In my previous blog I wrote about Miyu, one of my old students. This time, I would like to write about some other students who came to visit at HIUC. This time they came as a group.
First, I was able to have a nice long talk with Ryuta. He is currently in the athletic trainer program at The University of Nebraska at Kearney. He said the course is tough but very interesting. In one of his classes, he had tests almost every week. He recently had a course on nutrition, and when he gets back to the US he is going to start a course on statistics. He sounds busy but happy.
He also said he is part of a host family program that his school has. He has an apartment that he shares with some friends, but he also has a host family. He meets them sometimes and gets to experience American culture with them. For example, he had an American Thanksgiving with his host family. It sounds like a good program.
He also told me that he has discovered the joy of using English to communicate with people from many different countries. He likes talking to people from other countries and learning about their countries and their native cultures. The more you use English for enjoyable things, the more you will enjoy using English.
He also talked about becoming more independent. It is important to take control of your own learning. When he has questions or does not understand something, he goes to see his professor. He told me that it is important to be proactive and talk to professors when you need help. He is no longer shy about making appointments to talk to his teachers.
He said the weather was the biggest surprise. In the winter the temperature went down to minus 20 degrees Celsius a few times. The good thing is that his apartment is only a five minute walk from the school. The walk is cold, but it is not too far, so he is okay.
I also had a chance to have a short talk with Yuki and Mako. Yuki is going to SUNY Fredonia, and she is studying about education for young children. She was telling me that she had a chance to teach a class of children that were aged 5 to 6. She said it was really fun and that the children were very cute. She told me that one of the things she did as a teacher was to read stories to the children. Her favorite story to read to the children is The Hungry Caterpillar. Her own classes are also very busy. She had to take an English literature class. She read many books, but two that she remembered were The Call of the Wild and the Odyssey. Yuki said she really liked The Call of the Wild.
Mako is studying physical education at SUNY Genesee Community College. She said she got to do many sports and meet many new people and make many friends. It sounded like she really liked her classes. She told me that part of her class was teaching other people how to play sports. For example, she had to teach other people how to play soccer. She said she liked the classes, but sometimes it was hard to explain the sports because people asked many “why?” questions. When she told us that we all laughed because when she was a student at HIUC she took a class with Lance. Lance is famous for asking “Why?” He always asks his students this question to make them give longer and more detailed answers. Taking Lance’s class was good practice to get her ready for the US.
Kenji also came to the school, but I never had a chance to talk to him. I had to teach me current classes. However, after my class I asked the staff how he was doing in America. Currently he is at Alfred State College, but in the future, he is planning to transfer to a 4-year university and major in business.
It was really great to see them again and hear about how they are doing. I hope they all continue to have a great time in the US.