By PM English Level 5/6 Class at the English Learning Center
There are many things that people in Minnesota don’t understand about new immigrants. There are many things in our culture that are different.
First, our religion is different. Some new immigrants are Christians, some are Muslim, and some may be another religion. One difference for Catholics from Mexico and South America is that they celebrate Virgin Mary on December 12. Muslims pray 5 times a day. Also, every year, Muslims have one month of fasting and two holidays. Many Muslims hope to go to Hajj in Mecca.
Many immigrants wear clothes that are different. Muslim women wear dresses, hijabs, and scarves that cover all of the body except the face and hands. Some women also choose to cover their face. For many new immigrants their home country is hotter than Minnesota. They need new winter clothes in America. It is very cold here, especially in Minnesota. There is no snow in many of the countries immigrants come from, so winter is new and harsh.
People get exercise every day in our home countries because they walk everywhere. In other countries, children play alone outside without adults. Mothers don’t worry about their children because neighbors always help with children more. Many immigrants have bigger families than people do here. The Grandparents live with the families, and family members help take care of older people and children. The government doesn’t help families with care. In some of our countries there is no education for people with disabilities.
Business is different too. If you have a farm or want to sell something, you can sell it in the street. You don’t need permits. Drivers in some countries do not have insurance because it is too expensive. It is more dangerous to drive because sometimes there are no traffic lights. In our home countries we ate all fresh food from the market or from the farm. We didn’t eat much junk food.
While there are many different people in America, we all live together.
By AM English Level 5/6 student
I believe people have misconceptions about Ethiopia. People from Ethiopia are hospitable. The country has a nice atmosphere, and 12 months of sunshine! Due to this warm weather, food is natural and grown there, the fresh food is so delicious and cheep. If you want to go somewhere there are many forms of transportation: taxis, rent a car, or take an airplane for state to state travel. There are a lot of banks and people use debit cards. There are a lot of beautiful houses, condos, public houses and villas. Most people from Ethiopia live in Villas. If you want to buy a house or car you pay cash.
There are so many schools like high school, elementary, college, graduate, PHD degree programs, etc. Most of the people there are educated. Ethiopia has everything there, but Ethiopia is a small country. When Ethiopians come to America they don’t expect it to be so huge.
I often spend time searching online about Ethiopia and read about Addis Ababa, the capital. I miss Ethiopia’s weather and other things and the real nice atmosphere.
[See original piece here: http://alleynews.org/2015/03/we-are-your-neighbors-things-you-might-not-understand-about-new-immigrants/]