(I thought I could just edit my last post with another comment, but it turns out I have a lot more to say)
A lot of schools in Europe seem to have multiple "streams" of education during highschool, dividing students based on aptitude at a fairly early age (14 or so, though my school in Canada pretty much did the same, with two classes for each main subject, one academic, one not so much). I like what you said Abi about mixing all the students for the first year then dividing them after that. That could be really interesting in a fic.
I might further question, do students have the opportunity to switch classes/levels and if so, when? Do they have other exams besides the OWLS and the NEWTS?
I've looked up the acronyms used in the French translations of the books on wikipedia :P and on the Encyclopédie Harry Potter (link goes to the ASPIC article if you speak any French, the site might be a useful too, but then I'm never sure how welcome introduction of a second language in fiction is.) In any case:
OWLS are: (les) BUSE (Brevet Universel de Sorcellerie Elémentaire)
NEWTS are: (les) ASPIC, (Accumulation de Sorcellerie Particulièrement Intensive et Contraignante)
From what I understand, the OWLS and the NEWTS are pretty standard across the wizarding world, so the subjects would probably be the same all over, as would the evaluation methods.
Maybe they take their OWLS at the beginning of their 6th year? Maybe NEWTS are optional? Maybe NEWTS are taken during the summer after graduation so as to give more time for preparation, allowing Beauxbatons to boost their scores and look better in the wizarding community :P
Oh thank you for the OWL and NEWT's abbreviations, I never thought to find a French copy of the books!
Regarding OWL's and NEWT's, do you think they would have the same grades (i.e. O,E,A,P,D,T) or would they have something different.
Also how likely do you think it is that Beauxbatons has the Quidditch cup like Hogwarts does. I personally think they would as it encourages team-work and competitiveness but I would like to know your views.
Any help welcome
The French encyclopaedia lists the same letter grades as in English in translation (Optimal, Effort Exceptionnel, Acceptable, Piètre, Désolant, Troll) so you wouldn't have to bother about changing the letters--the books' translators obviously found no harm in keeping the same letters. They do pertain to standardized tests also, so they'd probably still be universal.
I think it'd be safe to assume Beauxbatons has a Quidditch cup, which would mean you'd have to decide how they divide teams, how many teams there are, and whether or not there are any other sports at the school. At Hogwarts Quidditch seemed to be the only sport worth talking about, which I'd assume would be more or less the same at Beauxbatons (basing this of course on UK and France having comparable passion for football). This is the fun part! The teams could have animal mascots or they might not, there's a lot of room for creative license.:D At Hogwarts I found it interesting to see that they had co-ed teams (perhaps because they didn't have enough students to put together two teams)--maybe at Beauxbatons they have a girls league and a boys league?
I hope that helps! I'm always happy to make my countless years of French language instruction useful. Happy writing!
Keeping with the assumption that Beauxbatons has more students than Hogwarts, they could have enough interest and players of the sport to make sort-of "intramural" teams, like many universities have. Brackets could be set up and overall winners in leagues could be established. I have to admit - the idea of a group of teenagers trying to come up with colors, a mascot, and a name could prove to be rather entertaining for authors!
Originally Posted by crazy717
Thank you to every one who has replied on this thread so far!
I just wanted to run this by you. I've been playing off the carriage idea and thought, would you be able to have a carriage or maybe a few for each year as a way to get to school? They could use the flying horses that pull the carriage that took Beauxbatons students to Hogwarts but maybe they wouldn't be as fancy or be able to hold as many or perhaps more pupils that that one could. I haven't explained it very well but right now I can't think of how to make it understandable.
Also I am desperate for a school moto! Does anyone have any idea's?
Any thoughts and idea's welcome,
I get the impression Beauxbatons prides itself in academic excellence. I also get the impression it's a lot more formal than Hogwarts. The silk robes give me the impression that they like to be extremely elegant, (Seriously-- silk?) and I kinda think they sort of hold themselves aloof somewhat.
As for the actual building and housing arrangements-- It's a palace, not a castle, I believe, which also lends itself (IMHO) to more opulence, I think. As for housing-- would the palace even have towers? I would probably study some Medieval French architecture. Perhaps they have wings, not towers. They might have the north wing, the west wing, and so on. Perhaps students aren't just randomly divided, but are divided completely by year, with the first and second years in the East Wing, the third and fourth years in the West Wing and so on. I get the impression Beaxbatons is more organized than Hogwarts, (Wasn't Fleur not liking the moving staircases?) so the dormitories might correspond to each other in their location in the building. (Not like Hogwarts, with Hufflepuff by the kitchen, Ravenclaw and Gryffindor in the towers, and Slytherin in the dungeons)
For intramural sports, I don't know if they'd be as enthusiastic about Quidditch as Hogwarts. Although, they did go to the Quidditch World Cup... I would guess they would have some kind of academic competition....
For a motto, you could start by looking at the name of the school. According to Google Translate, "beaux batons" means "fine sticks". I can't see this as anything but a reference to wands and the quality of their magic, so maybe you could do something like "An Academy devoted to excellence" or something along those lines. Maybe fit something in about wands, too. They seem proud of their wands. Isn't there a pair of crossed wands on the door of the carriage?
Transportation: Carriages, I think would be okay, but you might want to tone them down a bit-- I think they were really pulling out all the stops for the Triwizard Tournament. I don't think the carriage was mentioned at the World Cup, but the Beauxbatons students were looking for Madame Maxime, so I think it was a school trip. Perhaps they take flying carpets--aren't those just illegal in the magical U. K.? Maybe they Floo or take a Portkey.
For more school culture ideas, I might try going to the language and culture corner of the desk and ask about french school culture. What little I know of it is mostly in relation to how it's different from the U. S. I pretty much learned most of what I know about it from my French teacher, who is actually French. I know they have longer school days than Americans, and I know they get a lot of schoolwork. According to my teacher, class is much more formal than America. (nobody talks during class, before class, anything) In America, we have a kind of culture for each school-- each school is its own community. Everything happens through the school-- theater, art, sports... Apperently the French equivalent of highschool doesn't have sports teams or really much school spirit-- it's for learning, and that's what they do at school. I wouldn't trust me as a sole source of information, though. And I don't know what would be different about French boarding school. I'm just not going to be a good source of information there, I don't think.
Sorry I haven't replied for a while!
I like the idea of having the different years in the different wings so I think I'll have it like that.
Thank you to every one who's replied to this thread!
Mods you can now lock this thread :)