Goals of our Exchanges
- To establish contacts and promote cultural exchanges with schools in the neighbouring community.
- To promote a positive image of contemporary Germany and to encourage an interest in German language and culture
- To motivate and support pupils from partner schools in their studies of German.
- To introduce our pupils and teachers to other educational systems and philosophies through visits to partner schools.
- To express our school’s good will toward and membership in the network of international schools in the London area
Schools involved in our exchanges have included: Brighton College, Gordon’s School, Greycourt School, Guildford High School, Halliford School, the Japanese School, Pimlico Academy, St Benedict’s School, St Catherine’s School, St Marylebone School, the Ursuline School and the Waldegrave School.
Types of Exchanges
School Exchange Visits: pupils and teachers from our partner schools visit the Deutsche Schule London, attending classes and engaging in special projects with our students, and then their DSL partners are invited to do the same at their school. (The result of one such exchange project with Tiffin Boys’ School in Kingston was a film on national stereotypes, “The Queen und ich”.)
Family Exchange Visits: Pupils in Years 7 through 9 meet exchange partners at their school on a Friday afternoon and then spend Friday night and Saturday with their partner’s family. Then a month later the partners reciprocate at their school and homes. This enables pupils who are studying German at local schools to be immersed in the language for a weekend and similarly enables our pupils to be immersed in English and British family life. Schools participating in this exchange are Tiffin Boys’ School, St Catherine’s School and The Waldegrave School for Girls.
Russell School Program: Students from our Years 10, 11 and 12 go to the neighbouring Russell School on Friday afternoons throughout the year to teach German language and culture to small groups of pupils in Year 5. Traditionally, these pupils visit the German School’s Weihnachtsassembly to perform German songs taught to them by their devoted teachers. Last year, these Russell school pupils and their teacher also did a project with our 4c, visiting our school and then inviting Frau Wisotzka and her class to visit them.
German Fair at Tiffin Boys’ School: Students from our Year 11 go to Tiffin Boys’ School to jointly create and run with their 6th Form an interactive German Fair for Year 7 boys in their first year of German. Tiffin and DSL students first work together at their school and ours to create varied stands for the fair. Each involves an activity or game that gets the boys to use specific German words and phrases. In the past, for example, there have been stands focusing on food, music, sports, clothes, geography, animals and holidays. This year will be the first year that we will have boys who participated in the fair in Year 7 now planning this year’s fair as 6th Formers!
Family Visit Exchange DSL & Tiffin Boys School 2011/2012
On two weekends in December 2011 and February 2012 the 4th Exchange Program with Tiffin Boys School Kingston took place.
On the first weekend we (sadly only 3 DSL boys from year 7) started with a short reception and guided tour on Friday afternoon at Tiffin and then headed to our British host families for dinner, sleepover and a well planned Saturday program. We were invited to ice skating, laser quest and tennis training, as well as delicous British family meals before being picked up by our parents on Saturday evening. For me it was very surprising to see a decorated Christmas tree already in the early days of December.
During the time before the 2nd round we all stayed in contact with our exchange partners via email or facebook. Thus the weekend hosted by DSL families was quite easy and a natural follow up. We tried to impress my exchange partner Tobias with a nice Raclette dinner and a typical German breakfast, which all went well but then chose “Grünkohl mit Mettendchen” which was a tough challenge for him! Because of a slight fever he preferred not to go bowling with us and instead played lots of board games with the whole family. We were surprised that he didn´t know the famous “Scotland Yard” game that leads through the streets of London and he enjoyed it very much!
Tobias´ and my family immediately scheduled a follow up weekend for a family get together. Overall, it was a nice experience and led to new contacts that we will all try to keep alive.Frederick Zahn, Klasse 7a
Ursuline Pupil comments on her visit to the DSL, October 9, 2009
"On the 9th October our GCSE German class together with 14 girls from Year 9 went to visit the German School in Richmond. I found the experience very interesting and relevant. As soon as we got there we were assigned to our personal tour guides. These were all students from our year. Our tour guides were very kind and could answer all the questions that we asked. I personally had the experience of seeing what it was like in a German, Geography, English and Science lesson. Other students from the Ursuline saw French, Maths, Art, Music and other lessons. They all really enjoyed them.
We all thought that the lessons were really relaxed, the teachers were less strict and the classes were much smaller than ours. The main thing that I noticed to be different was the length of their breaks (only 10 minutes) but they did have two of them in the morning! The bell was also very different to the one at the Ursuline.
Also, the teachers moved around the school and the pupils stayed in one classroom - in the Ursuline we have to move each lesson. At 12.30 we left the German School - all of us happy with the eventful day we had. Many of us exchanged MSN and Facebook addresses and we still talk to each other often. We are all glad that we had the opportunity of seeing what it is like surviving in a German School!“
Picture: Year 10 Pupils at the Ursuline High School, Wimbledon
Host parent from the DSL comments on Family Exchange with Tiffin Boys’ School, December 4, 2009
The exchange with the Tiffin Boys' School was, at least in our opinion, a great success. Julia had a wonderful time, and so did Diptarko. Funnily enough, Julia said that Diptarko was rather quiet during the first part of the exchange (in his own house), but much more lively when staying with us.
We took him to the German Christmas Market in Kingston (he hadn't been there before, even though he lives in Surbiton) and tried to teach him new words in German.
While his command of German is remarkable for someone who has been learning it for just over a year, he is, of course, not fluent in the langage.
Back at home we played Scrabble in German - I helped him because it would have been rather unfair had he played completely on his own.
Diptarko seemed fascinated with the raclette we used for dinner - as there are certain kinds of meat he doesn't eat it seemed a good idea to do that, as one can create one's dish according to one's taste.
After more board games (and about half an hour of silly German television) it was off to bed at about 10.
When Carmen and I woke up the next morning, all three children were already playing in Julia's room. I prepared a German breakfast (breadrolls from the German baker, marmelades, jams and the inevitable Nutella) after which we baked Vanillekipferl - quite fitting for the season of Advent I thought.
It was perhaps a coincidence that Julia spent Diwali with Diptarko's family and he spent a weekend in the run-up to Christmas with us, but it worked beautifully.
We tried to speak as much German as we could (even Carmen), but sometimes we had to translate things into English.
All in all it was a good experience for both children, certainly something to be recommended.