Hi, my name is Marie I am an exchange student from France for one year here in New Zealand. I am going to speak about my school and my town, let’s go!

I live in Nelson. It’s at the top of the South Island and I really enjoy it! The weather is so nice, even if it rains sometimes, it’s very sunny and hot! Nelson is a very dynamic city there is always something going on, like Race Unity Day or the French Film Festival where I went last week. It’s quite a big city but with a bike you can go everywhere very quickly. The thing I like the most is the landscape, Nelson is surrounded by hills and close to the beach. This is so beautiful! It’s also near the Abel Tasman National Park, where I already went a few times for kayaking and hiking, which I love and I hope to go again.

I am at Nelson College for Girls. It’s an all-girl school with a uniform. It’s totally new for me because in France schools are mixed and we don’t wear a uniform. I really love this school and I love wearing a uniform. You could think that wearing a uniform is boring, but we have what we call mufti days on which you can wear what you want to fund raise for many causes! The school days are a lot shorter than in France, so it gives us more free time to do more activities.

Like the town, the school is very dynamic and there are lots of groups that you can join. For example, I am in the Environmental Group and the Pikimai Club which is the Maori group. A few weeks ago at Culture Diversity Day, Pikimai had to perform a Maori dance song, a poi performance and a haka in front of the all school! It was very stressful but also very fun!

Thanks for sharing your experience Marie, and well done on making the most of your time in beautiful Nelson and immersing yourself in school life.