Madame Schumacher’s Wonderful World of French


Ava Repanich, Staff Writer

Madame Schumacher is a teacher at West Seattle High School teaching about 100 kids a year French in a way no teacher has ever before. Her constant energy and excitement to see each and every student makes it hard not to pay attention. The way this teacher uses interactive lessons engages all students.

She gives every student the ability to raise their grades if they need and she gives you all the resources you would need to be speaking French. She immerses you in culture and language with weekly translations of real events and posters and France as well learning history and geography that every kid can understand no matter their level. She will always answer questions you have whether your vocabulary is broken or sounding fluent, and no matter where you stand she can give you the opportunity to succeed in her class.

I talked to two of her students, one is in her French 1 class, Alex Stieger, and the second in her French 2, Owen Davido. Both students seem to admire her teaching style and clear passion for helping kids. Alex says, “Ms. Schu is one of my favorite teachers because you can tell that she really puts effort into teaching and makes her classes a lot of fun.” But the praise does not end there. 

He continues, “She takes the time to talk to and get to know her students.” It’s clear he has an affinity for the teacher and really appreciates her effort and style in teaching and I’ve watched as he’s learned French. From the start of the year to now, he’s become remarkably proficient – I remember talking to him at the beginning of the year and he couldn’t even maintain a conversation because he couldn’t understand me, but now we can have complex conversations in French. 

It’s the same in her upper French classes. Owen says that, “She’s good, she tries, she’s fun, (and) she can be strict at times but it helps.” Even though he had a less energetic response, he does really still enjoy learning in her class, and he passes most of his classes with flying colors – and it’s not just because he’s passionate about French, but because her learning style forces her students to learn French whether they are trying or not. I think it’s safe to say everyone comes out of her class knowing a little more than they knew the day before.