Message from NewZealand



Hi, I am Kyoka from Central Hawke’s Bay in New Zealand. How have you been? A pandemic virus, Coronavirus is going around at the moment, which is unprecedented. I hope you are all good although we are in a hard circumstance. In New Zealand, though there are still some restrictions, I am really enjoying my life. Here, I would like to share my New Zealand life with you.
First of all, I am going to write about my host family. I have two mothers, Kerry and Tammy, an older sister, Devon, Nana, Aunty, three big dogs and one chubby cat. I now live with Kerry and Devon. They are all approachable, and I enjoy spending time with them.
In late March, the New Zealand government declared for everyone living in New Zealand to stay home in order to keep us safe from Coronavirus, which is called a lockdown. During the lockdown, my host sister, Devon, was considered as an essential worker and she worked, so I spent most of my time with my host mother, Kerry. The lockdown lasted for approximately eight weeks. I felt as though the lockdown was a much shorter time than actually eight weeks, and I’m sure it’s because of Kerry. We cooked, knitted, watched TV and went for a walk with our dogs together. We did more things than I have just mentioned, but I can’t write all of them here because there are too many. By doing those many sorts of things, we kept ourselves busy and productive. Also, we talked a lot and got to know each other. When I had a problem or a concern, she gave me good advice. Besides, when I was crying, she gave me a hug, saying “I’m giving a mama hug.” She has absolutely become my second mother. I appreciate her from the bottom of my heart.
Secondly, I am going to write about the drama class that I take at school. I have just done a solo performance in front of audience recently, which was really rewarding for me. I played the role of a ghost, Hamlet’s father. Traditional English is used in the story, Hamlet by Shakespeare, which made it obstinate for me to pronounce words and memorize lines. My teacher also said that I was learning the third language. I didn’t have any confidence in English and acting, and I was introverted about performing in front of people. So, before the actual performance, I was extremely nervous, and I was about to cry, actually. When I stood on the stage, my mind went blank. But I was able to accomplish the performance till the end with a minor prompt from my teacher. After the performance, my classmates, teacher and host family came to hug me, and they said “You were amazing!” I had heaps of feelings at that time, but I felt a sense of achievement the most.
To be honest, the reason why I chose drama class out of a list was not that I actually wanted to perform a role. I chose it just because most of my seniors from Study Abroad Course used to take it, and they recommended it to me. So, I didn’t even know whether I would like acting. But now, it is one of my favorite classes, and I want to try a different performance again.
I have four more months to study here. I’m surprised because the time has flown so fast. I will not stop trying, and I want to go back to Japan without any regret. Thank you for reading till the end.

Lots of love,
Kyoka  Hamada





Hi, guys! I’m Nozomi from Cullinane College in Whanganui. Five months have passed since I came here. I feel like the time has flown. I have only another five months to stay in New Zealand, which is truly sad for me.


A coronavirus called COVID19 in NZ is going around. I was studying with the computer at home for about 8 weeks during the quarantine. I missed my friends, my teachers, even my family in Japan at that time because I felt lonely all the time. However, it was a good opportunity to build up my relationship with my lovely host family. They seriously listened to my wish that I would like to go back to school and they occasionally helped me with my assessments or tasks, which were too difficult for me to do by myself. Don’t you think they are so amazing?  


I would like to share my wonderful school life in NZ with you now. Firstly, I would like to talk about the cricket team I had joined. We have already finished all the games and had a pizza lunch, which was our prize. Playing cricket was my challenge as well as my best memory in NZ so far. To be honest, I didn’t want to join it because I’m not good at any sports, but one of my friends said, “You are joining cricket with me, right?” I thought, “Oh my gosh…She might not be my friend if I say no…What the heck!!” To my surprise, all my teammates were absolutely nice and kind to me. They said, “All good, Nozomi !!” even when I made mistakes like dropping the ball. I really enjoyed all games thanks to my teammates and cool teacher.


Secondly, I’m going to talk about my friends. I’m always with my BESTY, Karina, who is an international student from Hong Kong. I often hang out with her on weekends, consult her on some problems I face, and even argue with her. (haha) Amber and Grace are also my beautiful friends and cricket teammates. They listen to me as well, and give me accurate advice when I face troubles or cry. I’m super happy to be friends with them and I want to become better friends with them than now.


As you can see, my NZ life is filled with happiness. However, I’ve faced so many problems not only at school but also at home. One of the biggest problems I’ve faced is to have homesickness. I was terribly sad although I was doing fun things with my host family or my new friends. That was because I was always thinking about my family and my home in Japan. I cried even in front of my host family, friends, and teachers. However, I attempted to change my mind in order to succeed in studying abroad and improve my English skill. What I started, and still do, is write a journal before going to bed every night. I write down what happened, whether good or bad, in English, as well as my feelings in Japanese to get myself sorted out. It is totally helpful for my life so I will continue writing it every day.


I feel like my experience of studying abroad is definitely meaningful and valuable thanks to my host family, friends, and teachers. I will never ever slack-off on my efforts nor forget to appreciate all the people who have supported me. Thank you for reading until the end.


Kind regards,


















Hello. I’m Nanami. Near my lovely house, there are many cows and they live a slow life in the green field.  On the other side of the field is the ocean which is calm and inviting and safe to swim in. People swim there with their much loved dogs and leisurely spend their weekends and holiday at the beach. I hear their laughter.  Everything moves slowly and calmly in New Zealand. It’s a big difference compared to Japan. Can you imagine this New Zealand life? Now, I surely think my decision coming here was not wrong. This year, 2020, will be a year in which I have the opportunity to experience many new things.
First night when I stayed at my host family’s house, I felt homesick and I was crying until midnight.  I had never been overseas, so I was very nervous. Also, I realised that it’s tough for me to live without my family, as I was supported by them to take on this opportunity. I couldn’t get used to the new environment at first. To overcome my challenges, I decided to just accept my situation and make the most of my time in New Zealand, even though I struggled to make friends at first.
Making friends in a foreign country where you don’t know anyone can be stressful. I had to start making friends. I spoke to students and they tried to communicate with me, but I couldn’t understand what they were saying at all.  I asked them to repeat what they had said and they said, “NEVER MIND.” I prepared myself for a situation like that before I came to New Zealand, but when it happened, I was still shocked. I am getting better at understanding what the students are saying and this feels good.  My confidence in talking to my friends is also getting better. One of my favourite events was going to camp. It is an important event for students to build a bond with each other. I spent 4 days with my friends building great memories. We slept in the bush one night where we had to build a shelter to sleep under and walked for 1 hour in the bush at night without a torch. One of the nights we had to present a fashion show to the rest of the students, and this was really funny. I felt I was beginning to understand what they were saying and also about New Zealand’s culture as well. Honestly, it was hard to stay for 4 days with new friends, but I can say that the camp had absolutely helped me to build friends with kiwi kids; a good memory for me. 
I am certain that as the year goes on, I will make more good memories. At the moment, we are in lockdown due to Covid-19 and this means I am not spending time with my friends chatting and practising English. I still do not feel I am making much progress but I will have to wait and see as the year goes on. I am looking forward to any other events that the school is going to have this year. I feel much more confident in attempting whatever my stay in New Zealand brings.
To sum up my experience this far, I have taken every opportunity that came along. It may have been hard but the rewards were worth it. Also, I’ll never give up trying to make friends, as it is just as difficult for them to understand me. Eventually, friendship connections happen naturally. Ever since I knew I was going to come to New Zealand, I could never imagine how much I have learnt and experienced a different culture and language, had I stayed at home in Japan. Therefore, embrace the adventure and come to New Zealand. Kia kaha, Wash your hands properly.






Hello everyone. I’m Wakaha. I have been away from Japan for three months. The last three months have definitely been the hardest time for me. Of course, there were many fun and happy things I experienced. Today I will share one of my hard experiences, what I’m trying now, and my feelings.
First, the hardest thing I have encountered is that I cannot say what I want to say. Sometimes I can’t express what I think, and I can’t answer well enough to the questions I am asked. Because I am a foreigner and I speak a different language, it can happen. However, this created a big barrier once. I didn’t make a big wall from the beginning. Small misunderstandings became a big wall. Once the wall was built, it was not easy to overcome. However, I didn’t give up and kept trying until the misunderstandings were solved. Then the wall became smaller and smaller. If I had given up then, the problem wouldn’t have been solved.
By having made such mistakes, I’ve realized the importance of vocabulary and I study more words now. Even though I am studying abroad, no matter how much conversation I have in English in my daily life, my vocabulary will not improve without my own efforts. Without enough vocabulary, I won’t be able to tell the others exactly what I think. Therefore, before going to bed, I look up words in my word book in my room, read the emails from the school and look up the words I don’t understand in the electronic dictionary. Also, I try to use the words that I have newly learned for conversation with my host family. I haven’t felt my growth yet, but I’m going to do something I can do little by little.
This year, the new coronavirus is rampant around the world. Currently, New Zealand has an out-of-home restriction called lockdown. Since schools started to be closed, I have been studying at home on my computer and I can’t see my friends. Many events, such as my teacher’s visit and April camp, were canceled. I was very sad and it was not easy to accept. However, I try to think positively that there should be something I can do in this situation.
To be honest, in the last three months I felt homesick, lost confidence and cried a lot. Even now, I almost cry because of disappointment in myself. Just like when I was in Japan (Haha), but I think that’s probably the same with my 11 wonderful friends. I have to work hard because my friends are working hard. I’ve realized the importance of having friends in order to overcome this pain.
My study abroad continues. I will keep trying my best to show my growth when I write such an essay next time.




Sora Nishimoto(NZからのメッセージ)


Kia ora! ( “Hello” in Maori. )  My name is Sora.  I’m from Ishikawa and my school in New Zealand is Te Kuiti High School.  Three months have passed since I came to New Zealand.  How fast time flies!!  My teacher in Japan often said, “The first three months will be the hardest time for you after you arrive.”  I thought I wouldn’t be troubled by anything at that time, but my teacher was right.  Now I have a lot of troubles in my life.  However I have happy memories more than hard memories.  Well, today I will share my happy and hard memories with you.

   First I’d like to tell you some of my happy memories!  I have P.E. at school and we played cricket one day, but I couldn’t hit the ball with the bat.  I had played tennis for eight years so I should be good at hitting a ball but I couldn’t.  That was so shocking… But then, all boys and girls cheered for me, “Go, Sora!  Just hit the ball.  Sora, Sora!!”  Even my teacher said, “It’s alright.”  I was a little embarrassed but I realised that everyone remembered my name and I had a lot of friends!!  I was very happy. 

I have more to tell you.  I live with an awesome family; my host mother, my host father, one dog, one cat, eight birds and lots of fish.  My host parents are so funny and love jokes.  My host mother likes scary movies and I like them too, so we often watch them together after school.  Also, my host father loves ice cream and I also love it, so every day after tea, he says “Do you want some ice cream??”  And I say “Yes, please!!”  I eat ice cream every day.  He says “I’ll make you fat!”  I don’t want him to make me fat but I will be fat.  So don’t be surprised when you see me next time.  But anyway, I feel happy to just live with them.  I can still tell you my happy memories but I will stop for a while. 

Second I will tell you about my hard memories.  It was really hard for me to make friends.  I was very busy the first two weeks after I started to go to Te Kuiti High School. I asked a lot of students if I could have lunch with them.  And I ate lunch with more than ten groups.  I had a good time each time, but I didn’t know if I could join the same group the next time too.  So I ate lunch with different groups every day and I was very lonely. Finally, I made friends with year 13 students!  I was so happy!!  However, a few days later, they started to go to a room called “the common room”, which is only for year 13 students.  Since I am in year 12, I couldn’t join them.  My friends welcomed me but I was scared because that was against the rules.  Then I was very sad.  Now I have friends but I haven’t found any best friends so I still keep trying to talk with the students! 

I guess you already know that the problem of Corona virus is becoming serious.   In New Zealand, some events have been cancelled and all schools have been closed.  The school closure will last at least a month. We are not allowed to even go outside.  I was disappointed and honestly I was frustrated when I heard that.  But my teacher has told me that I have a lot of things to do even if schools are closed.  I changed my mind.  I have decided to be more positive!  So I made tea, wrote some essays in English, read an English book, studied English words and such.  I did a lot of wonderful jobs!!

As I told you, I have a lot of difficult problems now.  However, I believe that there are always ways to solve these problems.  If I do my best, all my troubles will be gone!  I will never give up trying.  I’ve got this!!  Also I am really thankful to all people for giving me such a big opportunity to study in New Zealand. These experiences will give me huge confidence to make my dream come true in the future.  I’m looking forward to the rest of my precious life in Te Kuiti.

Thank you for reading.



Sora Nishimoto