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[YRP Students' Essays] What about Just Being You?

A chameleon changes its color in nature to protect its life. An army officer wears camouflaged clothes. Those are my images of assimilation. People can also assimilate like a chameleon. The difference between a chameleon and us is that a chameleon has to adjust its body for its life, but it is not necessary for us to assimilate ourselves to other people.

It is important for us to learn and assimilate the great points of other people around you. For example, when you play sports, you have to watch many wonderful plays and people that play better than you in order to get better at it. So you can actually steal the skills and techniques to use for yourself. However, it is not necessary to be exactly the same person that you admire. You can always be yourself and not the other person. You have to remember to keep your excellent points. The same can be said about second language or second culture. It is always important to try to learn and assimilate to the second culture. The more quickly, you adapt yourself to a new environment, the better you will learn the new language and the new culture. Nevertheless, I learned living in another country that it is also valuable to keep your home country's culture. Maybe it is hard to keep your home culture and learn a new culture, but not forgetting where you came from is very significant.

You do not necessarily have to change yourself completely by assimilating to the ways of others. Just being you is as excellent as learning and assimilating to somebody else or a new culture. When I lived abroad, I just wanted to forget about my home country and be exactly the same as the people around me, since I did not like to be different from others. However, I found that my idea was wrong. It is because we are not like chameleons. We do not have to adapt ourselves to others. We can be different. We are all different and that is the most wonderful point about being human.

Child Research Net would like to thank the Doshisha International Junior/Senior High School and Sakiko Yamaoka, student and author, for permitting reproduction of this article on the CRN web site.
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