Cultural Bridges is a new class at Otsego High School just for our foreign exchange students, or those who are new to Otsego from another country. Otsego has a wonderful tradition of families who open their homes to exchange students which enriches the experience for all of our students and staff. It is our goal at Otsego for all students, from Otsego and beyond, to find success. This new class will help those who are not yet familiar with our culture, or a landscape like Otsego, transition to their new home away from home. “I hope the students become comfortable with OHS much sooner than they have in the past,” says Allison Breese, Otsego’s English Language Learner teacher. “My goal is to make American high school life easier to participate in and give the international students comfortability in the classroom.”
This class entails a lot of information about how OPS works, student expectations with Otsego as well as US currency and how individuals fit into the bigger world culture. It’s a safe space to ask questions and explore the unknown. This first week, they went on a scavenger hunt to find, and learn about, different people and places that make OHS what it is. This is just a one trimester class, offered the first trimester. “This class allows them to practice conversational and academic English language, lessening barriers that may arise concerning participation in their core classes,” Breese adds.
So far, we have 18 foreign exchange students and 1 permanent transfer from Brazil. Exchange students are from Finland, Spain, Czech Republic, Denmark, Thailand, Italy, Switzerland, Chile, and Germany.
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