Message from NewZealand



Hi guys! How have you been? My name is Miyu. I go to Hastings Girls’ High School. I’m having a great time in New Zealand. At school, term one has finished. I am on holiday now. So I will write about the subjects I took this year. I took six subjects, ESOL, math, P.E., science, digital, and literacy which is an English class.

First, I will write about my ESOL class. There are ten Japanese students, four Samoan students, and one Thai student. We often learn the basics of English. This class is very helpful to learn English. We have reading time in the class so our reading skills can improve. In the weekends, we have homework which is writing our journal. So our writing skills can improve.

Second, I will write about my maths class. I have learnt factorization, coordinates, and inequality. Sometimes, I have to solve story problems. If I couldn’t understand the questions, I asked my teacher or my friends. They explained the questions in detail until I could understand.

Third, I will write about my P.E. class. It’s my favourite class. I like plying sports so I chose this class. I played many sports in the class. For example netball, softball, and cricket. My favourite sport is Ki o rahi. It’s from Maori culture. We also learn New Zealand’s popular sports in the class. Sometimes we study about “risk in Fourth, I will write about my science class. I like science so I chose this class but it’s most difficult subject for me. I learnt biology and chemistry. It’s interesting how to say science words in English. Sometimes I have to write a lot in my notebook, I have to write a summary. However my teacher and my friends help me to solve the questions, and to write a summary. So I can enjoy the class.

Fifth, I will write about my digital class. I always use a computer in the class. I made a poster and a game. To make a game was very difficult but I could make it. I played computer games in Japan so I’m happy that I know how to make a game.

Sixth, I will write about my literacy class. I often learn about cultures in the class. There are kiwi students, Japanese students, Samoan students, and Tongan students. So we can learn a lot about different cultures in the class. It’s very interesting. So I’m happy that I chose that class.

Finally, I’m glad that I came to New Zealand and Hastings Girls’ High School. I really appreciate my parents, and teachers. Now, I have great friends, great teachers, and great host family in New Zealand. They are very kind to me. So I enjoy learning a lot from them. I want to write about a lot of things in New Zealand but I have to finish this. I would like to write again. See you!

Thank you for reading it.

Big love, Miyu Noji













Hello, I am Anri. I go to Hauraki Plains College with my best partner, Aya. I cannot believe I have to leave here soon. Looking back at my memories, I’ve gone through so many happy things surrounded by a lot of kind people during my experience of studying abroad. I appreciate my host family, friends and teachers at this school for giving me a lot of love and many good opportunities.:) People in New Zealand are so friendly and I like their style. When they have a conversation, they open their hearts to each other. I feel like it is such fun.:) I would like to write about what I’ve learned in New Zealand in this essay.
I am taking math, English, Maori, music and ESOL. Let me talk about my favorite subject, music. I love the class because many students have the spirit of making something purely for pleasure and I can do some creative activities here. Students work on interesting tasks. For example, some students form a music band and compose original songs with the members. Composing a song and writing its lyrics from the beginning as a band group was such a fresh experience for me. I sometimes have performances and record our songs using a computer and a full-scale machine. I was surprised when I came here for the first time because what the students were doing looked like what real musicians and recording engineers do. I learned many things in this class.
One of the things I’ve learned from this class is that it is very important to have fun when we acquire something. This is quite sudden, but I have a question for you. When you hear the word “studying”, what do you imagine? Do you feel excited, interested or do you have a negative impression? I used to choose the latter one. However, my point of the view has changed from the music class. This class told me studying should be fun and that learning things in that way will come back as a benefit someday.
Making a song together as a team, my bandmates and I sometimes had a slump. It had been decided what the piano part was going to be, but we could not start making the sounds for the other instruments. We had some talking time for the song but could not find a fundamental solution and repeated similar discussions for the song during the whole week in class. We noticed that we needed a new way to solve the problem. However, no one knew where to start. I felt that we were wasting our time. The performance day was getting closer! At the same time, I was frustrated about two things in my heart. One thing was that our song did not improve at all and the other was the language barrier which I had. If I had understood their whole conversation like a kiwi student, I would have understood what my bandmates were thinking better and could have given them more of a hand. I thought this many times. I did not want to finish this class, making an excuse that I had no choice but to be a bystander since I was a “foreigner.” I wanted to change something with my band members. I realized I needed to take an action by myself.
I decided to make music and write musical scores for my bandmates on a weekend. Although I had some experiences from choir and piano, it was my first time to make music scores for instruments other than the piano. To make the song, I researched information about the trumpet and the alto saxophone on the Internet. Then I learned something new. These instruments are called transposing instruments and their music scores and piano’s music scores are different. I checked how different a music score of those instruments are from that of the piano. When I was composing a music score and getting the knowledge which I had not previously known, a thought occurred to me. “Isn’t this the meaning of studying? Studying means trying to find what is needed and using the knowledge for our own goal?” Thinking in that way, it seemed to me that studying means to learn something exciting.
Also when I got ideas from what I learned, that knowledge was reflected in the song. I thought I would like to know more about music in order to play pleasurable music while making a harmony and arranging the song with my bandmates. That feeling also told me that studying is interesting and fun. Moreover, I felt one more happiness. When I gave the music score to my bandmates at school, they seemed very glad. They received it with smiles and started practicing it immediately. From that day on, we spent our music classes effectively for our performance. I also got a chance to teach my band members how to play the melody, playing the piano. They understood me very well.

I never expected that I would be involved in music like this. My bandmates supported me a lot. Music meant a lot to me and this experience taught me how important it is to take an action by myself. I will never forget these things. I’ve come to love music more in New Zealand.
I would like to take this opportunity to express my sincere gratitude to my family in Japan. I thank them for supporting me studying abroad from far away. Their warm words and the stuff they sent from Japan cheered me up. While I am here, our homeroom teacher and our agent here have been organizing many things for us. Also, they visited and encouraged us. I thank all the people who have supported me. I appreciate their help.







Hi, there! I’m Saki. Today, I’d like to share my life in New Zealand. My town, Te Kuiti, is a really good place to stay because the winter isn’t really cold and it doesn’t snow. The summer isn’t wet like Fukui as well. Lately, the time of sunlight is getting longer, so I feel lucky. Isn’t it nice to see the sun until 9 o’clock?
I have had lots of new experiences since the beginning of my life here. My experiences here have taught me how important it is to communicate with people. Relationships between others and myself change through good communication.

I’m going to tell you an episode that gave me the chance to focus on communication. I used to live only with my host parents since their own children have grown up and they live in other cities. However, in June, my host parents decided to accept another girl into our family. She is a local New Zealand student who goes to the same high school as me and she had some problems at her house. Before she came, I had really enjoyed my style of my life, living alone with my host parents, so to be honest, I didn’t like her very much. Many days went by but the situation didn’t change. I started to think that “I” needed to change something. Rethinking carefully, I realized that I was judging her without trying to get to know her. I was just watching her as a girl who suddenly became part of our family and changed my comfortable life style. If I had met her as a school friend, not as a family member, I wouldn’t have had any dislike for her. After that, I started to communicate with her a lot. The more I came to understand who she was, the more I came to like her. I think communication is the most important thing to build a relationship now.

I’ve learned one more thing, which is the difference between “to compromise” and “to accept”. These are both things that I did, but they are different in how we see a problem. There is a huge difference between the life in NZ and the one in Japan, so I am sometimes confused by cultural differences and people’s way of thinking. What is important is to face and solve problems and there are two ways to face them. One is to compromise. But when I try to compromise, I have to suppress a part of my feeling and give up something. The other way is to accept a difference. Acceptance doesn’t require me to ignore my opinion. I just see things as they are. I’ve come to be able to accept and enjoy the differences. A difference is not always a hard problem. It is sometimes quite funny and beautiful. Also, there are many differences that I can experience only in New Zealand. For example, I can see the Southern Cross in the night sky here. Every morning, I see a man and his big sheep. It looks just like when we take our dogs for a walk in Japan. Isn’t that interesting?
While I have been learning important things through studying abroad, I have been enjoying my life here in New Zealand. At school, I take math, English, P.E., music, art, and ESOL. I used to take biology, tourism and drama. Most of my subjects are participatory, so I can state my opinion without caring about making mistakes. In music class, we enjoy singing or playing various instruments. When I have spare time, I play the ukulele and sing with my friends. Speaking of music class, we had a big performance show last month at school. I performed in 11 performances including the piano and flute solo, some band and chorus!! I was super excited, so I actually don’t remember what I did properly… but, I can say it is a good memory.

In addition to my classes, I joined many clubs and the last club finished last month finally. I miss all of them now. One of the clubs is Kapa Haka and the other ones were netball, orchestra, rugby, chorus and tennis…(and a few more…) These clubs kept me busy during the week and gave me the chance to make lovely new friends. I had never done most of these activities before coming here but it was so fun for me. I especially liked netball and I think I spent one-third of my time here playing netball. I played netball as a school sport club. This sport is popular in New Zealand and in the U.K. Netball is like basketball but it’s for girls. Playing netball, players don’t dribble and each player has her own role and her own movable range. In my case, we had practices twice a week and we played games once a week. Besides, we did fundraising to buy our uniforms and to go on a trip. The excursion to Rotorua after the season with the netball members was one of my precious memories.

Looking back, I have been enjoying every day, which is better than I had imagined. Everything that I have experienced has made me more creative. I have not decided what actions to take for my future, but I hope the experiences that I have gained here will connect to tomorrow. Also I’ll make sure that I must never forget what I have achieved here.

Finally, I thank everyone who has supported me. I will try my best from now on, too!!














Hi guys! I’m Aina from Pompallier Catholic College. It’s been warm these days in my city and spring is here. It’s hard to believe that 9 months have gone so fast. I have experienced many different things. I’m going to tell you about my life in New Zealand.
First of all, I’m going to tell you about my school. I take English, math, science, social studies, religion, P.E., health, ESOL, textile and art. I took wood work and music during the first term and the second term. You guys must be surprised to hear that I take so many classes. I especially liked wood work. I made a ukulele in this class. It was difficult for me to use different machines for different parts of the wood, but my teacher and my friends helped me, so I could make it very well. I sometimes play the ukulele after school.

Second, I’m going to tell you about my host family. I stay with my host father and my host mother. They are kind to me. My host father always tells me a joke and makes me laugh. My host mother works at the school canteen of my school, so we always see each other at school. She is good at playing the guitar and the ukulele. She teaches me how to play them. Now I can play them well like her.

Next, I’m going to tell you about badminton. I have made countless memories playing badminton. I belong to the Northland representative team. At first, I played badminton every Thursday for Kensington Club, and then I was invited to play at Tuesday’s practice. I was so glad because that meant that I had been chosen to represent Northland as a member of the senior badminton team. I practiced hard with adults every Tuesday for the team competition. However, I didn’t enjoy the practice at first. I thought that I wanted to quit this club many times because I couldn’t join a conversation due to the lack of confidence in my English ability. As a result, I felt very isolated. I knew that I needed more confidence to do my best for my team. I told my friends about my problems at the April camp. One of my friends told me that I should continue to play badminton because playing badminton surrounded by only seniors would give me more opportunities to have more challenging games, which could help me improve my badminton skills and gain more confidence. I came back from the camp with a more positive way of thinking. At badminton practices, I tried to say to the other players, “Nice shot” or “Nice smash.” After that, they started calling my name and talking to me a lot. In May this year, a competition of the seniora was held. I was nervous because this competition was the first one I entered in New Zealand. My first opponent was a 16-year-old girl. I just managed to beat her. After this game, I saw my teammates clapping and I heard them saying, “Well done, Aina!” from the stands. That made me become tearful and I was so glad to be a member of this team. Finally, our team won the competition to be the best team in Northland area. And after the competition, my first opponent became my first real friend in badminton. She said to me, “I want you to take part in a U19 team competition. I need you. Can you join my junior team?” I joined her Auckland team for 5 days with other top female players. I made fantastic memories with them. I was worried at first that I wouldn’t be able to fit into this team, but I completely forgot about my anxiety because we instantly became friends with each other. Finally, my team won the 13th prize in this competition. I played with a representative player of New Zealand in this competition. I’ll never forget playing against her because she was such a good player. However, I won the second set against her!! Yaay, go me!! I thought my skills were good enough even against national players like her. Through the badminton competition, I made friends with a lot of people who live in Auckland. One day, when I played a badminton match in Auckland, one of my friends came and watched my match for me. After the match, she said to me, “Did you know that I was going to quit badminton? However, I was so impressed by your match so I just decided to continue playing badminton.” Her words made me happy. I remembered that I wanted to quit badminton like her. If I’d quit badminton, I wouldn’t have met all these nice people and made fantastic friends and memories. I have a thing to brag to you about. I have been chosen as one of the Northland Secondary Schools Sports Awards Finalists!! I was invited to the dinner for the award.


Through badminton, I’ve learned the importance of doing activities and the importance of never being afraid of making mistakes. I believe that if I do my best even when I encounter some difficulties, they will be good experiences for me. Now I practice squash and take ukulele lessons in addition to badminton. Thanks to my family in Japan, I was able to experience lots of things in New Zealand. I cannot thank my family enough. To be honest, I don’t want to go back to Japan because my host family, my friends at school, my teammates and others are so kind to me. I can’t believe that only one month of my life in New Zealand is left. I want to enjoy myself every day.

Thank you very much for reading.

Lots of love,











Kia ora everyone!!  How have you been doing?  I’m Tsukino from Te Kuiti High School. It has already been more than eight months since I came to New Zealand.  I have had quite a few experiences here so I would like to tell you about some of them.
Firstly, let me tell you about my lovely Maori family.  I live with my host mother Pania, host father Mitchell, host brother Qaiyaan, two host sisters TeRito and Taniko.  Pania works at Te Kuiti High School and I go to school with her.  She always listens to me so I like talking with her.  Mitch is a Maori carver and tattooist.  He is good at cooking and I always look forward to eating dinner.  Qaiyaan is very energetic.  He is good at rugby and I like watching his rugby games.  TeRito is my younger sister but she is taller than me.  I thought she was my older sister when I first met her.  She is good at Kapa Haka and I like her beautiful singing voice.  Taniko is also my younger sister and she is cheerful.  I like playing with her.  Also, there are heaps of animals in the neighborhood.  I sometimes run with ostriches. lol  It is one of my good memories.
Secondly, I would like to talk about my school life in New Zealand.  As I wrote above, I go to Te Kuiti High School with my great partner Saki.  I take math, tourism, DTE, hospitality, photography and ESOL.  I like all of the subjects but especially I like hospitality and ESOL.  In our ESOL class, there are six Samoan students, two Japanese students, one Fijian student and one Filipino student.  We can learn about the cultures of our countries.  In the last term, we made the dishes of our own countries and shared them for lunch.  There were many dishes which I had never seen before and I really enjoyed eating them.  At hospitality, I can cook a lot of dishes.  I learned how to make coffee in the last term.  I hang out with my kiwi friends at interval and lunch time.  I have been having an awesome time at Te Kuiti High school.
I have joined the Kapa Haka club, in which I practiced Maori’s traditional performance.  I thought I wanted to join this club since I was in Japan.  I competed in two competitions and a festival called ‘Tainui Waka Regional Kapa Haka 2017’, ‘Maniapoto Secondary Schools Cultural Festival (WAIWAIA)’ and ‘Te Nehenehenui Tribal Festival’.  We practiced hard and we sometimes stayed at marae to practice Kapa Haka.  Singing and remembering Maori songs were easy but using poi was so hard for me.  I used a single poi in the first competition but I had to use two pois at WAIWAIA and Te Nehenehenui.  I had never used these and I’m clumsy, so I couldn’t keep up with my friends.  However, they taught me enthusiastically even if I couldn’t do it properly.  To be honest, I sometimes thought I didn’t want to do Kapa Haka anymore but I was able to continue and enjoy doing Kapa Haka thanks to them.  Also, I participated in many Maori important events such as powhiri through the Kapa Haka club so I’m very glad that I joined this club.

Next, I would like to talk about the hard time that I had in New Zealand.  I didn’t have any confidence in myself and my English ability when I first arrived here so I couldn’t talk so much with my family and friends.  I knew English was my second language so it was alright to make mistakes.  However, I was always afraid of making mistakes because I thought everyone would make fun of me.  I knew what I should do in my head but I couldn’t bring myself to do it.  I was disappointed in myself and I came to think I couldn’t do anything because I was so shy and quiet.  Then, my host mother said to me, “Oh Tsukino, we have come to learn that you are shy and that’s ok.  This is part of who you are.  It is alright to make mistakes because sometimes we don’t learn without making mistakes.  I know exactly how you feel about talking in English to people speaking English fluently since I also get very shy around people who are fluent speakers of Maori.  I think you are very brave and we will make more opportunities for you to have a go.  Chin up!  It’s a new day tomorrow.”  These words gave me confidence and I thought I had to do what I could do now.  Yes, it was so hard for me to become positive but I think I’ve built a good relationship with my friends and host family thanks to my host mother and my own efforts.

I have only one month until I go back to Japan.  Although it was very hard to spend time together with people who have different cultures but I’ve learned a lot of things from them and learned to see things from different angles.  I will never forget these experiences I had here.  Thanks to everyone who has supported me!!

See you guys soon

Tsukino Shimasaki




私はカパハカ部に入り、マオリの伝統的な歌や踊りを練習しました。日本にいたときから参加したかったものです。大会に2回、フェスティバルに1回参加しました。「Tainui Waka地区カパハカ大会2017」、「Maniapoto中学校文化祭(WAIWAIA)」と「Te Nehenehenui部族大会」です。一生懸命練習し、時々マラエ(マオリ族の集会所)で合宿することもありました。歌ったり、マオリの歌を覚えたりするのは簡単でしたが、ポイを使うのが難しかったです。最初の大会ではポイは1つでよかったのですが、あとの2回はポイを2つ使わなければいけませんでした。それまでポイを使ったことがなく、それに私は不器用なので、友達についていけませんでした。しかし、友達は、私がうまくできなくても、熱心に教えてくれました。正直言うと、もうカパハカをやりたくないと思ったことも何回かありました。でもカパハカを続けて楽しかったのは、友達のおかげです。また、カパハカ部で、ポウヒリ(マオリの歓迎式)などのマオリの大切な行事にもたくさん参加できたので、この部に入ってよかったです。