January 2009 : Jean Boujonnier [fr]
Jean Boujonnier is a primary school teacher at the Lycée Français de Toronto (www.lft.ca). He came to Canada in August 2007 to teach French language to first grade pupils. A native from Picardie, this young tall man had always flirted with nomadism. His primary school teacher diploma in his pocket, he wondered about possibilities he could get. “Not a lot” he confessed. A worshipper of the Picardie nature, he was reluctant to deal with the concrete and the asphalt of the French capital. Full time positions are pretty rare in Picardie but he struggled to finally obtain a class with socially challenged pupils with learning difficulties, in Hesdin in the north of France. Jean spent two years teaching twelve children. He fully accomplished his mission and the will to fight with a new challenge starts to show up.
“My oldest brother told me about International Volontary Participation”. Since 2001, this type of contract succeeded to the co-operation military service and allows young people between 18 and 28 years old to work outside of France, for one or two years. His desire to discover new countries and his will to exercise his teaching profession were both fulfilled. The departure was imminent! He worked in Finland for two years, where he taught at the Finish French high school in Helsinki.
Delighted by his Scandinavian experience, he wished at the end of his contract to live again the same enthusiasm, the same exaltation. The white vast fields and the Finish cold forged him a robust temperament. He is grateful to them, so he decided to carry on his career in a country where climate does not leave you indifferent.
Jean touched the Canadian ground for the first time in July 2007 and he met his students in September of the same year. “They are adorable and it’s a real pleasure for me to work with them”. Jean quickly realised he was not the only one in his class who had travelled. “Most of my pupils grew up in a French Canadian environment and in spite of their young age a lot of them already lived in another country”. Proudly, he tells that his pupils are really perceptive and the excellent results of the Lycée Français de Toronto seem to support his view.
Jean is here for three years, maybe six. And when you ask him where he will go after his stop in Toronto, he gives a hint of a smile and answers “where the wind will take me ! ”. Maybe he already knows it…
For more information, feel free to visit the Lycée Français of Toronto website : http://www.lft.ca/