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Shen with Valentline's Day candy.
Photo: Thomas Peters
When we began the reading class, Mr. Peters gave every student some chocolate and said, "Happy Valentine's Day!"

Learning about Valentine's Day

Shen Yu from China

February 14th was Valentine's Day! In America, this day is very different from in China.

In China, it is only a day for boyfriends and girlfriends, but my teacher and my friends in America told me that Valentine's Day is a public day.

Gving gifts to boyfriends and girlfriends mean a loving heart. If other people send gifts to each other, it only means friendship.

In school, boys and girls send many kinds of cards, exchange gifts, and send chocolate to each other. You can send any gift except red roses. If you want to send red roses, you must be careful.

This was my first Valentine's Day in America. I was very busy studying English, and I didn't understand all these things clearly. Maybe I didn't need to send any gifts. I watched others to see what they did, so next time I can understand.

On that day, when we began the reading class, Mr. Peters gave every student some chocolate and said, "Happy Valentine's Day!" I was very happy. I thought the teacher gave his students gifts and blessings. I never saw that in China. Maybe American teachers are very different. I didn't buy a gift for the teacher, so I owed a gift to the teacher. Anyway, I want to say, "Thank you teacher, and I'm sorry."

Shen and her classmates
Photo: Thomas Peters
When we had a break, one of my classmates gave me a Pokemon card. Then another student who had only been in our class one day called out to me and gave me some chocolate. for me and my friends.

When we had a break, one of my classmates gave me a Pokemon card. It was very funny. I felt we were children. I thought I owed a gift again, but I felt thankful. It was the first gift from my new classmate.

When we were moving to our grammar class, suddenly I heard someone calling me: "Shelly!" I stopped. Another classmate who had only been in our class one day gave me some chocolate. She said, "These for you and your friends. Have a good day!"

I was looking at her leaving and thinking she spoke Arabic. We were in the same class only one day, but now we are friends. That's very good, but I owed a gift again.

When I came home, my Chinese friend sent some roses and chocolate. I was surprised and happy because I had never received roses in my past life, but I hoped it was the last gift. I didn't want to owe more gifts.

In China, we often heard about a lack of care between people in America, but now I know that is wrong.

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