An adventurous account from our students who went on the trip:
“Moin moin! This October half-term, we were lucky enough to have the opportunity to participate in a German exchange programme with Merchant Taylors’ School in Hamburg. We were all very excited to see our exchanges again and to stay with German host families for a week. Despite arriving late at night, we were all immediately shocked by the number of bikes and the amount of fizzy water in Hamburg!
We had the weekend to explore the city and to catch up with our exchange partners. Riya went to a chocolate factory, optical illusions display and an ice-skating disco in the evening, as well as visiting the famous Hamburg harbour and a trampoline park with some other exchanges. Tanya spent the day in Lübeck, trying different types of German marzipan and shopping in the city. She also went on the river bus through Hamburg and explored the gorgeous “Rathaus” or Town Hall. Libby spent a day in Berlin brushing up on her German history and then had a day exploring Hamburg, including watching the musical “Pretty Woman” in the evening.
Following a fun-filled yet tiring weekend, we visited “Miniaturwunderland”, an incredible miniature model version of the entire world, and walked through the centuries-old “Elbtunnel” – a tunnel which runs under one of the main rivers in Hamburg. On our second day, we were fortunate enough to experience a private tour through the world-famous Airbus Manufacturing and Research facility before enjoying some free time in the city centre.
Though we only spent one day in school, it was a definite highlight of the trip. What struck us the most, was how different (in a good way!) German school is compared to school in the UK. Not only are they allowed to wear their own clothes but the school day is considerably shorter enabling students to spend more time on activities after school.
In addition to learning and appreciating the typical German lifestyle and culture, we all agree that our language has improved and developed hugely. Alongside this we have all made long-lasting friendships with our exchanges and the other German children at school as we were so warmly welcomed. We all feel even more motivated to improve our German to help maintain such great friendships.”
By Tanya, Libby and Riya