I arrived in Germany a week before I began classes at Louisenlund because the school was on Easter break. This gave me a chance to get over jet lag and to begin to explore Germany. During this time, we saw sites in Berlin, Hamburg, and Lübeck.
I got to school on Sunday evening, the day before classes began. After meeting my house father, Mr. Geest, and my roommate Oliver, I was greeted by almost everyone else in the house. I really appreciated that everyone made an effort to introduce themselves to me and also how understanding they were, even if I immediately forgot their names.
The weather has been mostly warm and sunny, which I like as it is similar to weather in California. However, sometimes the weather can change a lot in one day. It can start as sunny, then become cloudy and pour rain for an hour, and then back to sunny again. But overall it has been pleasant and warm most of the time.
Classes are from 8:15 to 5:00 in a total of 12 periods. Although it is really six as each class takes two periods, making each class 90 minutes. I am in the IB program which means all of my classes are in English, which makes it a lot easier. The entire curriculum seems to revolve around the final exams. Each teacher is constantly reminding their students how each skill can be used on the test.
The biggest differences from Athenian is that everyone must refer to teachers by Mr. or Mrs. and that they have bread and cheese for breakfast and dinner every day. One of the biggest challenges is that most people talk to each other in German only. Although most of them speak English, it can be hard getting used to not understanding what people are saying. This is especially difficult at Dennis’ house (my exchange) where he and his father are the only ones who speak any English. A piece of advice for others is to learn at least some key phrases before going off on exchange, it will help a lot. Not doing that is a mistake I made when coming to Germany.
Overall, I have had a great time in Germany. Everyone has been very welcoming and I look forward to the next two months at Lund.