International Exchange Student Class

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In a new country, learning a new language, and meeting new people: these are just some of the challenges that the international exchange students at Herriman High School face. That is where the exchange student class steps in.

The class is led by Mr. Escossio with the goal of helping exchange students adapt to their new life in America. The main point, Mr. Escossio says, “ is trying to make their lives easier”. Mr. Escossio understands this better than anyone. He was an international exchange student at the age of 14 and understands the challenges that come with it. “I was in that position one time”, he says, and for him, that is what makes this class so important.

The class is split into several parts to try and help the exchange students as best as possible.

The first is a language skills lesson. This is to help them understand the more detailed parts of the English language as well as certain terms they may not understand. For example, they might not understand what the terms “to have a ball” and “I’m beat” mean. Students will often approach Mr. Escossio if they hear something during they day that they didn’t understand.

The next is a lesson on American civics. They are taught things like the national anthem and the importance of the American Flag in the United States. Mr. Escossio  often  teaches them a little U.S. history as well to help them better understand U.S. culture. Students  also bring American music to the class to analyze. As a class, they  go over the song to help understand the meaning.

The other main part to the class time is watching NBC News. This helps the students get a better understanding of what is going on in the U.S. today.

As time goes on, Mr. Escossio says that “You can see they are adapting to the new culture”.  Even though it has not been very long since the school year started, he is already seeing them pick up new things and become more comfortable with life at Herriman High School. Right now there are eight international exchange students at Herriman High and Mr. Escossio says he is “grateful for the opportunity to teach them”. He hopes he can continue to teach this class and assist these students in their transition to a new life in America.