In Brazil, Tatiana goes to a private school from Monday
to Friday. Twice each week, she has classes in the afternoon.
In her school, teachers change rooms and the 35 students stay
together in all classes. Her school has about 200 students from
the first to the twelveth grade as well as preschool, which is
Tatiana Danice, Brazil: Tatiana, 17 years old, comes from
Santa Rosa de Viterbo, Sao Paulo State. Tatiana decided to come
to Canada to improve her English and get to know new people and
their culture instead of going to England, New Zealand, Australia,
or the United States. "I had to go the same way as the other
two students. I was invited to a meeting where I had to speak
and write in English. Later I had to fill out my application,"
School starts in February and ends in November. Her 9 different
subjects don''t change during the year. "In some subjects,
I have two teachers." If she were now in Brazil, she would
be in the twelveth grade. But here at Cole Harbour High, she
is in the eleventh grade for this school year in "cold!"
In Brazil not only the climate is different but also, since
Brazil is in the southern hemisphere, the summer starts in November
and the winter starts in July. Because of the year round warm
climate, Brazilian girls often wear skirts and tank tops.
Rice and beans are important to their diet just as is a variety
of fruit. Due to the hot climate in Brazil; much fruit juice
is consumed. At the age of 18 years you are able to get your
driver''s license. This makes it easier to go to several places
at night, for instance to where they play samba music.
Bruno Bravo, Brazil: Bruno, 16, the only male exchange
student at Cole Harbour High this year, comes from Recife, a
city of over 3 million people in Pernambuco State. From five
different possibilities, he chose to come to Canada to improve
his English. "I want to become a journalist and for this
job it''s important to be able to speak English."
After he filled out his application and answered several questions
at an interview, he was told that he would be one of the exchange
students for 99/00. One of the changes for him when
he arrived in Canada was the different climate. When I asked
him which word came first to his mind when he thought of Canada,
he answered: "Cold!!!"
Now it is summer in Brazil. The clothes worn there in the
summer are shorts and shirts, and jeans and shirts in the winter.
Just as the Columbia label is popular here, so too is the Brookfield
brand in Brazil. Levis is also a very popular style of clothing.
Bruno''s "normal" foods are rice, beans, and a variety
of fruit. The music of Brazil is made with a lot of drums, so
different from East Coast music. In his city, 70% of the inhabitants
are Catholics with a small percentage of Protestants.
Canada''s school system is a new experience for Bruno. In
his Brazilian school, they have 6 classes each day and 9 different
courses each week. The courses, which cannot be chosen by the
students, stay the same during the whole year. In twelve years
of public school, the teachers are the ones who have to move
from room to room - the students stay together as a class, some
50 students in each room.
School starts at 7:10 in the morning and ends at 12:45. Bruno
even has to go to school on Saturdays but only for 3 classes.
He says: "Cole Harbour High is so quiet." No wonder!
In his huge school, there are about 2300 students from the first
up to the twelveth grade. Though in Brazil he is in the eleventh
grade, here he''s taking grade twelve courses.
Carolina Bergamo, Brazil: "I''m from Santa Rosa de
Viterbo, Sao Paulo State." Carolina, 16 years old, chose
Canada because first of all she wanted to improve her English
and she wanted to get to know new cultures. To be one of the
exchange students, she was interviewed and had to fill out an
application. When she thinks of Canada, the first word she would
tell you is cold or snow - the same thing the other Brazilians
would say. In Brazil the average annual temperature ranges from
16 to 27 ° C.
"The music which is played in Brazil is samba."
What do they wear to go out? Carolina says that there is not
a big difference in what people wear in Brazil. "We have
different brands that are popular. We have Tommy Hilfiger but
it''s not as common as it is here in Canada." The food eaten
daily includes rice, beans, and lots of fruit.
When Carolina goes to school in Brazil from 7:10 in the morning
to 12:45, she participates in 6 classes per day and 9 courses
each year. In her school, as in Bruno''s, teachers change rooms.
The same students, up to 40 per class, stay together during the
school day, from grade one to grade twelve, when they graduate.
Carolina says, "In Brazil, I'm in the twelveth grade. Here,
in Canada, I'm in the eleventh grade."
Dona Blankenstein, Germany: My name is Dona, I'm 17 and
from Cologne, a city of over 1 million people where Cole Harbour
High students taking part in the "Europe Trip 2000"
will go in March. I wanted to improve my English and to get to
know more and different people, so I chose Canada for my exchange
year. To be one of the exchange students ''99/00, I went to a
meeting where I had to talk about myself and explain why I wanted
to come to Canada. I was asked a lot of questions
at least in the application I had to fill out.
At home, I''m in the eleventh grade. In my school there are
about 1000 students from Grade 5 to Grade 13. From the fifth
to the tenth grade, students are separated into classes with
up to 30 students, and the teachers have to change rooms. In
Grades 11, 12 and 13, you have your 9 to 11 different subjects
together with different people in different rooms. School starts
at 8:05 in the morning and ends at 1:20 or 2:10 in the afternoon.
Physical Education is required and takes place in the afternoon.
All 13 years of school aren't compulsory. The first time you
can quit school is after the ninth grade. Here in Canada, I''m
in Grade 11, but I also chose four Grade 12 courses.
The first thing that comes to my mind when I think of Canada,
or especially of Nova Scotia, is water or trees! But that''s
not the only difference I have noticed. The music that is played
in Nova Scotia is very similar to the kind we listen to in Germany.
Very popular is German Hip-Hop and pop music. Though we have
Tommy Hilfiger, with the exception of the jackets, this brand
is not as popular as Nike, Levis, or FILA.
Christianity is one of the major religions in Germany. Islam
also plays a big role because a lot of people from Turkey live
Our food consists mostly of potatoes and vegetables. We don''t
have that big variety of fast food restaurants (just McDonald''s
and Burger King). The weather doesn't change very much. Where
I live, we have more rain than snow in the winter and it is rarely
hot in the summer.
As it is in Brazil, we must be 18 to get a driver''s license;
however, most places of interest are quick to reach so a car
is not really necessary. This is probably a good thing since
the legal age for drinking and smoking in Germany is 16 years!
Myrna Flores, Mexico: Myrna was not available for this
interview. We did manage to stop her long enough to get a photo!
A few words of gratitude:
We all would like to thank the students and teachers of
Cole Harbour High for welcoming us and being so friendly and
kind. It''s a pleasure for us to be here. Most of all, we would
like to thank our host families for their hospitality and their