Pocatello, ID, Rotarian Craig Nickisch adds early morning Zoom to his project to teach English to students in Germany.

Zoom-assisted English Teaching in German High Schools

Rotarian Craig Nickisch (who summers in Spearfish) is continuing his support of English teaching in German High Schools. Club members may recall seeing the internet “padlet” with pictures of various American scenes, and Craig’s written texts for reading comprehension. The German teacher set up the padlet especially for distance learning. Here is the link:  https://padlet.com/isabelhassfurter/bp12u2ozrd0kqek9

This year Craig sent calendars for the students featuring America’s National Parks. Students met in “breakout session” workgroups to prepare a report on the park of each group’s choice. Craig met with the class via zoom from about 2 to 4 a.m. on January 31st. He shared his memories of each national park, including once meeting former East Germans, who when they learned that he had been a soldier in Germany, said “Except for America, we would still be behind the Iron Curtain and could not be here to visit. Thank you and thank you America.”

The class then met as one group, and after presenting their National Parks reports, had a chance to ask general questions about America. Some were surprising: Do all Americans have guns? Why do Americans drive cars instead of taking public transportation? When Americans get carryout food, is the plastic silverware thrown away? How does America integrate immigrants?  

Each question gave Craig a chance to speak about America’s development through history, and to compare the two nations and their cultures. All in all, the project has been a great success, and additional activities are planned.