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AATF Rendez-vous des Retraités

Realizing that retired area teachers had diminished interest in pedagogy but missed the collegiality and connections of their teaching years, as well as the opportunity to converse in French and learn more about the Francophone culture and current happenings in the French-speaking world, the Philadelphia chapter of the American Association invited a group of retired French teachers to join the “Rendez-vous des Retraités” in early 2019. The goal of this group is to provide casual and formal occasions for retirees from the French teaching profession where they could use their language skills, connect with other colleagues who have left the French classroom and share cultural opportunities (e.g. book discussions, talks, concerts, theater, museum visits, etc.) These teachers are also welcome to join the local chapter at any AATF events of interest to them.

Several dozen retired area teachers joined and at a given bi-monthly event, about a dozen gettogether. Though some in-person events were canceled due to the pandemic, the group has gotten together at a variety of French restaurants for casual conversation and/or to hear a speaker talk about a Francophone related topic. Participants have learned about Haiti from a Fulbright scholar and learned about World War Two in France from a colleague, participated in a private guided tour in French of an exhibit at a local museum, and simply enjoyed one another’s company over delicious French lunches, sharing stories about their teaching days and their lives, activities and travels as retirees. They have re-connected with colleagues and become acquainted with new ones.

We invite all interested French teachers to join our group. Please contact Emily Wagner at voila5@comcast.net for additional information.