Saturday, July 30, 2011

LOST in translation...;)

Well, most of you probably know that we get the opportunity to host exchange students...I think we are on our 9th or 10th one since we started up last summer. 
This summer we've been crazy busy with them...the max that we can hold in our home at a time is 3...and we have had around that most of the summer so far. 
A lot of these students are young, some have never  traveled...and they all only have a small grasp of the English language (most of the time) a LOT is lost in translation
For of our students was trying to explain to us what her dad was....she said "an officer"....we thought, okay, police officer, cool. Later on we were talking about it, and pulled out our hands as pretend guns...and she said "no, no...". Apparently she meant officer, as in "works in an office" type officer, ha ha. of the girls we have right now 
l i t e r a l l y speaks NO English....well at least she didn't when she got here 2 days ago. I think she has finally figured out what I am saying when I tell her what my name that's a start. When we picked her up, I introduced myself(while pointing to me to make it obvious it was my name)...and she tipped her head sideways and said "ummm..." and looked at me like I was from a different planet. LOL. The English has been VERY slow going...but luckily we have another student from Japan as well, and she acts as a translator for us most days.

On the drive home today I was driving this student and a friend home. I asked them: "What did you learn in english class today? what words?"...again she gave me the typical confused look, and after a while (with me repeating myself slowly) she said...."um, so-so"...ha, not the right answer, lol. So I ask the other student I was driving home (who also speaks little english but has gotten little that he told me his last name was his first name...and I've been calling him by his last name all week, ha ha): "what did you learn in English class today?"...he replies: "Cloak." that's it...the end, ha ha. Cloak? 8 hours of English class today and you learned one word? A word that you may only use a handful of times in your English life...unless your reading/writing or talking about Harry which case "invisibility cloak" is a must-know...but I'm pretty sure they aren't reading that, so it does seem like a pretty useless word to learn. 
If I were the teacher I might start with "hi, hello" or "food, shower, bathroom, sleep"...words that might come in handy while staying with us, since how all I do so far is use hand signals, and the occasional google translate, to explain really important things. has been pretty fun and funny...I just wished I always remembered to write down the funny things that happen with our students, because they are amusing!:)

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