2011-12 Exchange Students

Maria Llorente Sanchez

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Town/Country:  I am from Valladolid, Spain.

Family:  My father is an architect and my mother is a doctor. I only have a little sister named Gloria who is ten years old. I have several aunts and uncles and lots of cousins. We get together every chance we can to see each other.

Host Family:  My host family is Twylla and Randy Strom. It is so relaxing to sit and watch Twylla and Randy's film collection at the end of the day.

Travels:  My family and I love traveling abroad. Every summer and/or every holiday my family and I go abroad. I've been to Turkey, Egypt, Greece, France, England, Cuba, Germany, Italy, Canada, and to the USA four times. I enjoy experiencing new things in our travels. It's fun to go back and watch films of my family and our travels.

Hobbies/Activities: When I'm not traveling, I enjoy going out with my friends on weekends. I like playing volleyball and listening to music. Shopping is also one of my favorite things to do. And when I don't have anything to do, I read.

Favorite Foods:  I love every food Spain has to offer. But, I would have to say my very favorite is the Spanish omelet or the paella. In America, I really like homemade hamburgers and the homegrown sweet corn. I think in Spain we eat healthier than in America. We usually eat lunch and dinner later than here. We eat at home almost all the time. We do not eat at school or at work.

Comparisons:  The clothing here is similar to our clothing in Spain. There is not much difference between the two countries. I think American's have more informal wear than we do in Spain. My town is much bigger than Mountain Lake, so we have more places to go and things to do without having to take the car. I usually go out with my friends on the weekend and we may go to a cafeteria or to the cinema just by walking.

Climate:  The summer weather in Spain is really dry and much hotter than Minnesota. Our winters are cold, but we don't get any snow. We don't get as cold as you do in Minnesota. If you came to Spain in wintertime, you would probably think it was warm.

Schools:  Our school classes are similar, except that the students stay in the classrooms and the teachers are the ones who move from classroom to classroom. School activities are a big difference in Spain. There is less variety of sports and not many people go to the games. Sometimes if you want to play sports, you have to go to a private club. I prefer the way you do it here where everyone gets to play together. 

Activities:  Right now, I am in volleyball and show choir. I will try other sports this winter and/or spring. I love participating in the activities that are offered here.

Bruno Seidel Daurte
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Town/Country:  I am from Rio de Janeiro, Brazil

Family:  My dad is an engineer and my mom is a teacher. I am the only child in the family.

Host Family:  My host family is Frank and Kelly Dorpinghaus from Windom. I'm enjoying staying with then. They are very outgoing.

Travels:  I have had the opportunity to visit Chile, Argentina, Spain, Portugal, France, England, and Italy.

Weather:  Weather in Rio is warm all year. We don't have winter and autumn that are so extreme as you do here.

Hobbies/Activities:  I enjoy traveling with my family. In Rio, people are more used to going out almost every week night to the mall, theatre, and parties.

Favorite Foods:  Brazilian barbeque. In America, I like peanut butter and jelly sandwiches. We don't eat as much fast food.

Fashion:  People dress more casual here than in Rio.

School:  The classes are basically the same except most of our grades are based on tests instead of homework. We do not have cooking and sewing classes in our school in Rio.

School Activities: I would like to participate in track and baseball.

Other Differences:  In Rio, there aren't as many people who live on farms as there are in Mountain Lake.

Leonie Ermert, Germany
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Town/Country:  I am from Germany. My hometown is Aachen.

Family:  My mom is a financial advisor and my dad is an electrical engineer. I have a sister who is 16 and brother who is nine.

Host Family:  I am staying in Mountain Lake with Ron and Shirley Nickel. 

Travels: I have traveled to Sweden, Poland, Spain, Denmark, the Netherlands, Belgium, France, Austria, and Switzerland. I speak German, English, French, Latin, and am learning Spanish.

Weather: The climate in Germany is different from Minnesota. Here it is warmer in the summer and colder in the winter.

Hobbies/Activities: I like to travel and explore. 

Favorite Foods:  In Germany, my favorite food is sweet popcorn. My favorite American food is Dairy Queen's blizzards.

School: The school in Mountain Lake is different from my homeland because we don't have the same subjects everyday and our homework isn't graded, but what is said during the lesson is very important. The school work in America is much easier than in Germany. We just have the basics. Art, PE, and Music are considered fancy subjects in Germany.

School Activities: The most fun thing I have experienced since I've been here was the homecoming dance. The main sport played in my country is soccer, and girls usually dance. 

Other Differences: TV in my country is different because we don't have as many channels and all that is usually on are soap operas, news, and films.