“The culture is a lot different from here, first, girls aren’t allowed to wear shorts. Some of them also wear head scarves. The main religion is Islam, but there are small groups of Christians and Jewish,” Noor said while describing Palestine culture. There are some cultural changes such as, it is frowned upon that young women dye their hair at a young age.
It is also not just the style of dress that was a cultural shock for her. “Back home, people eat out at fast food restaurants once or twice every couple of weeks. Here it seems like they do it just about every other day. Here they have McDonald’s, Burger King, and other stuff. The only thing we have is KFC and Pizza Hut.” she said. “We eat a lot of fruits and vegetables.” A popular dish from Palestine is named Msakhan which is bread, onions, pine, and chicken.
Schooling is much different in the two places. In Palestine you only take two subjects, Literature, and Science. In a year of literature you get subjects like Geography, Math, Arabic Literature, and English all packed into one. If you take Science, you get Geography, History, Chemistry, and a harder level of math. Once you’ve taken one of the two you can branch off, there’s more to branch off on in Science than there is in Literature.
Back in Palestine, Noor was involved in reading, and she says that ever since she left home she hasn’t had time to read. The things that fill her time while in the States are participating on the swim team. She says she will join the speech team this winter, and plans to join the girls soccer team this spring.