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I’m happy with the progress that’s happening in my English lessons. The kids are becoming much more open. Their confidence has increased a lot and, consequently, so has their participation. Little whispers have turned into clearly audible sentences. Instead of keeping their heads down in the halls or looking at us shyly, some of the quieter kids in my English classes now beam at me as they say hello.
The film class Caroline and I teach began shooting last class. Of all the words I associate with middle schoolers, “cute” is not one of them, but these students certainly changed that. It was adorable to see them work on their videos. The students’ ideas impressed me. The breadth of their potential video topics seemed far wider than I’d see in any American classroom. Some students were planning on making an instructional video on mechanical planes while others decided on what they described to us as a sad story featuring a dog. Additionally, students who had been sitting around dully for the first few planning classes finally showed some pep in their step and it seemed like all the groups got some good footage. And since the final performance is coming up quite soon, it’s important that they did.
As the final performance comes closer, so does the end of our time with our host family. I didn’t realize how lucky I was to have Jerry as my host brother. I took how talkative and outgoing he was for granted, but then I realized that not everyone had the same experience with their host siblings. While my family has taken amazing care of me, Jerry has done an especially good job. I’m going to miss him a lot, but hopefully, the end of the program won’t be a final goodbye: he’s been talking about visiting America and the places he wants to see. I’ve shown him pictures of my hometown, Columbus, Indiana, which never seems to impress, but finally, I’ve got someone I can give a tour to.