School update

Primarschule TonhalleWe went for a parent teacher interview yesterday as it will soon be the end of the school year here (in Australia we start in late January and finish in December).

It is a small school  with less than 200 students and has just one building.  I didn’t think to take a camera so snapped these very dodgy photos with my phone….

IMG_0329

When you walk in the front door you enter a large hall which has classrooms surrounding it.  In front of the classrooms are benches where the kids change their shoes (they wear slippers in the classroom) and hang their coats.  This is very different for us.  Coming from one of the warmer areas of Australia where we only get a very mild winter, most homes do not have a coat closet.   They are common in all homes here and at school.

IMG_0328Each child has their own labelled area to put their things.

Claudia is doing well at school (she is in an integration class for foreign children).  She is not quite fluent in German but has excellent comprehension and can maintain a conversation.  It is only a matter of time now.   I ask her for help frequently….  She really enjoys school but the biggest problem is socialisation.  Friends are so important and most of the kids in her class would say that it is difficult because of the many language barriers.  There are currently more than six different languages spoken in her class (and a variety of age groups).  Despite this they all do their best to try to get to know each other.

After the summer holiday (which is the new school year here starting in mid-August) Claudia will start going into a regular Swiss class (in her current school) two days per week for a few lessons.  She will be joining the class to do sport and handwork.  The kids here start learning skills such as sewing, woodwork and even metalwork in primary school.   That is one thing I have noticed about school here.  There is a big focus on nature and creating independence.  Kids here are taught from a very young age to tend to a fire and to cook on an open barbecue.  Tomorrow Claudia will go on her first excursion.  They are taking a train to the forest to go exploring and will be cooking their own lunch there.  She is very excited about this.

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