Agnès Villoutreix founded an online language school, Passion FLE (https://www.passionfle.fr). To create her very small company of which she is the only employee, she relied on Office 365.
Agnes is my wife ;-). We conducted this family project together, each in his area of expertise. I am therefore all the more proud and happy to talk about it in Digital-Inside.
This project illustrates the ability of Office 365 to be used in multiple contexts, for very large companies, but also very small, like Z & Z, a TPE of three people that I interviewed in this post) and now Passion FLE .
The example of Passion FLE also illustrates the opportunities of these tools for all areas of activity. The only limit ultimately is the ability of the company to know how to set the tools in each context and imagine the use cases.
But what fascinated me in his project is to implement for this small family business the same tools that I deploy in large international groups. These are the same licenses, the same features: something unimaginable just a few years ago.
Agnes, can you introduce yourself in a few words?
I am a teacher of FLE, a term that refers to learning French as a Foreign Language. This job is my passion. I practiced for more than a decade, first in the United States at the University of Texas at Austin, then in a language training institute in Paris.
My students are usually adults of all ages. They are students who must learn French and pass certifications or diplomas. They are professionals who come to work in France and who must absolutely master our language: executives, doctors, hospitality professionals.
They are also sometimes just lovers of France who come as tourists, and who want to speak our language perfectly.
Can you tell us about Passion FLE ?
We started a family and decided to take care of our two children, Clemence and Stanislas. I miss my job but it is impossible to be totally available for them while going to work in Paris. So I thought about creating Passion FLE to be able to continue teaching while staying at home.
In studying the market, I could see that there are already many companies offering French language courses online. So I wanted to stand out by offering something different, very personal and high quality but that would still be financially accessible.
Passion FLE is a family business and I really want that to be felt in my approach to students.
Why use Office 365 in such a project ?
I wanted to offer something different in terms of experience for my students. I could have given my classes with a free solution like Skype, but it seemed extremely limited in terms of quality and possibilities.
Because tracking a student is not just about online courses. You have to be able to collaborate, answer questions, share media (documents, videos, etc.). When giving classes in a classroom, you can distribute paper documents, project videos. But when you teach online, it's very different: this physical and material proximity does not exist. And I really did not see myself interacting with my students by sending them emails.
I was looking for something really different and especially something modern. And when we talked about it together, I discovered that tools in Office 365 could meet my needs. That's how we came to the idea of using Office 365, which would have a lot of the features I wanted to offer my students.
What are the Office 365 tools used by Passion FLE ?
We use many of the Office 365 solutions to cover all the services I wanted to offer my clients.
School intranet : SharePoint
I wanted to propose a web space dedicated to my students, in which they could find information about the school, news, access to tutorials. This space, eventually, will also offer activities to groups of students.
Video media : Stream
As part of my activity, I will produce videos to help my students learn some aspects of the French language skills. I had wondered about how to set up a kind of internal private "YouTube" at school. But in fact, Stream is the ideal solution for that. These videos fit in very well in different tools, it's really ideal.
Knowledge tests : Forms
When a new student starts his career at Passion FLE, I offer him a placement test: it is a MCQ that allows me to know his level and provide suitable teaching.
For this, I used Forms, which allows me to define a questionnaire by giving points to each correct answer. Once the questionnaire is completed, I immediately see the student's grade, which allows me to locate it. And thanks to the administration module of the tool, I can study the student's strengths and weaknesses and adapt my pedagogical approach to its level.
Online courses and exchanges with the professor : Teams
We use Teams to interact with students. Each student has his own Teams team that offers different channels for online courses, homework, and all administrative matters.
The online courses are done with video conferencing via Teams, which guarantees us a very professional audio quality (if the internet speed of the customer is correct). In addition, the appointments for the courses are fully integrated into the "Teams channels", which is very convenient.
Teams is very complete for the student, who finds all his exchanges with his teacher, all the documents and supports of work in one click. If necessary, we can even record the audio / video meeting!
Teams is a very good tool for my students, but it is also very convenient for me, because I find in the same tool all student's channels. In addition, I use the mobile version of Teams on my phone. In any case, I can respond quickly to questions from my students, even if I am not at my workstation in front of my computer.
Make an appointment online : booking
To allow students to book appointment slots, we use the Booking application of the Office 365 suite. I include my availabilities, and the appointments taken online by my students are integrated directly into my Outlook calendar. .
The tutorials : Sway
The digital environment that we offer students is very simple, but not all students, regardless of their age, necessarily have complete control of digital solutions. We put at their disposal tutorials to master Teams: both to install (on Mac or Windows 10) but also to use it well.
The advantage of Sway is that these tutorials are quick to use and the appearance is very modern. It can include images but also videos. I intend to use it later to animate different activities.
Writen homework : office online
I had already had the opportunity to do online courses with students. On several occasions, my students were not equipped with the Office suite (Word, PowerPoint), which can sometimes be problematic. So, here we use the Office suite online (mainly Word) for all homework. It's very convenient, especially since they have nothing to install on their computer: everything is done online.
The Passion FLE messaging : Outlook
All of our students receive an email address @ passionfle.fr when they enroll. But it's mainly Teams that we use to work and exchange.
Passion FLE is a family business!
Passion FLE is the project of the family. Mine first of course, since I am at the origin, but also that of my husband (Christophe COUPEZ) who took care of the technical part with Office 365 and also the tool WIX for the website.
It is also the project of our children who are delighted that I remain with them, and who loved to help us by participating in the promotional video that we made together, with our own equipment, at home.
As for the logo and the graphics, we were helped by a friend, Anne VELDEMAN, who was seduced by our project and who wanted to apply her talent at our business, to produce this "touch" Passion FLE that we love a lot.
We absolutely want this family dimension because it serves us to stand out from specialized websites that lack humanity: everyone does not appreciate learning from a machine by following a generic program.
By choosing Passion FLE, our students make the choice of proximity, personalization and authenticity: this is what we want to give them.
LinkedIn : Agnès VILLOUTREIX
A bientôt sur https://www.passionfle.fr !