Sunny Swarthmore: Thursdays Events & Activities

June 27, 2014

Another eventful day here on the Swarthmore College campus with many great activities and events offering the students fun ways to further their own language abilities and learning. And of course another day means a more comfortable transition into the day to day schedule for each student, who seem to be finding their way much easier around campus and interacting in their respective languages with a lot of improvement. Here are some words about Thursday’s events from some of our wonderful staff here at MMLA Swarthmore:

The day began with an energetic morning assembly with dancing, music and lots of laughing. After introducing the students to a song that we will be using for one of the dances, my residents presented a skit about conflicts in the dorm. Topics included having trouble learning one another’s names, disagreements over what time to set one´s alarm with two roommates on different sleep schedules and enforcing the rule of not eating in one´s room so as to not attract bugs into the building. Students had the opportunity to practice useful vocabulary that they might need to discuss matters related to the dorm with one another. 

Afternoon activities included quite a special option, of which many students in the academy took full advantage–watching a World Cup match! With Spanish commentary, of course! Other students enjoyed a Zumba class led by fellow RA Sara. To add a bit of extra language immersion, Sara and I helped the students to understand the lyrics in some of the songs to which we danced. We are planning to continue offering Zumba, both for the opportunity to exercise and to enjoy music in Spanish!

-Gabe Beckerman, Spanish Residential Advisor

Today was the third full day for the French students here at Swarthmore, and the dynamics throughout our Academy have led to a consistently fun, energizing and accepting environment. Students have taken a foothold in their target language, socializing comfortably, and taking giant steps thanks to their peers as friendships continue to grow and sprout everywhere. Later, during activities some of the Academy chose to spend part of their time watching the France vs. Ecuador match of the World Cup, cheering on their fellow adopted countrymen, and celebrating the French advancement in the Cup despite the “match nul” (double entendre meaning a much that is tied 0-0). In the evening assembly students took the stage for one of the many opportunities to come, performing short scenes that brought plenty of laughter and put a spotlight on some thought provoking social situations. Back at the dorms near the end of the day, many of our students were treated to a small impromptu performance by pianists, cellists, guitarists and even ukelele players in their living groups, creating a buzz about the talent show that waits towards the end of the weeks ahead.

-Nolan Powers, French Residential Advisor

Being at MMLA always presents new opportunities to learn in a fun cultural environment. Today, Liu Laoshi taught us how to paint Beijing opera masks: multicolored faces that represent different characters throughout Chinese history. We also learned the language of the dorm environment: things like how to say “flush the toilet!” and “I need to do laundry” should come very much in handy over the next few weeks. Today we also made our first phone calls home, and we’re all very excited about what the next weeks have in store!

-Terry Hsieh, Chinese Dorm Head


Until tomorrow,

-Max Brazo, Program Assistant