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Latest Post: From a Peer Mentor (Week Sixteen Dec. 9-15, 2013) (December 9, 2013)

By Sammi Roelfs

My International Experience

Student Teaching in Indonesia

Latest Post: Wrapping Up: It’s Been an Amazing Cyclone Adventure! (May 13, 2013)

This post is just a final wrap-up post to let you know how the story ends. Basically, on Saturday, the co-hort and I went to the high school’s school production. It was amazing! We hung out for a bit to take final pictures and eat food. Afterwards, we went to the mall for the last time. That night, a parent of an elementary school student invited us over. My chaperon, roommate, and I were the only ones able to attend. It was a good time chatting about life and culture. This parent is an Indonesian widow of a British expat. She had an interesting life perspective that she shared with us. I think she views are more aligned with myself. She treated us to food at her house and then again at the Novotel. On Sunday, we flew out of Palembang, but before we did that, we received more gifts. The airport staff charged us unfairly for luggage costs. Our foreign status meant that we had to fork over more money that locals. We finally made it to Singapore. We walked around to the place where I shopped for my principal last time. On Monday, we hit up Sentosa, another man-made structure in Singapore. We walked around the city centre as well. Then, two of us headed over to Marina Bay in the evening and came upon the light show and gardens. This place looks better at night than during the day. On Tuesday, my roommate and I walked around and took public transportation. I ended up meeting my family friend for dinner that night. I was given a dress for graduation and I bought shoes at the mall. On Wednesday, we flew from Singapore to Tokyo to Chicago to Des Moines. There was a 3-hour delay in Chicago, so I did not reach Ames until much later than expected. That is the end of my Indonesian study abroad experience. At least I arrived with time to prepare and attend graduation with my family, friends, and other stakeholders in my education. Of course, I told stories about Hong Kong, Indonesia, Malaysia, and Singapore. I still have a lot of reflecting to do about how this trip will influence me in my new status as a college graduate!

Mi Viaje a España 2011

Latest Post: Cáceres- Weeks 10-11 (December 13, 2011)

Hi Everyone!

Finding Fashion in France

by Carleigh Rose, a senior in Apparel Merchandising and Design with an emphasis in Creative Design

Latest Post: End of Traveling (August 14, 2011)

My international experience is over and came to a close about a week ago. After my classes in Paris I traveled around Madrid, Spain for about a week and stayed with friends. Spain was so different from France. The culture is much more laid back, the food has a bit more kick, and in general the prices were much lower. I enjoyed wondering around the streets of Madrid because it was a nice change from the French way of life. I never felt the need to plan anything, which was nice. I am back in the United States and ready to start the beginning of my Senior year! I feel like my design style has improved greatly and I am ready to use the tools I learned in Paris towards my future processes. I recently received photos that Paris American Academy had taken for me of my projects I completed.

Student Teaching in New Zealand

by Miranda Crisp, a senior in elementary education

Latest Post: Eagles (April 20, 2011)

Hey everyone! I want to share with you a mini unit that I did with my students a of couple weeks ago. A link to the Decorah Eagle Live Stream Cam was sent to me. My students had just finished up a unit on the butterfly life cycle and I thought they would find it interesting to see eagles hatch. When I showed them the sight they were instantly involved. They asked questions about the eagles and were very observant of the video. After watching the video we talked about what we saw and what that tells us about eagles. The students predicted the day they thought the first egg would hatch, April 4th, they were correct. I contacted the Alexandra library for books about eagles and looked in the school library for books that I could read to them. For two weeks I had the eagles up every morning as they came into school, some students even watched them from home. We did quite a bit of eagle artwork, my students created eagle puppets to show at the school assembly. By the time the eaglets hatched, my students were fountains of knowledge when it came to eagles. I had so much fun learning with them, before starting the lesson I didn’t know much about eagles either. Our unit ended shortly after all three eagles hatched, feedings became more frequent and interest in watching the feedings less frequent. To show what we learned about Bald Eagles I created a bulletin board for the class. The board contains facts from the students. Each student had to think of one thing they learned about eagles from either observing the video of them or listening to the books I read. Some of the student had more than one thing to share. It was a really amazing unit for me. Since there are no eagles in New Zealand I was really able to share something special from the United States with my students, and they enjoyed it.

Studying Fashion in Florence

by Megan St. Germain, a junior in apparel merchandising, design, and production

Latest Post: The end (May 24, 2011)

Well, my time in Florence has come to an end. After a series of stressful travel related events consisting of sprinting through airports to catch tight connections, long lines at customs waiting behind a family of 6 and the chattiest passport control staff, struggling on half a dozen escalators with 3 pieces of luggage, and making it to my O’Hare connection simply because the airline was kind enough to hold the plane. Against all odds luck or fate was on my side today. Although it was sad to leave the city that I had spent the last 5 months in, studied in, made friends in, and just fell in love with its beauty, it was time, and I am ready to return to my life in Iowa. In retrospect, I am proud of my accomplishments and am so thankful for all my experiences. I got to learn in a different way from a different culture and develop skills unique to their curriculum and teaching methods. I am now able to more clearly define my focus after graduation, and it also helped me to realize the opportunities for continuing my education with a graduate degree. The study abroad experience expanded beyond academics, it helped me to realize personal growth as well. I learned about the Italian culture and enjoyed adapting parts of it as my own. I developed friendships that I hope will be lasting. The list goes on and on. My study abroad experience was exceptional and far better than anything I could’ve hoped for. I am so thankful for that.

Finessing the Fashion Show

by co-producer Danielle Powers, a senior in apparel merchandising, design, and production

Latest Post: Post Show (April 20, 2011)

Hello Fashion Show lovers!

Thank you to all of you who came to see the show. It was so amazing to see all of you there, 2042 of you to be exact. This means we were a sold out show this year and it feels great.

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