In America, there are yearbooks: pages recollecting some random faces, (too) close-up shots that will be out-fashioned in a few months or a few years if you’re lucky and have a extremely good sense of visionary fashion. Read the rest
Freundschaft ist eine Tür zwischen zwei Menschen. Sie kann manchmal knarren, sie kann klemmen, aber sie ist nie verschlossen. »
I think this quotation summarizes the meaning of friendship in a really good way and provides a wonderful metaphor. Friendship is something exceptional and incredibly precious. I think when you have found a real friend, then you won’t lose him/her anymore, no matter what has happened. Read the rest
How do you become friends with a stranger? How do you make a good strong connection with your friends? What do you do with your friends? Do you usually argue with friends, or not? What do you talk about with your friends? I think you already realized this week’s topic: it’s friendship. Read the rest
“Without music, life would be a mistake”
When one thinks about different cultures of the world, music is one of the first things that comes to mind as a central component of life. Music tells a lot about the soul of a people.
In this week’s issue, it is our pleasure to introduce you to the rich music from the countries and the hearts of our contributors. Let us rejoice to the different rhythms from around the world!
Jaime, Lars, Mary and Matt
What kind of music do you like? What kind of music do you usually listen to? Maybe some of you reading my entry are listening to your favorite music right now!
As you can guess, this week’s topic is music.
What is your image of Japanese music? Read the rest
German music…I don’t really know where I should start. I think everybody knows that some really famous composers are Germans. Johann Sebastian Bach, Ludwig van Beethoven, Georg Friedrich Händel and Wilhelm Richard Wagner are probably the most famous and also today, we have great musicians who remind us about the rich German heritage of classic music. Read the rest
By exploring Argentinian music, you will not only realize its eclectic nature, but also that it is embedded with many aspects of the Argentine culture, traditions, ways of thinking and living of Argentina’s inhabitants. From the well-known Tango to the popular Folklore, singers and song writers express love, friendship, family ties and even anger and protest. Read the rest
Going to KTV is a big thing in China. For birthday celebrations, family get-togethers, weekends hanging out, or even just killing time, KTV is a great place to go.
KTV is the place where we do karaoke. In China, we sing karaoke more privately than in the US. There are many separate karaoke boxes, and people usually sing in front of their friends instead of strangers. So even if they are not good at singing, they won’t be laughed at by others. Friends always support each other in China, and won’t laugh at you while you sing. Read the rest
When I saw the topic for this week, I instantly thought, oh great, music, so many things to say! Then I looked at my iTunes library… almost no French music in it! Well, maybe not that much to say then… Fortunately, so many tunes came to my mind and I started humming without even noticing.
French music is extremely diverse and is a great component of French culture. It is so varied that I chose to present music through a timeline, from past to present and by theme.
French music is said to be born during the Middle Ages and was mainly religious and was mostly confined to churches and sacred processions. During the same period, troubadours or minstrels created their own music tradition with songs dealing with chivalry and courtly love, close to poetry and satires. Renaissance and then Baroque music developed around ballet at the time of the court of France and it was then used as an element of ballets but also comedies such as Molière’s ones. Read the rest
We hope you all had a restful vacation! Now we’re back in full swing, and we are pleased to bring you an international education! Seriously, though, this edition is all about the “la maternelle” infant schools in France; the differences between the Hauptschule, Realschule, and Gymnasium educations; and the chain of educational development in Argentina. Did you know that mothers in China can pay 20,000 RMB to reserve spots in preschool for their 3-year-olds?
There is a lot to learn about, well, international learning, especially as it tends to differ heavily from what we take for granted in America. Read on to see how these countries deal with issues of illiteracy, high school graduation rates, the pressures that students and families feel to get a good education, and more!
Matt, Jaime, Lars, Mary
Education is so essential and still so different in every country. In Germany even the Bundesländer (states) differ in their concepts of education. Decisions about education like the school system or fees for studying are up to the states. In the state where I come from, the education starts with Kindergarten. You can enter Kindergarten by the age of 2 but it’s not an obligation. There is no fee for Kindergarten. By the age of 6 or 7, children enter the Grundschule (elementary school). They spend the first four years of their school education at this type of school. Often, the class has only one or two teachers for all subjects. New is that some pupils in the 3rd grade start to study a foreign language. After the 4th grade, students get a recommendation from their teacher for a certain type of secondary school. Read the rest
In France, like in most of Westernized countries, education is a primary concern as well as a sacred and strong institution since the French Revolution. Jules Ferry’s laws in 1881 and 1882 make education public, free, secular (non religiously affiliated) and mandatory for children from 6 to 13 years old. This law will be amended in 1959 to put the end of mandatory education to 16 years old.
French schools (from infants school to university level) start during the first week of September until late October when there are national holidays for 10 days commonly called “Les vacances de la Toussaint” (All Saints Day’s holidays). Then there is a two weeks Christmas break, a two weeks winter break, a two weeks spring break and school finishes at the end of June with two months summer holidays. Read the rest
Argentina, one of the countries with the highest literacy rates in Latin America and even the world, is the homeland of thousands of scientists and talented, professional people. One of the key figures responsible for this is President Domingo Faustino Sarmiento, who made education universal, compulsory, free and secular. In the present entry I’d like to share with the readers some characteristics of the Argentine educational system, its structure and how I happened to choose the enriching teaching profession. Read the rest