School in Germany

It is HOT! in Europe in the moment.  It’s probably hard for you to believe while it is cold in Sydney just now.  But even their hot weather isn’t as unpleasant as our really hot Sydney summer days.

I met some Year 5 students here who wanted to know if we have “Hitzefrei” (heat-free) when it gets too hot.  At their school, if the temperature goes above 30 degrees celsius, school is canceled.  Can you imagine that?  We would hardly go to school! They can’t believe that we don’t have Hitzefrei, or how hot it gets for us.  But they were glad to hear that we have air conditioning at our school (they don’t).

The students had many questions about school, and as I showed them photos, they couldn’t believe our uniforms!

Everywhere we go, people are astounded that we have been able to pull our children out of school, as German regulations around this are very strict – the maximum extra time you can take your child out of school is 2 days, and they cannot adjoin holidays. You have to seek permission and have a very good reason!  Police go to the airports on the last day of school, and if parents can’t produce the child’s report (issued on the last day), they receive massive fines for breaking these laws.

Austria’s rules are not quite as strict as Germany’s.  They are allowed to have a maximum of 1 week out of school, and permission is sought from the Government to do this.

German children have so much more independence and much more is expected of them.  School starts by 8, and is usually finished by 11.30.  There are no casual teachers, so teachers are not replaced if a teacher is absent (at least in upper primary and high school).  Many schools put their timetable online, and students can check in the morning to see what their lessons are, and if any are canceled.  They are expected to do some work on their own, or go home and come back again. High school starts from Year 5 onwards.

In Year 5, students learn German and English and 1 other language!!!, the level of proficiency is impressive, because they have at least 5 lessons a week of their other languages, so everyone has the opportunity to become fluent.

Students pass a “walk to school test” at around Year 2 age.  They receive their “Walk to School Licence” – then they are expected to walk to school on their own, and many will be allowed to walk home alone (even if their parents are not at home yet).

There is an after-school program for younger students whose parents work.

Schools also conduct bike riding lessons, and when the students are ready, the police assess whether they pass and receive their Licence.

In the towns and cities, there are so many aspects of life like this, that mean it’s easy to lead an active, healthy lifestyle.

 

What do you think about all the things that are different?  Which things do you prefer? The German way or the Australian way?

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Which language would you like with that?

We have arrived in the UK, and already I love the way I can see how people are aware of some other languages that are spoken.

We popped into McDonald’s for some familiar food yesterday…  The kids love to use the screens to order their own meals.  Look what we saw!

 

Have you ever seen this before?

maccas languages 1

We had a look at the French screen:

 

maccas languages 3

And the German screen:

 

maccas languages 2

Are there any words you can work out?

 

Can you find out what the other languages are?

 

Can’t wait to tell you more!

 

Frau Holmes!

 

 

 

 

Das Geld

Have a look at the photo…

What do you notice about the money?

Have you seen money that looks like this before? Where?

Have you used it before?

What’s different from the money we use in Australia? Is anything the same?

What do you think is interesting?

Most countries have their own “currency” (the word for the type of money they use).

If you travel outside of Australia you need to get some of the money for each country. You swap some Australian money for whichever currency you need.

Lots of countries in Europe now use “the Euro” instead of all having different types of money – this makes it much easier when you go traveling!

What currencies can you see in the picture?

Can you find out which countries they are used in?

Wasserkreislauf: Acting the Water Cycle

Today in Klasse 2, we read a book about the Wasserkreislauf, and then we acted it out.

We had 5 answers to our question:

Wo geht der Regen hin?

Dampf = Evaporation

Wolke

Regen

Erde

Wasser (rivers, lakes, ocean)

 

We are also learning a German children’s song about the Rain: Es Regnet.  Click here to follow the link to the video so you can sing along with us:   Es Regnet

This post was written by Frau Holmes & 2O

 

 

 

 

 

Es ist Herbst!

es ist herbst!.pngThe seasons have changed, and we have been discussing the names of them:

Sommer

Herbst

Winter

Frühling

We’ve also discussed how the seasons in Australia and Germany are opposite.

Have you seen the Autumn tree that Year 2 decorated in the library?

Ostereierbaum!

Easter Egg Tree

DSC_9498_edited

In Germany many people decorate a tree outside, or a branch inside with Easter eggs.

It is to celebrate the change from Winter, when everything is bare and grey, to Spring when everything is green, and the flowers bloom.

 

Lots of shops are selling the eggs for hanging on your tree.  They can be made from plastic, glass, ceramic, or china.  You can also make them yourself by blowing the egg out of the shell and painting them, but these are fragile.

DSC_9520

I have seen some in gardens when I have walked around the villages.

Enjoy the photos.DSC_9809

Oster in Deutschland: Bunte Eier!

Colourful Eggs!

Every shop I go to has colourful Easter Eggs, like this.

DSC_9634

 

These were in the bakery, ready to buy!

You can buy them already coloured like these.


Or you can buy the dye kits to do it yourself at home.

I even saw a little holder for your egg that allows you to paint it easily (I’ll try to get one later!).

 

 

Sometimes shopkeepers give you an egg from their basket.  A lady in a bookshop gave me one today!

 

It was a great snack!

 

Have you ever dyed eggs with your family at Easter?

Herzlich Wilkommen zum 2018

First of all I’d like to wish you…

Ein frohes, neues Jahr!

I have spent the summer holidays studying an inspiring course run by the Goethe Institut.  It’s one of their DLL (Deutsch Lehrer Lernen) courses (an internationally recognised certificate in teaching German).  They’ve been focusing a lot on supporting Teachers of young children, which is the area I am passionate about.  This course is DaF für Kinder DLL 8.  It is about teaching German as a Foreign Language to young children.

I have been so inspired by the course.  And so humbled that many of the participants (it’s an online course, with students from all over the world) are pursuing it so that they can help refugees that are finding new homes in Germany and Austria.  How fabulous is that!

I have been so inspired to re-think and re-design a lot of our German learning activities. I can’t wait to get into the year, and see how this learning impacts my teaching throughout the year!

In my readings today, I have found my motto for the year – this is going to be my guiding star for 2018.

Bewegung ist das Tor zum Lernen (1)

The quote is from my readings, in the DLL textbook, Chapter 4, which talks about a Primary School concept, der bewegten Schule (lit. the moving school).  The quote in English says “Movement is the gate to learning” and I can’t wait to implement it more in my lessons!

Bis später!

Winterfest – Schneeflocken

Year 1 have made beautiful Schneeflocken to sell at the Winterfest.

All of Year 1 have had fun making them with lots of love.

They have been learning how to tell you their name in German.

They will answer the question “Wie heisst du?” with “Ich heisse …” at the Craft Stall to buy their Schneeflocke.

We can’t wait until Friday evening when the Winter Festival is on!

Come along for lots of yummy food, fun things to do and things to buy!

 

This post is written by 1B