The difference between Denmark and La Réunion

Seen from an exchange student’s point of view

Jakob David Termansen, Danish exchange student

My name is Jakob David Termansen. I am a Danish exchange student here in La Réunion. I live in La Rivière and go to school at Lycée Jean Joly. I have been here for 44 days now and it has been the wildest experience of my life. French is a very difficult language to learn and I’m not very good at it, but I try as best as I can. There is a huge difference between Denmark and La Réunion at least what I have seen so far. Here the school is quite different from Denmark. The teacher speaks, and the students write the lessons down, the days are also much longer and the relationship with your teacher is completely different. In Denmark you have a much more loose and friendly relationship with your teacher. You know about your teacher’s private life and they are happy to tell stories about it. They also try to keep their political point of view for themselves, but it’s difficult for a Danish teacher. It would be quite strange to call your teacher by their last name here, so in that way I think the personal relationship with your teacher is much better back home. In Denmark, most people meet at school at 08:00 and finish from 13-15:30 depending on what grade you´re in. The lessons are usually 45 minutes long and you often have two lessons in a row. You also have a lesson that only focuses on the relationship between classmates every week, where you bring cake and then you talk about how things are going in class and if there have any problems you try to solve them during those 45 minutes. The teaching itself is quite different from here. You work a lot in groups, both with large projects and small exercises. It’s not very normal to have many tests in the Danish school and the opposite here. I think it’s fun to get to know another culture and I look forward to learning more.

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