artists, with a focus this year on Vincent van Gogh (who worked mostly in France) and they got the opportunity to create their own rendition of famous Impressionist works.
A special event also took place on Nov. 18, something French Club had never done before. After school, students, local Francophiles and teachers went down to Andrew’s Skylight Theatre to view the French film “Romantics Anonymous.”
“It was the perfect way to finish a very French day,” said Graham. “The movie was an awkward romantic comedy which everyone enjoyed, even if some of the viewers didn’t speak French.”
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Parkdale third graders sing "12 Disaster Days of Christmas"
Welcome to your sing-able Christmas gift list. What follows is an emergency rendition of “12 Days of Christmas” – for outfitting your home or car in case of snow storm, earthquake, flood or other emergency. Read it as a simple list, or sing it to the tune of “12 Days” – you know, as in “ … and a partridge in a pear tree…” Not to make light of it, but the song is a familiar framework for a set of gift ideas that you could consider gathering together, even if the recipient already owns items such as a bunch of coats, tire chains and flashlights. Stores throughout the Gorge are stocked up on all these items. Buying all 12 days might be prohibitive, but here are three ideas for checking any of the dozen off your list (notations follow, 1-12.) The gift items needed to stay warm, dry and safe are also coded to suggest items in your abode (A) in your car (C) or both (B). 12 Gallons of Water (A) 11 Family meals (B) 10 Cans of propane (A) 9 Hygiene bags (B) 8 Packs of batteries (A) 7 Spare coats (B) 6 Bright red flares (C) 5 Cozy blankets (B) 4 Tire chains (C) 3 Flashlights (B) 2 cell phone chargers (B) 1 And a crush-proof first aid kit (B) Price ranges? Here’s a few quotes for days Three, Two, Four and Nine: n A family gift of flashlights (three will run $15-30, Hood River Supply, Tum-A-Lum) n Cell phone chargers (two will run $30-60) n Tire chains (basic set, $30, Les Schwab, returnable if unused for the winter) n Family meals ($100 or so should cover the basics for three or four reasonably well-fed days) n The home kit should be kept in a handy place near an exit, and remember that water needs to be replenished every few months. If you have a solid first aid kit already, switch out the gift idea with “and-a-sto-o-u-t- tub-for it-all …” Otherwise, it’s a case of assembling your home or car kits and making sure all members of the family know what the resources are and how to use them (ie flares and propane). Emergency situations are at worst life-threatening, at best deeply uncomfortable if you and your family are left without power for an extended period, or traveling and find yourself in a situation where you need to wait out a storm, lengthy traffic delay, or other crisis. Notes on the 12 gift ideas: 12 – Gallons of water: that’s one per person in a four-member family to last for three days, the recommended minimum to be prepared for utility outages. 11 – Easy-open packaged goods, energy bars, dried food and nuts are good things to include for nutrition. Think of what your family of four needs for three days to stay fortified and hydrated (see number 12). Can-opener also recommended 10 – If you have a propane camping stove, keep extra fuel handy. 9 – Hygiene bags: put packaged moistened towelettes, toilet paper, and plastic ties in large garbage bags (for personal sanitation) Resource list courtesy of Hood River County Emergency Management, Barbara Ayers, manager/ 541-386-1213. The county also reminds residents to Get a Kit, Make A Plan to connect your family if separated, and Stay Informed. See www.co.hood-river.or.us to opt-in for citizen alerts. Enlarge