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.


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.


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

Meadow Foam
Handcrafted Soaps and Scrubs

Anne Uebbing
German Children’s Books

Christie Colebrook
Facebook: Love Lip Magic

Antje Schoepper
Handcrafted Gemstone Jewelry

Pam Derrett
Creative Card Designer

Daniela Wilcke
Wellness Advocate

Sandra Lake
Epicurious Consultant

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

For weeks our school was preparing for the first Outdoor School Event in April. Hawthorne Park in Surrey was chosen as the location which was perfectly located close to school and had all the amenities we needed. Days before we knew the weather would not cooperate and it would rain, so lots of tents were put up.

The day started with 90 minutes of Outdoor Classes which the teachers prepared accordingly with lots of German exercises involving speaking, listening and reading. The students were then mixed up and divided into nature groups: Baum(tree), Blume(flower) etc.

Now the real fun started! The new groups were given a punch card and they had to complete every station put up by the teachers. The first task was a treasure hunt where every group had to find certain things in nature. After that the race through the stations began:

  • Seilgarten (rope garden)
  • Soccer Station
  • Sackhüpfen (Bag hopping)
  • Eierlauf (Egg race)
  • Plumpsack Game
  • Bingo Questionnaire
  • Klammerspiel (Clip game)
  • Volleyballoon
  • Dreibeinlauf (Three legged race)

Wet and happy the students were then called for the Hot Dog Lunch which was prepared by the board members. There were Hot Dogs from the BBQ,  German cucumber salad, potato salad, veggie ans fruit platter and hot chocolate.

After the lunch the main attraction took place: the Easter Egg Hunt. Off they went to fill their little Easter baskets with chocolate eggs.

Despite the weather, everyone had a good time and the plans are to make this an annual event.

See more pictures of this event in our Facebook Album: Outdoor School Event Album /as

Due to severe weather conditions our annual Christmas Celebration had to be cancelled for the first time in school history. All the students were heavily involved in the preparation for this event and it was decided in January to have at least the younger students perform their acts for the parents and families.

The performances included:

G1/2 with the Christmas Theatre Performance “Traumstern”

E3/4 performing the Christmas song “In der Weihnachtsbäckerei”

Kindergarten reciting the poem “Advent, Advent ein Lichtlein brennt”

E1/2 singing “Alle Jahre wieder”

G3/4/5/6 performing the dance “Tanzalarm am Tannenbaum”


Our November tradition continues as the younger students got involved again in the annual Lantern Parade. Or as we say in Germany the “St. Martin Umzug”. It is in memory of Martin von Tours, a Roman soldier who shared his winter coat on a cold winter’s day with a beggar.

Today the children are joining the St. Martin parade with their crafted lanterns while singing a lot of specific songs. The parade is accompanied by a man on a horse with a wide coat and the story is often re-inacted by children who gather around a large bonfire. /as

Last year 5 teachers left our school. So it was important throughout the summer to fill those vacant positions. Our Principal Axel Rechlin was busy interviewing new candidates and we can announce our new staff members:

G3/4  – Annabelle Devos

G5/6 – Vanessa Welsh

E1/2 – Stefanie Müller

E3/4 – Nadja Khadra

E5/6 – Sandra Milton

Ein herzliches Willkommen unserer neuen Lehrern! /as

After more than 30 years as a teacher Agnes Drissler is retiring as the E1/E2 teacher. For all those years Agnes was a very valuable source of knowledge. She was a teacher in the Canadian school system all her life and her experience was very precious to our school.

Also retiring is Eva Touzard who was the G7/G8 teacher for over 10 years. With her excellent German language knowledge, Eva was a valuable part of the teacher staff.

We wish both a happy German School retirement and hope to still see them once in a while at our school festivities. /as

Version 2

We are happy to announce that we will have an OPEN HOUSE again this year on May 14th. So please invite your family and friends and neighbours to check out our wonderful school!

At 11 am we will all move into the theatre where the kids will show some performances and we will say Good Bye to four of our teachers, one of them has been with us for over 30 years!

We will have a BBQ going (Hot Dogs are free for all students, they will receive a ticket from their teacher) and German Vendors are there to sell their goodies! Please make sure to bring some cash.

We are also preparing some games for the kids, like “Sackhüpfen”, “Tauziehen” and we will have the “Torwand” (soccer wall) for our kids to play, as well as a craft table for the little ones.

Pre-Registration will also be open between 9am and 10.30 am. Please fill out your registration form prior (see attached) and bring it to the “office” (room D204) together with your $100 placement fee (per student, cash or cheque).

We are still in need of volunteers for the set up. If you can spare some time, please find one of us to ask what you can help with or contact/see me in the office. Please get in touch, if you can help!

We have some great silent auction item (one of it is an “Audi Weekend Experience” which is valued at $500), so please make sure to put your bids on the bidding sheets and pick up your winnings at the end!

We would like to thank our Sponsors of this OPEN HOUSE:

  • Cowell Auto Group
  • Triple Tree Nursery, Maple Ridge
  • Armada Mortgage Corporation
  • Hansel and Gretel Bakery, Maple Ridge
  • The Firehall Bistro, Pitt Meadows
  • Von Hardenberg Candles
  • The Fast Family
  • Sew Many Threads

We are looking forward to seeing you all and pay a proper good bye to this fantastic school year! /as

Just 3 days before the Queen of England our Queen turned 90 as well! All the best wishes to Luise Roloff, a former teacher of our school, who is still involved with the Surrey German School. Luise Roloff organizes the Kaffeeklatsch with her homemade cakes and still spoils the teachers with home baked bread, cold cuts, cheeses and cake during their meetings. She is always helping out where help is needed and never misses a day of school! Thank you, Luise! /as

As you all know, the Surrey German Language School is a non-profit society and run by the Board of Directors which is comprised of parent volunteers.

The current Board consists of 8 members, most of them have been with us for quiet some time. We are expecting a significant turn over in the new school year (starting September 2016) and therefore would like to ask you to consider becoming a Board Member starting in September 2016. With us starting the search for new Board Members this early, we can make sure that there will be a smooth transition which the current Board Members are happy to assist with.

As many of you might not even know what this volunteer position entails, we would like to invite you to an Information Session for people who might be interested in learning a little bit more about it. This will be on Saturday, February 27, 2016 at 9.30 am in our “office” (which is room D 204 upstairs). We will have it coinciding with our monthly “Kaffeeklatsch”, so there will be complimentary coffee and home baked goods! Who doesn’t want yummy cake and coffee? This is the perfect place to learn a little about the positions, commitment (it’s way less than you would expect) and the fun! You won’t have to commit to anything at this time, this is purely informational!

If you can spare one Saturday per month (while school is in session) and are interested in shaping this Language School, please consider stepping up. We are a great team to work with!