Intercultural Communication

The use of language is one aspect of human communication which makes us unique from other animals. Language allows us to put forth our ideas but it also grants us the accessibility to receive information from others. I argue that language can be compared to a double-edged sword. It has the ability to enrich an experience through deeper understandings of a situation, beyond the basic perceptions we pick up from our senses. Yet, our dependency on languages that we are familiar with, is perhaps slicing off the opportunity to communicate with others beyond our linguistic understandings. Therefore, as an international student, the skill of communicating across cultural borders is essential. 

Through personal experience I can agree that multilingualism has its advantages of broadening your “communication points” and being able to interact with people beyond your primary culture. For an example, I have spent 9 years of my life living in french-speaking countries or known as “francophone” in those areas. Being able to speak English helped me through the basic communication with the local people but it only established a “meet-me-halfway” mechanism since English was in most cases not their first language either. Therefore, we both had to rely on imagination to fill in the gaps and could not form any in-depth communication. On the other hand, being able to speak French deepened my communication with the locals and also helped me to form social bonds. Without a language barrier, it allowed us to express ourselves fully. Therefore, being proficient in a language allows thorough communication, beyond transactional purposes which adds a significance in our experiences. 

There is one particular experience that I had during the time I was in Belgium which really forced me to be “culturally smart”. We had moved into our new house and my mother decided to invite the neighbours. The parents were fluent in french, flemish and english and had no trouble communicating with myself or my parents. However, their son spoke next to no English and I could hardly introduce myself in French. For both of us, it was frustrating and at times embarrassing as everything we tried to communicate was returned with blank stares or shrugs. However, we found one medium which we were both able connect with and that was our love for animals. I had 2 hamsters at the time and I remember placing one of them into his hand and he exclaimed “très mignon” which now I understand to be “so cute”. Yet, even at the time with my poor french, I was still able to understand his enthusiasm. After that I had asked him if he had any himself by pointing at the hamsters. He shook his head but barked and imitated a dog which came through to me clearly.

The communication mediator: The hamster

As seen in cases like this, I realised that language may limit the cross-linguistic understandings but it does not necessarily stop people’s wills of communicating with eachother. So maybe, communication does not only come with the cost of proficiency in the language but also the will to want to communicate and connect.

GCD Community Engagement

My biggest contribution in strengthening my community engagement is through my establishment and implementation of the Sustainability Project. I decided to start a service group which intertwines fashion and recycling as a way to push my passion for fashion beyond myself and add a service component as a way to tackle environmental issues. This started with my Personal Project in Grade 10 which was about upcycling used clothing. I decided to take it a step forward and started a club for people who are interested in fashion and design to express their talents in a sustainable way.

Especially living in Japan where the concern for waste product accumulation is overlooked and the act of reusing and recycling is not very common, I thought that the actions taken by the group would be very meaningful. In relation to fashion, there are many cheap fast fashion industries towering the streets of Tokyo and Yokohama. For people who have grown up in an environment as such, I think that educating the students at YIS about the harm of textile waste is a very effective way for students to start thinking critically about the fashion industry and what they buy.

As a way to take action to spread awareness about the issues with fast fashion and the importance of sustainability, the group decided to conduct an activity at Food Fair to appeal to a larger audience. We decided to use old clothing and fabric ranging from table clothes to curtains to someone’s little brother’s cargo pants as a base for bandana making. As a skill taught to us last year in design, we decided to incorporate stenciling as well. Bringing a creative aspect into the project really appeals to a wider audience both older and younger. By running this bandana making activities at the Food Fair, we were able to inform people of what we are doing as a group and also hopefully made an impact on some of our guests to also start thinking critically about waste accumulation and possibly decline the next plastic bag offered to them while their running their shopping errands.

In a community where the act of recycling is only vaguely known and even more sparsely done, creating ideas and carrying these ideas out to promote sustainability in both fashion and beyond is the first step to start bringing the strain off of our environment. The slight changes in people’s lives that we can push without having them sacrifice the quality of life they are living, is the goal that I am hoping to achieve or at least begin to push forward.

As a next step for our group, we are planning to move away from the idea of just fashion and spread out a little more into what we can change in the community of YIS. For an example, we are planning to look more into the issue with plastic bottles and promote the use of individual bottles from home. Therefore, I feel as though as the leader for the sustainability project, stimulating the small acts is part of my responsibility to engage in the community.

Sustainability Project – Bandana Making at Food Fair

Les Familles Monoparentale

Les familles monoparentale sont les familles construire par un seul parent. En France, il y a une augmentation de familles monoparentales et il y a environ une famille sur cinq qui sont une famille monoparentale. En générale, il y a plus de mères isolé que les pères dans ces familles. Avant, les familles monoparentales étaient largement à cause de veuves et veufs. Mais maintenant, il y a plusieurs familles qui sont monoparentale par choix. Par exemple, beaucoup de familles sont monoparentale car les parents sont divorcé. Mais n’oublie pas qu’il y a aussi des difficultés d’être un parent toute seul. Parfois, il y a une large proportion de mères qui ne travaille pas à temps plein. À cause de ce problème, il y a des risques de pauvreté et de précarité sociale.

Les cas de familles monoparentales et les familles homoparentale sont toujours assimilées parce qu’ils ne se conformer par la famille traditionnelle.


Paragraphe Comparatif

La Belgique v.s La France

Des Chiffres

Tristement dans notre monde aujourd’hui, il y a beaucoup de gens qui veulent la divorce. Le nombre des divorces sont varié selon les differente pays. Des taux de divorce sont augmenté dans plusieurs de pays développés, mais c’est la plus élevé en Europe. Un pays qui a des taux de divorce plus élevé dans la monde, c’est la Belgique. Dans la Belgique, 70% de gens avoir un divorce. En totale, il y a environ 2.2 personne par 1,000 qui sont divorcé. Cela signifie que la Belgique a plus de gens qui sont divorcé que la France (1.9 personne par 1,000) chaque année. Mais en 1960, la France avait plus de divorces que Belgique avec 0.7 personne par 1,000 tandis que la Belgique avait 0.5. La croissance du nombres de gens divorcé sont plûtot stable. Au contraire en Belgique, les chiffres de nombres de divorces dans les années sont beaucoup plus fluctuant. Les taux de divorce sont plus élevés en Belgique mais les nombres de divorces eux-mêmes sont plus moins que la France. La Belgique avait presque 35,000 divorces en 2008 mais la France avait 130,000 personnes qui sont divorcé. Il n’y a pas beaucoup de différences entre les raisons de pourquoi les taux de divorce augmenté dans les deux pays. C’est parce que les femmes dans ces pays sont habilités. Donc la plupart de femmes qui sont divorcé peuvent chercher un travail facilement. Ça c’est importante pour les mères divorcées particulièrement parce qu’elles doivent s’occuper de leurs enfants aussi que eux-mêmes.


Engel, Pamela. “MAP: Divorce Rates Around The World.” Business Insider, Business Insider, 25 May 2014,


Smith, Oliver. “Mapped: The Countries with the Highest Divorce Rate.” The Telegraph, Telegraph Media Group, 26 Sept. 2016,



Les problèmes familiale

Mecredi 13 septembre 2017

Cher journal,

J’en ai ras-le-bol de mon petit frère. Il est toujours ennuyeux et trop bruyant. Tu sais aujourd’hui, il a mangé mes bons bons que je cachais. C’est pas drôle ça!!! Il m’agace tous les jours quand je fais mes devoirs et quand je m’énerve…il va à mes parents comme un petit bébé. Je ne suis pas finis, écoute moi: quand mon petit frère va pleurer à mes parents, ils disent que c’est ma faute. QUE C’EST MA FAUTE!!! Je n’en reviens toujours pas! Mais mon frère, il n’est pas la plus mauvaise problème. Mes parents… imaginer que tu habites avec deux adultes qui ne comprennent pas la vie d’un ado. Ben, c’est l’enfer. Crois moi. Je toujours leurs demande que je veux plus d’indépendance parce que je suis assez grande et comme une adulte maintenant non? Mais c’est toujours la même histoire, “Non, tu es encore trop jeune d’être indépendant. Si tu voudrais plus de liberté, tu dois nous prover”. Alors, comment peux-je prover que je suis prêt d’être indépendant si ils ne me donnent riens de liberté? Je ne suis pas une bébé, tu sais? Tous mes amis droits être en de hors plus tard et plus fréquent. C’est pas juste!! Cher journal, aide-moi s’il tu plait.

Bon, il est tard donc je doit me coucher.

À demain,

Le Bac et Moi

C’est le début de…

Le blog de Maho Nambu

Mecredi, 6 septembre 2017.

Le Tour du monde en 80… non, 5475 jours

Bonjour tous le monde! Je m’appelle Maho et je suis une adolescente qui veut commencer un blog. Alors, un peu de ma histoire: Je suis née le 30 juin à Hong Kong et j’ai vécu là jusqu’au 4 ans. Après, j’ai déménagé à Bruxelles et commencé l’école primaire là bas. Puis, ma famille a décidé à déménager encore à Hong Kong. Je suis resté dans la pays juste deux ans quand nous devions habiter en Europe encore. Je sais, je déménageais beaucoup! J’habitais à Bruxelles jusqu’au 3 ans et à Luxembourg pour 2 ans. Finalement, je suis retournée au Japon, mon pays d’origin.

Dans les plusieurs écoles, j’ai eu la chance de jouer beaucoup de sports et faire d’activités différentes. Par exemple, je jouais le foot depuis grade 8 et j’ai fait l’hockey en grade 6 et j’ai recommencé en grade 10. Pour l’activités, j’ai commencé de jouer le piano quand j’avais 8 ans et je continuais jusqu’au 13 ans. Oui, j’ai arrêté les leçons mais je continue à jouer dans mes temps libre. Et toi, tu aimes le sport?

Ma passion dans la Fashion:

À part de ma vie academic, j’aime beaucoup la mode. Mes parents travaillent dans l’industrie de la mode, donc ils passent leur passion à moi aussi. Dans mes temps libres, Je cherche les nouvelles mode et crée les tenues. Après l’université je voudrais faire quelques chose en relation à la mode.

Baccalauréat International?

Ben, je suis maintenant dans le grade 11 (Première) et j’ai commencé le Bac International. Je décidais à faire le Bac parce que c’est très utile pour nombreuse université en Europe mais aussi surtout dans le monde. À l’école, mes sujets préférés sont des sujets de sciences sociales. Donc, j’ai pris le Psychologie et le Géographie pour mes sujets supérieur. Les sciences sociales, c’est très intéressantes non?

Ma famille et moi

7 Septembre, 2017

Pour moi, la famille est quelque chose de la familiarité et l’assurance d’être la personne que tu es. J’espère que c’est un mot universelle et tous le monde est contente avec ses familles. À mon avis, l’importance d’un famille est que tous les personnes sont heureux avec uns des autres. Pour les enfants, la vie familiale a un grand impact sur leur vie donc c’est très important d’être un relation saine avec la famille. Pour vivre en harmonie, la balance entre la temp avec la famille et le temp sans famille est important. Personnellement, Je voudrais plus de liberté de faire des chose toute seule. Il y a parfois les temps que je dispute avec ma famille. Généralement les sujets de discussions sont sur les choses comme le manque de aider les corvée dans la maison mais pas les choses trop sérieux. La famille monoparentale est une famille avec juste un parent (mère ou père). Il y a quelques amis de moi qui a une famille monoparentale et je pense que il n’y a pas la nécessité d’avoir deux parents si la famille est contente. Je pense que la marriage était toujours populaire avant et ce sera populaire dans la future aussi. La raison que les gens marier varié mais je pense que la raison principale est l’amour. Parce que mes parents sont assez strict, je voudrais être plus libre avec mes enfants. Mais je voudrais aussi être impliqué car il y aurais les temps que les enfants veulent l’avis de leur parents.

GCD Wellness Reflection


Throughout the year of PSHE 10 we digged a little deeper into the aspects of wellness in our lives. One factor of wellness which I really developed through the year would be my physical health. I joined two varsity sports teams (Field Hockey and Football) in order to keep in shape. However, I found out that I gained much more than “staying fit” through the team sports that I participated in. I knew that exercise helped with brain circulation and it did in fact help me to be productive at home. Also, by having something to fill up my schedule, it stopped me from procrastinating. I chose field sports because I generally enjoy running and also moved me to be more agile even in everyday life. On more of a minor note, sports pushed me to drink a lot of water which I tend to forget when I am not thirsty. Therefore, through sports I was able to maintain my physical health. I also adapted my lifestyle so I could move around more. Since we spend a large amount of time working while sitting down, I tried to walk whenever I could instead of asking my mom for a ride.

Another aspect of joining a sports team was my development of social wellness. I say this because throughout the season I established a sense of teamwork and a bond with the team. Being able to communicate with my teammates and getting to know them both on and off the field expanded my interaction with people from different grades. I feel like being on a team with different grades burns down the social hierarchy between the grades. By breaking through the split between grades, I was able to get an insight on what was going on in the other grades. Also, by getting to know the people from older grades in particular, I was able to ask for advice in both my academic life as well as my social life. As I briefly stated before, I was able to understand the importance of communication. When you are part of a team, you are given responsibility (to cover a certain position for an instance). This required me to be more openminded and to think about the people around me and not just about myself. I found that this was what I found most challenging because unlike individual sports, when you are given the responsibility, you are holding something for the whole team. So if you let down yourself, you also let down the team. The pressure involved in this might have been the scariest part of the commitment to a team.

Pre-Game Huddle (Football)

Another development of my social wellness was through my establishment of the Sustainability Project. This really helped me to grow as a leader but to also think socially smart. I knew that I needed to take control but also think about others so they didn’t get hurt by my words or actions. For an example, we would have group discussions which would turn quite quickly into a debate because we have a large group of people who are very passionate. In cases like this, I would have to cut into the middle to cool down the discussion, regain control and to direct the discussion to its initial goal. Although hard at times, collaborating with others and adding to community really kept me socially in health as well. As a way of time management I have also made sure to keep everyone updated and remind the group before every meeting.

(Pre-Meeting Email Screenshot)

There are many things we take for granted such as the people that we interact with everyday. But by taking a moment and realising the impact those people have on us make us really feel thankful for them. The acknowledgement of our friends and family may be what also contributes to our social wellness.

Chapitre 6 – Mise en train

Activitié 1: Tu as compris?

  1.  Château de Chenonceau
  2.  Par car
  3. Le guide touristque
  4. Visiter le chateau et faire le tourism
  5. Hector a disparu

Activitié 2: Qui…

  1. Bruno
  2. Céline, Hector et Virginie
  3. Céline et peut-être Virginie aussi
  4. Céline
  5. Hector
  6. Hector
  7. Céline et Virginie

Activité 3: Le journal de Céline

  1. visiter
  2. magnifique
  3. a acheté
  4. est parti
  5. est arrivés
  6. des vélos
  7. a remarqué
  8. a cherché

Activité 4: Cherche les expressions

  1. A ton avis…
  2. C’est magnifique!
  3. C’est pas vrai!

Activité 5: Et maintenant, à toi

Je pense que Hector a trouvé la viste un peu ennuyeux donc il voulait faire quelque-chose interessant. Si j’étais à la place de Céline et Virginie, je voudrais téléphoner Hector.


Self-Awareness, Mindfulness and Wisdom


When we attempted the Visualisation activity, I was able to pinpoint the things on my mind and what sort of things were bothering me. I found myself being quite stressed about the assignments just around the corner or upcoming tests to prepare for. By doing this meditation, I was slowly able to let go of these small stress balls and unclutter my thoughts. This would definitely strengthen our self-management skills when identifying our problems and just letting them go for a moment to focus on other tasks at hand.


By doing the Presence activity, I was really able to connect with the environment around me. I found it really hard to “just” count without noticing the other things. For the first few seconds it was easy to just clear everything, but after that my ears would just perk up at anything getting me off task. The obvious factors like sound triggered me to think, but other more subtle thoughts like how the ground felt under my feet or how the sun rays were hitting just one part of my face also got me thinking about other things other than counting. I find it almost impossible to just focus on one thought process without being intruded by another. Even when I try to empty my brain of my thoughts, I feel as if they are always lingering at the blurred edges of my mind.


Noticing was a hard one because we had to have a particular motive. When we were asked to notice the colour yellow, I found myself “finding” rather than “noticing”. Yet, when we were given the task to notice it, it was much easier to identify. Other than noticing yellow, I also made an observation on how yellow is actually quite a common colour. If I were to shift my notices to something more abstract like simple acts of kindness, I think I would be much more aware of it. I think that by developing a habit to be more observant about the world around me, I would feel more gratified and perhaps acknowledge things which I take for granted now.



<MBTI Test Results>

By taking the MBTI tests it was a true novelty in which strangely enough, I actually got to know myself better. There were questions which really made triggered my mind and forced me to put myself in the situation. There were also questions in which I really didn’t know how I would react. But by the end of the test, I had a better understanding of what sort of person I actually am and how my mind tends to function. By looking at the results I found that I am quite an extrovert and if I imagine myself in social situations, I realised that I do like to have the spotlight. I also recognised that I keep my thoughts quite open and prefer to talk about what is on my mind. By taking the test, I found out that some strengths were how I am capable of connecting with others easily and tend to be open-minded and inviting. On the other hand some weaknesses to look out for could be how I could be vulnerable to criticism and am worried about what others think.


One thing I realised after taking the tests and participating in the mindfulness activities is that when there is so much going on in our lives, we tend to forget about what sort of things are essential to us. When I tried to reflect on My Three Questions there were some things which popped into my head just because they were recent in my memory. I now think that it is important to reflect on our life as a whole to decide the components which make our life as full as it can be, not just by looking at what is nearest.

Mindfulness is again a very abstract concept which is hard to really apprehend. After watching the video and joining the activities in class, I made a connection between Mindfulness and Wisdom. I say this because when we are being mindful, we are almost dragging ourselves out and observing ourselves as a third person. In other words, we are aware of what our emotions are and are attentive about how they connect with the exterior world. I think that mindfulness definitely works hand in hand with wellness. The more mindful we are about ourselves, the more aware we are of our thoughts and feelings. To be in this state of mind, means we know the factors which are bothering us and what make us happy. By knowing these things, can help us develop our welfare.

In conclusion, mindfulness is a skill which is useful now as a student and would be when we start our careers as well. In a continuously thriving society that we are lucky to live in now, sometimes it gets overwhelming and we lose that “gut feeling”. In those hard times where we have to make decisions, the only person who knows you the best is you. So by getting to know our strengths and weaknesses, our likes and dislikes, it makes is so much more easier to thrive and live a life of full potential.