Exchange Students from Germany, France and Italy Talking about Intercultural Communication
Arthur: Hello, teachers and schoolmates. I’m An He from France. My French name is Arthur. Back in France I have two little brothers and one little sister. I’m going to study in China for a year. I believe this will be an unforgettable experience. I love learning languages and have interest in science. I like sports and music. I play bass and form bands. I also know how to do British boxing. Hopefully in China, a country full of culture, I could learn more different things, know something new for me and make new friends. It’s been nice to know you all.
I can speak french, english and a little german but the hardest thing for me is to switch from one language to another... sometimes it happened that i could not speak at all because i didn't remember the words in the right language... it was a really weird sensation, just as if i lost my voice...
Now i have a better understanding in chinese, english and german, and with the help of my friends and their patience i don't have much more problems of communication.
Each saturday i do taichi with a master but he only speaks chinese, so at first, it was hard for us to understand each other. But now we found a way to solve this problem, he teaches me chinese and i teach him french, when we have problems in understanding each other, we just explain the words by drawing and miming.
If i say, that I’ve learned something from these situations i guess it’s that there is always a way to be understand.
Sometimes I have some extra activities at school after regular classes like taking part in the history club and choir rehearsals on Friday. On other days of the week I have lunch, do my homework and study for tests once I get home. However I have some other hobbies. On Monday and Wednesday I give English tuition, on Tuesday, I go to band rehearsals in the evening and every Thursday I play the accordion with our orchestra. When I am free from any other activities I read, listen to music and watch TV series. In the evening I always have dinner together with my family. Finally I go to bed at around 10 pm.
Clément: Hello, everyone. My name is Clément Doctor。 I’ll try to speak in Chinese, but my Chinese is not very good. So please forgive me if I make mistakes.
Giulia: Hello! I’m Giulia. I haven’t got a Chinese name. I’m 17, from Italy. I’ve decided to spend a year here, because I like Chinese culture and history. What impress me most are the people here. Everyone is nice and kind. Chinese food here is really delicious. My favorite is steam dumplings and sweet soup balls.
I have a little brother in Italy called Marco. I love volleyball, music and travelling. Sorry my Chinese is not good enough. I will keep trying and make progress. Thanks！
First of all, have you ever tried Italian food? if you have never, I strongly suggest you to give it a chance, 'cause I think that Italian cuisine, with the Chinese one, are two of the best cuisines all over the world.
Now let's start with some differences.
One of the main differences is the "meal time". In Italy I usually have lunch at one or two o'clock and dinner after eight o'clock. Here in China, with my host family, I have dinner at about six o'clock. It's really early for me, so at 9 o'clock I usually get hungry ahah.
(Another important difference is cutlery. I'm sure you all know that in Europe we use fork, spoon and knife instead of chopsticks to eat. During the first few days it was very difficult for me to get used to chopsticks: I was very dolt using them but now, even if I'm not a master, I can eat without problems.)
Here, during the meals with the family, everyone have a bowl of rice and all the people share food which is at the center of the table. In Italy, every person has his own plate and we don't share food. Yet Italian people don't eat rice everyday, but its equivalent is "pasta".
In China, while eating, people make a lot of sounds to express their appreciation towards the food, while In Italy it's really gross to do so. There is not a right or wrong in this, it's only a cultural difference.
A curious thing that Italian people do before eating is to "wish a good meal". In Italian, we often say "buon appetito".
Despite the differences, China and Italy also have something in common when it comes about food culture.
As in China, meals in Italy is a very important part of family life and culture. Even though Italy is a very tiny country compared to China, there are a lot of different kinds of cooking: in every part of Italy you can taste different specialties, among which, I think it's useless for me to mention the most known Italian specialties as pizza, spaghetti and lasagne.
Thank you for listening!
H: Thank for sharing. From what they say we could feel their curiosity and expectations for the new life. Wish that they would have a good time and wonderful and unique experiences during the year to come.