What kind of students do well at the French Academy?
Students with a variety of backgrounds and learning styles have excelled with us.
Our qualified teachers and small class sizes allow us to provide extra support – or additional challenges — when needed. Our warm, supportive and international environment helps children learn to their full potential.
How many students are in a class?
We truly believe big things happen in small classes. Our classes don’t exceed 16 students in Pre-K and K. On average, our elementary school classes have 14 children. Smaller classes allow us give our students more individual attention, which helps them excel both academically and socially.
Is it just a French school or do you cover a full curriculum?
The French Academy covers a full curriculum. We follow the structure of the French Education Ministry, while adhering to the American guidelines established by the Common Core. After attending our school, students are prepared to enter both French and American schools.
How do we compare to Montessori?
Maria Montessori was a wise woman whose expertise with children and unique teaching philosophy spread rapidly
throughout North America during the 20th century. Her core beliefs centered on small classroom size, manipulatives that link math and geography to day to day life and, promoting a sense of independence to the children.
The world has changed greatly since Ms. Montessori first implemented her ideas.
The philosophy at the French Academy, includes some of Maria’s best tenets:
small classroom sizes help us to know each student well and give them adequate
support in a differentiated environment. We also embrace life-based teaching. But, our educational approach goes further, by proactively promoting 21st century skills required in today’s world. Our modern culture includes an ever-changing global environment. We believe that if the children attending The French Academy are to succeed we must enhance their ability to understand, communicate and collaborate with others of varying backgrounds.
Science is also part of our project-based instruction, including a daily problem solving exercise.
Our bilingual program opens minds to global citizenship, and advances presentation skills. The true bilingual
education opens the mind exponentially allowing the brain to learn and connect
Please take 2 minutes to watch our
video about the path we choose for our children http://www.faacademy.org/the-benefits-of-bilingualism/the-paths-we-choose/
Do you teach handwriting?
We do. Our children learn to write in cursive. In Pre-K 3 and 4, they start to write in upper case while practicing their fine motor skills with loops and bridges on dry erase boards or paper. In Kindergarten, they will start to write in cursive. In first grade, it is a well-established skill which enables us to focus on other academic subjects in the later grades.
How is time divided between French and English?
At 2 years old, 90% of the curriculum is taught in French. Then, as the children get older, the number of hours taught in English slowly increases (3 hours per week at 3 years-old, 6.5 hours in First Grade). By fifth grade, they will receive 60% of teaching in French and 40% in English. The ultimate goal at FAA is to raise children equally in both languages.
What if you don’t speak any French?
In pre-school, it is not required for a child to speak French. In 1st grade and up, prior knowledge of French is required. In addition, we offer language support for children who may need extra help in French or English. This is truly a nurturing environment and we do everything we can to give all of our students the support they need.
Does the school provide transportation?
We do provide transportation between Hoboken-Weehawken and Jersey City. We can extend to Newport area, Bayonne or Union City if needed
Is lunch provided?
Both campuses offer hot lunches. You can choose to sign up for the lunch program or provide a boxed lunch for your child.
What grades does the school serve?
Our New Milford campus serves children from 2 years of age through 7th grade (5eme).
OurJersey City campus serves children from 2 ½ years of age through 5th grade (CM2).
Our Morris Plains serves children from 2 ½ years of age through First Grade (6 years old).
Aren’t grade structures a little different in French and English?
They are. This chart should help clarify.
|Cycle||Cycle 1: initial learning||Cycle 2: fundamental
|Cycle 3: in-depth
What are the class hours?
Classes start at 8:30 or 8:45 am and end at 3 or 3:15pm depending of the grade and campus. We strongly encourage punctuality as this helps children transition smoothly into their working day. Before school care is available at 7 or 7:30am and after school care is available until 6 or 6:30pm.
When is the school closed?
Our school is closed for three days in October and three days for Thanksgiving. We are closed two weeks in December for Christmas and New Years, one week in February for mid-winter recess, one week in April for Spring break, and one day for Memorial Day.
What is the difference between afterschool and enrichment?
Our afterschool program focuses on French language development, while our enrichment program includes a variety of offerings such as art, robotics, lego, sports, chess, theater, or Spanish.