Here, a classroom of students and phones on every desk, clicking pictures of the screen, translating confusing words

There, a white piece of paper giving special permission, showing it to the teacher before I took out my phone.

Here, the students are the ones who change classes and you can meet your classmates in the hallways, you hear a lot of voices, laughter or see the teachers at the doors waiting for their students

There, the teachers are the ones who go to the students. While the students waited in the classroom for the class teacher, there were times when the teacher took a while to go to class and the students started talking or playing inside of the room

Here, you can go out with my friends to eat pizza or food that we crave at that moment during lunch, we walk and laugh too much, sometimes we buy food and go back to school to eat with more friends, sometimes we stay outside all lunch until let it end

There, you can’t leave school, but you can order food and have it arrive at the school booth. With my friends we always ordered McDonald’s or Dunkin Donuts. While you were waiting at the school booth for the food to arrive, it was very fun because we always made jokes with the guard or we started talking to him

Here, you can come to school dressed however you feel most comfortable, you can see many people in pajamas as well as people who come with a very unique and cute style

There, they had dress codes and we wore uniforms, the color of the uniform depends a lot on the school colors. You must also respect the uniform schedules, which will depend on your classroom. It was also mandatory to have a hairstyle and the skirt could not be very short.

Here, is a lot of athletic support, since there are several sports in which you can apply and the coaches are very attentive to your needs, you can feel the excitement of watching the games at school, also the support, you hear many people supporting the teams and you can also see many parents

There isn’t much athletic support there, since there is not much variety of sports within the school. There are no games inside the school like 

here, but if there are games outside the school, you also feel the excitement of watching the soccer games that are only for men. The most important are soccer and basketball. 

Here is a cafeteria with free food in a place where you hear a lot of very loud voices.

There in the cafeteria you paid for your food and it was a quieter and more peaceful place with trees, plants in the garden and grass while you watch your classmates playing or talking

Here is a building there can be several schools inside with many students and you can make friends from different countries

There it was a single school in a very large and spacious building, with fields, or there could even be two buildings for a single school.

Aquí, puedes usar o traer tu teléfono a clase, aunque debes respetar las clases cuando el profesor habla y no usarlo si no lo necesitas

Allá, no podías usar ni llevar tu teléfono a la escuela, podrías llevarlo con un permiso especial, pero no podías usarlo entre clases

Aquí, los alumnos son los que cambian de clase y puedes encontrarte con tus compañeros en los pasillos, escuchan muchas voces, risas o ves a los profesores en las puertas esperando a sus alumnos

Allá, los profesores son los que van hacia los alumnos, mientras los alumnos esperaban en el aula al profesor de la clase, había momentos en los que el profesor tardaba en ir a clase y los alumnos empezaban a hablar o jugar dentro. 

Aquí, puedes salir con mis amigos a comer pizza o comida que se nos antoja en ese momento durante el almuerzo, caminamos y reímos demasiado, a veces compramos comida y volvemos a la escuela a comer con más amigos, a veces nos quedamos afuera todo el almuerzo hasta que termine

Allá, no podías salir de la escuela, pero puedes pedir comida y hacer que llegue a la caseta de la escuela. Con mis amigos siempre pedíamos McDonald ‘s or  Dunkin Donuts. Mientras esperabas en el stand de la escuela a que llegara la comida, fue muy divertido porque siempre hacíamos bromas. con el guardia o empezamos a hablar con el

Aquí puedes venir a la escuela vestido como te sientas más cómodo, puedes ver muchas personas en pijama así como personas que vienen con un estilo muy único y lindo

Allá tenían códigos de vestimenta y usábamos uniformes, el color del uniforme depende mucho de los colores del colegio. También deberás respetar los horarios uniformes, los cuales dependen de tu salón de clases. También era obligatorio llevar peinado y la falda no podía ser muy corta

Aquí hay mucho apoyo deportivo, ya que hay varios deportes en los que puedes postularte y los entrenadores están muy atentos a tus necesidades, se siente la emoción de ver los partidos en el colegio, también el apoyo, se escucha a mucha gente apoyando a los equipos y también se puede ver a muchos padres.

Allá, no hay mucho apoyo deportivo, ya que no hay mucha variedad de deportes dentro del colegio. No hay juegos dentro de la escuela como aquí, pero si hay partidos fuera de la escuela, también sientes la emoción de ver los partidos de fútbol que son sólo para hombres. Los más importantes son el fútbol y el baloncesto.

Aquí, hay una cafetería con comida gratis en un lugar donde se escuchan muchas voces muy fuertes.

Allá, en la cafetería pagabas tu comida y era un lugar más tranquilo y pacífico con árboles, plantas en el jardín y césped mientras observabas a tus compañeros jugar o hablar.

Aquí, hay un edificio, dentro puede haber varias escuelas con muchos estudiantes y puedes hacer amigos de diferentes países

Allá,  había una sola escuela en un edificio muy grande y espacioso, con canchas, o incluso podía haber dos edificios para una sola escuela

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November 28, 2023 3:05 pm

Dear Mia,

I am satisfied with your poem contrasting school in Guayaquil, Ecuador and school in Brooklyn, NY because I am an ENL teacher so all of my students have gone to school in at least two different places and I am always interested in what changes, and what might be strange or unfamiliar at the beginning.

One line of your poem that stood out for me was, “you can meet your classmates in the hallways, you hear a lot of voices, laughter or see the teachers at the doors waiting for their students…” I think this is  beautiful because it captures my favorite moment of the school day, when we all stand in the hallways together and I can see the teenage lives orbiting around our school.

Your writing connects to my own experience. For me, I went to a very small high school with tiny classes, but when I got to college, all of the sudden I was in a huge lecture hall with a lot of strangers.  It was a strange transition, just like yours.

Thanks for your work on Youth Voices. I look forward to seeing what you write next because your writing is very subtle.  I’m not totally sure which school you prefer because there are elements to both environments that you like.  I like it when writing is subtle and doesn’t have any easy conclusions.


Youth Voices is an open publishing and social networking platform for youth. The site is organized by teachers with support from the National Writing Project. Opinions expressed by writers are their own.  See more About Youth VoicesTerms of ServicePrivacy Policy.All work on Youth Voices is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 4.0 International License


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