Thursday, February 5, 2009

Snowed In With Hong Kongers

I have not blogged in some time and that is mainly due to the fact that I lost freedom in my house for sometime. Every year, our school hosts some students from Hong Kong and their teachers. My principal had her hands full so I offered to take the teachers into my own home for a week to relieve her a bit. This sounded like a great deal because I would get some to experience a different culture.

There were 16 5th grade students (I could never send my kids around the world by themselves) who stayed with various "host families" and 2 teachers (Wing and Peggy) who stayed with us. The plan was that they would spend all day at school (and receive breakfast and lunch there) then there would be planned activities each day after school. There was only 2 days that I would need to make a meal for my teachers and only one of the days would I have to entertain them. Sounds great, right?

Cue the winter storm of the decade.

I will say that overall, Wing and Peggy were very independent. They kept to themselves mostly, but I will say that my week of snow days was not as easy to enjoy. I couldn't just lay around in my pajamas, I couldn't get on the computer (the computer is in our guest room), and we couldn't really go anywhere. I tried to fix foods that they would like. Emily even came up to visit one day to help me out with some entertaining.

Some things to note:
-They were amazed that we had more than 4 channels. They never really grasped DVR either
-In Hong Kong, they miss school due to typhoons
-Students in Hong Kong usually receive about 4-5 hours of homework a night
-All of the elite officials in Hong Kong send their kids overseas for schooling
-The school day is over at 3:00, but if you would like to have classes such as science or art you have to stay until 5:00.
-The building that these teachers taught in was 7 stories high
-Teachers are required to work every other Saturday
-School is so competitive there that one must apply to secondary school (middle & high school) and you can not get into a good school unless you've spent at least some time overseas...hence the students' trip here
-We received a Hong Kong meal which was DELICIOUS!
-Most living spaces in Hong Kong are 300-800 sq. feet
-Only the VERY wealthy have ovens in Hong Kong
-The record low temperature ever recorded in Hong Kong was 32 degrees Fahrenheit. Only 2 students had ever seen snow before
-The teachers had never heard of Wal-Mart or Kohls. We got to take them which was very neat.

Wing trying on some of Mark's firefighting gear

Mark and I with Peggy

No comments: