Stepping I was determined to learn this

  Stepping out of my first plane ride, I experienced a realization of new culture, which seems to me as a whole new world. Buzzing around my ears are conversations in an unfamiliar language that intrigues me. It then struck me that after twenty hours of a seemingly perpetual plane ride that I finally arrived in The United States of America, a country full of new opportunities. It was this moment that I realized how diverse and big this world is. This is the story of my new life in America.     A mere two weeks passed by since the day of my arrival to my new home before the start of second grade. I struggled to learn basic phrases before the start of school, phrases such as “May I use the restroom?” and “What is this?” After timeless tries, my aunt, who already knew English, came up with an idea to write the phrases down on pieces of paper. I would have to hand the teacher the pieces of paper which matched what I needed in order to communicate with her. The idea made me feel embarrassed, but knowing that it was the only way possible for me to get my needs from my teacher, I agreed to the plan.     Day after day, week after week, my fellow classmates would laugh at me whenever I took a piece of paper out from my bag saying I needed something. After so many incidents, I was determined to learn this foreign language and prove to people that I wasn’t not lost in this country. Every day afterschool I would ask my family to help me with my English. One year later, I was able to understand what people around me were saying, and I could do basic communications with people. School came to me as an enjoying part of my day, something I looked forward to when going to bed, and an opportunity, a gift for me to learn the language of this new country.     During the fifth grade, an event occurred that really shaped the way I am. It was the Math Is Cool competition. I was a very shy person, afraid of people around me and dared not to work with anyone. My classmates knew that I excelled at math and wanted me to be a part of their team. Time passes by and it gets closer and closer to the first practice for the competition. A part of me wants to be a part of the team, but a bigger part of me says “no” because I’m too shy and afraid to do so. Everyday, my classmates would try and talk me into it. After some time, I finally gave in and gave myself a try. After many practices, it was time for the actual competition.It was a Friday evening; our team gathered before the competition started in a couple of minutes. We all gave “good lucks” to one another and off we were to the competition. After what seemed like days, it was time for the award ceremony. We are able to see our results. The results didn’t look very good to us; we didn’t even make it to the top 10. Our team was disappointed, but we’re happy at the same time. We were happy because we were able to work as a team and have fun too. Something that seemed impossible for me to do, I did. I overcame my fear of people.     If there were one thing that I learned from that competition, it was the value of teamwork. Each one of us is not perfect, but we are all good at something individually. When all of us work together, that something becomes one, and that’s when real knowledge appears. From that day on, I value the chances to work with people. Learning English and a new culture is wonderful, but sharing what I learned with other people is a greater experience.