Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Quote of the week...

To get the students as ready as possible for Seattle, I have been doing "USA LESSONS" with them the past few weeks, using all the suggestions from my international friends, plus a few ideas of my own. The rule at the beginning of each lesson is... "DO NOT ASK WHY!" I always tease them that these are all the things I had to "unlearn" when I got to Denmark and for most....there is just not a REASON! It just is.

As I was doing my "USA Lesson #7" (See link HERE) yesterday, we were talking about BASIC things... you know, EATING and SLEEPING... and the "normal" things we take for granted. The things we COUNT ON being the same, day in and day out.

However, one of my students said something that really made me stop and think. It was not a complaint or a form of sarcasm about the "American way" of doing things... it was an honest question; a question that really has given me pause today.

He said, "How is it that we are two countries with so many things in common yet when it comes to such basic stuff, we are SO DIFFERENT?"

And he is so right.
Like I always tell Jess when she experiences something new in's not bad, just different.
Well, that statement works for everything except leverpostej and lakrids. Anway...I digress.

As I leave for Istanbul today with 80+ colleagues, I am going with an open mind--a mind that is searching for the differences. Not to judge or question, but just to observe! I already opened up a new note on my iPhone called "Turkey" so I am ready to, ready to learn!


PiNG aka Patti said...

It really is a good question! For many things, I suspect that the 'basics' came about by what was manufactured in various countries. Before I visited here, I always assumed that things like beds, toilets, ovens, etc., would be the same. I was not at all prepared for how different these things actually were and it definitely surprised me. We now have a truly global economy, but I'm sure when the modern conveniences, such as stoves/ovens became so popular, there was no crossover between Europe and America, so you just got what was manufactured where you actually lived. A perfect example - look at the current fascination in the US with front-load washing machines! And, the flip side of that? The extreme cost here if you want to buy a side-by-side refrigerator/freezer!

Pdyrholm said...

ahhh yeah all those little things. Forget about finding your dyne in the US. I'm smuggled a couple in though so I'm covered for now ;-)

Nina Ø said...

Everyone in DK will know what leverpostej and lakrids are. For those in America, leverpostej is a spread you put on bread at breakfast or ? and is very good. Take it for a fact from someone who hates liver. Lakrids is what American call licorice but is ten times better in Denmark than the stuff sold in America. The young people need to bring some lakrids. I bet they can find some homemade leverpostej if any of the host families are Danish.Comfort foods are important. My main comfort food is cheese. There was a cartoon recently where the person's religion was "everything is better with cheese". That me.

Lisbeth said...

Hi Kelly,
I don't plan to send you all these links when you write about your teaching experiences but when I saw this ( today, I thought it would be a really cool thing for your students - and that their poems would all be so vastly DIFFERENT despite them all living in Herning :)