On the May 18, I went with my Year 10 class to the French pastry shop “A la folie” on Chapel Street.

There, my students met the pastry chef, Mercede Coubard and interviewed her. They had to formulate questions in different ways, including formal and informal ones.

While they were practising their listening skills,  it was 100 per cent in French, and they tasted macaroon and petit chou. They began to gain confidence and asked more questions.

But it went beyond the grammar lesson. They discovered the story of a woman from Paris who changed her job twice and started a new life in Melbourne more than six years ago.

At home with two children, she began to make cakes and to develop a passion for macaroons.

She decided to follow courses at the famous Parisian Culinary school of Alain Ducasse to master this tiny pastry. She came back, chose a team and began her business using the best ingredients, using traditional or exotic flavours. The best seller is the caramel macaroon with salted butter.

As a conclusion, Mercede said: “it’s never too late to start a new life”.

When asked by my students what she liked most about her work, she answered:”faire plaisir aux gens” which means bring happiness to people.

An excursion is worth hundreds of lessons.