Most people travel to Lyon to experience the UNESCO accredited World Heritage city, and to indulge in the culinary delights of France’s acclaimed gastronomic capital. But in increasing numbers, travellers are combining a cultural visit to France with a course in French language, and with Lyon being the culturally rich city that it is, the city has become a centre for language schools that offer courses in French language that feature an emphasis on cultural immersion.
Choosing a French language school in Lyon
Inflexyon and Alliance Française de Lyon are both accredited with the French government certification “Qualité Français langue étrangère“ (French Foreign Language Quality), while Lyon Blue is accredited by IALC, the independent “International Association of Language Centres”, but doesn’t carry the “Qualité Français langue étrangère”, quality label. Following further independent research, Inflexyon topped the list of school choices, in terms of value for money (lesson length and hourly rate comparison) and also in terms of the cultural orientation of the language school.
With our research complete, it was time to test drive a course at our chosen language school in Lyon, which is exactly what our NileGuide Local Expert for Lyon did at the start of this year. Here’s what she found out:
Studying French at Lyon’s Inflexyon French language school
The first pleasing feature of the Inflexyon French language school is its location; situated at the foot of the World Heritage Croix-Rousse hill, the language centre is surrounded by unique architecture; tall romantic buildings of pink and yellow hues that were constructed in the 19th century to accommodate the large Jacquard looms of Lyon’s silk making industry. Rue René Leynaud – the road where Inflexyon is situated – also features one of Lyon’s most charming passageways, Passage Thiaffait; an elegant court passage that marks the ascension point that leads onto the Croix-Rousse slopes and its maze of famous Traboules de la Croix-Rousse. Rue René Leynaud also features the restaurant Le Tiafé – a small but very popular restaurant in the area – and the immense Église Saint Polycarpe; a striking church characterised by an imposing pillar fronted façade that dates back to the 18th century.
The Inflexyon language school itself is housed in a building typical of the area; a tall atmospheric building that shows its time-worn history in the stone spiraled staircases that connects each floor.
Situated on two levels of the building, the interior of the school has been renovated to create a modern functionality with design features that generate a warm convivial ambiance.
The reception areas of the school are where you will find the schools teaching staff and multi-lingual office staff. These areas merge with the rest of the school creating an “all doors open” atmosphere that is abuzz with the movement and activity of teachers and international students, some relaxing, chatting and studying in the school’s communal area and some moving from class to class.
Inflexyon courses, accommodation in Lyon and cultural activities
Inflexyon offer course programmes that comprise six levels of attainment, ranging from beginners classes to classes for advanced learners. Entrance level is initially ascertained through a placement test, but in addition, students can choose their own formula of study within their levels of study. For example; you may be an intermediate learner who wants to focus on oral communication and French grammar. In that case, Inflexyon will help to find the most appropriate formula of classes to meet your needs.
In addition to helping students with their academic needs, Inflexyon can take care of students’ accommodation requirements, with a wide range of options including home-stay with French families, hotel residence, shared apartments and campus housing. The school also offers a wide range of cultural immersion activities ranging from cultural excursions in and around Lyon, to courses in the famous Lyonnais gastronomy, to citywide guided tours.
For full course details, contact information and further information on accommodation options offered by Inflexyon, visit the Inflexyon Official Website.
Article and photography by Emma Muldoon
Photography Copyright Emma Muldoon. All Rights Reserved