Lenape Valley students visit Germany

| 15 Feb 2012 | 09:29

    STANHOPE — Fourteen Lenape Valley High School students spent three weeks abroad in Bad Reichenhall, Germany, this past summer as part of the American Association of Teachers of German (AATG) Study Abroad Program. German teacher Sandy Newcomer organized the trip. This is her second visit to Bad Reichenhall as chaperone. She said that immersion into the German language and culture began immediately on the flight from Newark Liberty Airport. “None of [the students] had ever been to Germany before and some had never been on an airplane,” said Newcomer. “Our eight and a half hour flight on Lufthansa provided the perfect segue. The opportunities for teachable moments were bountiful.” The group was warmly greeted by local teachers who would help Newcomer with the daily lessons and activities. One was an internationally ranked extreme climber and teacher of English and geography. Another teacher specialized in the German language and culture of the region. Bad Reichenhall is replete with Alpine vistas, hiking trails, a philharmonic orchestra, and excellent spa facilities. It’s no wonder that "bad" in German means “spa” or “resort,” and Reichenhall translates to “rich in salt.” The students were thrilled. According to Newcomer, everything was carefully planned and there was no time for homesickness. “Our days were packed with exciting lessons at school and excursions to points of interest such as Herrenchiemsee, Passau, Munich, Berchtesgaden, the Königsee, and much more.“ Said she felt that the AATG Study Abroad Program is so much more than a three-week trip to Germany. “My students became more confident in their target language skills, made new friends, learned how to navigate public transportation, experienced new ways to protect the environment, and some even spoke Bayerisch (Bavarian).” All participants agreed that Bad Reichenhall was a very good experience.