Multicultural Centre in Warsaw (Centrum Wielokulturowe)
54 Jagiellońska St
(entrance from the Haller’s Square)
tel.: 048 666 600 566
How was it to grow up as a child in Poland?
Well, first of all it was a great experience and most importantly a place where I have learnt the most. Poland
The city was also very silent, there are no trams in India instead there are buses. I could not hear loads of traffic sounds as in India J and most of all I did not have any friends at that time. I stayed at home all those days but I enjoyed looking at the view - it was very nice indeed! I remember, while my mom travelled on job for week or so, I sat by the window watching the colourful trams crossing the streets. is a nice country .I live in Wroclaw with my Mom and Dad, and now also my 2 year old sister. Actually, I was of my sister’s age - 2 years and 7 months old when I came to Poland. It is very different from India. Now if I think of it, I can imagine myself in a coop with no dear ones (apart from my parents) surrounding me. Back at home, I had my grandparents who were always, 24 hours around me and loved me the most.
Soon I was big enough to go to kindergarten! It was a nightmare to me, I kept crying on the first few days. All strangers, speaking in a language I did not utter a word of. It seems like the care taker at the kindergarten praised my loud crying voiceJ. However, I finally got used to it, good thing I learned to speak Polish fluently. I was not taught Polish but learnt it by listening to the kids. They were friendly, the care takers most of all were the best I had. I learnt to enjoy Polish food. When I returned home, I would speak few Polish words with my parents and they had no clue what I was talking about. I felt proud, that I had to explain them Polish. After one year, I was at regular school. Did I miss my kindergarten? Yes! Very much, the caretakers, my nap time, the toys, Polish food and Polish all around me. It was my second home.
The school’s name is BISC (British International School of Wroclaw), I had a warm welcome from the kids and teachers. In this school we are only allowed to speak English. So I was in the first grade which was quite easy for me, I learnt a lot in this class, the teacher was very friendly and I have forgotten Polish completely. In the third grade (I skipped the second grade), I had an easy school year because the teacher did not teach us or give us much to do. But then I attended extra Polish language classes and to my surprise, I had forgotten even basics of Polish. I started to find it difficult to learn Polish as a regular subject. It was much easier to learn the language as you speak with friends in kindergarten.
Fourth grade was harder, there was very strict teacher and she taught me a lot during all the lessons. In the Grade 5 there was a stable teacher, he was not too strict nor too lenient. I had all Korean classmates, not international in that sense.
Now I’m in the sixth grade. I enjoy the lessons however there are lots of tests which our teacher gives us. So busy days throughout the week. During play time we play all sorts of game like Tag, Traditional Korean games, made up games, and hide and seek. Our playground is quite big. Each class has its own garden, which is fun to grow plants and flowers budding. We get to use the shovel and other gardening tools. In my School there are lots of competitions like spelling bee, most beautiful garden, who reads the most books, costumes challenge, hair styles e.c.t. I am the topper in school, I always win competitions, get good grades and no complaints from teachers J. Last time I’ve won the spelling bee competition in the school (it is a prize for best speller in the primary school, we have such competitions in USA). Every Friday I play the violin with the teachers and some other students in the school orchestra. I like playing violin. I have many extra clubs after school like violin lessons, maths club, basketball, swimming. I like doing all of them. So overall my school is very good, the teachers are friendly, the children have games to play and the lessons are fun. My parents say kids must be always busy doing good activities apart from just playing video games on a computer. Now I have my little sister, so growing up with her is as fun as being with friends (if I had any).
I stay in an apartment, it has nice playground where I can play and ride my bike or rollerblades with my younger sister. Here I feel lonely still because other kids speak Polish and I forgot the language. During summer holidays, I could see a lot of kids around our apartment playing, but no one was interested in playing with me. My parents said, it is because they could not speak English and I could not speak Polish. But I found this very hard to accept that I had to play all by myself while the others were having fun cycling, roller skating etc. My parents also took me for cycling (I learnt skating on my own by observing), but then I had to just go around myself. Would learning Polish help me as my parents said? I don’t know, maybe other kids also could learn English as they have to learn it at school anyway, and then we could be friends. I started to feel bored during holidays, except when we went on long trips which was really fun.
I am fine with it because most of the time I am in school. If there are holidays I watch movies, play with my sister, draw or do anything creative. During vacations I go to different places away from the country, but in Europe. There were lots of places that we visited around Wroclaw, the city is so beautiful, with lots of parks, river side roads, rope gardens etc. This was all fun for me.
Let’s see … oh yes once I had gone to Bulgaria. It was amazing and I had a very nice time there. There was a swimming pool, beach, activities for children etc. During one of the Summer holidays, I had been to India, my home country - I enjoyed it. I picked all my favourite sweets and fruits and enjoyed till I was satisfied!
In Poland there are no temples like in India, only churches. That was one thing I did miss the most, and most of Indian festivals I miss a lot. Fortunately at home we’ve found a solution for that … we just bought our favourite gods idols from India and worship them as we do in temples!
Overall I think Poland is a nice country. Lots of good people who are kind and humble.
It has nice places to visit and beautiful things to see, but we need to speak the country language if we needs friends.
Projekt ‘MIEJSKI SYSTEM INFORMACYJNY I AKTYWIZACYJNY DLA MIGRANTÓW’ jest współfinansowany z Programu Krajowego Funduszu Azylu, Migracji i Integracji oraz budżetu państwa. Wyłączna odpowiedzialność spoczywa na autorze. Komisja Europejska nie ponosi odpowiedzialności za sposób wykorzystania udostępnionych informacji.
Projekt LOKALNE MIĘDZYSEKTOROWE POLITYKI NA RZECZ INTEGRACJI IMIGRANTÓW realizowany był w ramach programu Obywatele dla Demokracji, finansowanego z Funduszy EOG.
Projekt LOKALNE POLITYKI MIGRACYJNE - MIĘDZYNARODOWA WYMIANA DOŚWIADCZEŃ W ZARZĄDZANIU MIGRACJAMI W MIASTACH był współfinansowany ze środków Unii Europejskiej w ramach Europejskiego Funduszu na rzecz Integracji Obywateli Państw Trzecich oraz budżetu państwa. Wyłączna odpowiedzialność spoczywa na autorze. Komisja Europejska nie ponosi odpowiedzialności za sposób wykorzystania udostępnionych informacji.
Projekt LOKALNE MIĘDZYSEKTOROWE POLITYKI NA RZECZ INTEGRACJI IMIGRANTÓW był współfinansowany ze środków Unii Europejskiej w ramach Europejskiego Funduszu na rzecz Integracji Obywateli Państw Trzecich oraz budżetu państwa. Wyłączna odpowiedzialność spoczywa na autorze. Komisja Europejska nie ponosi odpowiedzialności za sposób wykorzystania udostępnionych informacji.
Projekt ‘WARSZAWSKIE CENTRUM WIELOKULTUROWE’ był współfinansowany ze środków Unii Europejskiej w ramach Europejskiego Funduszu na rzecz Integracji Obywateli Państw Trzecich oraz budżetu państwa. Wyłączna odpowiedzialność spoczywa na autorze. Komisja Europejska nie ponosi odpowiedzialności za sposób wykorzystania udostępnionych informacji.
LOKALNE MIĘDZYSEKTOROWE POLITYKI NA RZECZ INTEGRACJI IMIGRANTÓW Projekt realizowany był przy wsparciu Szwajcarii w ramach szwajcarskiego programu współpracy z nowymi krajami członkowskimi Unii Europejskiej.