Family, Football & Feng Shui

Mit einem zweiten Besuch der Landeshauptstadt Boston (hier vor der renommierten Havard University) geht für 20 Austauschschüler*innen der Austausch Westford, Massachusetts langsam dem Ende entgegen. Die Teilnehmer*innen berichten vom Schulalltag und Ausflügen...

October 6th

It’s an exchange tradition to go apple picking as Westford used to be an area with a lot of farms and orchards. You can pick apples, pumpkins and even peaches in the summer. After a morning without any activities everyone used the chance for a lie in and a relaxed start into the day. In the afternoon we met at Drew Farms which had a big stall at the bottom of the orchard where you could buy already picked apples or pumpkins, cider and most importantly apple cider donuts. We then formed little groups and every American-German partner team received a bag for the apples. On a small tractor we were driven up the hill (although one could easily walk up the hill but where is the fun it that?!) and then spread out to pick our most favourite apples while trying different types. The weather was on our side again so we could enjoy the sunshine one more time before autumn arrives.
By Bonnie Puelm

October, 6th: Family, Football & Feng Shui

SUNDAY means FAMILY DAY.

You can sleep as long as you want, so I did exactly that. I got up at 9:45 and went down for Family Breakfast. My family has a tradition that every Sunday their grandparents came over for breakfast. After a long and good breakfast we went to MARSHALLS. The market that is well known by the Germans and one that most want to vist. It is like a store you can get everything, from clothes to decoration for your home. After 3 hours of shopping we felt ready for a snack, so right after we got home we made an apple crisp. It's a real American thing where apples are baked and you have a crisp on top, and the apples with cinnamon taste like heaven! Now, with our apple crisp in our hands, we were lying down on the couch, watching Football. PATRIOTS. It is a huge thing in America, and also a tradition of my family that you have to watch Football on Sunday.  So now dressed up in Patriots fan clothing, the support has started already. Atfer the game we all must have burned like 1000 calories after screaming at the TV screen, so the Patriots can hear us. We changed our outfit to a more casual one, because we are went to Feng Shui with the whole Family. Also the aunt and uncle. It is an amazing restaurant where you can see how the chef cooks the food right in front of you. Looking back, I am blessed to get these experiences and to be part day of whole family!
Anna-Lena Franke


October, 5th
This Saturday my exchange student and I finally had time to sleep as long as we wanted to because we just had apple picking planned with the group in the afternoon. But we didn't participate because my exchange student's cousin got married.
So, after a little breakfast we left at 10ish to drive to Cape Cod. The car ride was about 3 hours so we got there at 1pm. As soon as we arrived, we went to a Mexican restaurant to get something to eat and drink like Tacos and Nachos. After the meal we all got ready for the wedding which started around 4pm. Then we were picked up by a yellow school bus at our hotel with the other wedding guests to get to the wedding location.

 

When we arrived, I was impressed by the location because they had set up a big tent for the ceremony and the following after party which had a beautiful view on the ocean because it was on the beach. The ceremony was held by the groom's sister which was pretty emotional because it felt very intense. While the couple was taking pictures, we all got appetizers and drinks to celebrate until the tent was redecorated as a room with tables to eat and a dance floor. On the served menu which we got at our tables was a typical New England soup (clam chowder), a salad, two main dishes to choose from, fish or prime rib, and a dessert.
As soon as everyone had finished their meals, the DJ started playing music and the crowd was either on the dance floor or at the bar. 
Our evening ended around 10pm when all the older guests headed to a club to go on with the celebration. It was an awesome evening with a lot of emotions and new impressions. One example is that the Americans wear their wedding rings on the left hand instead of the right hand.

Mascha Sommer

 

3rd October 2019
This day wasn‘t a normal school day. It was teacher’s- parents day, so parents of the American students were able to talk to the teachers about classes. Nobody had to go to school.
However, we had to get up early: I stood up at 6.30am. I got ready and went downstairs to my host family and we had breakfast together. There were many fruits, pancakes and bread. Also juice, water and milk. After we finished, my host mother drove me to school at 7.40am, because all Germans went on a trip.
So we left school at 8.05 and drove around 1,5hours to Plimoth Plantation. This is like a museum, but outside. It was about the beginning of America, when English settlers arrived there.

The Plantation has many parts. There was an information center, a craft center, a Native American Homesite in which real Native Americans talked to people and the village of the settlers. The most interesting was the village of 18th century, I think. We had three hours to walk around the plantation, before we had lunch.
After that we drove to an outlet and had three hours to go shopping or do whatever we wanted to do. At 6pm it was time to drive home. We enjoyed the shopping trip a lot. The trip ended at 6.55pm and my host family picked me up from school. At home I had dinner, talked with my hostfamily about the day, what I would like to do an Sunday and my Exchangepartner and me choosed any classes for the next day.
When It was 10.10pm it was time to go to bed.
This was a very interesting day. I‘m happy to have a great time with my family.

By Katharina Böhnert

 

1st October
Today we were witnesses of a really strange situation: two hairdressers had an argument with 3 policemen and an old woman about who might have killed a famous pianist. It was our first time in Boston so we didn‘t expect that to happen at all.
Well to be honest with you: That was a joke. Because we actually watched a play in a theater in Boston that is called „Shear Madness“. Shear Madness is one of the longest-running nonmusicial plays in the world. The actors interact with the audience,  so during the course of the action, a murder is committed and the audience gets to spot the clues, question the suspects, and solve the crime. Furthermore, the ending is never the same because it depends on the outcome of the audience’s vote who committed the crime. So, lots of people return to this place over and over again. So we met at 5.15pm next to our school and went to Boston by bus. After a short admission we took our seats on the chairs and enjoyed the exciting show. Then after 2 hours we drove back to Westford Academy.
By Lisa Rodin

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September 30th,
As always the week started with school and now I’m actually starting to adjust to the new school system.
This Monday was a so-called „G” day, that means we started with the block „G”, during that we went to art class and after that we had a meeting in the cafeteria with all the German exchange students. We’ve talked about our weekend and if everything is fine with our host families.
Fortunately, this is the case
Thereafter, three of my friends and I went to a bunch of different classes, first Mandarin („B” block) then V=Ceramics („C” block), Spanish („D” block) and Image Editing („E” block). In my opinion it’s interesting to try out as many different courses as possible.
Afterwards we went canoeing in Concord at 3:00pm with the Germans and Americans from the exchange group.
Frankly, I was pretty skeptical in the beginning because I’ve never been canoeing before and I didn’t think it would be fun but surprisingly I had a lot of fun. There were always three of us in a canoe. While we were trying to figure out how the canoe was working, we often drove in the wrong direction or didn’t move at all but that was actually the funny thing about it.
In fact, we kind of tried to hold on to other canoes because we wanted to move together.
Two boys got pretty wet but luckily nobody fell completely into the water.
Therefore, it was a really good day and now I’m sitting on my bed trying to get this blog done because I’m really looking forward to eat something

Greetings from Westford <3
Giada Testa

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29th September

Today we had a family day. I got up around 10am, because we had a very long day in NYC yesterday. I went downstairs, ate some fruit salad and played Wii with my exchange partner. After her parents came home from church, I got ready for the day. We drove abut an hour to a small island called plum island. We spent some time at the beach and visited a lighthouse. After that, we drove back to the city Newburyport, where we spent the rest of the day. First, my exchange partner showed me a 25ct hot dog. While we ate it, we walked around the city and did a break at a bench. We watched the boats, which were shipping through the river right in front of us. We saw a shop which sells antiquities, but it was not opened. We also went in another shop, with a lot of small things, like decoration and stuff.  It's one month until halloween but I see sooo much halloween stuff everywhere, that's a bit weird but also funny. It was a little bit cold today, so my host mother went back to the car and got the jackets of my host father and my exchange partner. We waited for her at another bench in the center of Newburyport. Afterwards we went through the city again until we stopped at a restaurant to eat something. The food was very delicious, I ate sweet potato fries. At 6pm we drove home and I went to bed early because I was really tired.
To put it in a nutshell, it was a very cool and fantastic day with my host family. I'm very exited about the next days.
by Sophia Heinze

 

29th September 2019
My day started at 7 am. After my host family and I woke up and got ready, we left the house at 8 am. Our first stop was Dunkin‘ Donuts, where we had a sweet and tasty breakfast. Then we drove to the train station. There we took the train from Alewife to Boston which was a 30 min trip.
The first thing we did when we arrived in Boston was going to the harbor. After taking some pictures from the beautiful view there, we went to the blue ,,Boston duck tours“ boat at 10 am. Our tourist guide of Boston took 1hour and 30 min and we saw every side of the city. The special thing when you‘ve a duck tour is that you‘re not only on the street. You are also on the water of the harbor and see the pretty and big buildings for exemple like the ,,old south church“: My host family and I had a lot of fun and learned some interesting facts about Boston.
Afterwards it was time for lunch so we went to an Italian restaurant and ate delicious pasta. When we all were full from the Italian specialties our next stop was the favorite Italian bakery of my host family, which wasn’t far away from the restaurant. After that we went back to the train station and turned back to Alewife. From there, we just drove back to Westford and when we were here, we all sat down and ate the appetizing desserts from the bakery.
All in all, I had an amazing and super interesting day and after the dinner I was happy just to go to bed and get enough sleep for the next day.
 

September, 28th

We had to wake up super early today since we were going to New York City.
Me and my exchange student had a small breakfast before we left for the bus.
Although the ride was 3-4 hours, it was really fun and it didn't feel too long.
The first thing we saw was the Bronx. Everything looked kind of shady, poor and old, but you could already see some of the Skyscrapers above the big red houses. After a quick group picture in front of the famous glass box Apple Store and the Trump Tower we could walk around Midtown in groups and enjoy the City. Especially on 5th Avenue, you can find a bunch of well known and expensive brands. We went into a couple of stores and saw the Empire State Building, Time Square and Central Park. Afterwards, we took a ferry trip and saw the famous Statue of Liberty and had a breathtaking view of the downtown and especially the One World Trade Center. Before driving back home, we went to Ground Zero, the memorial of the Twin Towers. The monument had the name of every person who died that day on it. After that, we headed back to the bus and saw places like China Town and the Brooklyn Bridge on our way back to Westford.
By Sascha Opolka

 

27th September
It was a normal school day for me. When my exchange student and I arrived at school we went to a spot where we met other Americans and Germans. We go to this spot every day before the school starts. After that we went to our individual classes. My host family picked me up after school at 2pm and we went home. 
Originally, we wanted to go to an American Football game of Westford Academy with our exchange students. Westford Academy against Haverhill. But the game had been moved to the 28th September because in Massachusetts there is a virus called "Triple E" (EEE). This virus comes from mosquitoes which is why the school doesn’t want the students to be outside at dusk. So, we couldn't watch the game but Westford Academy won the game against Haverhill on the next day. 
Instead, I will write something about my personal day after school: I was at a big ice cream shop named Kimball Farm. It is the biggest ice cream shop in Westford and the people from Westford say that Kimball is the best ice cream shop in the whole city. So first my host family and I played Mini-Golf on Kimball Farm but there are much more activities like Bumper Boats, Pitch & Put and exotic Animal Adventures. After that we ordered some food from the grill and then we bought a cup of ice cream. The ice cream was delicious but very expensive. A normal cup of ice cream costs $3,50. After that, we went home and I packed my backpack for the next day because I was looking forward to the New York trip. 
By Hendrik Johannes


25th September

Today I had to wake up at 6am like every morning. It was tough today, because my exchange student and I were awake till 11pm last night! So, we got some breakfast and went to school... over there we did nothing interesting, except the physics class, because there, we had an unbelievable teacher who’s name is Rafael. He‘s so funny and sometimes you can‘t understand what he‘s saying because of his Spanish accent. Well, after school we took the bus at home, ate some snacks and played ping-pong. It was fun! After some crazy games, my father arrived. He stayed in Boston for some nights because of his job, and decided to visit us. So Sam, his parents, my dad and I talked a lot and ate some crackers before he had to go back to Boston. The last thing we did this day, was more eating. Bob, Sam‘s father, is an amazing cook and made steaks for the whole family. I think that was one of the best things I ever ate!!
by Tom Heiduck

 

On September 24 we had our second day of school. I went to all the classes with my exchange partner Annika. First, we had algebra what is like math. Then we had German what was really fun because I could help the American students. It's so interesting to hear how they pronounce the German words. Then we had English class where they did group work so I was just watching what they were doing. After that we had creative writing. That class is really interesting. The students had 1 week for writing texts about a subject that they could choose by themselves. Something that describes their feelings and tells something about the writer. And then in the lesson three students read their texts and the other students and the teacher commented their stories.
After that we had lunch and after lunch we had US history and chemistry, where we did an experiment. After school we drove to Boda Borg in Malden with the bus. That is like a big house full of escape rooms but which are not escape rooms like in Germany. Of course we had to solve mysteries to get out of the room but it was more with casual activities. For example at one room we had to overcome a parkour in 30 seconds to get out of the room. We left at 6 pm and arrived at Westford Academy at 7 pm.
In conclusion, it was a great day and I hope the next days are going to be that nice, too.
Made by Jette Marquardt
 

23rd September
The day started of pretty normally:
First, I had breakfast with the exchange family and when everyone was ready we went to the bus to go to school. At school we hang out at the bell lobby for a few minutes (it’s called the bell lobby because there is a huge bell propped up on a big wooden base) and then we broke up to go to our own classes. At first, I had personal finances, then psychology, then P.E., then German because me and some other Germans wanted to do sociology but we found out that this class is only on in the second semester, then intro to movie making and then another German lesson which is the German lesson we normally went to.
After school my exchange student Declan and Paul’s exchange student Alex had soccer practice. So Declan’s mom picked Paul and me up to drive us to rock climbing where we spent some time with the other Germans and a few of the Americans.
After that Alex's mom picked us up and Paul and I hang out a little until the soccer practice ended because it was raining which is why we didn't watch the soccer practice. Then all of us went to Chipotle and had some Burritos which was really good.
All in all, I would say it was a really good day because we always had something to do and started getting used to the American school day.
by Niklas Koch

 

On September 23 we had our first day of school at Westford Academy. The first lesson started at 7:35 am and I was in the classes of my exchange partner so we had gym first and we went to the sport field. It was really fun but it also was very different to the German P.E. lessons because most students didn’t wear any sports clothes and just stood around doing not much than talk. The other classes were also different to the ones I know from Germany because the students are on their phones without the teachers caring about that and each student has their own laptop to work on. Overall, the school system is different to the German one. At Westford Academy the teachers stay in the rooms most times and the students have to change the room. The students in the classes change too because they take seven classes, which they have every day by a block system, in at least half a school year. That’s why the students, which are around you in class, depend on the classes you take. In the second and third block we had a meeting with all the people included in the exchange to get in touch. It was fun! After school, which usually ends at 1:55 pm, the exchange group got a bus tour through Westford, where we learned about the place we’ll live in for 3 weeks. It was very interesting even the bus was filled with stuffy air because of the warm weather. In conclusion, it was a very nice and interesting day and I got excited about the coming weeks.
Made by Lia Zaigler

 

First in Westford:

I woke up at approximately 8:30 am.
I went into the bathroom, washed my face and brushed my teeth.
Afterward, I went downstairs and said "Good Morning".
We ate breakfast and talked to each other.
I had bagels, an apple and a muffin.
I also drank a glass of milk.
Everything was delicious!
After breakfast, I helped my host family set up for the welcome party.
We put together the volleyball net, hung German and US flags and put out the chairs.
Next, Alex, his brother Cam and I played a small game of FIFA.
Then, the first guests arrived.
We ate a lot of delicious food and also played basketball and soccer.
It was a very nice party and everybody had a great time!
After the party, my German friend Tom stayed at the house because our exchange partners had to go to ice hockey practice.
We watched football on TV and played basketball and football outside.
When Alex got home, we ate steak with potatoes, salad and bread for dinner.
It was very delicious!
After dinner, I gave my exchange family the presents that I bought for them in Germany.
They were happy and really liked them.
I was very tired from the day so I took a shower, said "Good night" and went to bed.
It was a fantastic day!
Paul Deppe

 

Seit fast 40 Jahren existiert die Partnerschaft zwischen dem Corvi und der Westford-Academy in Massachusetts, USA. Auch in diesem Jahr besucht wieder eine Gruppe von 20 Schüler*innen aus den Jahrgängen 10 und 11 begleitet von Daniel Busch und Bonnie Puelm für drei Wochen die amerikanische Schule...

Nach einer problemfreien Anreise am Flughafen Boston erwartete die Corvinianer*innen ein großes Empfangskomitee der amerikanischen Austauschpartner*innen, die ihre Gäste mit einem großen Banner herzlich begrüßten. Mit einem echt amerikanischen Schulbus ging es dann nach Westford, wo sich alle zunächst in ihren Gastfamilien erstmal ordentlich ausruhten. Gleich am nächsten Tag waren dann Gäste und Gastgeber*innen zur "American explosion"-Brunchparty eingeladen, die bei strahlendem Sonnenschein und 28 Grad im Garten einer Gastfamilie stattfand.

Die ersten Schultage waren erstmal einigermaßen verwirrend, denn sowohl das Fächerangebot als auch die Stundenpläne sind hier ganz anders als in Deutschland. Psychology, Anatomy, Playwriting, Criminal Minds usw. sind Fächer, die besonders viel Interesse auf sich ziehen, aber dazu können die Schüler*innen bald mehr berichten. Es gibt also noch viel zu entdecken und zu erleben. Samstag steht erstmal New York City auf dem Programm!

Text, Fotos: Pülm

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