The Student News Site of Black River Falls High School

BRFHS Paw Print

The Student News Site of Black River Falls High School

BRFHS Paw Print

The Student News Site of Black River Falls High School

BRFHS Paw Print

Aoki finishes up year abroad

Going to high school may be hard enough, but imagine having to do it in another country, like Japanese foreign exchange student Taiga Aoki.

Aoki is 16 years old and is from Tokyo. He lives with the Anderson family.

Aoki has gained a lot of experience since he’s moved here, especially on the ice.

“He’s taken up hockey, but he’s never been on the ice before. He learned so great for his experience [level],” said Heidi Anderson, Aoki’s host mom.

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The Anderson family has hosted three foreign exchange students to date. They hosted Eduardo from Brazil last year, and Yamato, who is Aoki’s brother, three years ago.

“We had his brother Yamato three years ago, and they’re different but similar. They both like to joke,” said Anderson.

Anderson thought that is was interesting to compare Aoki and his brother’s attitudes toward the U.S.

“It has been a lot of fun becoming a foreign exchange student. I have met a lot of new friends in the school,” said Aoki.

Aoki has enjoyed playing sports outside of school and hanging out with friends.

“My favorite part about becoming a foreign exchange student is all of the people I meet that become my friends. It has been hard, though. One of the hardest things is not seeing my family and friends in Tokyo. Also, learning the English language has been very hard,” said Aoki.

Not only the lifestyle has been different in coming to America, but also the differences in school have been apparent.

“One difference about school here and in Tokyo is not playing the same sports all year around like we did there. I really love all of the sports I’m doing here, though, they are very interesting,” said Aoki.

Cody Bergerson, a sophomore who got to know Taiga through baseball, claims that he knows it is hard for Aoki to get used to the life here.He knows Aoki has fun getting to know what happens here on a day to day basis.

“I think he likes school here and his life in America, even though it was a little hard for him to get used to things here, he has made a lot of friends,” said sophomore Jonas Whitegull.

Whitegull became friends with Aoki early in the school year and thinks he is a great guy that challenges himself.

“We are very proud of Taiga for everything he has accomplished here especially when it comes to sports. He’s taken up hockey when he has never been on the ice before,” said Anderson.

Anderson has talked with Aoki about him and his brother Yamato visiting in years to come and thinks it will lessen the pain of them leaving.

“It has been really fun getting to know him..he gets along with everyone and likes to mess around with the guys,” said Bergerson.

Anderson said that she is definitely going to miss Taiga because she enjoys their daily talks they have in the car on the way to school every day.

By Tori Miller

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Aoki finishes up year abroad