Viola – Short term student from Germany
My time at Te Puke Intermediate School
On my first day, I was really excited and nervous. I was afraid the school would be so different to the one in Germany that I wouldn’t be able to manage. It really was different – we wore school uniform, had different classrooms, different lessons – but I had no problem to cope.
The teacher asked one girl, Jessie, to help me. That girl really was the right choice. She was always really patient when I didn’t understand anything or didn’t know what to do. But she wasn’t the only person who was that nice. Nearly all people in the Excel profile class and in the whole school were really nice to me. I felt accepted as a part of it from the first day.
We have many different subjects in Germany on each day, such as geography, history, German, English, and maths on Monday, IT, PE, physics, Latin, German and English on Tuesday,… As a result of that, I enjoyed it very much that we only had four terms each day.
But the best thing was people. People were there for me, where always nice to me and made my time at TPI a great, happy and unbelievable time.
They treated me so well, were always there for me, spoke to me and made no difference between me and the other students. At all times I felt completely included.
I want to say ‘thank you’ to Ms Belk, and Aryann (my teachers), to Jessie, Chloe, Cameron, Kathleen, Paige, Paige, Evie, Simran, … (my
friends) and to the principals of both schools (mine in Germany and TPI) who made may stay at TPI possible.
Back in Germany
Of course I miss New Zealand. Sometimes it´s hard to stand that I´m not there anymore. But I hope with all my heart to be able to come back some time in the future and to see my friends again.
I really miss you all
Viola’s Parents – Conny & Georg
We, a German couple, had the great opportunity to take six weeks off work to travel to New Zealand, provided that our 12-years old daugther Viola would visit school there for the time she would miss school in Germany. (In case you are wondering: This is a consequence of German law and school being compulsory.)
We chose the Bay of Plenty as the area to go to and asked a couple of schools there whether and how Viola could attend school. From the first email, our contacts with Te Puke Intermediate School were absolutely welcoming and helpful, so we got the adminstrative stuff settled soon.
From the first personal contact on school day one till the end of our all-too-short visit, we had nice talks, and where needed helpful council for both school related questions and general things like accomodation or what to visit. We felt welcome and appreciated as parents, and we felt that our daughter was appreciated and respected in the same way as all other pupils. Coming from the German school system that focuses mainly on “hard facts” and “hard skills”, it was great to hear a school official say: “Our goal is that the children like going to school.
Because if they do, they can’t help but learn things.” And it was even better to witness that this was actually made happen in school!
To sum up, as parents we can say: “Just great”, “anytime again” and “try it for yourselves”!
Conny & Georg