Some of the students from the Language Center CFJL/FAHOR, Horizontina, Rio Grande Do Sul, (Gisele Bundchen’s hometown area), attended or rather participated in an English Immersion at The Fools during July and what an amazing few days they experienced.
Their commitment and growth during the weekend was huge and definitely great fun, it was a privilege for us to be involved and help them develop their English fluency.
As an extra challenge for them, we asked their amazing teacher, Maria Alice, if she would ask the students to send us some feedback of their Fools experience so that we could post on our travel blog. It was either a class project or homework, I am not quite certain, anyhow read on for an insight into the minds of teens in Brazil coping with learning a second language……
Nathália Adiers – Pre-intermediate
‘I always thought that discover the world is amazing. Pick up the backpack or whatever, look forward and travel, feeling free, without worries, resentments and judgments. I believe that each person should have the will, or the chance, to be able to do this one day. Including me, that, despite having some limitations to do that for myself, I get inspired by people who follow this lifestyle, in order to be able, somehow, to feel part of it is this feeling of carrying in the heart countless stories, people from different places and cultures, as well as knowledge. A clear example of this way of living that I never fail to remember is Paul and Claudia, a lovely couple that will always be in my memory. They prove to me that happiness is saying yes to the simplest things in life, which may seem cliche, but only to hear their stories visiting many parts of the world, I could see in their voices that the experience they went through no money can buy.What enchants me the most is the main motivation for their trips: help people who needs attention, affection, love and availability through volunteer work, like for example in South Africa schools with illiterates children that lack of incentives and funds.There are still people who care about each other and know enjoy the maximum the beauties that the world has to offer, as well as Paul and Claudia, who carry with them true happiness, the complete happiness with the most simple things: love, peace, gratitude and friendships in all parts of the world.I will always be grateful for meeting them, for sharing their joys and their red dots marked on the map.’
Schayanna Schreiber – Intermediate
‘I’m Schayana Schreiber, I am 16 years old and I live in Horizontina, Rio Grande do Sul, Brazil. For three years I heard people talking about ‘The Fools’, and finally this year, in July 8th, 9th and 10th, I had the pleasure to participate of an English Immersion. I have no words to describe how gratifying that experience was.
On Thursday, July 7th, I thought about giving up. I was afraid. I had just met some people who were going there too. I wondered if I simply couldn’t talk and communicate, If I just forget everything and doesn’t know how to react. On Friday, just before get on the van to go to The Fools, I watched some TV series in English, the way that I found to start to adapt myself (hahahaha).
The travel was good, but when Teacher Maria Alice told that we were arriving all my fear came back. And came back with all!! We arrived and I heard James, an australian. Just heard because I didn’t understand anything. I was totally horrified. We checked the dorms. In the room that I chose, one of the beds was occupied, and I was even more nervous. James was talking all the things to us, and when he left, I just remember that I talked to Maria: “I undesrtood absolutly nothing!”.
So, it’s time to take our pin. We had to introduce ourselves to everyone. When it was over, we went to the external area, I was talking with my teacher when Paul, Claudia and James came. Like the best teacher, Maria went to talk with others and left me alone, with three people from other countries. But there I started to be confident. I understood what they were saying, I answered, and I expressed myself in one way to make them understand something that I didn’t remember how to say. I found Maria and hug her. I was so happy, more than happy. I discover that my roommate was Claudia. We spent a lot of time talking about dreams and studies.
Saturday was a day with a lot of fun. It was The day. It was unbelievable. That place was awesome, but the people were the best in the whole world. It was an ocean of sympathy. Everyone there, made all of us feel good and totally comfortable to speak in English.
So, Sunday came. I talked, I’m a very emotional girl. And I started to cry. I couldn’t control it. It was a lot of moments, a lot of stories. Many people that now we can call friends. It was little time, but enough to learn, to have fun, to make new friends, laugh, meet new cultures. Now, we have good stories to tell.
And now, more than never, I can’t wait to go back to The Fools!’
Pedro Stein – Pre intermediate
‘Do you know that time you think you’re in the wrong place? I felt like that when I arrived at The Fools, I was nervous and anxious at the same time. I thought I could not talk to other people, not trusting myself.
But my fear did not last long. After I met people who were there , I felt free to make mistakes, but happy to learn from it … With their help I got confidence, and with many bumps , literally (slacklining , volleyball) , games and parties , I did many friends, and I am very grateful for that.’
Ana Paula Dallarosa – Pre-intermediate
‘I already had amazing weekends, but a weekend at The Fools is unforgettable, full of surprises, laughs and we can’t compare with any other… All the moments lived there are memories and experiences for life!
At The Fools I had a lot of activities, including; karaoke, where I talked and met an amazing person, Claudia; a beautiful woman, full of stories to tell and who sings very well! She told us about the places that she have already visited and how she helps people and about her family.
In another moment, during the breakfast, I talked again with Claudia and also with Paul, (they make a lovely couple) who taught me and helped me a lot. With them I learned that we should care for all people, not only with close people, but even of the whole world! And we must help whenever we can.
During the conversation I was amazed by all that Claudia and Paul do together, the work that they develop is just amazing: teach, educate, help children and the number of countries and cities that they have already visited, it’s a dream for me! For all that I learned with them I just want to say: Thank you! They deserve success today and always!
The coolest of the immersion is that today I can say that I met amazing people, I had contact with different cultures, with a splendid nature and that I still had the opportunity to climb one more step in the quest for fluency in English language!’
Eduarda Balbinot – Pre-intermediate
‘Sometimes we just don’t expect to live some things, and sometimes in the world that we live everything looks easy and little. But when you start talking with people who know the world and open your mind to new ideas everything changes.
A surprise for the weekend: Paul and Claudia. I could not imagine how special they could be until the moment they started talking. So, I felt so happy just listening to their voices.
In a cold night, in front of the bonfire, Claudia started singing, and I was just amazed, because she said that she didn´t know how to sing, but her voice was so beautiful, and that moment was the magic of the night. Then, in the breakfast Paul started talking about their lives, his and Claudia’s, in a very openly way, about the reasons to have this travel life, the places they have met and what they have done, it was admirable, in just some minutes I learned a little bit more about the world with Paul. So, I realized that good moments can be simple.
Paul and Claudia make the difference in the world, they inspire, they have just good feelings in their heart and they ARE the happiness. Open your heart to the world is not so easy, but they are the prove the world and the people are amazing and there is too many things to live and to do in this crazy and big world we live.
I’m truly thankful for sharing your stories, a little bit of your knowledge, much of your fun, and for making the world a better place.’
Bento Borges Schirmer – Pre-intermediate
‘I met Paul in the Fools, when many of us were playing Uno, a well known card game. During the stay on the immersion he told us about his travels around the world with Claudia. I discovered he came from England and although he looks serious, he is gentle and fun, just as intelligent.
During the immersion we did many things, some together with Paul and he turned out to be a nice company. The auction in the last day of the Fools was the best, it was so fun when Paul played as policeman Bob. I’ll miss Paul and Claudia, and I wish them the best of luck.’
Renata Marschner – Pre-intermediate
‘The Fools is an amazing experience! This year was my second time there. Last year I was there I thought nothing could be better, everything was so awesome. But I was wrong. I met new people, brazilians and foreigner, I got to know different things, tried new food. Everything new and fun. My English got better again. The Fools is an experience I will take for my life.’
Julia Kappaun – Pre-intermediate
‘It was definitely one of the best weekends I ever had. The Fools was an amazing experience that I will never forget. There I learned different cultures and met amazing people, like Paul and Claudia. The first contact I had with Claudia was during Karaoke (she sings really well!), and she was super friendly with me and my friends.
No comments about Paul; one of the funniest guys I have ever met (I laugh alone when I think about the auction). I really enjoyed meeting them.
I just know that I’m going to miss The Fools and everyone I met. I learned a lot and I want to return one day to have more stories to tell. I hope, if I’m lucky, that I can see all the people I met there again, who made those three days so special (and I hope that Krysta can forgive me for stealing her mattress, hehehehehehe).’
Maria Alice Brandão (teacher)
‘Getting to know Claudia and Paul was amazing. Listening to their stories, all their experiences, all about their trips and volunteer work, it made me just super happy to know that, for sure, incredible people do exist, heroes without capes are real and go around the world helping people (even though I believe that they would look fabulous with long flying capes). Seeing them talking to my students, inspiring them with love and stories about how beautiful the world is, filled my heart with joy. I’m forever grateful for their inspirations to me too. Because of them I’m 100% sure that there is much more love and positivity than all the other bad things out there.’
I think that we are definitely the lucky one’s to have met this awesome group of teens at The Fools.