Uruguay is one of the smaller South American countries but it has a vibrant atmosphere. The land is predominately flat and it is bordered by beaches. The Uruguayan culture has a European influence which contributes to the uniqueness of its cuisine, art and sport. There is no language requirement for an exchange to Uruguay. Students without Spanish knowledge may participate in a YFU run language course (included in program price).
In Uruguay there are public and private schools, but exchange students generally attend the same high school as their siblings (if any). In some public schools, students can wear their own clothes, but in private schools they must usually wear a uniform. School days in Uruguay are not long. Students may attend school in mornings, or in afternoons, so many students opt to do extra curricular activities. Making friends in Uruguay is easy, as Uruguayans are in general really friendly and outgoing and will likely want to make plans with you, learn about Australia or New Zealand and invite you to go out with them, pretty much from your arrival.
In some host families, both parents work full-time. In others, 1 parent remains at home and stays with the children while the other one holds a full-time job. Many families will have children living at home, but not all will – what you can be sure of is that no matter what the family is made up of, the Uruguayan host families will welcome you into their homes with a open heart. Some families will share most of the meals or at least 1 a day, as this is an important time where they talk about the things they did and the experiences they had that day. In Uruguay, family life is very important , so they will appreciate you sharing your lives with them. Uruguayans can be very affectionate, and you may find that your Uruguayan mother hugs you a lot! In most Uruguayan host families you will be expected to help with household chores such as washing the dishes, preparing food, vacuuming, taking care of your own room and your own clothes.
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