Students experience Viking life through the IDC exchange

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Lilly Wu

Exchange students often compared Lynbrook and their home schools throughout the day.

Lilly Wu, Staffer

Students from all five FUHSD schools gathered at Lynbrook on Nov. 18 for the first Intra District Council Exchange in three years. The exchange students experienced Viking spirit firsthand at Lynbrook’s first-ever Fall Rally as the gym roared with the cheers of excited students. 

IDC representatives from each FUHSD school collaborate to organize the IDC Exchange, an event that invites students from across the district to spend a day shadowing a student at another FUHSD school. As the first of five exchanges this year, Lynbrook welcomed 10 students each from Monta Vista, Cupertino, Fremont and Homestead, for a noteworthy experience. 

Students had the option to choose between shadowing a friend or getting matched with a random host.

“My host and I were very good friends from first through fifth grade,” Homestead sophomore Brian Ling said. “We went to different middle and high schools, so we decided to use the IDC Exchange as a chance to catch up with each other again.” 

At 7:30 a.m., the exchange students arrived on campus for a breakfast of bagels and a mini presentation on logistics for the day. Goodie bags of candy, chips and a map of the campus were placed on the cafeteria tables as a welcoming gift. They then attended fourth and fifth-period classes with their hosts, often comparing Lynbrook and their home schools throughout the day.

“At Cupertino, a math teacher would typically lecture, then have students work on their own,” Cupertino senior Ria Sethi said. “Here, I felt that the teacher was more interactive, and I was able to joke around with her.”

As the exchange allowed students to shadow hosts from other grade levels, some exchange students were able to visit classes extremely different from their usual courses.

“Even though I already took the freshman English and Biology classes two years ago, I took them online, so it was still a good learning experience for me as a junior to attend them again in-person,” Monta Vista junior Nathan Liu said.

The highlight of the day for many students was attending the board game-themed Fall Rally. The freshmen’s theme was Candyland, the sophomores’ was chess, the juniors’ was Monopoly and the seniors’ was UNO. 

“From what I saw, there is a lot of hype and school spirit at Lynbrook,” Liu said. “There were many people cheering and wearing their class colors.”

Some exchange students shadowed members of ASB, so they were able to partake in the behind-the-scenes setup of the rally.

“We got there very early in the morning to set up the balloon arches and later, we handed out thundersticks,” Fremont freshman McKayla Hsu said. “The entire experience was very heartwarming as everyone worked together to achieve the one common goal of a successful rally.”

Other exchange students part of ASB at their own school were able to experience the distinct approaches different schools have when it comes to rallies.

“As an ASB media commissioner, I wanted to see firsthand how Lynbrook functions on a rally day compared to Cupertino,” Sethi said. “Some distinct components that really stood out to me were the use of projector screens and how there were many opportunities for students to participate in the rally.”

Exchange students left Lynbrook after lunch with their host, receiving free pizza and snacks from the ASB den. 

“My experience at Lynbrook was great and I am looking forward to hosting my friends at my own school in the future,” Ling said.

To make exchanges as memorable as possible for students, IDC aims to schedule exchanges on days of special events, though some are also scheduled on normal school days. The next IDC Exchange will be at Homestead High School on Dec. 16, the day of their Winter Black-Light Rally.