My niece lives in Rome and has been there since 2001. Due to Covid-19, she has been locked down since the end of February and has only recently been able to leave the apartment to start enjoying again the beautiful city that she lives in with her husband and 9-year-old daughter, Beatrice. As part and parcel of being on lockdown, she has been tutoring Beatrice and working on all sorts of projects with the French school that her daughter attends.
This latest project was one that I was particularly struck by as it was based around a French poem from Jacques Charpentreau. The idea behind the original children’s poem, called “Paris en Vélo“, took us by bicycle through the various districts of Paris. Above is the original poem and assignment.
Beatrice’s project was to replicate the poem using her own words and taking us through her neighborhoods in Rome. Below is her final poem along with a picture of Beatrice on her bike.
It is extraordinary for me to follow Beatrice and Jessica’s adventures on WhatsApp. Most of all, it is incredible to watch the creativity of her teachers as they continue to keep the kids engaged while they were literally at home unable to even walk 100 meters outside. “Rome en Vélo” is wonderful because Beatrice was able to take her bike out for the first time in nearly three months. While she couldn’t cover all of the neighborhoods, she was able to experience life outside of the apartment en vélo.
For all of the teachers who have been teaching remote over the past 2.5 months, Chapeau Bas! Thank you on behalf of all of the parents and students. Whatever country, whatever subject, you have all done quite an amazing job of keeping the knowledge flowing and the creativity blowing our way. I wanted to share this delightful poem because it says so much about the innovation and importance of education even when things are so difficult. Of course, grazie Beatrice for being the inspiration.