Smooth Transition from Denmark to Harrow

When Line Jessen had her first day at Harrow International School, she hardly knew any English. Coming straight from a traditional school in Denmark, seeing the other students in their blue uniforms and the different way of teaching was a shock. That was two years ago, and since then a lot has changed.

“I was really nervous,” Line recalls of her first day at her new school. “Mostly, because my English wasn’t that good. Everything was so different for me.”

Line had just moved from Denmark to Bangkok with her parents and everything was new. She had been with her parents on a successful familiarization trip prior to the move, but still there was a lot to learn. However, after meeting her Housemaster, she soon felt part of the group. She was given a buddy to show her around and help her settle into her new environment.

And settle she did. After some intensive English lessons, she is achieving great academic success and she has made a wide circle of friends from many nationalities. Her quick adaptation and progress was so evident that she was awarded a prize at Harrow’s annual Speech Day last year.

Line’s achievements didn’t come out of thin air, though. They required hard work and, knowing only a little English, getting through the first couple of weeks was tough. She received a lot of help from her new class mates, but her teacher, especially, supported her and helped her through the transition.
“He made sure that I got lots of extra English help and spoke to me clearly and slowly whilst I was learning the language,” Line says, and according to her that is what gave her the confidence to keep working at improving her skills.

The hard work paid off, and Line has always been glad that her parents chose Harrow as her new school. Of all the schools they visited, they liked Harrow and the idea of the British Curriculum the best.
“My parents wanted a curriculum that would help me in later life choose the universities I want and they understood that the British National Curriculum has a very strong reputation,” Line explains about the choice her parents made. 
 
She is particularly happy about the way they teach at Harrow.
“My previous school was OK, but I felt that the teaching wasn’t that great. I remember sitting in the history class, and just wanting to sleep. At Harrow the teachers expect you to give your opinions much more and to work out what you have learnt for yourself. It is more challenging, but it means that we understand things in a more meaningful way,” she says. 
 
According to Line, her first impression of Harrow was a good one. Everyone was friendly and they helped her adapt to her new surroundings. Even though it was tough in the beginning, she highly recommends the school to other Danish students who are moving to Bangkok. 
“The way they teach at Harrow is very different from Denmark, but in a good way. Everything about this school is great. What I really like about it is that it is so easy to make friends and when you are new, there is always someone to ask you how you are feeling or to help you out.” 
 
As for the future, Line isn’t quite sure of which path to choose yet.
“I am going to take IGCSE, and then we will see what happens next,” she says, and because of her education at Harrow, she feels prepared for whatever comes her way.

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