After experiencing a week in Brazil, I have already fallen in love with Brazilian culture and the people that I have met here. Though it is different in many respects from what I am used to in the United States, it is so easy to feel at home here.
For one, I love how people greet each other here. I went to a Brazilian barbeque yesterday and was greeted by every single person with a hug, a kiss on the cheek, and “prazer” (nice to meet you). Later on, when I sat at the table, I was absorbed into the conversation. The guests that were able to spoke English with me, and I tried a little bit of Portuguese. Others would joke and laugh along with me. By the end of the night, it felt like I knew them.
Second, I love spending time shadowing in the k-12 school in Brazil. The teachers and students are both so open to having us there, and it is such an amazing privilege to be working alongside and assisting such amazing teachers. The teachers always welcome us right in, and they do a great job at making us feel at home in the classroom. Surprisingly, I am a lot more confident working with the students here than I have been in my own home city. I’ve found myself stepping out and stretching myself more than I thought I could, and I have learned to become much more flexible and confident as a person and a teacher.
Overall, I have always felt so accepted and so welcomed here. I love the warmth of the people, and I love the hugs (physical touch is my love language). I still have a couple of weeks left, but I already know that I will really miss Brazil and the new friends I have made here.