What have our five exchange students thought about Finland so far?

In our school we have five exchange students. They have come from all around the world to see our country and education system. I have interviewed all of them and here is what I found out.


Emmanuel: Lives in Sicily Italy. He’s hobbies are football and basketball. He likes to hang out with friends and watch sports with them too.

Lorenzo: Lives in Buenos Aires Argentina. He’s hobbies are bike riding and rugby. He also goes to the gym. Likes sports, hanging out with friends and family meetings on Sundays.

Jasmine: Comes from Melvine Australia. She practices dancing, horse riding, tennis and soccer. Likes music and hanging out with friends. Listens to mostly Australian Pop.

Lais: Comes from Palmas, Parána South Brazil. She practices aerobic. Likes to listen to music, dance, watch soccer and read. Listens to Brazilian music for example Anita.

Lizzy: Comes from Florida USA. Her hobbies are soccer, piano, ukulele and singing. Likes to hang out with friends, nature, hiking, camping and traveling.


Why did you choose to come to Finland?

Emmanuel: Was interested of Finnish culture and had never been to Nordic countries. Thinks that people in Northern Europe are more civilized and clean.

Lorenzo: Doesn’t exactly know why he chose Finland. At first he was interested of New Zealand because there is a national rugby team. Other choices were France, South Africa and Japan. Chose Finland because of the good education and wants to learn some Finnish.

Jasmine: She wanted to go somewhere in Europe and looked up Northern countries. In Sweden and Norway you had to speak their language but not in Finland. What attracted was education, snow, northern lights and white Christmas.

Lais: She saw pictures of Helsinki and Lapland. And started to listen to the education system because it is so much different than in Brazil.

Lizzy: She had to choose five alternative countries. At first she didn’t even think she could go to Finland. First she picked Estonia but got switched to Finland. She wanted to go skiing and see snow and northern lights.


What are the differences between Finland and your home country?

Emmanuel: He thinks that there aren’t lot of differences apart from the school and dinner time.

Lorenzo: He thinks that almost everything is different in school. In Argentina you can’t choose your classes and the school determines everything. Also the structure of cities is different.

Jasmine: She told that in Australia there are private schools and they have morning sports. On Saturdays they go and compete against other schools. Melvin is also a lot bigger and more crowded. People are in a hurry and buildings are really tall. Helsinki is a lot more open so you can see the sky. There are less people and some buildings are older and not that modern.

Lais: Education is completely different. There are no computers. There is public schools and private schools. Public schools can be in a bad shape if the city doesn’t have enough money to take care of the school. In Finnish school there is a lot of space, the food is free and you can choose your own schedule.

Lizzy: Finland is colder, calmer and more quiet. Everything goes smoothly. For example the transportation and schools. Everything flows very well. Helsinki is bigger than her hometown.



What has surprised you the most in Finland?

Emmanuel: He told that everyone has been telling him that Finnish people are shy and not that social. But he says that instead Finnish people are very social and talkative.

Lorenzo: Nature because in Argentina there are no big forests.

Jasmine: Eating times. People eat dinner really early and have evening snack.

Lais: Finnish people are shy. Also clothing. People wear really nice clothes and there are no uniforms. Finnish people are also very polite.

Lizzy: People’s personal space.


What has been hardest about living in Finland?

Emmanuel: His family are vegetarians. And it had been hard to get used to not eating meat. The language is very different and it’s sometimes hard to understand.

Lorenzo: English courses. Language is also hard and sounds different and kind of strange.

Jasmine: She hasn’t been able to see her friends and family every day like she’s used to. English pronouncing is a lot different from Finnish so speaking is hard. Reading Finnish is okey but speaking isn’t.

Lais: First making friends was hard because people didn’t come to talk to you. The ‘r’ sound is very different. Also the tone when you speak Finnish doesn’t change, it’s the same whole time and has been hard to get used to.

Lizzy: Weather, jet lag and being away from your family.


What do you like most about living in Finland?

Emmanuel: Best thing has been Nasut because in Italy there is nothing like that.

Lorenzo: There are lot of different options in sports. In Argentina there is only football but in Finland he has played for example frisbee, basketball, handball and floorball.

Jasmine: Likes that you don’t have to wear uniforms in school and school in general.

Lais: Same as Jasmine. Likes also that people are open minded.

Lizzy: Likes everything kind of. The nature is really pretty. She likes to be active herself and everyone here is pretty active. People are real here and really mean what they say.


Then I was my curious self and asked everyone little bit what they think about Finnish food. So here is a closure of what I found out.

Emmanuel: He thinks that Finnish food is good. He has tasted salmiakki and thinks it’s okay. But he really likes macaroni.

Lorenzo: Has tasted salmiakki and didn’t like it. Likes macaroni a lot.

Jasmine: Likes most of the food and some of schools foods. Has tasted cinnamon bun, salmiakki and Fazers blue chocolate. She thought that salmiakki is okay and chocolate is good.

Lais: Has tasted buns and berry pies like blueberry and lingonberry. Hates salmiakki even the smell of it. But chocolate is the best.

Lizzy: She likes how healthy the food is and how it makes you feel warm and that there is lots of comfort foods.