What comes to your mind when you hear ‚Chesterfield‘ – cigarettes or sofas? To us, it’s a mid-sized town in England that Darmstadt is twinned with and the home of St Mary’s, our partner school. Since 1990 we have hosted more than 400 English teens from St Mary’s here at Edith-Stein-Schule in our student exchange program.
What most English kids learn about German when they are here is that this strange language with its funny guttural r’s and ch’s can be used for real communication with their partners and their parents. They can also see that when they get stuck with their German their hosts will gladly turn to English. (Many Germans love English, especially the ones with a thick German accent.) After a visit to Germany all our English visitors know that ‚Bratwurst und Sauerkraut‘ is not about the spoiled kid of an unhappy German, but about happy people enjoying traditional, regional and international food. We have sometimes been able to convince our English visitors that the combination of the words ‚German‘ and ‚humor‘ is not already a grand joke, but something real.
Be that as it may, our English guests have always experienced real life in Germany – the beauties of Darmstadt – people and sights included, the day trips to old castles and modern city centers, and the heartfelt hospitality of our host families.
Curious? Y’all gotta come to Darmstadt and find out yourselves what it’s like.