The Student News Site of Niles West High School

Niles West News

The Student News Site of Niles West High School

Niles West News

The Student News Site of Niles West High School

Niles West News

German Exchange Students Welcomed to West

German students posing at homecoming! Picture found on @nileswestgerman

Recently, at Niles West students from Germany came to live a week in America with their host families through the World Languages Department at school. These Germans attended a full school day, came to the homecoming football game and experienced the homecoming dance.

“My favorite part was probably the school and seeing all the differences, like all the school games and teams. Also, the sizing of Niles West is different from my school. I would also love to visit again because the city was so beautiful and getting to know everyone at school was cool too. However, the difference between my school compared to West was the school system, and in America, everything is bigger than Germany,” German exchange student Sanja Barsic said.

Juniors and seniors hosted German students in their homes. From Friday to Sunday, the exchange students would live with students from the West. Nonetheless, the exchange students only had to go to one full school day and for the rest of the week, they were able to explore.

Many students are excited to travel to Germany next summer to live with their partner’s families and make new memories and experiences.

“My favorite part about hosting a German exchange [student was] going to the homecoming football game and homecoming with them. I am honestly really excited to sight-see in Germany when I go,” senior Mia Niketic said.

With the relationships that blossomed between American and German students, both the kids and their families will have friends halfway across the globe.

The families part of the German program that hosted the German exchange students were impacted positively in many different ways. Many host families learned German phrases and also talked about what German schools are like, compared with our schools, what Germans like to do in their free time, and how foods and snacks are different in both cultures. Sharing the differences and similarities between American culture and language gives students and their families unique perspectives and helps develop global citizenship.

“The Neumayer family, for example, hosted two exchange students and we had so many laughs about both German and English languages, and comparing the cultures. We shared traditions with our Germans like Thanksgiving dinner and pumpkin carving. Our Germans also learned colorful English terms such as what a “homie hopper” is,” German teacherĀ Josef Neumayer said.

Students, staff, and families all had a wonderful time meeting the “new” students and many friendships were made throughout this program.

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