Eindrücke vom USA-Austausch

Monday, October 7th

At 7:40 a.m. we were full of anticipation at the airport in Stuttgart. Despite some complications  (Delta didn’t want to let one girl check in claiming she made a mistake with her “esta” – but it turned out that it was Delta who had made the mistake!!!)  we were all sitting on the airplane which took off at 10:40 a.m. During the 10 hour flight we slept, ate and talked to each other. Slightly exhausted we arrived in Atlanta at 5 pm local time (11 pm). The security checks, the customs and the baggage claim shortened the waiting time in Atlanta drastically. At 7 p.m. local time (1am!) we took off again and landed at 8:30 p.m. (2:30 am) in Cleveland. We picked up our luggage quickly and then we were very warmly welcomed by our exchange partners and our host families.

Text: Hanna

7.10.2019 – Noch am Flughafen

Tuesday, October 8th

Our first day of school started in the cafeteria at Roosevelt High School. Most of us were really tired because the night after our flight was too short. But everybody was so excited for the High School day. First, some teachers and administrators greeted us and we took some pictures with them. Everybody was really friendly and glad to have us. After that we got a tour of the school building with M. Morgan. He told us that the school is like a Gymnasium, Realschule, Haupt-, Sonder- and Berufsschule all in one. On the tour we saw many different classrooms and it was so special for us because there are many differences compared to Germany. Everybody was like: “Oh my god, that’s like a High School film here!”. And that’s the truth, everything is like it is in the movie; the yellow school buses, the cafeteria, the teachers…

In Roosevelt High School every teacher has their own classroom. So they are more personalized than in Germany. They have special rooms for the choir, the orchestra, the wood working class, the cosmetology class and forestry class. It was really cool because we don’t have rooms like this. Another special thing was that they have snakes and spiders in their biology room. After our school tour we had a private concert from the school choir. It was so cool! We spent the rest of the day with our exchange partner and enjoyed our first day at the High School!

At 5 p.m. all the host families came to the cafeteria and  we had “Kaffee and Kuchen” together. It was fun!

Text: Anna-Chiara

8.10.2019 – Erster Tag in der Schule (Cafeteria)

Wednesday, October 9th

Today was our second school day. The school still seems so big. The parking lot at which the students can park their car is much bigger than our “Neubau”!

In first period we always have homeroom with all the Germans and with Mrs. Bratenstein and Mrs. Hüfner. After study hall and all the other periods, we had our lunchbreak. Every student’s lunchtime differs, some have theirs at 10 a.m., some at 1 p.m. Our school day ended at 3 p.m. Patrick had theater rehearsal till 5 p.m. After school, a group of us exchange students met, and before we did another big thing: we went to Walmart. Walmart is a supermarket chain and it was very big. The snack section was as big as the supermarkets in Germany. We met in downtown Kent. The little downtown tour was very fun. We met Patrick’s family to have dinner. I now know what a real Cheeseburger looks like.

The day was very fun, I’m so glad I have the opportunity to be here.

Text: Luc

9.10.2019 – Kaffee und Kuchen mit allen Gastfamilien

10. + 11.10.2019 – New York

Thursday, 10th

Like every morning, the German students met in the homeroom at school. We were all very excited about going to New York. But first we went to the Cosmetology class (yes, they have Cosmetology classes in school!!) and got our hair and nails done. Then we put our luggage on the bus and left Kent. We drove through Ohio, Pennsylvania and New Jersey.

Time went by quickly: we spent it singing and playing cards. We made some stops and got something to eat for lunch (McDonald, Burger King, …). After almost seven hours we could finally see the famous skyline of New York. It was a great moment!

We went to a restaurant/arcade called Dave and Busters and had dinner. As it was David’s birthday and he got a huge ice cream cake with candles on it. Then we walked to Times Square. It was really impressive! There were lights, people, cars and tall buildings everywhere. Finally, we got everyone back on the bus (which is not that easy at such a busy place) and went back to our hotel in New Jersey. It wasn’t too late so we could go to the pool till 10 p.m. After that we played card games in our rooms. It was a great day that we definitely won’t forget!

Text: Morgane

Friday, 11th

Like every day, we woke up at 6 a.m. and went to breakfast at 7p.m. After bagels, toasts, waffles and other delicious things, we got on the bus and left the hotel. Even though we had a hard time finding the parking lot for our boat tour to Ellis Island and The Statue of Liberty, we finally got there and had a nice view on downtown Manhattan. We had a sunny boat ride over to the Statue of Liberty. We took a lot of nice pictures and had a lot of fun posing in front of Lady Liberty. It is really impressive to see the real size of the statue – believe me, it is HUGE! Later, we went to Ellis Island and visited the museum and the Wall of Honor. We even got an exclusive preview of an exhibit being made by Kent State University students. The KSU Professor explained to us that this exhibit of the Italian Lady Liberty statue was a remake based off the drawings that Bartholdi supposedly used to create the Statue of Liberty.  We then went back to Manhattan by ship and went to Wall Street. On the way there we went through Battery park and we looked at the Wall Street Bull. The buildings were really impressive and we saw a lot of well-dressed people. Later, we went through the southern part of Manhattan and set our meeting spot in a nice and tiny park between the astonishing skyscrapers of Manhattan. We had a little bit of free time to get some lunch. We all went to different places, but I can tell you, New York Pizza was really good.

After lunch we went to Ground Zero to view the 9/11 Memorial, and the atmosphere around us changed. Everybody (even Johnny…) went silent. What had happened at that spot on 9/11 is so horrible and sad. The running water in the monument reminded me of the collapsing towers. I felt so sad, and every time I read a name on the memorial I wondered what plans the people had had for their lives, if they had a family and how these families have coped with this loss. One of the names had a white rose to it, probably because the person had their birthday on this day. After this, we drove to Chinatown, away from Ground Zero and the sad mood.

Chinatown is a small district which looks Asian. We walked through a small park and saw some skater boys doing tricks. Then we had time to check out all the shops there. A group of us went looking for fake Gucci, but sadly we didn’t find any.

We got back to the bus again and drove to Times Square for dinner. Bubba Gump Shrimp Company was a Forrest Gump themed restaurant, and if you looked out the window you could see the bright lights of Times Square. The food was great, I had a veggie burger. Then we had free time, David obviously had to go to the Hardrock Café. In the store there was a huge guitar hanging from the ceiling.

After that we went to the Broadway Show ALADDIN. The theatre itself was really pretty and we sat all the way up in the top rows. The show was awesome, too. I loved all of it, the actors, the dancing, the singing and the story.

At the end of the day I was really tired, but so grateful for being on this exchange and experiencing all of these amazing things.

Text: Lisa & Mario

12.10.2019 – New York – Central Park

Saturday, 12th

On our last full day in NYC we woke up as soon as possible and got on the bus at 8:30 a.m. What I’ve noticed while sitting on the bus is that you’ll never get bored in New York. You could drive around the blocks of the massive city all day and always have an amazed reaction on your face because the streets are so busy. We first went to Central Park to check out the memorial for John Lennon, a former member of The Beatles. We had some time to wander around a bit and look for any good art pieces we wanted to get or see. Our next destination was Grand Central Station. There we got some time to check out the train station and we got some lunch too. After that we got into the bus again and went to Harold Square where we got 2 hours to explore the nearby block by ourselves in at least groups of three. I especially liked this part of the day because we got to be only with our friends. The two hours went by pretty fast and as soon as they were over we headed to the main attraction of the day: the Empire State Building Observation Deck. It was the perfect way to enjoy our last sun set in NYC. Honestly, when you’re up there you start to forget all of your worries and just quietly enjoy the beautiful view on the huge city and the majestic sun set. Right after that we did the last activity of the day which was exploring the Rockefeller Center by ourselves. At 10 p.m. we arrived at the hotel again and fell exhaustedly into our beds.

Text: Franzi & Diana

Sunday, 13th

The day started with everyone getting up and having breakfast. As soon as all the people were ready we left the hotel at 8.30. We drove to Philadelphia, which took us about two hours. When we arrived there everybody visited the Liberty Bell, which was the first highlight of the day. The second one was Independence Hall. A guide showed us around and told us about its history. After that we had a lunchbreak for about one hour. Most of us tried a Philly Cheese steak sandwich, which is typical for Philadelphia.

Then we went to the bus and drove for a long time. During the ride, we also decided which classes/electives we wanted to take back at RHS. When we finally arrived back in Kent, it was already dark. We got our luggage and went home with our host families.

We are going to miss New York! But we are also looking forward to the next two weeks in Ohio.

Text: Annika

Monday, 14th

Today our day started as always with our homeroom lesson. There we discussed our weekend in New York City and got our complicated timetables. After that we went to class. Two groups gave their classroom presentations. After school I went home and chilled and texted with friends from Germany. Then I ate dinner before I watched my exchange partner play in a soccer match. The Roosevelt High School (our high school) won. The soccer matches here are very different compared to Germany. It is a much bigger event, the anthem is played before the match and there are many more spectators. It is normal for some high school students come to watch the game and cheer on the players. You can say that the audience is there with “heart and soul.’’ After the soccer match, we drove home and the day was over again.

Text: Ronja

Tuesday 15th

Today we started off with homeroom, just like every day. We talked about what we were going to do on the trip to Cleveland, the next day. After Homeroom I had my first biology lesson; it was scary because I didn’t know anyone and just sat in the back doing school work. In 5th and 6th period we had to give a presentation in German about the Berlin Wall and we answered the students‘ questions. After German I had my first sculpture class; it was interesting to talk to the kids there, because they wanted to know a lot about Germany. In America it is really easy to connect with people, because everyone is so open.

After school we went to the KENT fire station and the KENT police department, where we got to see parts of both buildings like the kitchen in the fire station and the jail in the police station, where I handcuffed myself to a bench. We also took mugshots! We learned interesting facts about Kent and the people there.

After that, we drove home and got a Bubble tea on the way. After we went home and got ready, Claire (my exchange partner), her family and I went to eat dinner in Hudson (a really nice town a few minutes from Kent). It was a birthday dinner for Claire’s sister. I got pizza which was good and I really enjoyed the evening talking to everyone and getting to know them even more. I also met her brother who works there. After dinner we went home again and I went to bed. It was a nice day.

Text: Jana

15.10.2019 – Bei der Feuerwehr

Wednesday, 16th

On Wednesday morning, we went to Cleveland. At first, we went to West Side market, a market which is similar to the market hall in Stuttgart. Many of us had crêpes and coffee. After that we drove to the court and talked to a judge. We had the opportunity to see a real trial about a possession of cocaine. When the trial was over, the judge let us ask any questions that we wanted; that was very interesting. And we asked many questions…

Before we went back to the cars, we enjoyed the nice view of Cleveland from the court building.  Around noon, we ate lunch at the Tower City Mall, which is one of the biggest malls in Cleveland. Then we had some time to go shopping. Before we left Cleveland, we took a picture at the famous Cleveland sign on the pier. The last attraction of the day was the Sweetie Candy Company, a very huge candy store. Some of the boys bought salted insects and ate them.

For dinner, I went to “Five Guys“ with my family. They make very good burgers there. The day was a lot of fun.

Text: Lorenz

16.10.2019 – Cleveland

Thursday, 17th

After breakfast, Connor drove Nicholai and me to school. When Morgane and I finished our PE lesson we went over to the middle school where we waited for Frau Hüfner, Frau Bratenstein, Lisa and Annika. We went to Frau Stefaniuk’s German class to give a presentation about some German stereotypes. When we entered the classroom, we took notice of the huge welcome poster that the students had made for us. When we were done with our presentation the children asked us some questions about Germany (e.g. which cars we drive). After school Connor, Nicholai`s brother, picked me up to drive me home. At home I worked on my German school material. For dinner I ate a beef sandwich. When Dale, Nicholai`s dad, came home we watched a horror movie called “insidious”. Then I went to bed.

Text: David

17.10.2019 – Präsentation „German Stereotypes“ in der Middle School

18.10.2019 – Heimspiel der Footballmannschaft

Friday, 18th

Today was the highlight of the week. The football game was very exciting; it took us a while to understand game, but then it was really cool, different than expected, but cool. The atmosphere in the stadium was indescribable. Everyone was in a good mood and supported their school like a real fan club. There were even guys who wore no shirts and run around the stadium every time our team makes a touch down. The game itself was a bit sluggish, though, as there were a lot of interruptions because of the referee. But at the end it became really exciting. The score was 21:20 for our school. The opponents almost scored a goal in the last second, but they did not get the goal, so our school won the game by one point. The people couldn’t sit any longer! Everyone jumped up and hugged and cheered.

Text: Joelle

19.10.2019 – Pumpkin Carving

Sunday, 19th

Today was the first day we could sleep in and we all enjoyed it.

In the morning I went with my host family to Kent State University. It’s a big campus where 35,000 students take classes. After that we met Hannah and Joelle downtown, and we went to many different shops and had a lot of fun! Our exchange partners took us to a place called Yogurt Vi where you can create your own frozen yogurt. There were many flavors such as vanilla, coconut, and cheesecake, and you can put toppings on it like strawberries, kiwi, M&M’s and skittles.

After that Hannah drove us to an apple orchard. We walked through the orchard and we got caramel apple lollipops.

In the afternoon, I went with my host family to a pumpkin party at a friend’s house in the neighborhood. It was really fun! It was a nice party with a lot of food, music in the garden, and a big table with a lot of pumpkins to carve. I carved a ghost in my pumpkin.

In the evening, we went to Roosevelt High School because there was a cabaret where Melaina sang a solo. The theme was musical/ jazz songs and she sang a song by Lady Gaga from the movie A Star is Born. All of the students sang so well! It was a nice Saturday =) !

Text: Jenny

Sunday, 20th

Sunday was the first day in the exchange when I could sleep as long as I wanted to. After I woke up, I had sausage, egg and toast with my exchange student, Cooper, and his little sister Annie. At 11 a.m. we drove to Dussel Farm in Brimfield. There we bought some pumpkins, tickets for a corn field labyrinth, and I tasted caramel apple for the first time. In a German corn field labyrinth you have to find stamps which can be anywhere in the labyrinth. In an American labyrinth you have to find the end of the labyrinth. At 3 p.m. I went with my host family and grandmother and grandfather to the Cooper’s concert, which took place in the auditorium of the school. The school has three bands: the ‘‘good‘‘ band, the ‘‘not so good‘‘ band and the orchestra. Cooper is in the ‘‘not so good‘‘ band.

After the concert we went with the whole family to an Italian restaurant named Brico. I ordered a burger with French fries and Cooper ordered mac’n cheese, some very typical but unhealthy American food. My burger tasted very good but mac’n cheese didn’t taste that good. After Brico we played Fifa on Cooper’s Xbox and then I went to bed.

Text: Leon

20.10.2019 – Family Weekend: NFL game

Sunday, 20th

On Sunday morning we got up early. We left the house at 7:30 a.m. for our trip to a NFL game in Buffalo. On the way we made some stops to get food. After 3 hours of driving we arrived in Buffalo at 11:30 a.m. We tailgated there with super fans (Bills Mafia) and friends of my partner’s dad. Then we entered the stadium and went to our awesome seats. The game started at 1 p.m. and after three hours of cheering on the team the Buffalo Bills defeated the Miami Dolphins (31:21). The atmosphere in the stadium was great. After the game we went to Niagara Falls on the U.S side. We arrived there at 5 p.m. The falls were really impressive and we took some beautiful pictures. At the end of the day we went to a restaurant called “Griffin Gastro Pub” in Niagara Falls. The food was delicious and I had the best burger ever. After an hour of eating, talking and watching football on the screens we started our way back to Kent. Finally we arrived at home at 10:30pm.

Text: Aleksandar

21.10.2019 – Woodworking

Monday, 21st

I woke up very early. The family weekend was over, and it was another school day. In the first lesson (homeroom) everybody told something about their family weekend, and we worked on ideas for the farewell costume party.  After working on German school activities, art and lunch, I went to my next lesson: photography. There we have our own iPads for editing pictures in the lightroom. I was editing the pictures I took in Washington and New York. At first, I copied the files from my SD Card to the Ipad, then I edited the pictures and printed them. The last lesson of my schedule was woodworking. There we were working on a picture frame. With the glue we were given, we put the single pieces together.

After school, Mario took pictures of every German student with their exchange partner in front of the school. Everybody was wearing their exchange-shirts, and everyone could pick an object like a football or a flag for the photo. After the photoshoot, my exchange partner went swimming and his Dad went with me to a shop where you can buy merchandise with the Kent State University logo. I bought a very comfortable pullover, and some presents for friends. We ate dinner at a special local fast food place called Swensons. You park your car and an employee runs to your car and picks up your order. Then he runs back to the kitchen. After a few minutes he comes back to your car with your food. It was funny to watch, and the food was very tasty, too.

Text: Julian

22.10.2019 – Fußballturnier des Language Departments (2. Platz!)

Tuesday, 22nd

Like every day I woke up at 5.30am. I had breakfast and got myself ready for the day. School was really relaxed today. Some had to present their presentations, some did their homework and others had fun in woodworking, photography or in art class…like always.

After school I went to Anna-Chiara’s house because my exchange partner had to work. It was no problem that I could go over to their house, because all Americans are so hospitable. We ate lunch together and then just relaxed and talked a lot.  Around 4.30 p.m. we were on our way to the Foreign Language Department Soccer Tournament in Hudson. There were six different teams; Latin, Spanish, German, German exchange team, ESL and the middle school girls’ soccer team. Every team had to play against each other. The German exchange team made it to the final. We ended up in second place! The atmosphere there was great! All had fun cheering each other on and playing!  It was a great event that will be well remembered!

Text: Isabel

23.10.2019 – Bei den Amish

Wednesday, 23th

Today we went to Amish Country. The Amish are a religious group that live a simple life in the countryside. We drove by carpool to a cheese factory, called Heini’s Cheese Factory. There we learnt how cheese is produced. We were able to sample the cheese and shop. Afterwards we visited an Amish house, where we were told a little bit about two types of their culture, conservative and modern.

Then we went to a store at Schrock’s Farm. In the store, there were cute puppies which we could hold and pet. After this we went to a real Amish auction. To see the people betting there was really interesting. Then I went to a flea market and saw the Amish selling gloves, hardware and real weapons. Afterwards we had a great experience; we got to ride in an Amish buggy.

Then we had lunch. It was awesome to eat something home-made and healthy again. We had salad as a starter, and for the main course we had mashed potatoes, green beans, noodles, and chicken with gravy. The dessert was also amazing. There were three pies:  crumble apple pumpkin pie and a chocolate cream pie. This was a great final impression of the Amish culture!

Text: Martin

Thursday, 24th

Today was a very nice day but there was a sad feeling in the air because we that in a few days we would be flying home.

We had pancakes and eggs for breakfast. Then I was taken to school and went to homeroom to discuss our plans for the day, such as who had to present. After school, I went with my exchange partner to exercise and get a good lunch at a nearby restaurant with some friends. When lunch was over, we went to my partner’s basement to hang out and relax. We went bowling in the evening with others in the exchange and it was a lot of fun.

It was a great day and I will miss the time spent here.

Text: Mohammed

Bilder: Isabel Bratenstein