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位置 > 首页 > 学校新闻-英文 > Immersion Program | A Homestay that Feels Like Home

Immersion Program | A Homestay that Feels Like Home

发布时间:2017-04-07 | 浏览次数:

Go to top American private schools as transfer students and stay with American families to experience an authentic American education — In this winter holiday, 6th to 10th graders at Kaiwen Academy (Haidian) participated in a different immersion program, getting a brand-new experience in 21 days.


The “Immersion Program” allowed Kaiwen’s children to gradually get involved in and experience middle school classes in the United States. What interesting extracurricular activities did the children join? What exciting exotic experiences did they gain during the three-week cross-cultural communication on the other side of the Pacific Ocean? What special feelings did they have when living with the U.S. families?

 

Growth always comes surprisingly. After coming back to China, we found that the little things they learned outside class have unconsciously changed them for the better.


Outside Class: Playing Excitedly

 

During this Program, the U.S. students’ strong sense of time management greatly impressed Kaiwen’s children. This self-management embodies itself not only in their studies but also in extracurricular activities. The children seemed to have many comments on this.

 

Although their infrastructure might not be as good as that offered by Kaiwen, they all actively participated in various activities. There were a lot of activities during class recesses, especially community activities, and the students enthusiastically joined in. Although my shadow partner studied hard and had excellent grades, he never sacrificed game time for study. What made me admire him even more was that he spent more time on games and had more interesting ideas than I did. He had won numerous golf contests and was good at playing ice hockey as well. When he knew that I was playing ice hockey, too, he invited me to watch an professional ice hockey game.

——Martin, Grade 10


A U.S. Friend Took Martin to an NHL Game


Most U.S. students are outgoing and frank, in part because they are proactively involved in many extracurricular activities. On Valentine’s day, the students spontaneously organized an amazing party, which lasted from 7:00 p.m. until midnight. The mood never got low during the five hours. Even teachers and the principal went to the party. When seeing that we Chinese students were sitting at a table and some were busy with mobile phones, they walked straight toward us with surprised looks and encouraged us to join the others. Tim, a Kaiwen student, was really the life of the party that night. I enjoyed that party very much. We were so impressed by the party that we began planning our senior middle school party after coming back to China.

——Christy, Grade 10


Valentine’s Day Party Photos of the ECS Team

 

Cross-cultural Communication: From “Gradually Adapting” to “Enjoying Themselves”

 

During this Immersion Program, students were assigned to different classes according to their grades and English proficiency. At the beginning, it was really tough for the Kaiwen children because they had never had English-only classes or experienced a totally different culture and lifestyle before.

 

As the program proceeded, however, they gradually adjusted to their classes. In addition, their homestay shadow partners helped them quickly overcome the discomfort of being a newcomer and get comfortable with the new environment. Soon, language was no longer a barrier to communication. On the last two days, they totally enjoyed themselves while visiting Kennedy Space Center and Universal Studios.

 

Kennedy Space Center and Universal Studios

 

At the beginning, some humanities and social science classes were really difficult for us. To bridge the gap in her history class, Ms. Dozier taught us how to dance and invited me to be her dancing partner and take the lead. I was very happy and that helped me quickly adapt to the new environment.

——Nancy, Grade 8


One weekend, Ms. Qiu from Linden Hall invited some other students and me to a homestay where we were treated to hot pot. She was Taiwanese, and the only person I met in the United States who could speak Mandarin. Ms. Qiu taught Chinese to the older sister in my homestay. We had hot pot together and talked about fun things of Kaiwen and Linden Hall. There, I learned how to use a knife and fork. The people cooked the hot pot on a stove and then served everyone separately. Although it seemed strange to me, I kept saying “Thank you! Thank you! It is very kind of you!” I truly appreciated all their hard work.

——Lucy, Grade 6


I felt a little uncomfortable for a short period after I arrived at the U.S. school. However, I soon found that the people there were very friendly to foreigners and were more easygoing than I had expected. If you are open-minded enough, you and they can become close friends. As soon as you get to know each other better or find a common hobby, you can play together very happily.

——William, Grade 10


I Never Knew that I Could Be So Popular at School One day after school, a couple of U.S. students asked me to help translate their names into Chinese. They gave me a big hug after I translated their names, which really surprised me. Later, I found that they were kind, enthusiastic, friendly people who show their feelings. I love that culture a lot.

——Tim, Grade 10


William and His Shadow Partner in the U.S.A.


Building Friendship and Achieving Growth in Homestays


It was not the first time for most children in the Immersion Program to travel abroad. However, almost none of them had ever attended U.S. classes or lived with homestay families. During their stays with the families, they learned to appreciate others’ efforts and built a strong friendship with the families.


Photos of Kaiwen students who studied in ODA and their homestay families


When I had my first biology class there, some terms really bothered me and I was too shy to ask the older sister in the homestay. That made me feel helpless. Surprisingly, the older sister highlighted the key points and translated them for me although she was not so fluent in Chinese. I was so touched. Before my return to China, the hostess made a quilt for me as a gift. I feel very lucky to know this kind and happy family.

——Olivia, Grade 9


The shadow partner in the homestay was a person with excellent self-discipline. I was shocked by the tidiness of his room as soon as I reached there. Later, I felt deeply touched as I saw how well the mother looked after the family. While living with them, I helped them with housework, hoping to leave a good impression as a Chinese student. After returning to China, I began cleaning up my room myself. My parents were surprised at my dramatic change, because I seldom did what they told me to do before the U.S. journey.

——Leo, Grade 10


The Homestay Family Took Leo to an NBA Game of Miami Heat


The shadow partner in the homestay was a person with excellent self-discipline. I was shocked by the tidiness of his room as soon as I reached there. Later, I felt deeply touched as I saw how well the mother looked after the family. While living with them, I helped them with housework, hoping to leave a good impression as a Chinese student. After returning to China, I began cleaning up my room myself. My parents were surprised at my dramatic change, because I seldom did what they told me to do before the U.S. journey.

My shadow partner in the homestay family not only went to school and took part in activities with me, but also took me to a Miami Heat home court game, which still has me excited.

——Leo, Grade 8


The shadow partner in the homestay was a person with excellent self-discipline. I was shocked by the tidiness of his room as soon as I reached there. Later, I felt deeply touched as I saw how well the mother looked after the family. While living with them, I helped them with housework, hoping to leave a good impression as a Chinese student. After returning to China, I began cleaning up my room myself. My parents were surprised at my dramatic change, because I seldom did what they told me to do before the U.S. journey.

One day, the host family father picked me up after school and on the way home, I found my mobile phone was missing. I was so worried that I cried, because I might not be able to contact my family without the mobile phone. I searched every clothes pocket and my backpack only to find nothing. I couldn’t remember where I’d left it. The father soothed me and drove back to the school to help me look for the phone. Before returning to my school, he checked my backpack again and found my phone right in the bottom of my backpack. I was so happy and relieved! I really appreciate his love for me.

——Barry, Grade 6


U.S. Hot Pot with Two Homestays


During my homestay, I saw how the mother took care of the family every day. She prepared breakfast for us every morning and then went out for a run with their puppy. The father took us to school and back home every day. He was also responsible for taking the older sister to her piano class and the older brother to his basketball class and taking them back home. The parents were really busy. Before my arrival, they prepared a welcome banner for me and hung it up in the most obvious spot in their living room. That really touched me. They treated me like their own kid. I thought that I should do something good in return. So I helped clean up the dining table, set the table with knives and forks, and made coffee for the father. Before my return to China, the mother even prepared snacks in sealed bags for my journey. I was very touched by their kindness and it was so hard for me to say goodbye to them.

The father and older sister drove me and my luggage to my school. The school held a short farewell ceremony and presented us with certificates of education. Before leaving the school, we ran all over the lawn, played seesaws, and took photos with our U.S. classmates on the campus. I will show the photos to our classmates in China to share with them this happy moment.

——Lucy, Grade 6


Special Farewell Ceremony on Seesaws


The three-week immersion program soon came to an end. The day before we left the homestays was Valentine’s day, and the homestay families prepared chocolate and goodbye gifts for every kid. All the kids still feel very touched when recalling the moment of farewell.

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