Staff and Students from the College have just returned from a exchange visit to our link school Welfen-Gymnasium in Ravensburg Germany.
This yearly exchange saw 25 students make the long bus journey to take part in a cultural exchange. Regular reader of this site will recall that last year we hosted 30 students from Ravensburg and this was a great opportunity to renew friendships .
There is an account of the trip by two of our students.
Day 1- We arrived in Germany at 12:30pm and explored the school. We saw the difference between their school and ours; they had 5 floors and didn’t have school uniform. We then went to have dinner, the food was different, there were only two food choices which were vegetarian and pork dinner where we would have more choice at our school. When we had all finished our dinner we went to the town hall and met the mayor. We had an interesting presentation telling us the main facts of Ravensburg. When the mayor had finished speaking we paired up with our German partners then went into groups with other German and Tonypandy students. In our teams we had to do a scavenger hunt around Ravensburg. We found out about where the rich and poor lived and the different religions. The scavenger hunt then led us to our hostel where we had a good nights sleep after we had climbed the 216 steps leading to it!
Day 2– we woke at 7.00am ready for our breakfast. When we had finished our breakfast we then travelled to their school. We then experienced the different kinds of lessons. Their classrooms were very plain compered to ours and the lessons were very formal. The German students are very good at languages and can speak fluent English and French. We then visited the church which was amazing; the ceilings were painted with people in heaven to connect Christians with God. When we had finished learning and exploring the church we travelled to Bauernhaus-Museum Wolfegg. This was an outdoor museum where we visited old German houses which had interesting pasts. We then visited our German partners and their families. Some people went to the host’s houses and others did activities like bike riding and bowling. The German parents then took us back to the hostel where we talked then fell asleep.
Day 3– We visited a Zeppelin museum where we learnt about German airships. We found it very interesting and we actually went in a rebuilt air ship. It was very big and posh. After coming out of the museum we bought some ice-cream before travelling by boat to Austria which was amazing! When we arrived at Austria we waited for a bit before getting a ski lift to the top of the Austrian mountains. That evening we had a BBQ at the school with our German friends and their families.
Day 4- We got up that morning the same time as usual then went down for breakfast at 7:45am . at 8:15 we left and went to the market with our German partners. Some partners brought them goodbye gifts others brought them fruit. We had to be back at the hostel at 10:30am for the bus to be able to leave on time so we could catch the ferry back to Dover.
By Tia Kidner & Caitlin Lane-Jones