Every year at the last school day, we usually celebrate the Language Diploma 2 students who passed this demanding exam. With all graduations now being online, we also jumped on the wagon to honour these students.

Organized by the principal of the Vancouver Westside German School Ute Steves and Andreas Meckes of the Central Agency for German Schools Abroad (ZfA), the ceremony included students of the German School Victoria, Vancouver Westside German School and our Surrey German Language School.

We were honored that also Birgit Densch, Vice-Consul of the German Consulate General in Vancouver could participate. Furthermore Isolde Winter president of the Canadian Association of German Language Schools zoomed in from Vancouver Island.

The students were announced by Andreas Meckes who virtually gave them their diplomas. Then every language diploma teacher introduced their DSD 2 students. Our DSD 2 teacher Anke Sabo did the honors and explained how well Emily Helms, Isabel von Borstel and Larisa Dubinovic passed the challenging exam. After a short school year from September to November 2019, the students managed to perform excellent in the written exam and then again in January 2020 in their oral exam.

Congratulations again to all the students!!!

What is a PASCH school?

Awakening interest and enthusiasm for Germany, motivating young people to learn German and creating an international network of schools – those are the aims of the PASCH initiative. PASCH stands for “Schools: Partners for the Future”.

PASCH is an initiative of the Federal Foreign Office in cooperation with the Central Agency for Schools Abroad (ZfA), the Goethe-Institut, the German Academic Exchange Service (DAAD) and the Educational Exchange Service (PAD) of the Secretariat of the Standing Conference of the Ministers of Education and Cultural Affairs of the Länder in the Federal Republic of Germany.

The initiative is a global network of some 2000 schools that place a high value on German. PASCH partners provide advice to head teachers, ministries and schools on developing German teaching. Seconded PASCH partner experts visit the schools to provide direct support. Fostering exchange between international and German PASCH schools is a particular priority.

We are part of PASCH

Since the start of the PASCH initiative in 2008, our school is part of this German School network working closely with the Central Agency for Schools Abroad (ZfA) in Edmonton and the Goethe-Institut in Toronto and Montreal. The initiative supports the German teachers at PASCH schools by providing regional training courses, opportunities to see teaching in action in Germany and grants for further training in Germany.

Our school portrait on the PASCH website reflects on the history and school organization:

Die Surrey German Language School wurde 1971 im Keller einer Kirche in Surrey bei Vancouver, British Columbia, gegründet. Wir sind seitdem gewachsen und ein paarmal umgezogen, um den gestiegenen Anmeldezahlen – derzeit haben wir etwa 200 Schülerinnen und Schüler – Rechnung zu tragen. Wir sind eine private Deutsche Sprachschule und eine gemeinnützige Organisation, die jeden Samstag Deutschunterricht von 9 bis 12 Uhr anbietet.

Unser Deutschunterricht gliedert sich in Deutsch als Zweitsprache (DaZ) und Deutsch als Fremdsprache (DaF), jeweils bis zum Niveau C1. Unsere Schülerinnen und Schüler im Alter zwischen fünf und 17 Jahren können Deutsch bis zum Oberstufenniveau lernen und darüber hinaus die Prüfungen zum Deutschen Sprachdiplom I und II ablegen. Seit einigen Jahren bieten wir auch Deutschklassen für Erwachsene an…

Click here to continue reading our school portrait on PASCH-NET:

School Year ended on high note

The unique circumstances of the pandemic forced us to transfer our schooling to virtual classes in March. At the last school day, we organized a Zoom gathering and over 100 students, parents, teachers and board members participated. To commemorate the end of the school year, everyone came together to create an epic 12 minute video showcasing all events happening throughout the 2019/20 school year ending with screenshots of the virtual classes.
Over the next weeks, we will present parts of this video. We want to make sure that each sequence is according to the media consent of the participants.
Today we start with the awesome video created by Gita Matthew and her Preschool Class. Enjoy this piece of cuteness overload.

For the second time our school is celebrating the traditional German Fasching or Karneval. The carnival session, also known as the “Fifth Season”, begins each year on November 11th at 11:11 a.m. and finishes on Ash Wednesday of the following year with the main festivities happening around Rosenmontag (Rose Monday). Read more about carnival on our heritage page.

We had a fantastic ‘Karnevalsumzug’ on the special leap day on February 29 and were delighted to have so many guests! Thank you to everyone for the great costumes! We had so much fun and are happy to be able to share the German tradition of ‘Fasching’ with our members and the public!

Here a video of our school version of the traditional German Fasching Parade.

At the end of the parade, everybody received a traditional German Kreppel or Krapfen. Which is basically a sugary donut filled with raspberry jam. Delicious!

After having a couple years off, our choir was finally performing at the Vancouver Christmas Market again.

Under Choir Teacher Steffi Walker our choir supported by some parents performed traditional German Christmas songs like ‘Alle Jahre wieder’ and ‘Stille Nacht’. Though the weather was not the best, our students had fun participating at this annual event ringing in the Christmas season for our school.

/as

Alle Jahre wieder

Am Samstag, den 7. Dezember war es wieder soweit. Der Nikolaus hat unsere Schule besucht und die jüngeren Schüler im Foyer empfangen. Er hat seine lange Liste mitgebracht und mit den Schülern gesprochen. Dabei wurde er von seinen zwei Engeln unterstützt.

Zwar ist der Nikolaustag in Deutschland kein gesetzlicher Feiertag, dennoch gehört er nicht nur in Deutschland, sondern weltweit zu den wichtigsten Traditionen. Oft ist er in Begleitung von furchteinflössenden Gehilfen. Während der Nikolaus der gutherzige Geschenkgeber ist, ist die Aufgabe seiner gemeinen Gehilfen, unter anderem Knecht Ruprecht, verzogene und unartige Kinder zu bestrafen.

Unser Nikolaus hatte war auch seine Rute mitgebracht, jedoch keinen Gehilfen. Hier im Foto sind man die Rute neben dem Sessel.

Alles in allem wieder ein schöner Auftakt in die Weihnachtssaison. /as

2019 Spelling Bee

The German Consulate General in Vancouver organized a German spelling bee with our school. Natasha Daiminger of the consulate conducted the ‘Buchstabierwettbewerb’ at our school on December 7. Weeks ago, the students received a list with 60 words they had to practice. During the spelling bee selected students from each class participated. We were deeply impressed by their spelling skills. Here the list with some of the more difficult words:

Gruppe 1 Gruppe 2
Schmetterling (butterfly) Überrascht (surprised)
Tschüss (see you, bye) Schlitten (slide)
begeistert (impressed) überglücklich (overjoyed)
konzentriert (concentrated) interessiert (interested)
Gleichgewicht (balance) Entwicklung (development, evolution)
Lebewesen (creature) Genehmigung (permission)
Kindergärtnerin (nursery-school teacher) Krankenschwester (nurse)
optimistisch (optimistic) fantastisch (fantastic)
vernünftig (reasonable) unschuldig (innocent)
Weihnachtsmann (Santa Claus) Adventskalender (advent calender)
Luftballon (balloon) Erdbeere (strawberry)
Nikolaus (Santa Claus) Christkind (Christ child)
Flugzeug (airplane) Sternschnuppe (shooting star)
Plätzchen (cookies) Marmelade (jam)
Kleiderschrank (closet) Süßigkeiten (sweets)
spazieren (to go for a walk) Badeanzug (swimsuit)
Hubschrauber (helicopter) Brücke (bridge)

And the winners are…

  1. Ann-Sophie Neuscheler (G8)
  2. Lynn Elkins (G8)
  3. Will Meeks (DSD 1)

Each November 11 German’s celebrate St. Martin’s Day and traditionally we also organize the annual St. Martin Lantern-Parade around that date. In many parts of Germany it is tradition for children to participate in a procession of paper lanterns in remembrance of St. Martin. They make their own little lanterns in school or kindergarten and then gather on city streets to sing songs about good old Martin and their lanterns. Often a man dressed as St. Martin with a long red cloak leads the parade on horseback.

This year the E2 class of Trea Low class took photos of their lantern crafting. Look how proud the students are of their self-made lanterns!

Then all students from Preschool, Kindergarten up to Grade 4 participate in the traditional St. Martin Parade with their lanterns. All children are singing the traditional St. Martin songs like “Laterne, Laterne” or “Ich gehe mit meiner Laterne” or “St. Martin” . /as

Welcome to 2019/20!

Message from the Principal

On behalf of the staff at the Surrey German Language School, we are happy to welcome you to the 2019/20 school year!
We are looking forward to a productive partnership with you to ensure our children can achieve their highest potential.
We recognize that in order to be successful in school, our children need support from both the home and school. We know a strong partnership with you will make a great difference in your child’s ability to learn to speak German.
We encourage as much German exposure as possible to make it easier for the children in class.
Axel Rechlin

Like last school year, we had to say good-bye to four teachers. We thank Christiane Perschke-Thoma, Annabelle Devos, Ute Preuss and Nadja Khadra for some great school years and wish them well in the future.

We are happy to let you know that all vacant teacher spots could be filled with excellent new German teachers.

A heartfelt welcome to the new teachers Steffi Walker, Karin Tischler, Stephanie Kates and Sophia Weber and to a great new German school year filled with exciting events reflecting our German heritage. /as

SGLS @ YVR !!!

On May 4th, students of our school were able to visit the Vancouver Airport. Jürgen Gönnemann, a parent of one of our students organized this field trip for us. What an experience for us all!

60 participants from our school, students and parents, were allowed in the Air Canada hangar, inspecting a Boing 737. Even sitting in the cockpit was not off limits.

Our students looked at the turbines and checked out the landing gear and the freight cargo.

Trying to open the emergency exit door was a tough job for our principal. He needed the help from some students to master it.

Then everyone got to try out the flight simulator which was set to land in Vancouver by night. After that we checked out the training section for emergencies.

The Surrey German Language School would like to thank Jürgen Gönnemann and Air Canada for their effort to make this an unforgettable experience for our participants.

/as

A special morning in the Adult Class of Markus Zurberg. The students were treated to an original German breakfast. The traditional ‘Deutsche Frühstück’ with soft boiled eggs, real crusty Brötchen (buns), Leberwurst (liver pate), pickles and much more was enjoyed by everyone in class.

The students were so excited that they all wrote a German note for this blog. Have fun reading the following short reviews of the students and we think this should be an annual event for every class. /as

For the first time our school is celebrating the traditional German Fasching or Karneval. The carnival session, also known as the “Fifth Season”, begins each year on November 11th at 11:11 a.m. and finishes on Ash Wednesday of the following year with the main festivities happening around Rosenmontag (Rose Monday). Read more about carnival on our heritage page.

We had a fantastic ‘Karnevalsumzug’ and were delighted to have so many guests! Thank you to our Choir Teacher Annabelle for the performance and our Adult Class Teacher Markus for bringing ‘Kamelle’ (sweets that are thrown in the crowd at the parades in Germany)! We had so much fun and are happy to be able to share the German tradition of ‘Fasching’ with our members and the public!

Here a video of our school version of the traditional German Fasching Parade.

At the end of the parade, everybody received a traditional German Kreppel. Which is basically a sugary donut filled with raspberry jam. Delicious!

The last school day of the year also means it’s time for our annual Christmas Show and Vendors Market. For weeks the students prepared for this event. This year organized by our teacher Annabelle Devos, a Christmas Musical was on the agenda. Something new for everyone.

Again our Christmas Market was a big success. German inspired products were for sale by various vendors, who are now a staple for our market.

What a special treat!

Our teachers got into carolling this year.

Thank you, Annabelle, for encouraging the teachers to perform this year.

Thank you to everyone who came out to our Annual Christmas Show & Market! The student’s performances were wonderful and the market was great as always! The staff even did some carolling and we served Hot Dogs, hot chocolate and Glühwein (non-alcoholic, of course!)
Special thanks to Natascha Daiminger from the German Consulate General Vancouver and Beatrice Schreiber from the German-Canadian Business Association

Am 8. Dezember war es wieder soweit. Der Nikolaus hat unsere Schule besucht und die jüngeren Schüler im Foyer empfangen. Er hat seine lange Liste mitgebracht und mit den Schülern gesprochen. Dabei wurde er von seinen zwei Engeln unterstützt. Wie immer ein schöner Auftakt in die Weihnachtssaison.

/as

The German Consulate General in Vancouver organized a German spelling bee with our school. Two delegates of the consulate conducted the ‘Buchstabierwettbewerb’ at our school on December 8. Weeks ago, the students received a list with 60 words they had to practice. During the spelling bee selected students from each class participated. We were deeply impressed by their spelling skills. Some of the words that they got right were: Forelle, Küstengewässer and Dürre.

And the winners are…

  1. Emma Preuss (DSD 1)
  2. Kaya Boos (G6)
  3. Sarah Helms (G7)

Each November 11 German’s celebrate St. Martin’s Day and traditionally we also organize the annual St. Martin Lantern-Parade around that date.

In many parts of Germany it is traditional for children to participate in a procession of paper lanterns in remembrance of St. Martin. They make their own little lanterns in school or kindergarten and then gather on city streets to sing songs about good old Martin and their lanterns. Often a man dressed as St. Martin with a long red cloak leads the parade on horseback.

Every year our students perform a short play about the story of St. Martin. This year the teachers came up with the new idea of a shadow theatre. So the students played the St. Martin story behind a white sheet which was lighted from behind. What a great performance! /as

Christmas Party and Bazaar

Dancing, Singing and Performing in the Theatre

This year our Christmas Event took place on December 16, on our last school day. Again the teachers and students organized a phenomenal event in the theatre in front parents, family members and friends.
Parallel to the performance in the theatre the board had organized a vendors bazaar with lots of German related goods.
After the first song “Kling Glöckchen Klingeling” of the choir, president Gisela Schulte and principal Axel Rechlin welcomed the visitors and gave a brief overview. The Language Diploma Certificates to the successful DSD 1 students were presented by Natascha Daiminger of the German Consulate in Vancouver.

The class performances started with the Christmas song “Ihr Kinderlein kommet” by the E1/2 class, the poem “Es ist Advent” by the E3/4 class and the funny German/English song “Christmas is im Eimer” by the E5/6 class.

The performance continued with the “Weihnachtliche Zungenbrecher” of the E7/8 class. Then the G1/2 class performed the short sketch of “Die vier Kerzen”, followed by the G5/6 with the reciting and performance of a humorous Christmas poem.

The G7/8 class had a special game for the teachers prepared. They created German Christmas Monsterwords for the teachers to read. After that the DSD 1 class read the Christmas Story of “Die Weihnachtsmaus”. Then we showed a Christmas school video from 2013, the students looked so different after 4 years!

The special song of the G3/4 class “Zünd ein Licht an” was a very touching performance with lots of candle lights.

The annual Christmas Party closed with the songs “O Tannenbaum” and “Stille Nacht, heilige Nacht”, accompanied by the instrumental Quartett of the Adult class.

A short video of the G3/4 class performing “Zünd ein Licht an”.

German Related Vendors at the Bazaar

This year our Christmas Bazaar included the following vendors. Thank you all for making our Christmas Event special this year.

Kirsten & Hartmut Friedrichs
Herrnhuter Stars from Germany
www.mybrilliantstar.com

Meadow Foam
Handcrafted Soaps and Scrubs
www.meadowfoamproducts.ca

Anne Uebbing
German Children’s Books
www.kinderbooks.ca

Christie Colebrook
LipSense
Facebook: Love Lip Magic

Antje Schoepper
Handcrafted Gemstone Jewelry
www.enchantedgems.ca

Pam Derrett
Creative Card Designer
www.turquoisecards.com

Daniela Wilcke
Wellness Advocate
www.mydoterra.com/dwilcke

Sandra Lake
Epicurious Consultant
www.sandraoake.myepicure.com

Karina’s Shining Stars
Facebook: Shining Stars

Trea Low
Paper Stars
Facebook: Paper Star Company

Wir wünschen Ihnen und Ihren Familien ein frohes Weihnachtsfest und einen guten Rutsch ins neue Jahr. /as

Message from the Principal

On behalf of the staff at the Surrey German Language School, we are happy to welcome you to the 2017/18 school year! We are looking forward to a productive partnership with you to ensure our children can achieve their highest potential. We recognize that in order to be successful in school, our children need support from both the home and school. We know a strong partnership with you will make a great difference in your child’s ability to learn to speak German. We encourage as much German exposure as possible to make it easier for the children in class.

Like last school year, we had again to say good-bye to five teachers. We thank Ana Kozjak, Melanie Ledlin, Vanessa Welsh,  Stefanie Müller and Ute Steves for some great school years and wish them well in the future.

We are happy to let you know that all vacant teacher spots could be filled with excellent new German teachers.

A heartfelt welcome to the new teachers and to a great new German school year. /as

Vancouver Consulate Intern Josephine Neumann visited our school on May 6 to answer questions of our students about student life in Germany.

How is it to study in Germany? What different universities are there? What entrance qualifications do you need to be able to study there? Those were just a few questions that were answered during the presentation of Josephine Neumann. Josephine is finishing her masters degree “Moving Cultures” at the Johann-Wolfgang-von-Goethe University in Frankfurt , after completing her bachelor in Translation Sciences at the University in Heidelberg, the oldest university in Germany founded in 1386. So she has lots to tell about student life in Germany.

Josephine prepared a PowerPoint Presentation with the most important information about studying in Germany which gave our students a glimpse into student life in Germany. She presented the different university levels like “Fachhochschule” and “Universität” and their differences.

What are the chances to receive a scholarship? Where do I get information about them? Josephine provided us with a lot of brochures and booklets to answer these questions.

Josephine described every day student life like living on campus, eating in the “Mensa” (German student cafeteria), preferred studying locations like the quiet libraries, semester schedule, exams etc.

For our students it was important to hear that passing the Language Diploma 2 at our school will give them the language proficiency to study in Germany. Though the Canadian Highschool Diploma is not sufficient to study at a university in Germany, an extra 1 or 2 years of additional studies are required at a “Studienkolleg” before applying to a university.

But the best of all: There are no student fees at all! German and international students are able to study for free! This is a tremendous motivation for our students to work towards their Sprachdiplom 2 to then be able to study in Germany. The classes participating at this presentation were the G7/8 with Ana Kozjak, the E7 with Melanie Ledlin and the DSD 1/2 with Anke Sabo.

A big thank you to Josephine Neumann for this great presentation and for all the various gifts from the German Consulate in Vancouver.  /as