Cheshire High School, A Report by Kristin Haase
October 3rd – October 18th: Nineteen exchange students and two teachers arrived from the Königin-Luise Schule in Köln. They were here with us at Cheshire High School for 2 weeks and attended school and lived with host families. Some events during that time were: Welcome Breakfast, a tour of Yale University and a farewell pizza party.
Every year I host an Oktoberfest in my classroom, and when the exchange students are here, I make sure to plan for a day when they can participate as well. For the Oktoberfest I take orders and buy the sausages at Noack’s in Meriden. I bring in my electric grill and grill all afternoon in the classroom. The school smells really good!
I am now in the process of planning our return exchange for August 2020. The German students are here with us in the fall in odd numbered years, and we go in the summer in the even numbered years.This exchange has been going on since 1983.
November 14th: Twelve students attended “Career Immersion Day” at
UCONN. (Students from E.O. Smith and Staples High School were also there) On this day students were able to learn about UCONN’s EuroTech program, take part in a lesson run by a TA, have lunch together and take part in a Quiz Bowl.
Wilton High School, A Report by Christine Higgins
APRIL/MAY 2019-A busy April for Wilton German students
German students at Wilton High School have had an eventful Spring. On April 3rd German students, along with other language students, competed in the COLT (Connecticut Council of Language Teachers Poetry Recitation contest) in Vernon, CT. Two German students, Caelah Kennedy & Maxwell Downing received Silver and Bronze medals. The day after, on April 4th, German students had the opportunity to go on a field trip to the Yale University Art Gallery. There, they focused discussion on artwork by German artists Cranach & Grosz, and Swiss artist, Giacometti. This field trip was in conjunction with their recent learning about Der Blaue Reiter (the Blue Rider) group. The Blue Rider group was a Munich-based art group (1911-14), and was very important to German expressionism. Artists such as Franz Marc and Wassily Kandinsky were involved in the movement, and some of their work is also on display at Yale. A delicious Swiss Fondue lunch was enjoyed at Au Chalet in New Haven after the visit to the gallery.
Shortly after this field trip, German students also had the opportunity to attend many cultural and artistic events put on by the Festival at Wilton High School the week before Spring break, including their own two German performances! German students performed in both “Deutschland hat Talent (Germany’s got Talent!)” which highlighted German pop music, poetry, classical piano, etc. and “German Fairy Tales” where students learned about the history of the fairy tales, their connection to Germany and upper-level German students performed Snow White (Schneewittchen), Hansel & Gretel & Cinderella (Aschenputtel) in German!
Lastly, six German students from Wilton High School (Melissa Arenas, Nicholas Ivanov, Tess Nobles, Sinéad Roché, Trevor Silvia, & Lukas Witzke) were honored at the annual AATG (American Association of Teachers of German) banquet held at the Norwalk Inn on April 26th for their stellar performance on the National German Exam, earning them bronze, silver, and gold medals. This banquet has over 120 students and parents in attendance and serves a traditional German meal. Current student speakers from UCONN in the EuroBiz and EuroTech Dual German degree programs, also spoke to students about the many opportunities with German in the STEM and Business career fields.
OCTOBER- It was a busy two weeks October 17-31st for the Wilton High School German classes and German Honor Society. Four students from Überlingen am Bodensee, Germany stayed with Wilton High School students and their families. This is a very exciting exchange, as it is a 40 year partnership between the town of Überlingen and the state of CT. Historically, the exchange started in Ridgefield, and now has continued with Wilton High School and Fairfield Prep leading the program. There were 23 German exchange students and two teachers here this year. Students from Wilton High School enjoyed forming transatlantic friendships, practicing their German, taking part in activities with German exchange students and Fairfield Prep students, and showing the German exchange students Fall/Halloween customs and traditions in CT.
The exchange teachers from Germany also led trips for the students to NYC, Hartford, Yale, and Fairfield. On October 28th, the German classes also celebrated German-American friendship and made intercultural connections when the WanderBus (sponsored by the Goethe Institut in Washington D.C.) came to Wilton High School for the day. On that day, not only did all 23 German exchange students come to Wilton for the day, but also, our German students had a chance to interact with them with activities provided by the WanderBus team and their teachers.
The WanderBus visited 65 schools across the country and we were one of the final stops! Students enjoyed conversing with German exchange students, but also loved the virtual reality simulators on board the WanderBus, games, prizes, and even the photo booth! A great time was had by all. The German teachers and students would like to thank the school, Dr. O’Donnell, and the families for a wonderful time had in Wilton, CT. Many memories were made on both sides.
DECEMBER- German students at Wilton High School enjoyed the annual Gingerbread house competition. This is a project in conjunction with the house and family unit, the fairy tale unit (Hansel & Gretel) and the study of the history of Lebkuchen and the city of Nuremberg.
Wesleyan University, Fall 2019, Report by Iris Bork-Goldfield
The Bauhaus was founded in 1919 and closed in 1933. One hundred years since its beginning, this school of architecture, art, and design continues to be celebrated in Germany and around the world as the model of modernism.
A poster exhibition of Bauhaus posters and works by Kandinsky, Klee, photos of buildings by Gropius and Mies van der Rohe were prominently exhibited on the fourth floor in Fisk Hall from September 1 – November 9, 2019.
Professor Joseph Siry, talked about Dessau, Then and Now: The Bauhaus and Contemporary Green Building. The Bauhaus ideal of creative collaboration for the making of modern architecture has long been identified with the Bauhaus building in Dessau of 1925–26 by Walter Gropius and Adolf Meyer. Recently the Bauhaus approach inspired the work of contemporary architects in the nearby building for Germany’s Federal Environment Agency (Umweltbundesamt) of 1998–2005, which synthesizes ideas of landscape and energy use.
Brenda Danilowitz, Chief Curator of the Josef and Anni Albers Foundation talked about Bauhaus: The Cradle of Modernism. Myth and Reality. Her talk explored some of the myths and realities that underlie the history and the idea of the Bauhaus with a digression into the contribution of Bauhaus artists Josef and Anni Albers who made their eventual home in Connecticut in 1950.
On October 11, a group of Wesleyan students and professors visited the David Zwirner gallery in NYC to view the Anni Albers and Paul Klee exhibition. Guided tour by David Leiber.
On October 25, a group of Wesleyan students and professors went on an excursion to the Josef and Anni Albers Foundation in Bethany, CT: A guided tour and hands-on activities were organized by Fritz Horstmann, Artist Residency and Education Coordinator.
Professor Joel Westerdale (Smith College) talked about The Film of Tomorrow! Walther Ruttmann and the Bauhaus. Contemporaneous with the golden age of Weimar cinema, the Bauhaus had radical filmic ambitions. Yet few of its cinematic efforts would make it beyond the draft stage. One can, however, find many of these ambitions realized in the concurrent films of Walter Ruttmann, a filmmaker with no official association with the Bauhaus, but who nevertheless falls under its sway. Presentation by Joel Westerdale, Associate Professor and Chair of the Department of German Studies, Smith College, will include clips from Ruttmann’s early abstract films, his classic Berlin, Symphony of the Big City (1927), and his work in film advertising.
On November 1, Wesleyan’s Curator Miya Tokumitsu’s and Professor Katherine Kuenzli’s special viewing of Wesleyan-owned artworks Bauhaus-affiliated artists concluded our Bauhaus series which was partly funded by the German Embassy in Washington D.C.