Foreign Exchange Friday: Creating A Bucket List

Bucket List word cloud #3

Bucket List word cloud #3 (Photo credit: mccmicb)

A good way to for students to experience the American and local culture is to create a bucket list.  A bucket list is a wish list – come up with some activities, events or short trips you want to experience together.  Both students AND families should come up with one and compare – see what kinds of fun things you can plan for the year.  It’s certainly not necessary to plan out every single activity for the year, but it gives a good idea of what is coming up during the year.  It gives everyone something to look forward to!

Items on your list can be a simple as celebrating a holiday like Halloween, Thanksgiving or Christmas together.  It doesn’t need to be elaborate or expensive – just ideas of fun family activities that will allow students to get the most of their year in the area they are living in.  If you’re not sure what to do, ask friends, neighbors or Google.  Students can ask friends, teachers or other community members they meet (for example, if they attend church).

I’ve created an example of ideas for Northern Delaware as a jumping-off point.

Sample Bucket List

What are some ideas that I could add?  What would you include on your Bucket List?  I’d love some suggestions – feel free to add them in the comments.


Thoughtful Thursday: Dutch Proverbs


Zolang er leven is, is er hoop.  


As long as there is life, there is hope.


hope wish dream

hope wish dream (Photo credit: hojusaram)

Word of the Day Wednesday: Voorpret

Voorpret (Dutch) = The feeling you have just before you are about to do something fun

This is probably the same feeling our students have before embarking on their year-long adventure of living in the USA!

Voorpret en grootte woorden!

Voorpret en grootte woorden! (Photo credit: @martius)

Be a hero and accept an exchange student into your home; we have students still available for full-year placement, as well as half year beginning in January and even for next school year.  Let one of them experience the feeling of voorpret!

Fill out the form below for more information and an EF representative will contact you within 24 hours.

Tasty Tuesday: Erwtensoep (Split Pea Soup)

Split pea soup (Erwtensoep)

Green Pea Soup

Green Pea Soup (Photo credit: ontheflyrecipes)

Rinse and wash the split peas, and add them with the water to a pot. Chop the vegetables and add them to the water and add the bay leaf. Add the smoked meat.

Bring to a boil and simmer for about 40 minutes. When the peas are soft, remove the bay leaf and either puree or just stir the soup several times, the peas will dissolve and give it a creamy consistence. Cut the meat off the bone, or slice the sausage and stir it back in the soup. Adjust the flavor with salt and pepper if needed.

Serve with a slice of buttered dark rye bread. This soup is best served the next day, when the flavors all have a chance to blend. Do reheat carefully, as the soup thickens overnight and can scorch easily. Thin with a little bit of warm water if needed.

Get to Know…The Netherlands!

Netherlands flag outline

Netherlands flag outline (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

  • Official Name:  Koninkrijk der Nederlanden
  • Language:  Dutch
  • Capital:  Amsterdam
  • Currency:  Euro
  • Area: 16,039
  • Population:  16,788,973
  • Government:  Unitary parliamentary representative democracy under constitutional monarchy
  • Head(s) of State:  King Willem Alexander; Prime Minister Mark Rutte
  • National Anthem:  Het Wilhelmus  
  • Location:  Northern Europe, on the North Sea

Find out more about the Netherlands here.

Here are some kid-friendly crafts that are related to the Netherlands and its culture.


Netherlands (Photo credit: didkovskaya)


The Dutch were some of the first settlers in Delaware.  Does your family have Dutch ancestry?  If you’d like to learn more about the culture and country of the Netherlands, we place Dutch students with families.   If you’d like information on becoming a host family, fill out the contact form and an EF Foundation representative will contact you within 24 hours.

Sunday Students!

English: Flags of countries of the UEFA nation...

English: Flags of countries of the UEFA nations (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

These students may still be available to host.  If you’re interested in hosting or arrivaling for the upcoming school year, please use the contact form at the end of the post and an EF Foundation representative will be in touch within 24 hours.

Jannik, 16, Germany

Interests:  Movies, DJing, Snowboarding, Computers, Listening to music

It is important to me to live in a family and to do things together. I like to meet with friends an to consult family and friends when I need help. My friends say that I am funny although I am not extremely extroverted. I also need time-out for myself sometimes to relax or think about things. I like to sleep-in long at the week-ends.

 Jannik is a really great boy. He loves to do sports, especially snowboarding and surfing. He is open and easily integrates into new situations and environments. Jannik loves to pend time with his family and they do many things together. Jannik already spent one week in an English family and is eager to get to know the American culture.

Haider, 16, Denmark

Interests:  Basketball, computers, movies, reading, swimming, listening to music, soccer, watching TV
I am a very kind boy who likes to make fun and be social. I like to be active, and play all kind of sports.
Haider is really active and loves to play soccer – but he would love to try American Football while being in the US. He also loves to listen to music. He really likes animals. Haider is really family oriented and used to spending a lot of time with his family. He is very social and he often hangs out with friends. He always helps out at home and has got his own chores. He is very academic and always does his school work.

Shotaro, 16, Japan

Interests:  Movies, listening to music, skiing, watching TV, ice-skating, piano, soccer
I have a brother.We are a family, brother, good rival, and fellow confide anythings. I can get along with siblings so, I’m sure I can have a great relationship with your kids if you have. I want to make a good friendship with them during studying abroad, and I want to keep in touch even after the year. I think it would be very nice. So,I guess everything to see would be interesting.
Shota is a very ambitions student who likes sports. He has had an interest in studying abroad naturally, because there are many exchange students in his school. He is excited to go to US to study.  He will be a great student there!

Seungmin, 16, South Korea

Interests:  Boxing, computers, soccer, watching TV, movies, listening to music, volunteering
I am very positive and get adjust myself easily in new environment. You might think I am shy when we meet first time, but you will find out that I am very active and outgoing. I would like to play sports and hang out with friends. I look forward to meeting my host family and friends for my great year in US!

Seungmin is very cheerful and bright boy who loves to meet new people and get to know each other. He also loves to play sports with his friends and he does his best at what he does.I do believe that he is going to be a great exchange student who will be loved by his future host family.

If you are interested in hosting any of these students or any other student, please contact us today!

Saturday Students

If you’ve ever considered hosting a student, now is the time.   If you haven’t, check out some of our available students and see what a difference they could make in your home, school and community – and what a difference YOU can make to them!

Maximilian, 16, Germany

Interests:  Basketball, computers, skiing, listening to music

I would say that I am very determined. I am very confident and I am open to new things. I am helpful and can work well with other people. I am interested in playing basketball and spending time with my family. Furthermore I like languages: I study Latin as a second language.

Max is a highly likeable and sociable young man. He’s very open-minded, loves to be among people and counts basketball as one of his favorite hobbies. He also loves to be with his friends, go skiing or just relax with his family. The year abroad will definitely be a dream come true for him and you will love having him in your family.

Jose, 17, Spain

Interests:  Computers, field hockey, piano, soccer, listening to music, swimming, snowboarding, surfing, watching TV

I like sports but I am not obsessed. I am a funny guy. I am a good person, honest, talkative and friendly.

Jose loves snowboarding. He also likes music and many other sports. He’s well prepared to face a high school year abroad and know how this experience will influence in his future. He´ll be a great boy for any host family he is lucky to share his year with.

Edoardo, 17, Italy

Interests:  Fishing, computers, martial arts, listening to music, surfing, watching TV

I’m a very independent boy, I am precise and polite. I was born in the north of Italy but I have been leaving all my life in Sardinia in a nice and touristic town, where there’s no so much violence and criminality as in big cities, it is very crowded in summer season and relaxing in winter.

Edoardo is an extroverted and lively boy. He is athletic and especially enjoys windsurfing and martial arts. He is also interested in fishing, listening to music and watching movies. He is flexible, polite, reliable and well mannered. He believes this program will allow him to improve his personality and English and is very excited to be able to meet new people and live in a new community.

Phranai, 16, Thailand

Interests:  Choir/singing, movies, dance, drama/theatre, gardening, running, listening to music, volunteering, soccer

I think I friendly with everyone but in first generation when I live there I think in must hard to qualify because It is a new country new environment new family new friends and certainly new language so it hard to start a relationship with new friends but I will try to talk with them and I believe I can do it. I don’t like any illegal things and I don’t enjoy to quarrel with anyone I want to live peaceful.

Phranai is a humorous, kind, and open minded boy. He likes to play many kinds of sports. He also likes to dance and listen to the music. He is a pet lover. Dog is his favorite pet and he has 1 dog in his home. He usually spends time with his family having dinner and watching movies. Sometimes he helps his dad gardening and his mom cooking. He thinks that going abroad as an exchange student will gain him experiences and makes him learn about culture and language.

US Flag

US Flag (Photo credit: PS-OV-ART Patty Sue O’Hair-Vicknair, Artist)

Interested in hosting any of these great boys?  Interested in finding out about other students we still have available?  Fill out the contact form below and an EF Foundation representative will be in touch with you within 24 hours.

Foreign Exchange Friday: Culture Shock


Anxiety (Photo credit: Rima Xaros)

According to TeensHealth, culture shock is “a common way to describe the confusing and nervous feelings a person may have after leaving a familiar culture to live in a new and different culture.”  This is extremely common, not just for exchange students, but anyone moving to a new country or even a new part of the country.

Culture shock may not set in immediately.  At first, feelings of excitement will probably be the most evident, but after being immersed in the new culture for some time, some common symptoms may arise, such as:

  • sadness
  • loneliness
  • anxiety
  • feeling left out
  • frustration
  • overwhelming negative feelings
  • extreme homesickness

It may be a natural reaction to want to withdraw and be alone or isolate yourself, but you should do the opposite.  Don’t dwell on it and talk to someone you trust if your feelings don’t change or sort themselves out.

Do your best to become comfortable with the language.  Some frustration could be coming from an inability to understand what’s being said.  Practice and immerse yourself in it as much as possible.  Resisting and speaking only in your own language will continue the isolation . Make yourself familiar with the culture you’ll be visiting.  It may not be as overwhelmingly different if you have an idea of what to expect.

Ask for help.  EF Foundation provides a great support unit for students, including host families, International Exchange Coordinators, Regional Coordinators and Program Support Managers.  Your school will also have counselors you can speak with.  You can also just talk to friends.  Friends who are part of your new culture can help you better understand it.  Meanwhile, you can educate people about your own culture.  That’s the best part of the cultural exchange experience!

Remember that your exchange year is a time to learn and grow and it may not always be easy.  Things aren’t good or bad – just different and your experience will depend on how you deal with these differences.

Thoughtful Thursday: Swedish Proverbs


Rädsla är mindre, hoppas mer,




ät mindre, tugga mer,




gnäll mindre, andas mer,




prata mindre, säg mer,




älska mer, och alla goda ting kommer bli din








“Fear less, hope more;




Eat less, chew more;




Whine less, breathe more;




Talk less, say more;




Love more, and all good things will be yours”




Fear less, hope more; eat less, chew more; whi...

Fear less, hope more; eat less, chew more; whine less, breathe more; talk less, say more; hate less, love more; and all good things are yours. -Swedish Proverb (Photo credit: deeplifequotes)