We are pleased to announce Aimee Tauscher as the December 2023 CBYX German Participant of the Month! Aimee, a Congress-Bundestag Youth Exchange (CBYX) High School program participant placed by CIEE, is hosted by the Laudenslager family in Allentown, Pennsylvania.
One of Aimee’s favorite volunteer activities is teaching German to second graders at a local elementary school. Aimee likes working with kids as she has a large extended family in Germany and believes that teaching is a great opportunity to talk about Germany. The second graders are surprised that someone her age could leave her parents, school, and home to live in a foreign country. Aimee is not only teaching them German words, but she also shares some of the differences between the United States and Germany like how Chistkind is more popular than Santa Claus in Germany or how Germans don’t celebrate Thanksgiving.
Aimee is also learning about American traditions and culture. After watching Philadelphia Eagles and University of Pennsylvania football games with her host father, she wanted to learn more about the sport, so Aimee decided to join her grade’s flag football team. Parkland High School has an annual flag football bowl game where girls from each grade compete to win a tournament. While her grade lost to the seniors, she is happy that she understands the game now. She adds, “It was super fun and a great way to make new friends. The whole school showed up and it was amazing seeing all the school spirit.” She hopes to introduce football to her friends in Germany and would love to be able to show them a Philadelphia Eagles game.
Aimee says, “I have such a good relationship with my host family. I love them from the bottom of my heart.” She made a German cookbook for her host family and prepared Apfelradln, or pancakes with apples, on Thanksgiving so that a little bit of Germany could be added to the celebration. To make sure Aimee had a full Thanksgiving experience, Aimee’s host family made two turkeys along with all the traditional side dishes. The two things Aimee was most excited to try were turkey and cranberry sauce.