Last year, when Mr. McKay, the former German teacher at Hermann High School, announced he would leave Hermann, speculation as to the future of the German class sprouted throughout the school. Since the Spanish class had switched to a proctor-led class, sponsored by Rosetta Stone in 2015, many students assumed the German class would take a similar path.
“I was more scared the German class would move to Rosetta Stone because I didn’t think I would understand [the material] and I thought it would be easier if there was a teacher teaching me,” said Macie Witthaus (9).
“I was frustrated because I tried learning Spanish on Rosetta Stone and it was harder to learn. But I realize it is hard for teachers to teach different languages, especially in an online setting like Rosetta Stone,” said Anna Borgerding (12).
To many of the students’ relief, the administration found a German teacher, Ms. Maurer, who was born and raised in Mosbach, Germany, approximately 45 minutes from Heidelberg. Maurer moved to the United States in 2014 in pursuit of her graduate degree.
Having a foreign language teacher that is from the country students are studying provides a new cultural perspective for students. Since Maurer grew up with the language and culture of Germany, Maurer provides more in-depth explanations of German grammar and usage.
“It’s easier to understand what Ms. Maurer wants… she takes time, and goes in depth with her lessons,” said Witthaus
Maurer often uses stories to teach her German class, asking students to read different works in German to help them understand the use of vocabulary and grammar.
Emma Scheible (9) says, “Ms. Maurer tells us the words before we read a story, so we can translate easier, and we understand what is going on.”
“You learn more, get more out of the class with Ms. Maurer and it’s easier to understand what she wants from us,” said Witthaus.