Every other year, the German Exchange program here at Sweet Home invites students from its partnering school, Gesamtschule Hungen, in Hungen, Germany, about forty-five miles north of Frankfurt.
This is a very exciting time of year because students here get to meet and learn about students of different cultures and it could be a once in a lifetime opportunity for many of the students who visit here through the program.
German exchange students are housed with families who volunteer to host them for two weeks. The students get to visit our school and get their own schedules to get the true experience of an American school. The students also get to visit Niagara Falls, Downtown Buffalo, Toronto and New York City for a few days.
Every other year, students who take German here at Sweet Home have the opportunity to visit Germany and have similar experiences to the German kids who visited the United States.
The Eye interviewed a student from the exchange program named Malena. We first asked if America was similar to how you thought it would be?
She replied, “Yes, it’s really like I expected [it] to be but everything is even bigger, like the thousand different kinds of ice cream or the grocery stores for example. They aren’t comparable to our supermarkets in Germany.”
When asked about her favorite part of American school, she said, “I think my favorite part is that you guys can choose every class on your own and the more possibilities you have like forensics or the different art classes. I had a lot of fun [in] try[ing] them because we don’t have such a big choice in Germany.”
And when finally asked about her first impressions of American schools she said that she “was so surprised when Mr. Murphy told us that everything is in one big building! I mean, we have twelve buildings at our school plus two gyms and you guys only have one, and even things like an auditorium or a swim hall that’s so cool.”
Finally, I would like to thank Mr. Murphy for putting together this wonderful program and giving these students a once in a lifetime opportunity. None of this would have went on without our district’s amazing German teacher, Mr. Murphy.