From New Zealand – Great Summer Report from Sacred Heart Girls’ College

From an exchange student at Sacred Heart Girls’ College in New Zealand, Yuki Fushida, an updated report reached us, which is very informative, impressive and insightful.  It’s our great pleasure to share what she has learned so far and how she feels now there.

Kia ora! I’m Yuki Fushida, an Otsuma Nakano student, who is now participating in an exchange at Sacred Heart Girls College at New Plymouth in New Zealand.

Now summer is coming soon here in New Zealand, but it has been rainy and cold this week. So, I have been to beach just once these days.  If it’s sunny, I want to go there to swim every weekend!  Anyway, I’m going write about my new host family, Marae trip, surfing, school classes and the primary school which my host mother is working at.

I changed my host family at the beginning of November. I had no choice to change it due to the circumstances of my previous host family’s family relationships.  I had never thought of a second change, so when my teacher told me about it, I was shocked and couldn’t say anything.

My host mother couldn’t understand the cultural differences. I was really sad about that, but I learned many things. I think the most important thing about a relationship with host mothers is “Courtesy should be exercised when you are with a superior person.”  I learned that the way I talk, my attitude and behavior are very important.  I think high level English skills are necessary to be polite, so I’m going to try to be polite with my new host family.

My new host family has 4 people and a dog and a cat.  My host father is kind and funny, and he always makes me laugh. And he is like the boss of this family.  My host mother is full of energy and she is really kind. If I make a mistake, she teaches me very kindly.  And she can play the guitar. She teaches me how to play the guitar once a week.  She is a primary school teacher.  My host sister is 13 years old and she is sporty, and she likes talking, so she talks to me a lot. I’m so happy with that.  My host brother is 10 years old. I can’t believe he is 10 years old, because he is really kind and clever. Sometimes he asks me “Shall we play basketball or soccer or trampoline?”.  They are really active, sporty and really kind. They do orienteering or bike riding, so I can feel nature! I’m so happy.  When I was writing this report, my host mother called me, my host sister and my host brother and there was small lesson about the toilet. Like this, she teaches me about the house rules really kindly.

I went to a Marae for trip with some international students from other school.  In this trip, there were some girls and boys from Germany, Italy, Brazil, Indonesia and China.  A Marae is a communal and sacred meeting place for Maori people. The most important building of Marae is called Te Ferenui.   There were a lot of portraits on the wall.  This is very sacred, so we can’t enter there with shoes.  There is a dining hall, kitchen building, shower and toilet. Maori people stay there when there is an important event. Everyone sleeps on a mattress by the wall in the same room. And they cook and eat together.  I think Maori culture is a little bit similar to Japanese culture, because we eat tea together and the accent of their language is also similar to Japanese. I had a close affinity with Maori culture.

I took a surfing lesson. It was the first time for me. I was really excited, because I don’t go to beach when I’m in Tokyo and surfing is one of my yearnings.  When I was standing on the board on the waves. I felt the sea breeze which I can’t feel in Tokyo and I could feel the nature of NZ.  It was just amazing. I would like to try again.

I’m doing collaboration with year 7 to 10 students.  I was nervous and shy because there were not any friends in the class room beforehand.  I was thinking “I definitely have to make new friends!”  But I was very shy.  However, my international teacher asked her students to support me, and then I got new friends!  They are really kind and they talk to me naturally. I was glad about that.  When I was here for 2 weeks last year, I couldn’t talk to the girl who was my neighbor. I have been regretting that.  I thought that she was not friendly or kind, and I couldn’t speak English alot.  I remembered I wrote about this in my report.   But, I found the same girl in the group which I am in. Now, she is really kind and I can talk to her a lot. I’m so happy!

I went to the primary school which my host mother is working at.  Some of the students in this primary school are poor. They can’t have breakfast at home, so the school gives them breakfast. Some grandmas are making it for them. And they make lunch for them also.  When I arrived at the school, a little boy talked to me.  He showed me around school. He is really kind and almost all of the students say, “ Hi!” And they waved a lot. I was just impressed because they are really really kind!  I taught them Origami. They were doing Origami hard. They were just so cute.  A shy boy told me, “I love Origami”. I was really happy.

I asked my host mother about their parents.  I have heard the parents of the boy who talked to me first don’t love him. If he goes to a friend’s house for few days, they don’t care. I was shocked. I can’t believe it. His parents are not kind to him. But he is very kind to me.  And one of boy’s parents don’t wash his clothes and he can’t have a shower. There are a lot of children whose parents don’t work.   What can I do is to makes them smile.  I would like to be a good friend with them.  I’m going to go there next Wednesday and the week after next. And I will bring a good plan there.

About 7 months have passed since when I came here. I got a lot of friends and acquaintances.  When I went to the church, I saw a lot of my friends. And I can realize that I am a resident of New Plymouth. I’m going to work hard for the summer holidays which is coming soon, so that I can achieve my goals in 2 weeks.







Maraeとはマオリの人々の集会場みたいな所です。Maraeの最も重要な建物はテ・ファレヌイという建物で、亡くなった人々の遺影が飾られています。そこは、とても神聖なところなので土足で入ることが禁じられています。他にはダイニングホールとキッチンの棟と、シャワーとトイレの棟があります。マオリの人は大事な行事があるときにそこに泊まったりします。みんなが同じ部屋で壁際にマットレスを引いて寝ます。そしてみんなで協力して料理を作って一緒に食事をします。家族揃って共同生活をすることやマオリ語の発音などは日本に少し似ているなと思い、少し親近感が湧きました。またマオリの文化の1つに「ハカ」というダンスがあります。この文化は小学校で教わることもあり、世界で最も強いニュージーランドのラグビーチーム、All Blacksも試合が始まる前に踊ります。このように昔の文化を過去に受け継いだり、今でも行うことはもし自分がキウイだったらとても誇らしいことだと思いました。






私が朝学校に着いたときに1番に小柄な9歳くらいの男の子が声をかけてきました。学校を案内してくれたり一緒に行動してくれたりとても優しい子でした。その子以外にもほとんどの子供達が学校ですれ違う度に手を振ってくれたり挨拶をしてくれたりしました。私は只々子供達の優しさに感動しました。私は彼らに折り紙を教えてあげました。やんちゃな子も大人しい子も賢い子も面白い子もみんなが一生懸命折り紙を折ってる姿が可愛くて仕方がありませんでした。そして作り終わった後に大人しい男の子に「I love Origami」と満面の笑顔で言われたときは今までにないくらい暖かい気持ちになりました。