Author Archives: speedbird1

International Picnic 2016

160426intpicposterThe Dickens Parents’ Association is pleased to announce an exciting all-school event coming this spring:

International Picnic Bring and Eat
Tuesday, April 26, 2016
16:00-18:00 in and around House II

The International Picnic is a chance to celebrate the cultural richness at our school by sharing food from our home countries or regions of Germany!

Here’s how it works: Each family contributes a dish from their home country/region. Dishes will be arranged on tables according to continent. Each food item will be labeled with the name of the dish and what country/region it comes from. Note: This is not a fundraising event and all food and activities will be offered for free.

To add to the fun:

Native Speaker crafts projects will be on display
The Africa AG will dance
The children’s choir will sing
The Native Speakers will offer outdoor activities at the event.

So don’t miss this event! Make sure your continent or region is well represented!

Sign up with your food contribution here!

If you can help set up or clean up, please indicate this on the sign-up sheet as well.

If you have any questions, contact us at

Update on Native Speaker work

This month I taught the 4euA and 4euB classes how to make a homemade honey carrot soup. It was a big hit with all the kids and the teachers! A very healthy warm soup to bring in the winter. In 4euA, we continued on with the Middle Ages and did research, posters and a presentation of one aspect of the times. I went with the 4euB class, Mrs. Bailey and Frau Förster to the bike school so the kids could practice for their bicycle certificates. We have also started our rehearsals for the Christmas Show.

Computer club has been going well with the kids practicing on their pc and working various programs.

Theater club is very popular. Sophie and I have been working on monolgues with the kids. Some acted out what the other was saying it was very interesting and we are seeing a lot of growth in their abilities.

The Digital magazine and Computer graphics clubs are still in the learning phase. We will need a bit more time until the kids master the programs but it is coming along well and they are enjoying the work.

In science club this month things got stinky! A pirate stole our dog ‘Pipo’ and and ransomed him…so we had to polish some pennies with vinegar to trick the pirate into thinking he was getting gold coins to get the dog back!!!!! We also explored the properties of different liquids, oil, water, honey etc. We then made treasure maps out with a oil and paint printing technique. We had lots of great feedback from teachers and staff who had the kids running up to them and showing their shiny coins, one child even shouted out that it was ‘the best science class ever!!!’

In Science 6euA the children have been revising ‘body systems’ so I was assisting them with that by testing them and asking them lots of questions.

In Theatre Club we have been working on emotions and how to portray them using warm up games. We saw some promising acting this month and are excited to build on this into the next year.

In English with 4auA I have enjoyed getting to know the children and having them individually reading their school books to me.

Free time with 2euA and 2euB has been really fun this month, lots of origami, learning about Queen Victoria and her pets which really fascinated the children and making really cool Japanese dragons. I really enjoy this part of the day so much, the children are so fun and I love hearing their stories whilst we make art.

The 3euC has been busy learning all about the various celebrations that take place in November: Guy Fawkes Day, Diwali, and Thanksgiving. In their free time, a core group of boys and girls from the 3euC has proven to be particularly hardy, as they insist on going out to play football irregardless of the weather.
The 3euB have been honing their business and maths skills by playing lots of Monopoly. We also finished reading a thrilling book about two kids who stop a family of aliens from taking over the world. Most recently, we got started on a little Christmas project, which will, however, have to remain a secret for now.
The football clubs are working hard and preparing for their upcoming indoor tournaments.

Well November was quite an eventful month; in the 2EUA and 2EUB we got seriously into Ninjago Dragon Models( of my own design),which have so many pieces I had to purchase a big fat packaging tape dispenser to keep those claws and tails stuck on tight! We named the tape dispenser megaladon, because he is huge and keeps biting me. I was very proud of all my dragon riders, who put so much effort into constructing their toothy friends! For the non fire breathing crowd, we had fat little origami kittens and cat beds, a modular origami transforming star, plus lots of coloring pictures and glitter pens!

I started a second origami club this month, so now you can come and learn origami or expand your folding horizons Mondays from 14.30 to 16.00, and Tuesdays, on the lunch break, from 11.30-12:30. I am always in room 102, house one, and have a life sized ogre and/or big origami mice in the house one entrance pointing the way. Really. The magic finger gang has already started cranking out beautiful Christmas ornaments,including some modular models, which were new to all of them.

For those of you unfamiliar with modular origami, I describe it to the kids as the lego of paper. You build units of folded origami squares which you attach to other units by inserting them into each other and folding, and/ or weaving them together. There are models that use hundreds of units,our Christmas ornaments use four and six( although they look far more complicated), which I thought was a nice introduction. The transforming star was eight which every second grader who tried managed to do with minimal help.

In the New Year I am hoping to introduce Sonobe Modules, which will allow the older children to build larger geometric models, and create their own designs!

This month I have been in science class with 5euA and 5euB, we have been learning about the four seasons and the class completed their end of topic test on the Solar System. In science class with 6euB we have completed body systems presentations and moved down tp the science lab and have begun a new topic on food chemistry. In class 4B English support we have been learning about school clubs and hobbies as well as some new tongue twisters which the children are getting really good at!!!

In 3euA free time we have been on autumn walks to collect pretty leaves which had fallen all over the playground recently. We then made some boxes out of card and decorated them with the leaves we collected. We also made crete paper flower which were used as decorations for Diwali celebrations.

In science club this month things got stinky! A pirate stole out dog and and ransomed him…so we had to polish some pennies with vinigar to get the dog back!!!!! We also explored the properties of different liquids, oil, water, honey etc. We then made treasure maps out with a oil and paint printing technique.

In homework club we have seen a lot of work on the Greek gods and Athens.

On Mondays I have been helping Christine with the Origami club, it’s been a great success with kids from all different classes coming in to try their hand at making Christmas decorations, paper stars and Christmas trees. On Tuesdays I have been with class 1eua, where I read a story and then take small groups of kids to come and make beautiful flowers out of napkins and tissue paper. I have also been doing a lot of drawing with them, they are such an enthusiastic and creative class!

I have been doing Waveboarding with the kids on Tuesdays and Wednesdays and the turn out has been great. I have been seeing some regular faces every week now, with some kids coming both days if possible! On Thursdays me and Christine have been working on origami and making dragons out of paper and cardboard which the kids have loved!

In 1euB I have been working with English classes, also reading stories to the children. Other than stories , gardening we have been doing various craft projects in our free time, which the children really enjoy. We have been making bat and butterfly paper kites … That really fly !!!

Good attendance in both football groups
Football is going great and there are at least 20 participating each session which is really exciting.

It has been such an exciting week cooking with 4eu B, 5euB and 6euB. Lately we’ve had the 3euB join us and it has been fun cooking with the younger ones too. Using knives with the younger ones is tricky business and they don’t take ‘NO’ for answer. Last Friday I had Charlie H to support me and it was great. The kids adore him!! I think cookery has been handed over into good hands. We continue as always to cook fresh, health, international and colourful………

This month has been an exciting one for 3euC and 3euB with the lead up to Christmas. Christmas Origami shapes with the fabulous Christine have been appearing all over the place, students meander into her room during free time and the figures produced are fantastic. Projects for students from 3euC include making sets, sock puppets and writing amazing scripts for the adorable little characters they are creating. I have never seen children so keen to write down their fables and feel very happy that they are unwittingly improving not only their spoken and written English but also swapping cultural stories. Each puppet, through no influence of my own, seems to be coming from different parts of the globe, places where the children themselves come from or have a strong connection to. It is very exciting to watch their stories unfold. 3euB are also telling stories onto a very special Christmas CD that Debby is compiling whilst I take students aside to bake so that Debby can better focus on smaller groups at a time. This rotation of the students is working very well and the children seem to be equally excited about which ever group they are divided into for the week. 3euB are still hooked on Roald Dahl’s wonderful book ‘Danny the Champion of the World’. Chess is packed during lunch hours. Unfortunately some of the children are now working in teams and beating me….. ?

6euA science is going well. The students really respect Ms Hagmann who is an excellent teacher and it is a pleasure to help out when needed. I also help with a little extra English work with 6A and take them weekly to the library. 1euA is really cute with Ms Meyers and their reading is visually improving. Teaching is such a hard job and I really admire how all the teachers handle their students. Thanks, over and out!

Update on Native Speaker work

NEW! The Native Speakers are now part of the Library staff.

Welcome to Sara and Maria.

This school year you’ll find me in the library helping the kids get familiarized with how this kind of space operates as well as in the computer lab teaching the kiddos the basics of graphic design!

Fresh, colourful,  healthy and tasty food from around the world

During our cooking session we talk about the dish we are preparing, where it comes from and the ingredients used in it.  The children are brave enough to try the ingredients before it is cooked and tell me their honest opinion, so far mostly positive. We use seasonal vegetable, we always include 3 to 4 colours so our food look and tastes great.  The best part is everyone takes turn in chopping, setting the table, preparing the food and tidying up.  Excellent team work and best of all is they enjoy eating  together, it’s like a family. Sometimes some lucky teachers get to taste our food too……We ensure that our food is fresh, healthy and tasty.

In the year 1 science club, we have been learning the basics of how an experiment and collecting experimental data works by trying out different paper airplanes and measuring how far they fly. After that, we built our own little submarines, using diving bells, and did a number of little experiments with air and water.

The 3euB has been busy getting the garden ready for the winter. This included weeding the garden, raking leaves, and fixing the path after a digger had ruined it over the summer. We have also been reading an exciting book together about aliens.

The 3euC has been learning all about butterflies. In our free time, we have been playing lots of games, including capture the flag and football.

The girls’ football club has finally gotten going with a good-sized attendance. While the younger girls are learning the basics, the more experienced girls have started training for their first tournament in November.

I have been working in the 1euA English lessons with Ms Meyer, teaching the children to listen and identify different objects in English.  Ms Meyer, along with my assistance, makes the class as fun as possible, with the use of interesting scenarios and, of course, many coloured pencils.  I also give extra help with English for the children in class 6A on a Wednesday, after which, I take class 6A to the library to select an English book for the week.  I work with the children of 3euC on Wednesdays and Thursdays, I usually start the sessions by reading a story to them in English. On Wednesdays a number of the students from 3euC have been joining Christine’s Halloween origami classes, whilst others prefer to sit and read or play various games.  The children have been teaching me how to make friendship bracelets!  On Thursdays, after free play, the children have quiet time working on their individual folders, and I rotate around the room answering any questions the children may have about their work.  On Thursday mornings I assist in Ms Hagman’s 6euA science class.  The children have been learning about different functions of the body, which culminated in a wonderful power point presentation from each child on their allocated body system.  I also visit the class 3euA on Thursdays.  The class begins with me reading them a novel by Roald Dahl, ‘Danny, the champion of the world’ which the children are very engaged in and finishes with free time where we play many games and sometimes make beaded animals.

Twice a week I run chess club.  The children enjoy playing against each other and myself.  The children I have played against are pretty good players for their age whilst the younger ones are surprisingly very interested and are indeed beginning to understand the rules of the game.  Often they sit and watch each other, learning how to play in groups.  The atmosphere in the chess room is very relaxed and not competitive, which is nice.

Well my activities were finishing up the 3euA Science Project, where the entire class made origami models of the Tortoise Shell Butterfly in it’s 4 stages of life, egg, Caterpillar, cocoon, and mature butterfly. Three of the model designs were created by me specifically for this project.

In the 2euA,and  2euB, we opened the Halloween factory, and have churned out masses of origami bats, spiders spider webs, giant worms and bloody claws, cut out and assembled, 3D life sized models of human skulls, plus solved and colored two tricky  Halloween puzzles. The children received  treats- cool stickers for every project they completed! The 3euC comes over on Wednesday to join the fun!!

I have also started an Origami Club on Monday afternoon from 2:00-4:00, where a small but dedicated group of folders nearly cranked out their body weight in Halloween decor! It was a great start!!

On Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday I have been reading stories to the 1eua and 1eub while they have their afternoon snacks. On the days where the weathers nice enough to go outside, I take the kids to the playground and we play games such as red light green light and What’s the time Mr Wolf? Those two games are extremely popular with the children at the moment!

I have introduced colouring to the children, and they seem to really enjoy it. I have been trying to encourage them to pick something other than Ninjas and Elsa from frozen, but that’s still a working progress! Because Halloween is one of my favourite times of year, I wanted to stick with the colouring in but bring something a little more spooky to the afternoons. We have been creating Halloween paper dolls, where they have been learning how to use scissors safely. We managed to get most of them finished before the break, so I am very proud of them!

When we are finished with our afternoon activity I go back into the classroom and play a game with them until it’s time to be picked up.

On Thursdays I work with Christine in the 2eua/eub where we have been taking small groups of children into the classroom to feed Christines rats, it’s all very exciting!

This month I have been doing Arts and Crafts free time with the children in 3euA, and sometimes also 3euB, on Wednesday afternoons! We have been making, origami heart cards, flowers, pom poms and monster munching bookmarks! It has also been a free art time where the children can draw pictures or make whatever they want to express their own creativity.

I have also been assisting in science class with 4euA and 4euB where we have been learning about the planets and creating a scale model of our solar system. In 6euB’s science class I have been assisting them with their PowerPoint presentations about the different body systems!

Monday and Wednesday I supervise Homework help during lunchtime. This month has been a mixture as usual of some of the above mentioned power point presentations, French homework and revision for spelling tests! All interesting stuff

So I’ve started reading class on Wednesday, the children come and read their class books to me. I’m doing drama class with Michael. The kids love it and our acting exercises. I’m doing free time with Christine on Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday with 2euA 2euB as well as making lots and lots of Halloween origami decorations we’ve also been doing lots of drawing and Christine had brought the rats in twice.

Football clubs both have been going well with 20 plus attending in both age groups.

With 1eu a  I have been making 3D paper sunflowers and then in the 2nd week outside for the last of the good weather!

With 1eub we were gardening for the first week and helping with Autumn crafts figures from conquers , leaves acorns etc. Story time with both classes.

Michael G
I have been working with classes 4euA and 4euB. During the free time we have been cooking. This month we created our own mini Cakes from scratch! It was very exciting to have the classes read the recipes and convert the measurements into the proper proportions. They also made their own Cookbooks for our recipes. I have also been assisting Mrs. Bailey in class working mainly with the Topic lessons and Art. We are concentrating on the Middle Ages at the moment learning the history, the life style and about Castles. I have also been helping with the English classes reading out loud and correct pronunciation.

I am currently involved in 3 Lunch Clubs: I am assisting students in the computer room in House 3 at lunch time on Mondays. Tuesday Sophie and I are running a Theater/Drama club. The kids love it, they are learning many acting exercises and emotion games. As well as how to read a script and cold readings. On Wednesday I am starting an Online Magazine for the students to learn how to create edit and publish their own Magazine. The Magazine will be available to the students at school.

Annual General Meeting

We would like to invite you to the

Annual General Meeting
on Tuesday, September 15th, 2015 at 7 p.m.

place: Mehrzweckraum of Charles Dickens School House I

The Board presents its updated charter, which has been adapted to fit the current
legal framework. In addition, certain practiced regulations are formally set
(commitment to the entire school, end of membership when leaving the school,
representation of the school management and educators in the Board, etc.).
Members are advised to approve the new charter (see Appendix).

Following the activity report of the Board and the reports of the treasurer and
auditors, the Board and two auditors will be elected.

Please think about whether you would like to be involved in the Board, contribute
your own ideas and shape the school.

1. Welcome address of the headmaster
2. Resolution of a new charter (attached)
3. Activity report
4. Financial report
5. Auditors‘ report
6. Release of the executive board
7. Election of the new executive board
8. Election of the financial auditors
9. Miscellaneous

The Board of the Förderkreis

Update on Native Speaker work for May

1euA / 1euB

May started out with a bang, as 1euA and 1euB had Cinco de Mayo Pinata parties with a huge Pinata stuffed with toys and popcorn!
Then Charly and Christine started a “Come Fly Away” project with cool paper flyers you can colour and cut out! The project featured butterflies, fairies, bats, moths, an angry birds theme plane, a dragon, a phoenix, with 5 different folding patterns!! The kids couldn’t make them fast enough!
Both classes also had a visit from the rats, Lucy and Eddie. Eddie came out of the carrier this time to watch the children, and Lucy discovered her talents as a rock star, going to ALL the children to be petted and talked to, pulling their hair, and nibbling their clothes- Lucy sure loves her classmates!!!!!

2euA / 2euB / 2euC

Nigel has been doing some gardening and helping the kids make presents for mothers´ and fathers´ day.
With 2euA Nigel has been making drinking straw rockets and he accompanied 2euB on a trip to the Okowerk.

Judy has been reading with the kids in 2euA and 2euB as well as doing arts and crafts and helping with book week projects.

Mike has been mostly playing outdoors with 2euC in the good weather and the kids have been busy learning about snails,
Mike has also been helping 2euB get the Garden of the Senses (Garten der Sinne) back in shape for the summer.

3euA / 3euB

With Nina, 3euA and 3euB have planted sunflower seeds to grow for a competition… The winners will be those who have looked after them, and got them to grow. The prizes will be given to the best sunflowers in each class before the end of term.

Michael and the kids from both classes have been creating their own ice cream floats with a variety of ice cream and sodas. Many experimented with different flavour profiles.
They also started making homemade pizza baguettes and will continue through June with this.

4euA / 4euB

Year 4 have been playing a lot of Capture the flag again as the weather has been so good.

Charly has been making colourful paper toys called flexangles and also origami planes.

Both classes went to the Grünewald with Debby and did a scavenger hunt. They had things to find and different tasks to complete in the nature.

During book week, Debby accompanied 4euA on their ‘Emil und die Detektiv tour’, as well as helped with the Berlin Project during the week and Charly accompanied 4euB to the Liebermann Villa and also helped in the class with the book week project.

We also welcome our new native speaker, Roanna, who will be helping in year 4 on Wednesday afternoons.

German Branch

Debby, Judy and Charly have been playing games with thew Jül classes on Wednesday, encouraging the kids to practise their English and introducing them to new vocabulary.

Nigel has been helping Mr Campbell in 3a, Charley has been helping in 4a and Debby has been helping in class with Mrs Hesse-Davis in 5a and 6a.

Charly has also been carrying on with arts and crafts in the Hört on Friday afternoons, introducing new crafts every week and encouraging the kids from all classes to practise their English.


In the year 1 science club, we learned about the heart by building stethoscopes and listening to our heart beats. We also built parachutes.
In the mad science club (years 3 and 4) we have been experimenting with thrust by attaching balloons to toy cars. We also planted some flower seeds and are looking forward to watching them grow.

Update on Native Speaker work

Year 1
Charly and Christine have been working on origami, paper birds and snappies.
The kids also had a visit from the rats, Eddie and Lucy which included a prep day of rat info, coloring pictures and some home movies!
Year 2
Judy has been doing some arts and crafts.
Nigel has been gardening, playing outdoors and making soap for mother’s day.
Year 3
Michael has been cooking up a storm with grade 3. They have learned how to make guacamole followed by ice cream floats. The students are really enjoying cooking and are very enthusiastic!
Nina made spring wreaths made from egg box flowers and they’re hanging on the walls in the classrooms.
Year 4
Charly made and laminated the flags for the international picnic with 4euB
Debby has been playing Capture the flag with both classes and also introduced 4euA to Geocaching.
German Branch
Debby, Judy and Charly have been playing games with thew Jül classes on Wednesday, encouraging the kids to use their English and introducing them to new vocabulary.
Nigel has been helping Mr Campbell in 3a, Charley has been helping in 4a and Debby has been helping in class with Mrs Hesse-Davis in 5a and 6a.
Charly has also been carrying on with arts and crafts in the Hört on Friday afternoons, introducing new crafts every week such as snappies, paper dolls and flower making for Mothers day.