A student-exchange program between Miami Country Day School and The English School
takes its first concrete step when eleven English School students leave for Miami on Feb 23rd for eleven days. An exciting itinerary can be followed here and on Instagram and Facebook. So, stay tuned! The ultimate goal of the program is to learn about each other's cultures by living with host families and to have a school experience by attending classes with the hosts.
In turn, on March 16th, The English School will be welcoming Miami students to Finland!
Saturday 23rd-Sunday 24th
Saturday 23rd, arrival at Miami International Airport. Host families will meet us at Miami International Airport.
Sunday 24th is for recuperating to be ready for a busy week ahead. Maybe on the beach, by the pool or in the shade of a palm tree.
Today was a fun and hectic day. We all had to wake up early and leave to school with our hosts. Some of us had to be at school already at a bit past seven, because of orchestra practise. We then attended our hosts’ classes and got to experience a normal day at MCDS. We participated in classes like economics, math, art, and music theory. During breaks and lunch we met a lot of lovely students. We were shocked to find out that the school campus was huge and had their own sports fields and even a proper theater in the Arts Department.
After lunch we got on a bus and left for Bayside Marketplace, where we went on a Thriller Miami Speedboat Adventure Tour. Even though after it our hair was a mess from the saltwater, it was an amazing and unique experience. Later we headed to Lincoln Road, where we did a little shopping and had dinner at Shake Shack. All of these activities were a great opportunity to get to know each other better.
All in all it was a great day, even though at the end of it we were so tired that we couldn’t stop giggling on the bus back to MCDS.
Ps. We’ve never eaten so many donuts in a day.
Niina & Laura
Apart from the perhaps mild (lol) exhaustion and the occasional complaint from Niina about how she’s hungry, this was pretty much a flawless day.
Our morning started off with a partial visit to our hosts’ first class of the day after which we set off towards the University of Miami.
There we received a private guided tour by one of the former students of MCDS, who relentlessly marched us through the heat of the day all over the campus.
In itself the campus turned out to be a small city in which everything is for the student. Restaraunts, a gym, a pool, etc.
Having conducted the tour (and taken some good food along the way) we departed for the Frost Science Museum.
At the Frost museum we got to learn about physics by seeing it first hand. There were also sea creatures like jellyfish, sea urchins, sharks, stingrays and fish. We could actually (try to) touch the stingrays, too. They turned out to be pretty slimey. At the top of the Frost Science Museum there was also a great rooftop area from which there was a great view of Miami. After everyone had seen everything we went to a dome to watch a short film about climate change. After the film everyone was super sleepy because the narration for the film was so soothing and it was dark in the dome. After the film the bus took us back to MCDS and from there everyone just went back to their host families.
In my opinion today was a fun learning experience. I also thought that the tips our tour guide gave about college were very informative.
Michael and Teemu
Today started a bit later, at 8:45, but still the ordinary way: we had the normal homeroom lesson after which we had a one-hour-20-minute lesson. After that we had some free time before the assembly during which we got some snacks from the cafe on school grounds. At the assembly there were some quite impressive short plays and a song from a musical. After the assembly we departed for the Real Food Academy, where we were taught how to cook easy healthy foods. We made some brownies using black beans instead of flour, some wraps where we used romaine lettuce instead of tortillas. The food turned out great and the instructor was also nice. After the Real Food Academy, we went back to school where we got to talk with the interim head of school, Mr. Connor. He told what it is like to be the head school and then we got to ask questions. After talking with Mr. Connor we had a few hours of down time while we waited for the Miami Heat game to begin. When the game started, there were a lot of people outside, making it hard to get in to the American Airlines Arena. Once inside everything got calmer and we got to our seats on the fourth floor quite easily. The match started quite one-sided with Miami Heat leading by 20 points through most of the first three quarters. Golden State Warriors caught up in the last quarter and even got in the lead by two points with five seconds left on the clock. At the last second Heat scored a three pointer and won the game. After the game we had a chance to throw a free throw, but we decided not to because the line was all the way to the exit.
Early on Thursday morning, our hosts dropped us off at school and we all hopped on a bus to head to the gorgeous Key Largo, which locates in the very Northern tip of Florida. The drive was closer to two hours but I don’t think anyone really minded since we got to just hang out without really doing anything and on top of that we also saw some beautiful views off of the bus window.
When we finally arrived at the Theatre of the sea we were all incredibly excited for what was to come. We walked in, checked our reservations and got out to into the tropical garden. The place in itself was absolutely gorgeous, as the pools were big and natural-looking and there were colorful plants and trees growing everywhere.
It didn’t take us long to get a first glimpse of the dolphins we were about to swim with. They were really curious to see who had come to their home and looked at us with big wide eyes. We were given the proper gear, including fins and diving masks, and a short instruction talk on what to do when it came time to actually get in the water.
Once we got in the water, it was a pretty amazing experience. We got to pet the dolphins, swim with them and see them do tricks, and they even kissed us! The dolphins were very sweet and seemed to love playing and doing tricks, and of course getting treats for it.
After the dolphin swim, we got to walk around the park and see all of these incredible animals, for example turtles, all kinds of different tropical birds and beautiful fish. Once we had roamed around the park for an hour or so, we got back on the bus and drove to a seafood buffet. We had a great and fulfilling lunch, and after everyone had eaten, we left Key Largo.
The bus trip back was nice, we were quite tired after the excursion, so most of us slept through the drive. Once we got to school, our hosts picked us up and we got to spend the afternoon/evening with our host families. Some of us went to an evening of theatre presented by the MCDS thespians, which was very exciting.
Jolanda & Riikka & Sofia
Saturday, March 2nd
My host family and I went to a barbecue party last Saturday evening held by Arina's host family in Aqua Park. At the party we ate grilled ribs, corn, salad and desserts. etc. We also swam, went to a hot bath a couple of times, played water polo with our own rules. We also played monkey in the middle and had fun chit chats. The beatiful night sky with the lights that came from the houses and from the pool created a nice atmosphere combined with the fun company that were invited to the party. The food and the drinks that were made by Arina's host family and other guestes were so good that I can't even describe how good it was. I had a blast at the barbecue party and I think the others, too.