Peoples Eyes Speak All Languages
Zhavgarat Gadzhieva, 14, Khasavyurt



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A year ago I happened to go to an international camp in Bulgaria. Before I went there I was afraid that I wouldnt be able to understand my new friends because I didnt speak English well.

In the morning I met boys and girls from different countries. There were children from Mongolia, China, Japan, United Kingdom, and from both North and South America. At first the main language was smiling. All people like kind words so we started making our own camp language to communicate with each other. It was difficult to understand my new friend from China, Pang. He knew English very well but preferred to keep silent and be alone. Once I asked him to tell me about China and his family.

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He smiled, kept a short silence and finally said, Our family lives in Beijing. There are eight of us in the family. My father is a salesman. My little brother wants to work as a shop assistant He dreams of becoming a good salesman whom customers will love and from whom they will always buy different things. He wants to have the best shop in China. When he spoke, a smile appeared on his face.

I understand how important it is to be able to listen to a person, especially someone who is from a different culture. Later we became very good friends. Now he sends me e-mails or rings me up very often.

An open heart and a welcome smile is a signal and call for friendship.


I. Understanding the Story
What do you think is the main idea in this story?
1. It is important to be afraid of strangers.
2. The writer is shy and not happy to meet others.
3. One can understand others if one reaches out to them.

II. Now you Talk
1. What are the different ways to communicate with a new person?
2. Talk about a time when you tried to make a new friend, and how you did it.
3. Describe a situation when you have been in a similar situation.
4. In pairs or small group summarize the story in five sentences and then read to class.

III. Now you Write
1. Write an email from Pang to the author of the story.
2. Write about a time when you had to reach out to someone.
3. Write a newspaper article about the camp. Add more details.

IV. Role Play
1. The writer and her mother: Before leaving for camp, she tells her mother her fears.
2. The writer and roommate: They try to talk, but they dont know a common language.
3. A teacher at camp and two boys: They talk about the boys being too shy.
4. The writer and Pang: They have a conversation.
5. Two girls: They disagree about talking to people from different cultures.