Homestay for Japanese students: Iffah spends an interesting day with
Hira and Yuki
Iffah was with Hira and Yuki for only one day, yet it was an interesting day for her and them, Iffah affectionately calling them “Kakak” (elder sister in Malay).
Ms Hira Dodo and Yuki Tsutsumi were in my home for three days, from Saturday 11 August (2018), staying for two nights for a homestay experience during their 3-week marine-study stint in Singapore. They are first-year students from the Tokyo University of Marine Science and Technology.
Before Hira and Yuki started their homestay, Hira emailed to me: “We would like to wear Malay dress. Also we are looking forward to being able to do exercises this Sunday morning because we do not have enough opportunity to do exercise since we arrived in Singapore. We are excited about homestay. We would like to learn and experience many things about Singapore’s life.”
Yuki too emailed me, saying: “Spending time with you and your family
is the first priority, and I wish to learn about the Singapore culture deeply. I am looking forward to meeting with you and your family.”
Iffah didn’t know of the coming of the Japanese students. It was a surprise for her when she saw them early in the morning of Monday, 13 August, the third day of their homestay, when her parents sent her to my home.
Nur Iffah Binti Muhammad Imran is my 4-year-old granddaughter who my wife and I look after during the day from Mondays to Fridays when her school-teacher parents, who live about 10-minute drive away, go for work. Iffah got attached to the Japanese “Kakaks” in the afternoon, after her 3-hour preschool programme at Sparkletots, till her parents came to fetch her that evening when all of us took my wife’s home-cooked dinner together.
The following photos tell the story of the students’ homestay stint in my home:
Fun in the city
Iffah joins the visitors
It’s time for parting
It is a joyful activity for us to volunteer our time and services to foreign students for the homestay programme during which they learn about Singaporeans and the interesting Singapore cultures.
My blog articles on the Japanese students’ homestay stints at my home in the last two years are:
- (1 – 23 Aug 2017) “3 Jap students experience family lifestyle in Aug”
- (2 – 15 Mar 2017) “Iffah with her Japanese “kakaks””
- (3 – 30 Oct 2016) “Meeting Sakura, strengthening friendship”
- (4 – 12 Aug 2016) “They came, they stayed, they enjoyed”
- (5 – 24 Jan 2016) “An educational treat for Japanese students: Relishing the sights, sounds and tastes of vibrant Singapore”
My wife and I have been taking various exchange students and youths programmes since 1989 to give the youths the homestay learning experience. The programmes include:
• Ship for South-East Asian Youth Program (SSEAYP)
• Iwate Global Seminar Program
• Singapore-Vietnam Youth Exchange Program
• Indonesian Icon Youth Visit
• Tokyo University of Marine Science and Technology
• Shelton International College Student Exchange Program.
We must say we enjoyed taking them for the homestay stint just as much as they enjoy staying with us and learning a lot about our family lifestyle.
26 August 2018