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Haram VGS > Nyheiter > Hosting foreigners

Hosting foreigners

Utvekslingselevar få Skottland har vore på besøk.

Since our class is participating in an exchange project with Scotland, we had guests which followed our daily lives for five consecutive days. They joined the host's families and joined school hosted events. I will not go too in-depth what we did the different days, from Tuesday to Saturday, but rather mention shortly what happened throughout the exchange. The majority of us had one guest, but some had two. Sofie took some of the Scots on a small mountain climb, and some of the girls took the Scots on a football match. They slept, ate and did whatever else you need to do in order to be able to survive.

One of the first things they encountered was waking up earlier. This was amplified because of the one-hour jetlag. Some of us even had to take the bus to school, consequently making them wake up nearly two hours earlier to what they are used to. (Those two hours bring the jetlag into consideration.) Some even seemed to be desiring a bed so badly they almost fell asleep halfway through chemistry.

During the mentioned chemistry lesson, one of the Scottish educators asked me about our teacher's Norwegian accent. She is from China and studied in Trondheim. Fascinatingly, the teacher understood her Norwegian better than our Norwegian!

After school, the teachers managed to get ahold of a place filled with couches, mainly built for social gatherings down at ID-Huset. We ate pizza as we chatted. There was group separation, and different conversation themes filling the room with cultural passion. Some were consuming kebab pizza with both hands while someone on the other side was talking about a music genre. There was a quiz which the Norwegians were not allowed to partake in. It had the basic "you are visiting Norway, what is the capital" sort of questions. All of the questions had been distributed orally on the bus or during classes.

They also got to see some natural treasures. We went to Geiranger during school hours. Some were cheering, some sleeping. An unfathomable number of pictures were taken that day. I do not blame them though. We got to climb a couple of stairs which lead to a museum. We got some food and an insight into how the canyon was formed. Before we headed home we were brought to the peak of Dalsnibba, a lookout offering an amazing view. As we left the bus, the cold, strong and hostile wind greeted us. I will give a short description of how strong it was; unzipping your jacket and stretching it out would probably give you status as a new flying species. Those daring to pull out their phones held tightly onto them. This is probably an experience we will not forget anytime soon.

After school hours we spent the time doing things which seemed fit for their voyage. Some were interested in sports and sodas, some attempted fishing while hunting northern lights.

Here in Norway, especially at this time of the year, the outside temperature is reliant on the sun. This is not the case in Scotland, as the temperature will last even after dawn. When going outside for a late night stroll, the chill bit them.

Compared to them our school did not have long breaks. And we also had a cafeteria some seemed particularly interested in.

They also attempted to learn some basic Norwegian phrases. Some did well, and some straight up butchered them.

The formality towards teachers was if I dare to say so, the main difference in the school system. I recall one time they mentioned one of the times one of them was going to change teachers. The class messaged him about how much they were going to miss him etc. Following these messages, the teacher got in big trouble. He had gotten too close to his students. Such incidents are probably being hindered because the authorities want to avoid favouring certain students. Keep in mind, this is just a wild guess.

Back in Norway, we address our teachers with their first name, not Mrs or Mr followed by their last name.

I hope the Scottish students had a satisfying stay. They appeared to be enjoying themselves which was the main objective of this trip. We learnt some Scottish slang, and they learnt a tiny tad Norwegian. It helped our oral English develop as well, which is desired by many. The exchange was both fun and entertaining.

Composed by Sofie Seth and Jørgen Indstø.