Student Reflections from Trips Abroad

Trip To China

By Emma Z.
Just recently in November, five 8th grade students, including myself, went to Beijing, China! This was one of the greatest trips that we experienced! It was amazing practicing the language, trying new foods, and immersing ourselves in Chinese culture. During the week we were able to go sightseeing to places such as the Forbidden City, Summer Palace, Temple of Heaven, and the Great Wall of China! The Great Wall was one of our favorite places to visit. It is one of the world’s seven wonders. It was originally built for protection against attacks from the North, and is almost 4,000 miles in length! We also loved trying Chinese food, especially some of the most famous meals- Beijing roast duck and hotpot! In addition, we participated in a few art classes, including making Chinese masks, using the mao bi brush, and Chinese painting. Over the weekend each of us stayed with our exchange students, where we could experience life in a Chinese family. Everyone at the Beijing Foreign Language School was so welcoming to myself and my classmates. We formed friendships with the staff at the school, the students, and even other students from two other Chicago schools who went with us to China! Over the course of two weeks, our Chinese speaking abilities improved, and we gained more confidence when speaking to people in China. The unforgettable trip made us all sad to leave, but very excited to return home and share our journey!

 

Trip To France

By Oscar S.

France was a beautiful country. I stayed with a family that lived in Angers by the chateau. The family was very nice and  kind. They have two sons, 12 and 16 years old. The family and I went to their friends’ house, a festival, and their grandparents’ house. One evening Ms. Sapieka and Ms. Aquino came to my families because a couple years ago the older brother came here and stayed with Ms. Aquino.  When they came over we had some special foods that we tried out, such as a blood sausage, and we liked them (note from Ms. Aquino – Oskar did a good job of trying all of the new foods at dinner).

When I was there I tried many different foods and kind of foods – for example, cheese, salami.  They were all delicious. One day all of the families met up and went bowling. Another day we met up one more time and went ice skating, which were both a great time.

LaSalle II students went to many different places. We visited the chateau of Angers, which was mostly made out of slate.  I was amazed how it was built and how it was improved over time. It was originally a fortress.  My host dad was an architect that designed some awesome things such as the museum in the chateau.  We also walked around town which had lots of old buildings and monuments still standing from the Middle Ages.  We also attended classes at College Mongazon, which is a private school.  The school also provided a private bus to take us to Mont Sant Michel and St. Malo in Brittany, about three hours north, for the day.  My favorite thing in Angers was when we visited their school and went to their classes to see what subjects they have and how they are taught.

Then we got to Paris.  We stayed at a nice hotel that had complimentary breakfast.  It was delicious. We visited some very famous places and things like the Louvre, Latin Quarter, Jardin Du Luxembourg, Notre Dame, the Champs Elysees, the Sacré-Cœur, and the Eiffel Tower.

The most beautiful thing was the Eiffel Tower. When we were taking the elevator to the top it was really scary.  The wind was blowing very hard, and it was so cold. It soared in the sky, and I couldn’t believe that someone actually created it. My favorite thing in Paris was the Eiffel Tower and the view that it had on top of it.

Overall the weather was beautiful and everyone there treated us well. The trip was wonderful and a great experience.