First Day of School In America Experience Essay


It was a bright, sunny day that morning. As I nervously walked to my bus stop, I looked around and saw everyone laughing and smiling -- everyone except me. Today was my first day of school in America, and I was by no means excited. I trudged on the bus and looked out through the window, watching as my parents disappeared from view. As the bus stopped, I took a deep breath and went to a bright classroom filled with students happily putting their backpacks away and talking amongst themselves cheerfully. In India, we had to quietly walk to our desks and not talk until the teacher led us into our morning prayers. This stark contrast was what made it so hard to adapt.

We moved to America in 2013, and my parents enrolled me in school as soon as we got to Virginia. Before I came to the States, I had no knowledge of English and only knew very minor phrases like “Hello” and “Bye.” My development in America grew stagnant as I could not properly communicate with other people, whether that was students or adults. When I started first grade, I was completely lost. For example, during art class, we had to color the US flag, and I remember totally messing up the colors. All of the students and teachers seemed like aliens to me because I could not understand what they were saying. The only way I could learn was by looking at pictures and understanding facial expressions. This is part of the reason why I am still very observant.

Moving to a new country was a challenge for me as I had to adapt to the new rules and new social norms. I remember eating lunch alone throughout first grade compared to now, where I fit in with my peers and have my own circle of friends. I persevered and worked hard every day to learn English becoming completely fluent by third grade. Today, as I look back on my experience, I can tell that all the hard work certainly paid off. I can now speak English fluently without an accent, and I hope to have a successful career.

If I faced the same challenge in the future, I would take it in stride. This experience has taught me that by embracing change: I can reduce my fears and become more resilient, enjoy new experiences, pursue better opportunities, develop new skills, and I can overall become my better self.

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