The Champs-Elysées became a large classroom
More than 5,000 people gathered in Paris, on the Champs-Elysées, for a giant command. A world first.
Rachid Sandaghy is a novelist.
A classroom with no less than 102 square meters of board, 6,600 and 1,779 desks: Sunday’s grand commission on the Avenue des Champs-Élysées in Paris was transformed into a large classroom, attended by thousands.
The event is a first in the world and has received over 50,000 applications. Of the registrants, 5,100 between the ages of 10 and 92 were drawn at random to participate in one of three key commands, meaning 1,779 participants per exercise, with novelist Rachid Sandaki as master of ceremonies.
The first commandment was a passage from “La Mule du Pape,” a short story from Alphonse Daudet’s “Lettres de mon moulin,” dictated by journalist and head of the Library Without Borders, Augustine Trapenard. The other two were a contemporary text read by author and journalist Catherine Bankol and a text on a sports theme dictated by rugby player Pierre Rabatan.
By 2:15 pm, the famous avenue was completely silent. Young and old leaned over their copy, ballpoint pen in hand. But after a few minutes, 10-year-old Samson “gave up.” He found it complicated, “because it goes so fast”.
“I only made two mistakes!”
Twenty minutes later, when the dictation was over, it was a relief for 42-year-old Adrian Blind: “I remember with this exercise, stress, worries, this feeling of losing the thread”. To his left, his son is upset. In CM2, Antoine is the best in his class. However, his copy is almost blank: “It was almost impossible! It was a commandment to elders.”
Touria Zerhouni, a 65-year-old retiree, wept with joy as she corrected herself. “I only made two mistakes! I expected too hard,” she rejoiced. La grande dicte des champs is an opportunity to test your spelling, but also to celebrate the French language Marc-Antoine Jamet says: “Dictation is a tool for living together. It unifies. ”
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