Nov. 30, 2016
Students from Nepal visit Northwood Elementary School
Sixth grade students at Northwood Elementary School in
Hilton had a firsthand opportunity to hear what life is like
in Nepal, a landlocked Himalayan country is South Asia.
Dipendra Bharati, now an eighth grader at McQuaid Jesuit
High School, came to the U.S. in 2009. Manisha Giri, an
eighth grader at Nativity Preparatory Academy in Rochester,
arrived in the U.S. in 2012. Sandy Castiglia, Northwood
teacher, worked with the students in her job with AmeriCorps
and as a fifth grade teacher at Nativity Preparatory before
she came to Hilton to teach this year. The presentation was
timely in that the sixth graders were beginning a unit on
Manisha arrived in Rochester with her mother and siblings,
but had to leave her father behind because he was from
Bhutan and not a refugee at the time. Eventually her father
was able to join them. Neither student spoke any English and
had to adjust to a completely different life in the U.S.
Dipendra’s family lived in a refugee camp in Nepal before
coming to the U.S. He described the red and green stoplights
that he saw when first driving from the airport in Rochester
thinking that they signified a holiday celebration. In
addition to their Hindu religion, the students described
their holidays, food, the geography of Nepal and education.
Both Manisha and Dipendra experienced corporal punishment as
students in Nepal, as well as life in refugee camps with
minimal electricity and technology, great acts of violence
and disease. “I’m so grateful to be here,” said Manisha.
“The teachers are so kind. I hope you appreciate what you