Homestay Host 1
I have been doing Homestay for Kedron State High School for some years. My experience with Kedron is that this a high school that provides professional, friendly and prompt service for their International Students and Homestay families.
The Homestay Coordinator is accessible, friendly and well informed about issues that international students have. Supporting and keeping in regular contact with Homestay parents helps everybody to be clear regarding expectations. I am very happy with the support from the International Student Homestay Coordinator. She does a great job. The Head of Department provides solid guidance and direction for the students and staff.
Highlights of providing Homestay to International Students include encouraging students with spoken and written English, watching them proudly attain high grades through to Year 12, and helping them adjust to Brisbane climate and cultural life.
In the past I have taken my students around Brisbane and beyond. Many have experienced all the tourist activities and as they settle in I find they are happier strengthening ties with their peers in preparation for life after Homestay.
I have had significant success with Kedron State High School and the International Department. The students are guided through their high school years with expertise, friendly guidance and accessibility.
Homestay Host 2
Our first experience of hosting was the French tour in 2003. Our children asked us if we could take a student so we gave it a go. It was a great success and Charlotte was lovely. When our children began moving out a few years later and Kedron were looking for host families, we decided to give it try long term.
We have gained a lot from hosting. Our children have made lifelong friends in countries all over the world. No matter where they have travelled, they always have someone to visit and stay with. We have met many of the families and have had them come to visit. We have stayed with them when we are travelling. One of our German girls joined our “Crispmas in the UK" 2018 family tour and just fitted right back in. One of our Chinese students lives in the home city of our daughter-in-law, where she lives with our son.
Kedron have been remarkably supportive over the years. Any hint of a problem, one call or text is usually enough to have the problem sorted.
Every year 12 graduation is a highlight. To see that shy little year 10 student become a confident, outgoing young adult is very rewarding.
We have been hosting students for probably 13 years now. We have had students from China, Taiwan, Korea, Indonesia, Brazil, Nauru, Germany, and France.
Homestay Host 3
1. What made you decide to become a Kedron Homestay host?
Experience another culture, develop lifelong friendships and sharing of our culture.
2. What do you feel you / your family have gained from the experience of hosting?
Great friendships, we have been able to visit students in their countries.
3. How are you supported in role as homestay host?
The international support team at Kedron SHS has been excellent in correspondence and helpfulness in different situations that you might need clarity on.
4. Can you share a highlight or memory of homestay?
Teaching my students to cook different cuisines, exercise or to visit other parts of our country. I have had many highlights throughout my hosting of international students. I love it when they interact with you and are willing to learn your culture and when they use the wrong language and are able to laugh about it, without getting upset.
5. What are the challenges of homestay and any tips on overcoming these?
Language is a big barrier at first and sometimes there are cultural differences. Setting simple rules and what you expect from students at the beginning always helps.
6. How long have you been hosting?
7. General comment – optional
You only get out of it what you put into it. Every student is unique and what might work for one might not for the next student.
A. Oberndorfer – International Student
- Who or what helped you settle into life in Australia and learning at Kedron SHS? My lovely classmates and friends, the international student coordinators and the teachers of the music department helped me settle into life in Australia.
- List 3 things you learned about yourself while studying in Australia? I learned about myself to become more open-minded and independent. I learned that I am able to overcome difficulties without having my parents around. I learned that I want to become a classical musician in order to inspire and touch people with my playing.
- Has studying at Kedron helped with your life goals? Definitely yes.
- What is your favourite memory of Kedron SHS? My favourite memory is representing Kedron SHS at the DEi Conference at the Brisbane Convention and Exhibition Centre by playing lovely classical music on my viola.
- What is different about studying at Kedron SHS compared to your school at home? In Austria we don't wear school uniforms. At my school we have approximately 12 compulsory subjects and at Kedron SHS there are only 6 subjects you have to take. At my school in Austria there is only one building for 500 students and the teachers move from classroom to classroom. The most important difference is the multicultural school community at Kedron SHS.
E. Dowiyogo – International Student
- Who or what helped you settle into life in Australia and learning at Kedron SHS? I had been to Australia before during family holidays however, actually living and going to school in Australia was going to be an altogether different scenario. The transition into life in Australia was made all too easy by the warmth and friendliness of the students at Kedron state high school;, the supportiveness and easy-going of the staff; most importantly, the way my host family treated me as their own allowed me to settle into life in Australia and learning at Kedron SHS with ease.
- List 3 things you learned about yourself while studying in Australia? My homestay mother took me walking up Mt Coot-tha during my first week upon arrival. My legs began to weaken as the climb got steeper. That's when my hostmom told me a fact that, "when you feel like giving up, you actually still have 40% left in you." This fact has been a motivation for me to keep going and never give up. Secondly, living in Straya has allowed me to recognise and embrace my passion for sports especially footy (both rugby and Aussie rules). A third fact regarding myself that I realised during my study in Australia was 'it is okay to ask for help.' The kindness and supportiveness shown by the people around enabled me to ask for help, seek assistance and even just talk to a friend when something was not going too well.
- Has studying at Kedron helped with your life goals? During my final year in Kedron, a group of friends and I decided to start an Environmental Committee. Being a part of the committee allowed me to discover my career path that I have now chosen. Being a member of the environmental committee taught me how to recognize the environmental niche within my surroundings, the sustainable methods to solve a problem, and the ability to work for the greater good.
- What is your favourite memory of Kedron SHS? Of course it has to be the sport carnivals. Though I have to admit, Kedron Week is that one week that everyone from students to staff to parents, even alumni's await in anticipation for Kedron Week; it acknowledges and celebrates everyone's culture and background which bridges the Kedron community even closer. Another favourite memory of mine was during Year 11 camp – everyone seated around the camp fire after trekking for miles on end. Exhausted. Hungry. Away from family. Yet, everyone sat in a circle and shared their stories. To go on, honestly, I reminisce on the times that we would discuss philosophy and life in English class or debate about whose answer was correct in Maths class. Nonetheless, my favourite memory of Kedron SHS will have to be the people.
- What is different about studying at Kedron versus your school at home? The difference between Kedron SHS and my local school was the manner by which students were taught. The teachers in Kedron SHS ensured that's students were on track and understood that the different levels of understanding of the students. On the same note, the manner by which students treat their teachers and staff is different. The Kedron SHS students showed respect and understanding for their teachers.
D. Chen – International Student
- Who or what helped you settle into life in Australia and learning at Kedron SHS? For me, the staff in the International office and my teachers, helped me the most with my study. For example, I always asked Ms. Kashmira and Ms. Short to help me with my assignments and they were very happy to help me. After school, my host family provided me with a cosy living environment.
- List 3 things you learned about yourself while studying in Australia? I kept making progress, always pushing myself, and getting more confident.
- Has studying at Kedron helped with your life goals? It has definitely been a great help with my life goals. I just got an offer from Bard Conservatory of Music in America. I wouldn't have discovered my musical potential if I hadn't got the opportunities to study at Kedron SHS. I would like to especially thank my music teacher, Miss Want. She is very nice, appreciates every single student, and made me more confidence to achieve my goals.
- What is your favourite memory of Kedron SHS? The days we practiced and presented our drama show, Narnia, in 2018.
- What is different about studying at Kedron versus your school at home? Study at Kedron is more colourful and relaxed than study at the school in my home country.