March is the month of celebrating “ La Francophonie” and also Carnival Time in France and here in Melbourne it is the month of the French Film Festival organised by the Alliance Francaise.
Mars le mois du Carnaval en France et de la francophonie !
Le carnaval or Mardi Gras is an annual celebration around France and all around the world today.
The traditional colours of Mardi Gras are:
Le violet- purple- for justice;
le doré – gold- for power;
le vert- green- for faith
la justice/ le pouvoir / la confiance
In French, mardi gras literally means Fat Tuesday! This is as a result of the event falling on the day before Ash Wednesday, the last day prior to the 40 day Lenten fast which ends on Easter Sunday. People would make the most of eating fatty foods before the fast for Lent began. The slogan for Mardi Gras is « laissez les bons temps rouler » – let the good times roll!
By far the biggest Mardi Gras celebration in France is held in Nice. People line the street in carnival costumes and masks to watch the procession of floats.
Every year, francophone countries around the world celebrate the ‘International Day of la Francophonie’. This occurs in March.
There are 29 countries where French is the official or co-official language. Our senior students will be researching some of these as part of their inquiry topic.
French Films are screening in Melbourne at the various Palace Cinemas. Due to the constraints of the timetable, it is not possible this year to take our students, as we did previously, to one of the School screenings at the Como cinema. I would recommend the following films to parents if they wish to see a French film this month: Edmond, Hors Normes (The Extraordinary); for students from prep to year six “ SamSam” is an animation but does not have French subtitles as they are not really needed; for the senior students in years five and six the movie “Spread Your Wings”. The movie “Donkey Skin (Peau d’Ane), although a fantasy masterpiece, written by French author Charles Perault (Sleeping Beauty, Cinderella, Red Riding Hood) is not recommended for primary students.