Students meet exchange partners in Tiengen


Graphic by Matthew Risinger

Violet Guzman-Robles, staff reporter

On June 10, several South students taking German will be participating in a foreign exchange in which they will go to areas in Germany and Austria and stay with a host family until July 2, according to German Teacher Lauren Haugh.

Haugh says she and 13 students will be going to a town in Germany called Tiengen that borders Switzerland in the Black Forest. Haugh says the German exchange students are set to travel to Glenview and live with their partners in mid-October.

Haugh explains the purpose of this exchange is for students to practice  and improve their German and experience first-hand what being a teenager in another country feels like.

“Students gain confidence in their language [speaking skills],” Haugh said. “They have to use it in context. They have to use it to get around and then they realize how much they do know [of German].”

Haugh explained that she is most looking forward to bringing her students to the school where she had her own foreign exchange in high school and hopes they enjoy the experience as much as she did.

“It’s fun for me to take my students to where I fell in love with Germany and the German language,” Haugh said.

Junior Kamil Prazcuk says he has been able to connect with his assigned German exchange student despite not having met him yet. According to Praczuk, the South and German students were able to interact with each other through email at first, eventually leading to trading social media accounts.

“We were partnered up in January and that was when we were able to exchange information,” said Prazcuk. “Personally, I Snapchat my student almost every week just [asking] ‘what’s up’ like usual friends do.”

According to Haugh, the German students usually look most forward to seeing what the life of an average American teenager is like compared to their lives in Germany. Ultimately Haugh says that as a teacher she benefits from the experience as well.

“[Going on and organizing the trip] always has been an amazing experience to be a part of as a teacher and I get to experience new things [too] every time,” Haugh said.