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Office Closed on Fridays05-Oct-2018

The Global Immersions Homestay office will be closed on Fridays beginning Friday, October 5, 201..

Welcome to Boston Homestay - Aalborg Handelsskole Turogade 3S Group27-Sep-2018

A second group of Danish visitors from Aalborg Handelsskole Turogade arrived to Boston and homestay..


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Four Spots to See Fall Colors in Boston

Global Immersions Recruiting - Monday, October 08, 2018

If you’re living in the Boston area this fall, you may have noticed the leaves changing colors over the past two months. Fall foliage has come a bit later this season compared to recent years, due to above average moisture and temperatures this summer, however, the colors are expected to be just as beautiful. To make sure you don’t miss out on seeing peak fall foliage this summer SmokyMountains.com released its annual interactive fall foliage forecast map, to forecast when and where leaves will turn their best colors. 



What kinds of colors will I see?

According to experts, peak colors will arrive slightly later in 2018, due to “heavier precipitation and warmer temperature trends expected through September”. The weather in September will also impact the colors of foliage you see. September is a critical month as “crisp days combined with plenty of sunshine” throughout this month will produce the best colors. Aside from the weather, the colors you see are also dependent on the type of tree. Beech trees, hickories, tulip poplars, and birch trees have mainly yellow and orange leaves while sumacs, sweet gums, sourwoods, mountain ashes scarlet oaks, red maples, and some sugar maples have red leaves.

When will colors peak in Massachusetts?

In Massachusetts specifically, foliage is expected to reach its peak around October 15th (next Monday!) and some areas of the state where the leaves peaked in the previous week are forecast to be “beyond peak”. Only small areas of Southern states will remain unchanged by this date.

Where can I go to see the best fall colors?

You don’t have to travel too far to see some quality fall foliage. While perhaps the most trees are located outside the city, several areas in the Boston area have colorful trees that are worth seeing. Here are a few spots to check out:


Mount Auburn Cemetery, Cambridge

Mount Auburn is one of the oldest landscaped cemeteries in the country and has a wide variety of different trees that are beautiful in fall. While you’re there you may like to take a guided foliage tour to explore all areas of the cemetery, such as the lookout tower, where you can have an amazing view of many Boston landmarks, such as the Zakim bridge and Harvard Stadium. Mount Auburn Cemetery is accessible by car or MBTA bus 71 and 3.


Arnold Arboretum, Boston

The Arnold Arboretum is located in the middle of Jamaica Plain and has 281 acres of different plants and foliage. Fun fact: The Arboretum was designed by Fredrick Law Olmsted, the same designer of New York City’s Central Park. With miles of bike trails and footpaths the Arboretum is also an ideal place for bike riding or running, especially on a warm fall day like the ones we have been experiencing.


Beacon Hill, Boston

Spending time in Boston’s smaller neighborhoods can be a good way to see some incredible fall colors. To explore Beacon Hill, start at Charles Street and make your way down the neighborhood's cobblestone streets, stopping in any little boutiques and shops along the way. You’ll be able to see autumn leaves as well as an area of the city you may have never visited before.


The Charles River Esplanade, Boston & Cambridge

The Esplanade has over three miles of walking paths along the Charles River, bordered by an array of fall trees. The Charles River is a relaxing place to go to enjoy autumn nature and see one of Boston’s famous waterfronts. To stroll the esplanade, start by the Museum of Science and walk in the direction of the Boston University Bridge where you can cross over to Cambridge. Alternatively, enter the Esplanade from the Boston-side of Massachusetts Avenue and take in the scenery from one of the nearby docks.


Source: Thrillist.com  

How to Spend Your Long Weekend

Global Immersions Recruiting - Thursday, October 04, 2018
What is Columbus Day?? If you’re not familiar with this U.S. federal holiday you can read about its origins here. If you've spent the holiday in Boston before, you'll know that the most exciting part of Columbus Day is taking a mini-vacation away from school. If you’re a student in the Boston area you probably know that Columbus Day means you have an extra-long weekend, which also means you now have extra time to explore the city! Lucky for you there are a lot of fun events happening things weekend and many of them are free. Here are some ways to spend the upcoming long weekend in the city.



East Boston Columbus Day Parade
Head to East Boston Sunday afternoon to experience Columbus Day in the city. Watch and enjoy the annual Columbus Day Parade that has occurred in Boston since 1937. The parade will begin at 1:00 pm in the Suffolk Downs parking lot and will march down Bennington Street, ending at Maverick Square near the waterfront. The parade will feature local organizations as well as veterans groups and can best be viewed from the sidewalk along Bennington Street. 



Chicken Stock 

You might be familiar with the Boston area restaurant, the Chicken and Rice guys. Maybe you've seen their food truck on campus? Well, did you know that they are hosting a free event at the Medford Condon Shell this Saturday? The event will feature live funk, soul and R&B music from local artists as well as free Chicken and Rice Guy's food. The party's main event is their 5th annual ChickyRice eating contest and the Extra Hot Sauce Challenge, where the top contestants can win free Chicken and Rice Guys for a year. If you LOVE chicken and rice or have a high tolerance for spicy food you can sign up for the contest on their event page, however, it might just be fun to watch the other contestants compete.




HONK!

The HONK! festival returns this year to Somerville, for even more music, performances, and celebration. HONK! is a 3-day street band festival, where musicians from all over the U.S. (wielding a variety of brass and percussion instruments) play throughout the city's streets, with no sound speakers or stage to separate them from spectators. HONK! creates an immersive experience as the musicians play among the audience and invite them to join the fun. The festival kicks off Friday night with a lantern parade and band showcase in Davis Square neighborhoods. Then, on Saturday, over 25 bands take over Davis Square for a giant music and dance party, followed by a parade of musicians and local activist groups on Sunday. This event is a great opportunity to engage with members of the Boston community while enjoying live musical performances and the beautiful fall weather. 




Free Admission to the ICA

The Institute of Contemporary Art, normally closed on Mondays, will open on Columbus Day and offer free admission. This is a great opportunity to visit the ICA Watershed, the museum's seasonal space in East Boston, before it closes for the winter. On Monday visitors at the ICA can participate in special events and activities (like art making and short films) as well as view all of the museum's current exhibitions. This is a perfect time to visit the museum if you haven't been able to make your way there on a Thursday when museum admission is normally free.

 


The Manhattan Short Film Festival, an annual film festival of international short films, received thousands of entries from more than 70 countries this year. Of those entries, on 9 finalists were chosen. These 9 films were then screened over 1,000 times in theaters in more than 250 cities on six continents between September 27th and October 7th. On October 6th, those in the Boston area have the opportunity to see these films during a screening at the Museum of Fine Arts. Viewers are invited not only to watch the films but also to judge them! On entry to the theater, you are given a ballot card to vote for your favorite short film and actor. Your votes are sent to Manhattan Short's headquarters and the winner will be announced on Monday! You can watch the event trailer here. 



Spend your day off exploring Boston's Fenway neighborhood at the Opening Our Doors Event sponsored by the Fenway Alliance. Enjoy free activities like a neighborhood walking tour, live musical performances, art installations, an interactive community mural, craft making, and a rhythm and dance parade. The event begins at 10:00 am at 200 Huntington Avenue/Avenue of the Arts with a performance by Boston's Children's Chorus, a New Orleans-style front line parade, and free cupcakes from Oakleaf Cakes! Following the event kick-off, a complimentary trolley will bring attendees to activities at key locations such as Evans Way Park and the Museum of Fine Arts. 

We hope you take advantage of this holiday to explore Boston and are we are excited to see how you'll spend your day off.  Share your long weekend activities with by using #HomestayBoston or tagging @globalimmersions!

Get Your Fill of Fine Arts This Weekend

Global Immersions Recruiting - Monday, September 24, 2018

Checking out Boston's music and art scene is a must-do during your immersion experience in the city. You might not know it, but Boston has a lot of free (or inexpensive) events celebrating the arts. This weekend, consider exploring Boston's fine art attractions outside of a traditional museum, and learn more about the city through art, film, and music! 

Music: The Boston Pops (Free Concert)

What better way to spend your Sunday than at a free concert put on by the world-famous Boston Pops! The Pops will perform a special free concert at Franklin Park as part of the Park's community arts festival. Aside from the concert, the festival will have other fun, interactive events, such as mural painting, an instrument playground, crafts, a photo booth, live animal demonstrations and more!

When: Sunday, September 30th, 3 pm - 7 pm (The Playstead at Franklin Park) 

Music: The Beyonce and Coldplay Experience 

Do you prefer pop to classical music? What about pop music mixed with science? If that sounds intriguing, consider spending your Saturday night at the Museum of Science to experience the popular music of your favorite artists, fused with stunning visuals under the Charles Hayden Planetarium dome. This is not your average listening party! Hear hits by Beyoncé or Coldplay as you are taken on a “sensory journey full of innovation, artistry, and imagination.”

When: Coldplay: Saturday, September 29th, 7:30 pm - 8:30 pm, Beyonce: Saturday, September 29th, 8:30 pm - 9:30 pm

Film: The Boston Latino International Film Festival (BLIFF)

Throughout the year, Boston hosts a variety of interesting and eye-opening international film festivals, and the BLIFF is no exception. This celebration of Latin culture will feature documentaries as well as full length and short films that explore Latino-related topics. The film festival is an exciting opportunity to get a glimpse of Latino culture through the eyes of members of the Latino community in the United States and other Spanish speaking countries. 28 films will be screened at 4 different locations around the city, this Thursday through Sunday. Admission is free!

When: Thursday, Sep 27th, 7:00 pm - Sunday, Sep 30th, 9:00 pm

 

Art: SoWa Artists Market

Every Sunday, the artist studios in Boston's SoWa district open to the public at the SoWa Open Market. The South End becomes busy with artists showcasing their work and art lovers browsing their studios to find that special piece. On Harrison Avenue, four floors of artist studios are open, displaying paintings, sculptures, drawings, and other crafts. While you're at visiting the artist studios, be sure to check out the SoWa farmers market or food trucks bazaar, after a long morning of art spectating, you'll be hungry for lunch!

When: Sunday, September 30th, 10:00 am - 4:00 pm

Art: Boston's Women's Market 

Boston's Women's Market is celebrating its one year anniversary! This market, located in the Seaport District, showcases work made strictly by local female artists and entrepreneurs. Shoppers can find everything from jewelry, to candles, to body lotions, ceramics, clothes and more. Come to support New England's inspiring female entrepreneurs and stay to explore Seaport and the sights along Boston's beautiful waterfront. 

When: Sunday, September 30th, 12:30 pm - 4:30 pm (District Hall - 75 Northern Ave, Boston)

We hope you see or hear something interesting this weekend! Share all your adventures with us by using #HomestayBoston!

International Students in MA: By the Numbers

Global Immersions Recruiting - Wednesday, September 19, 2018

September has really flown by! Now, almost one month into the school year, a new group of international students are well into their immersion experience in Massachusetts. It’s no surprise that many international students choose to study in Boston, after all, the city is a hub for colleges and universities. If you’re curious about the international student population in Massachusetts (or in the U.S. in general), here is some information you may find interesting!

How many international students study in Massachusetts?

Massachusetts is #4 in the ranking of most international students by state. According to the most recent Open Doors Report from the Institute of International Education, Massachusetts had about 62, 926 international students in 2017, a 5.9% increase from the previous year.

Where do international students study?

While Massachusetts has a variety of schools with international student populations, the institutions with the most international students are Northeastern University (13,201), Boston University (8,992), Harvard University (5,978), MIT (4,685) and UMASS Amherst (3,364). Aside from these larger universities, MA and specifically Boston are home to many language schools where students from all over the world come to study English. Students staying with Global Immersions' host families attend these various language schools, as well as different universities and community colleges in the Boston area.

Where do international students in Massachusetts come from?

According to the data, most international students in the state are from China (33.6%), followed by students from India (15.25%), South Korea (4.7%), Canada (3.9%) and Saudi Arabia (2.6%). Most students that study overseas in the U.S. during their college years come from China, however, India has a fast-growing population of international students. It is expected that a larger portion of international students will be from India in the future. 


This map shows the leading places of origin for international students in the U.S. The darker the blue, the more international students from that country.

What do international students in Massachusetts study?

International students are enrolled in many different programs and focus on a lot of different subjects. Many students choose Boston to study language, however, at four-year universities, popular major choices include those in the STEM fields, Business Administration, or the Arts and Humanities. According to Open Doors, in the U.S. most international students are enrolled in doctoral-granting universities, followed by master’s colleges and universities. Of the 20 million students enrolled in U.S. universities, over 1 million are international students. Of that 1 million, about 900,000 are enrolled in universities across the country, and about 175,000 are completing their OPT post-graduation. The chart below shows that on average, the number of international students in the U.S. has increased over time. 


Are you an international student studying in Boston this Fall? Like us on Facebook to take advantage of all the fun (and free!) events happening around the city. We hope you enjoy your immersion experience! 

Fall Fun: Apple Picking Near Boston!

Global Immersions Recruiting - Sunday, September 16, 2018

Fall Fun: Apple Picking Near Boston!

It’s that time of year again – the Summer weather is changing and in just a few shorts weeks it will officially be Fall. If you’re lucky enough to spend this Autumn in Boston, you can’t miss out on a classic New England activity: apple picking. Here are some PYO apple spots that aren’t too tough to get to from the city.


Belkin Family Lookout Farm

Belkin Farm is actually one of the oldest family farms in the United States and has over 180 acres with 60,000 fruit trees.  The farm offers PYO fruit options both weekdays and weekends. What can you pick? They have a variety of apples from Macintosh, to Golden Supreme, or Golden Delicious, as well as Asian pears, peaches, and plums.  After a day spent in the orchards, 21+ visitors can check out the taproom and try some of Lookout’s beers and ciders, brewed on site using the farms own produce.

Directions:

89 Pleasant St S, Natick, MA 01760

Public Transit: Take the Commuter Rail Framingham Line to Natick Center, then take a ride share service or taxi only a short distance to the farm.


Russell Orchards

Russell Orchards in Ipswich, MA also has a large variety of pick-your-own apples, as well as blueberries and blackberries. The Orchard’s bakery offers a fall staple – apple cider donuts. Like Belkin’s Lookout Farm, Russell Orchards has an added attraction for 21+ guests. The Orchard’s winery holds daily tasting hours and serves wines and hard ciders made right on the premises with their own fruit. If you’re an animal lover, be sure to stop by the barnyard to visit the farm animals! Pet the farm’s adorable bunnies or help feed the pigs and chickens.

Directions:

143 Argilla Rd, Ipswich, MA 01938

Public Transit: Take the Commuter Rail Newburyport Line from North Station to the Ipswich stop. After the farm is only a short ride away via taxi or ride share.


Connors Farm

Connors Farm in Danvers, MA is known for much more than their produce. Aside from apple picking (and other New England favorites like clam chowder), the Farm has a GIANT corn maze built into a different shape each year. This year’s maze is called “Crazy Train” and it looks crazy hard to navigate (seriously, one family got lost and had to call 911 to get themselves out). Connors Farm is also unique in that it hosts special events throughout the season, from “Flashlight Nights” in October to live entertainment and “Hillbilly Pig Races” on the weekends. If you’re into scary movies, you might enjoy Connor’s Farm at Halloween when it transforms into the haunted farm, “Hysteria”. If monsters and evil clowns aren’t your thing, you can always stop by the farm during the day for a much less terrifying experience.  

Directions:

30 Valley Rd, Danvers, MA 01923

Public Transit: Take the Commuter Rail Newburyport Line from North Station to the North Beverly stop. Then, hail a taxi or call a rideshare to the farm.


Smolak Farms

Smolak Farms in North Andover is another quintessential New England Farm. Smolak Farms is probably best known for their farm stand and bakery, which serves homemade goods each morning. On your visit to Smolak Farms be sure to spend time in the pumpkin patch, where you can have your pick at all shapes and sizes of pumpkins. You’ll definitely find the perfect one to display by your front door come October. Smolak Farms also offers daily PYO heirloom and standard apples from their many orchards. They have over 20 different types of apples! Maybe you can try to taste them all…

Directions:

315 S Bradford St, North Andover, MA 01845

Public Transit: Take the Commuter Rail Haverill Line from North Station to the Andover stop, after that it’s only a quick taxi or ride share to the farm.


Are planning to go apple picking with your host family or friends? Share all your fall activities with us by tagging @Globalimmersions or #HomestayBoston on Instagram!

Labor Day Around the World

Global Immersions Recruiting - Monday, August 27, 2018


American Labor Day:

The first Monday of September, the day when workers and all they have accomplished is celebrated. For most people this holiday just means they get to enjoy a three day weekend and a day off work. It also  means that sadly summer is coming to an end and the school year is starting. Do you know how this holiday came to be?

History:

12 day hours, 7 days a week was the average work schedule for an American in the 1800s during the Industrial Revolution. Adults and even children were working in unsafe and extreme conditions for little money. Strikes and rallies were formed to protest rights such as the Chicago Haymarket Riot in 1886. In New York 1882, 10,000 people took an unpaid day off work and marched for rights. This became the first Labor Day Parade which is still held today. People kept protesting for the work day to go from 12 hours to 8 hours to the point where violence was involved. Finally, in spring of 1894, President Cleveland signed a bill to pass a legal holiday for workers and their rights. To learn more about the history, click here.

Labor Day Traditions Around the World:


Many Americans have barbecues, family gatherings, go to the beach and see fireworks in early September. For more than 80 countries around the world, May Day or International Workers Day is held on May 1. In some countries, people even work on the day instead of it being a work-free holiday.

In France, people give their family members flowers. Parades and campaigns are held for workers' rights as many shops are closed. In Jamaica, people celebrate the workers who contribute to their country on May 24th, which originally honored the labor rebellion. It also used to honor Queen Victoria's birthday because she helped end slavery. In the Bahamas, the first Friday in June is taken off to remember the workers' strike held in  1942. There is a parade held in the capital, Nassau every year. 

In New Zealand, the fourth Monday in October is a public holiday to honor the 1840 eight-hour working day movement. In Trinidad and Tobago, June 19th is a day to remember the 1937 Butler labor riots. In Bangladesh, April 24th is known as Labor Safety day to honor the victims of the Rana Plaza building collapse. This day is used for inspecting safety measures in companies and businesses. 

In Italy, festivals, concerts and public demonstrations are held around this holiday. In Germany, 'Witches Night' is celebrated the night of April 30 to rid the evil spirits and pranks are played on friends. May 1, spring is welcomed by people putting up maypoles and marches being held for workers rights. In countries such as Ireland, Poland and Norway, the beginning of spring is celebrated with planting flowers and being outside on May Day.

We hope you enjoy your Labor Day Weekend!

Exploring Boston Trails

Global Immersions Recruiting - Tuesday, August 21, 2018


Are you interested in walking or biking along Boston's beautiful scenery? Learning about Boston's intriguing history? Whether you want to take a simple stroll or get your steps in for the day, check out some of these trails!


The Freedom Trail: Follow a red, brick trail through Boston that goes past 16 Revolutionary War landmarks. Walk past the site of the Boston Massacre, the Old North Church, famous burial grounds, where the Boston Tea Party began, Kings Chapel, the Old South Meeting Hall, Paul Revere's Statue and the Bunker Hill monument. 2.5 miles of rich history along this popular trail.


The Emerald Necklace: Walk through 7 miles of  green designed by Frederick Law Olmsted, who designed Central Park in New York City. The trail starts at the Boston Common and ends at Franklin Park. It passes by Jamaica Pond and the Arnold Arboretum. 


Minuteman Trail: Learn about the Revolutionary War through this historic trail. Walk along where Paul Revere rode his 'Midnight Ride' in 1775 and see battle grounds such as Meadow Grounds, Tower Park and the Munroe Tavern. This 10 mile trail also has a railroad history from the mid 1800's. The trail connects Cambridge to Bedford starting at Alewife Station and ending at South Road. People use this trail to commute to work on bike as its well-known around the area.

Rose Fitzgerald Kennedy Greenway: If you're downtown exploring, take a quick 2 mile walk starting at the North End Park, ending at the Chinatown Park. Along the way, check out Paul Revere's house, a carousel, gardens and public art. This trail was named after President John F. Kennedy, Senator Robert F. Kennedy and Senator Ted Kennedy's mother, Rose F. Kennedy. This trail is accessible by the MBTA through the Aquarium Station, Haymarket Station and South Station.


Southwest Corridor Park / Pierre Lallement Bike Path: Want to walk or bike through Boston? Check out this 4 mile, popular commuter trail for cyclists that runs through the city and runs along Boston's skyscrapers. The path is named after the inventor of the pedal bicycle, Pierre Lallement in 1860. Starting from Dartmouth Street off Mass Turnpike I-90, the path spans through New Washington Street in Jamaica Plain.

South Bay Harbor Trail: Nearly 4 miles, starting at Melnea Cass Blvd. adjacent from Ruggles Station and ending at Pier 4, near the Institution of Contemporary Art, this trail connects many Boston neighborhoods together. Accessible through the MBTA, this trail also includes the Harborwalk displaying Boston's waterfront.

North Bank Bridge: A gorgeous 1/2 mile walk, perfect for Instagram photo opportunities on the bridge over looking Boston. Connecting North Point Park in Cambridge to Paul Revere Park in Charlestown, the path goes underneath the Zakim bridge and above the MBTA tracks.

Want to find more trails to explore? Click here for more Boston trails and here for all Massachusetts trails. 


All About McDonald's

Global Immersions Recruiting - Friday, August 03, 2018

In America, fast food began in 1916 at a White Castle in Wichita Kansas.  By the 1920's, people would deliver food to cars as curb service starting at A&W Root Beer Shop. Roller skates were worn by the waitresses called car hops. Drive through windows were invented in the 1940's becoming a quick and easy way to order and receive food. 

McDonald's, one of the most successful companies in the world, started out as a hot dog stand, which then became a drive in barbecue restaurant. In 1948, it became the burger place we know of today. 

Let's learn about a few facts about McDonald's.

The Golden Arches of McDonald's became the logo in 1968. 12.5% of the population has worked at McDonald's at some point in their life. Every second, 75 hamburgers are sold and 68 million customers are served each day. You can find a McDonald's in 119 out of 196 total countries in the world. Ronald McDonald is the most universal character in the world besides Santa Claus. 3.4 billion pounds of potatoes a year are purchased and used to make McDonald's infamous french fries. 550 million Big Macs are sold a year globally.

Whether you're craving a Big Mac or nuggets, you can have an inexpensive, quick and easy meal at McDonald's in the U.S. Most everyone obviously knows and has eaten at McDonald's, no matter where you're from. Here in the U.S., there are over 1.5 more McDonald's than hospitals. In Hong Kong, you can even get married in a McDonald's starting at $1,200. In 1961, Hamburger University was opened where over 5,000 people attend every year to learn how to become a manager of McDonald's. Did you know that McDonald's is the world's largest distributor of toys? Over 1.5 billion toys are given out in Happy Meals a year.

McDonald's menus varies from country to country around the globe reflecting the culture.  In Japan, you can find a teriyaki burger, squid ink burger and McChocolate potato fries. A McRice burger in Singapore, mashed-potato burger in China, and McSamurai pork burger in Thailand. In Germany, there's the McSasuage burger, a McFalafel in Israel, and a McCurry pan in India. The McLobster can be found in Canada, Gazpacho soup in Spain, and McNoodles in Austria. Would you be up for trying some of these meals at your McDonald's? For more global McDonald's foods, click here. 


Watch Americans taste and provide feedback on menu items at McDonald's in Japan here and Dubai here

Whether you are traveling abroad or in Boston for the first time, visiting a McDonald's to check out the menu should be on your itinerary. 



Pets Around the World

Global Immersions Recruiting - Friday, July 27, 2018
In the U.S., having a pet is very common.  A cat or dog and/or both are part of the family and live inside the home. Set aside dogs and cats, are you curious to learn about the most common pets around the world?

Peru


  • 90% of the world's alpaca population is in Peru where they've been domesticated for years. Their fur is used to make products and sold in the mountains. Who doesn't love a friendly, cute and cuddly animal?!

Brazil


  • The highest population of birds in the world are found in Brazil and there are over 1,800 species! The most common pet birds are parrots, cockatoos and macaws.

Japan

  • Large horned rhinoceros beetles called kabutomushi and kuwagatamushi are popular, low maintenance pets found in a lot of households. If you're squeamish, we'll spare you the image.

  • Bunnies are common as Japan even has an island called Bunny Island!
  • Japan is also known for owl, reptile, sloth and hedgehog cafes to name a few.

China


  • Goldfish are the most popular pet found in China as the fish originated there in the Jin Dynasty from 265-420 BC.
  • Crickets are viewed as lucky in China and are kept as pets. There are even competitions to see which cricket is the strongest!

Taiwan


  • Tortoises can be traced back to ancient times when their shells were used to write messages on. Did you know the average pet turtle can live up to 25 years? It's believed having a tortoise will lead to a long life.

Middle East


  • Pigeons were originally bred in the Mughal Empire in the 16th century for racing, but are now pets! They're known for their beauty in the Middle East unlike the pesky pigeons found in the streets here in the US.

Canada

  • These next few are certainly not popular, but legal to own as a pet in Canada

  • Capybara - ever heard of these huge hamster-like creatures? They are around 100 pounds, originally from South America, can be aggressive, and require lots of attention.

  • Wallaby - similar to a kangaroo in the marsupial family, they enjoy jumping and need lots of space to roam.

  • Fennec fox - friendly, energetic and similar to a dog. They are only 3 pounds, originally from the desert in Northern Africa and can be litter trained.

USA - In addition to dogs and cats, people here in the U.S. sometimes have these pets...


  • Hedgehog

  • Ferret

  • Pig

  • Hamster

  • Lizard
Love animals? Check out some more fun facts here.

How Do You Say...?

Global Immersions Recruiting - Friday, July 20, 2018

For the non-native English speakers in America, I imagine it's tricky. Have you thought about how we pronounce the same thing differently or have multiple names for the same object?


Here are some things America disagrees on...

  • Is it firefly or lightning bug?
  • Tennis shoes or sneakers?
  • Hair tie, hair elastic, hair band, ponytail holder or hair bow?
  • Y'all or you guys?
  • Soda, pop or coke? 
  • Water fountain or bubbler?
  • Sub, grinder or hoagie?
  • Lollipop or sucker?
  • Dinner or supper?
  • Garage sale or yard sale?
  • Crawfish, crayfish or crawdad?
  • Rotary, roundabout or traffic circle?

Words with a different regional pronunciations: crayon, aunt, mayonnaise, syrup, caramel, pajamas, cauliflower and route

Check out a full list with maps here and here.

For foreigners, American English can be confusing because usually the variation of a word someone uses is common in the area where they're are from. For example, if you are on the east coast, you might say sneakers, but on the west coast you might say tennis shoes.

Play a quiz here to determine which region you're from based on your vocabulary!

    

The Bostonian language is even more complicated. Between the thick accent that excludes the letter "r" and the sayings, it can be hard to understand. Basically in words, you replace "r" with "ah".  Some common slang phrases are...

Wicked - extremely or very such as "wicked awesome"

Down the Cape - Cape Cod

Dunkies / Dunks - Dunkin Donuts

Spa - convenience corner store

The Hub - Boston (Beantown)

Bang a U-ie - turn

Bubbler - water fountain

Pahlah - parlor meaning living room

Chowdah - clam chowder

cellah - cellar / basement

clickah - clicker / TV remote control

Jimmie's - sprinkles

Frappe - milkshake

No suh - no sir / no way

the Hill - Beacon Hill

the Vineyard - Martha's Vineyard


Take a quiz to test your Boston slang knowledge here.

For a full list of words check out the unofficial Boston dictionary here.

Click here to hear an authentic Bostonian accent and click here for a clip from James Corden and Matt Damon.

Whether you're a native speaker or a learner, good luck at understanding the American English and especially the Bostonian language!