My name is Tori and I’m a current 一般时时彩网址 Volunteer, Returnee from Japan (2010), and past host sister. I’m here to share my experience with 一般时时彩网址 for anyone who’s curious – curious about going abroad, hosting, learning about new cultures, 试图弄清楚一般时时彩网址是什么以及它们的作用, 或者你只是喜欢读人们的冒险故事!
My introduction to 一般时时彩网址 began when I became determined to study abroad in Japan. 我查了不同的交换项目, 在他们的网站上搜索信息, timelines, and activities. I found 一般时时彩网址 to be the most complete and they offered the timelines I wanted: a semester or a year.
So, you hosted first?
Yes, we did. Before agreeing to send me away, 我的父母想知道更多关于这个项目是如何运作的, so we decided to host. 我们接待了一位来自日本京都的学生一年. As an only child, it was a learning experience to suddenly have someone to share my space with! 我也学到了更多关于日本、日本食物和日本文化的知识. In Albuquerque, we attended the annual Hot Air Balloon Fiesta and did our best to see every balloon that was there! We were also able to visit some of my extended family on the East Coast while she was with us. One visit was to Washington D.C. 我们在那里探索了自然历史和一般时时彩网址维护历史博物馆. Another visit took us to Florida to go to Disney World and the beaches of Tampa Bay!
As a host sister, 我也能够参加许多一般时时彩网址分会的活动, 比如去大峡谷, White Sands, Christmas and Halloween parties, and more. It was fun to be able to make friends from across the world and see both our similarities and differences. The experience also showed us how much 一般时时彩网址 takes care of both students and families during their time abroad with regular orientations and check-ins with students to address any concerns or difficulties students were facing. 因此，我的父母同意让我去日本学习一个学期(谢天谢地)!).
想知道寄宿家庭是什么感觉? 我们采访了一般时时彩网址的家长Sheri，看看她的经历是怎样的 here.
Questions about hosting? 我们来谈谈三个最常见的 this article!
Wait – you went to Japan? How were your language skills?
I get these questions a lot, so let’s talk about language when going abroad – you don’t need to know anything before going, but it sure does help! 当我去日本的时候，我只上了一年的高中日语. I could read and write the basic alphabets (hiragana and katakana), but my kanji was very limited. 我只能造基本的句子，而且我掌握的词汇很少.
I found myself in Takehara, Hiroshima, a countryside town on the southern coast of Japan. My host family consisted of a father, mother, and sister, none of whom spoke English. The funny thing is, I requested that my host family not have strong English skills so that I could learn Japanese and be immersed. 我不想撒谎，这是一场斗争. 一般时时彩网址 provided a Japanese workbook that I worked on outside of class and this helped me immensely! 我称它为“学习和奋斗”，因为我可以学习新的词汇, grammar, and kanji characters, 然后试着和我的朋友们聊聊我刚刚学到的东西. 我没有像我的寄宿家庭和朋友那样注意到我的进步! By the end they were saying my Japanese had improved immensely and I was honestly ecstatic and surprised!
What was school like?
当我刚一般时时彩网址上学的时候，我尝试了日程表上的每一门课. The school let me choose which courses were too challenging for my language level, 所以我没有选古典日语和世界史. The English courses were very helpful for me because they acted as my Japanese courses! 我能看到学生们正在学习的新英语语法，并把它颠倒过来! 我选修的课程是书法. It was a great way to relax, learn new Japanese characters and how to read Japanese cursive; it was probably my favorite class! 我在那里参加了两个俱乐部:排球和茶道. 我一直想尝试排球，这是我的机会. 我不能说我变得很好(我的肩膀很弱……), 但我确实进步了，发现我真的很喜欢排球! Tea Ceremony was a great way for me to unwind and drink some wonderful green tea! 我学会了茶道的基本步骤, how to properly drink the tea, how to walk, stand, sit, fold the handkerchief, and clean the utensils. 更准确地说，我被招进了茶道俱乐部, 但我很高兴我屈服了并加入了!
Small town in Japan? Not Tokyo?
我只在东京待了几天, so I didn’t get to see much of it and most of us exchange students were very jet lagged! 乡村就是你所期望的, beautiful landscape, 但对我这样的城市女孩来说，却没有太多的娱乐. 不过我很喜欢，而且我们还有卡拉ok! 我曾经(现在仍然)痴迷于卡拉ok! Along with a small community, we had a small 一般时时彩网址 chapter; there was me, a boy from Chile, and a girl from Germany. 我们经常去三原，因为那里是我们所有地点的中心. 我们还一起参加了其中一所学校的文化节! I actually learned a lot spending time with them because their Japanese was better than mine (they had already been there for 6 months before my arrival), so they were able to explain words and phrases that didn’t translate well as well as share stories of their past mistakes and daily life for me to learn from. Bonding with fellow exchange students was great for sharing our joys, frustrations, and goals.
我的寄宿家庭和联络家庭(几乎像第二个寄宿家庭!)帮助我获得了各种各样的经历，既有平凡的，也有不平凡的. 我们去了广岛和平公园, 宫岛(一个满是鹿的岛), and a few onsen (hot springs). 我还穿了浴衣，参加了一个夏季节日! 接待我的姐姐比我大一点, but we both liked horror movies so we watched horror movies together as our bonding activity! It was a great way to see a wider variety of movies and spend time with my host sister. 这也总是一个惊喜，因为她经常选择电影!
除了我在农村的时间, 我还能去我的日本姐姐的家乡京都看望她! 她的家人很好，让我和他们住在一起, give me the grand tour, 把我当家人对待! They took me to major historical landmarks in Kyoto, such as Kinkakuji (the Golden Temple). 实际上，我已经回京都去过几次了!
What happened when you came back?
As a result of my exchange, I found that my language learning capabilities upon returning to the US improved greatly. I remember struggling to understand new concepts in Japanese before going to Japan. After returning, I have been able to pick up new grammar and concepts more easily (even 10 years in the future). 我的会话能力和技能也有了很大的提高. The funny thing is, when I came back, some words would pop into my head in Japanese rather than English and I realized that there was some new slang going around that I was unaware of! It’s amazing how fast slang can evolve (and you can forget your first language!).
Check out 这是对Stephen Zhang的采访, an 一般时时彩网址 returnee from China.
对于那些有兴趣去西班牙的人，我们采访了阿曼达·索耶 一般时时彩网址 returnee who went to Spain.
想知道你的身份是如何融入其他文化的? Tony talks about his 与一般时时彩网址在德国的身份和时间.
What do you do as a volunteer?
当我回到一般时时彩网址维护后，我一般时时彩网址在当地的一般时时彩网址分会做志愿者. 我的大部分志愿活动都是在迎新. 我经常主持小组讨论，讨论文化差异, communication differences, 和学生的祖国在日常生活上的差异.
Another area we focus on is culture shock; what surprising or “weird” experiences the students may have had during their exchange. By highlighting culture shock, we can open the floor to discussing differences in visible and invisible culture amongst various countries.
I have returned to Japan a few times after my exchange with 一般时时彩网址 and have been able to visit my host family almost every time. 他们是我的第二个家庭，每次都欢迎我回家. One time, 我是在分会欢迎新生的时候去的, 所以我能够参与并协助迎新培训. 我交换的时候，很多志愿者还在那里, but instead of Mihara, 学生们到达了新建的新尾道车站! (As a side note, I am a big gamer and a video game I played had Onomichi as one of its locations; it really took me back!)
To summarize all of this, 一般时时彩网址在不同的能力下有很多的机会! Learning to understand and appreciate each other’s differences is important and helps us grow as people and pass opportunities along. 如果你对一般时时彩网址有任何问题, going abroad, hosting, volunteering, 或者更多关于我和其他人的故事, please reach out to us!