LJWorld.com weblogs Fourth Grade in a Foreign Country

The First Week


Thankfully, there was a smile at the end of the first day of school. Following the smile our daughter told us how some of the girls in her class took her by the hand during class break and showed her around. The morning of the second day they took her hand from mine and as they went into the school. I hope this simple act of kindness will stay with her so that she may pass it forward.

In the meantime, I spent a great deal of time with an German-English dictionary and Google translate trying to decipher the school supply list, which was not available until the first day of school. My daughter had been nervous about not having her supplies the first day, but her dad assured her that the teacher “would not pull out a protractor on the first day”. Well, the teacher did pull out a protractor on the first day but thankfully did not expect anyone else to have one. Families here have to purchase a lengthy list of supplies, much as we do in Lawrence. Unlike the Lawrence lists, kids here purchase a lot more notebooks of paper – lined paper, blank paper, graph paper, paper with borders, paper without borders, etc. Each of these notebooks must also have a different color cover, purchased separately of course. My daughter was thrilled that students here need to have a quill type pen. They aren’t feather quills like in Harry Potter, but close enough. Students here must also bring house slippers to school for after recess (there is also something on the website about kids sweeping out the classroom and helping the janitor’s garbage, but we are not sure about this yet). After visiting four different stores we were able to get most of the supplies. I can’t say I miss the big boxes, but there are times when a Target sure is handy. On the other hand, one always passes by a bakery or a gelato stand while walking from one store to the next.


Terry Sexton 5 years, 8 months ago

Thanks for this blog. It is both fascinating & heart warming. We can learn a lot from fourth graders.

Sandy Beverly 5 years, 8 months ago

Love the image of the girls taking her hand! Wish we could all witness that kindness, and share it, every day.

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