Host Family Reflections Tag

A Full Plate of Homemade Dumplings

Posted On July 17, 2020By Kyle SandmannIn Chinese (Mandarin)

When in Rome, Do as the Romans Do

Ekaterina is from New York, NY and an alumna of the Chinese AY 2019-20 program in Beijing, China & Taipei, Taiwan.  I glanced at my watch. 11 pm. December 31st. This was the first time that I went to bed on New Years Eve before 12 am. And I was okay with that. As I lay there, I thought through the events of the day: my host father, mother, and sister took me to the National Museum of China. There, they explained to me the history of Oracle bones, the evolutionRead More
Emma by the ocean in Rabat, Morocco

Posted On June 26, 2020By Kyle SandmannIn Arabic

Unexpected Bonding with my Host Family

Emma is from Lakewood, CO and an alumna of the Arabic AY 2019-20 program in Rabat, Morocco.  Integrating into a new family can be difficult. I remember the first few days of living with my host family in Rabat, Morocco being stressful as I was trying so hard not to “mess up” or do something embarrassing while also desperately trying to build a relationship with the family I was going to live with for up to nine months. There was a lot going on during my first week in Morocco: aRead More
Lunch with Friends in Korea

Posted On December 6, 2018By Meike FaberIn Korean

Where Food Equals Family

Ellie is from Spokane Valley, WA and participated in the Korea Summer 2018 program. My host mother stands firmly by the principle that food, like all other good things, should be served with generous portions of love. Among the first questions she asked me were “잘 먹는 게 뭐 있어? (What do you like to eat?)” and “보통 미국에서 뭐 먹지? (What do you usually eat at home?)” As I am not a very picky eater, I initially replied that I would eat whatever she made (and everything she madeRead More
Cous Cous: A Popular Moroccan Dish

Posted On December 4, 2018By Meike FaberIn Arabic

A Mistake Turned Life Lesson

Lillian is from Fargo, ND and participated in the Morocco Academic Year 2017-2018 program. In late November of 2017, I found myself huddled with two of my friends in a cold house in rural Morocco. During my gap year abroad, I had to get used to a lot of new things. I learned a new language, learned about a new religion, and learned how to navigate in an entirely unfamiliar environment. After two months of living in Rabat, my group took a cultural excursion. We stayed with host families inRead More
Danielle and friends pictures in traditional Korean dress
Danielle is from Miami, FL and is an alumna of the 2017 Korean summer program. Some of the experiences I valued most that the NSLI-Y program provided me with were instances where I was provided with the opportunity to teach someone something new, that they may have never been able to understand otherwise. South Korea, a country I’d previously thought, as it was so technologically and economically forward, was a global society, similar to the U.S. in that knowledge about other cultures would be so easy to access, that everyoneRead More
Picture of Alex on the beach with Korean friends

Posted On August 7, 2018By Signe KnutsonIn Korean

Looking back on a Year of Language Advances in South Korea

Alex is from Las Vegas, NV and participated in the Korea AY program from 2017-2018. Alex’s language journey began in 9th grade. Her first time walking through the many Asian markets of her hometown, Las Vegas, Alex experienced a new variety of smells, tastes, and most intriguingly, languages. “Las Vegas is one of the most racially diverse cities in America. I was fortunate to experience Korean, Chinese, and other Asian cultures first hand while growing up.” Korean culture provided the motivational spark for Alex to begin studying Korean. She didRead More
Anjali pictured cooking with her host family.

Posted On April 4, 2018By Signe KnutsonIn Russian

Remembering Russia

Anjali is from San Ramon, California and participated in the 2017 Russian summer program. After a long week of Russian language classes, pre-professional meetings, and adventures with my Russian and American friends, I was always ready to spend the weekend with my eleven-year-old host sister and her parents. Although I enjoyed every weekend with them, my last weekend was especially memorable. В пятницу, я готовила вкусную пиццу и смотрела “дневник принцессы”. Но, я устала и уснула раньше. On Friday, we made a delicious pizza and watched “The Princess Diaries” in Russian. However, I was veryRead More
Kathryn and her group posing in TASS.

Posted On March 26, 2018By Signe KnutsonIn Russian

Altering Misconceptions

Kathryn participated in the 2017 Russian summer program. Russia has fascinated me ever since I was a young child. I remember coming home from my first day of second grade and being extremely eager to tell my parents about how I learned to say “Good-bye” (До свидания) in Russian. I always knew I wanted to learn this beautiful language, but I did not realize how much studying Russian in Moscow would impact my life. I had so many incredible academic and social experiences which definitely impacted my long-term outlook asRead More
Carlie and her fan dancing team.

Posted On February 19, 2018By Signe KnutsonIn Korean

The Small Things Can Have the Biggest Impact

Carlie is from Dallas, TX and participated in the 2017 Korea summer program. For International Education Week I’ve decided to share one of my favorite experiences while studying in Seoul, South Korea over the summer. Every Seoul summer NSLI-Yan is required to choose a culture club to participate in each Friday during the program. I chose Fan Dance (부채춤), a Korean performing art where a group of dancers utilizes hand fans to create elegant shapes and stories. Soon after making my choice, I received some performance fans (부채) to bringRead More
David posing in front of a Chinese temple.

Posted On February 16, 2018By Signe KnutsonIn Chinese (Mandarin)

New Perspectives: Studying Chinese in Zhuhai

David is from Las Cruces, NM and participated in the 2017 China summer program. When I first arrived at my host family’s apartment, I was tired and jetlagged but also extremely excited to see my home for the next six weeks. From the nineteenth floor, I could see all around the city of Zhuhai; with parks, shops, highways, and high-rise buildings stretching as far as the eye could see. This vista was the first of many new perspectives which I discovered while studying Mandarin in China. Participating in the NSLI-YRead More