What is the hardest task of a foreign exchange student?

Were having one come in and would like input on what will be most challenging thing for us as a host family and also what is the most benificial part of hosting?

2 Answers

  • 1 decade ago
    Best Answer

    I went on an exchange trip to Germany, and to be honest, the hardest part was fitting (or not) into a different lifestyle. My German family thought I stayed shut up in my room alot and couldn't understand why I didn't want to go out to town every night (since I had very little homework). I thought it was perfectly reasonable to want some time alone once in a while, and that I didn't go to a foreign country to go to bars.

    When my partner came to the US, she would spend every waking moment out of the house. It was like she couldn't stand my family and needed to be with her German friends constantly. Once the Germans decided they wanted to go to a frat party (we were all high school students) after a Halloween get-together. Since it was a school night, I said we should be going home (it was almost midnight). My partner threw a sob fest and started weeping in German about how she "is forced to live in THAT house."

    I don't take well to insults to my family, so things went drastically downhill from there.

    In retrospect, there were several interesting things to take out of the whole experience. To my partner, I must have seemed immature because I didn't go out and get drunk. To me, my partner seemed immature because she did.

    I might have acted like something of a shut-in, but no matter how well you know a foreign language, a different country and culture is overwhelming and I just needed some time to chill. For my partner, her "chill time" was probably hanging out with her friends just like at her home.

    Also, I feel our two groups (American and German) had some basic differences. Let's face it, people don't learn German for 3 years just because. Usually it's a family thing, or a cultural interest, or something like that. The Germans had been learning English since 6th grade, so for them it might have been more like a regular school subject rather than a special interest. (German was by far the least popular language at my high school. The people who stuck with it for 3 years were pretty hardcore about it)

    Sure, some of the American students were all excited about the "16 year olds can drink beer" thing, but wanted to learn German too, and Germany was new and cool and mysterious. For the Germans, many had been to England, or even New York or California, and they have all these Americana crap floating around already - it's just not that fascinatingly foreign. And... I'm from Kansas, okay? To a tourist, it seems very plain, so to those kids it might have seen like partying without their parents' watchful eyes was the only pro some small Fly-Overville had going for it.

    So basically... it was a very interesting experience. I did enjoy it, and I would do it again.

    I just hope you get a better match than me : )

  • 3 years ago

    I agree, you must keep a yr. You see - it takes time to get to understand the Norwegian folks and tradition. Norwegians are mostly rather reserved, so to be able to get to understand them, discover a organization of folks to hang around with and so on. three months is probably not adequate. To an volume, it relies on your character, how a lot attempt you set into finding out Norwegian, how a lot initiative you're taking getting to understand folks/locations/become a member of events; nonetheless, 6 months isn't such a lot both.. Personally I selected a yr for my alternate, and despite the fact that I in many instances acquired bored, desired to go away - in hindsight, I'm quite completely happy I stayed as lengthy. Good success, and welcome to Norway, whether or not for a shorter or longer even as!

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