Seoul: Robots on the loose!

Third and fourth graders become engineers on Thursday afternoons.

The topic today are touch sensors. „Where do you find them in everyday life?”, asks the teacher of the extra-curricular activity. Many children raise their arm; some are very excited and shout that they want to give the answer.

I learn that touch sensors are used in elevators and air bags. After this short introduction, the programming begins. In pairs or by themselves, the students program their cars to go for a certain amount of seconds and then stop. They cheer each other when their cars do what they are supposed to do on the test drive, i.e. the floor at the back of the classroom.

Cairo: Junior elections

The BHS-Cairo has also participated in the Junior Elections for the Bundestag. During these elections the student representative was elected too.

Students from 10th grade prepared the elections and staffed the electoral proceedings. This exercise was not only interesting for the teachers and students of the German School: no less than four media outlets- two Egyptian TV stations, ARD radio and the Süddeutsche Zeitung – reported:

Seoul: Mapping the World

I see maps of the world and of Germany at different locations in the school. Different such ‘mappings of the world’ hang in the hallways as well as in the classroom: climate maps, political maps as well as a sticker with the slogan “world tour” that shows different means of traveling as well as the school’s location.

The map in year eight’s classroom explicitly asks for a change in perspective and thus critically reflects upon dominant mappings of the world.
What I do not see anywhere is a map of South Korea.

 

Seoul: Regional dynamics through Sports

Since today’s first long break, a big monitor in the lobby shows photos of pupils who represented the school at the East Asia Games last week. This year, the games took place in Hong Kong. Every two years, pupils of German Schools Abroad in East Asia meet and compete in individual and team sports.

 

This year, DSSI pupils also brought home the fairness cup.  Participants can be seen to represent their school at the games – photos of pupils in school T-Shirts and with the South Korean flag around their shoulders point to the interpretation that this might signify a complex bundle of cultural or nation-state meanings and ideas. A participant later tells me that pupils represent the school, but somehow also Seoul or South Korea at the games.

Cairo: A portrait of the Headmaster

Wolfgang Selbert has been Headmaster of the German School Beverly Hills Cairo since 2016.

He studied German, History and Latin and has been teaching grammar schools (Gymnasien) in Germany and abroad since 1998.
In 2002, he came to Cairo for the first time to lead the German Protestant High School in Cairo,
then he headed the Eichendorff Gymnasium in Koblenz and was director of the German Embassy School Tehran in Iran from 2010-16.
Wolfgang Selbert is assisted by Fevzi Türkyilmaz and Martin Zeisler – two enthusiastic teachers from Germany.

Mr. Selbert teaches history with full dedication. He finds his lessons to be particularly exciting when there are different views on developments in the past.
That’s why he prefers to have Egyptian and German textbooks next to each other and compare them in class.

Cairo: Müllstadt-project = student engagement and religious diversity

Since 2014, students from the BHS-Cairo have been supporting the “Müllstadt E.V.” association, which supports people in a waste suburb of Cairo. The students organize fundraisers and visit the community center sponsored by the association, a schooling center, and a kindergarten. Waste from the southern part of the metropolis is collected in this quarter. The people living here separate the rubbish in front of their huts and sell anything useful they may find in it.

For the pupils of the BHS this project means dealing with their social and environmental responsibility as well as, ultimately, with religious diversity, as many of the pupils are Muslim while the waste has been collected and used by Christians for centuries.

Seoul: Multiperspectivity and colonial history

Today, the ninth graders talk about the so-called ‘Berlin Africa conference’ of 1884/85. The headline is “scramble for Africa” and the pupils take first the perspective of colonial powers and their respective interests. Afterwards they write a diary entry from the perspective of someone suppressed by the colonial powers.

History is one of the bilingual subjects of the school which means it is taught and learnt in English and in German.