I'm bilingual. What's your super power?
Language is a powerful foundation for learning, so we use it as a lens for understanding the world, communicating and connecting.
GSM combines proven teaching methods and curricula from Germany and the United States, crafting a unique, child-centered curriculum that represents German and New York State Department of Education standards.
Subjects are taught in German and English by native speakers. The expertly trained teachers are able to support each child’s individual needs, with attention to language level and developmental skills. Small class size (maximum 20) allows for dedicated teacher-student interaction.
GSM puts the child first: personal well-being is the foundation for all academic accomplishments… and super powers!
The GSM Curriculum
GSM has developed a bilingual curriculum that reflects German grade-level learning competencies, as well as New York State Department of Education standards. After establishing a solid foundation in both languages in kindergarten, beginning in 1st grade, instruction is split evenly between German and English, with native speakers guiding the children in their learning. Following a responsive classroom model, teachers create classrooms that are child-centered and which foster creative thinking and independent learning.
Native German teachers instruct students in German reading and writing, math, social studies, and ethics. Native English-speaking teachers teach students in English reading and writing, social studies, science, and beginning in 1st grade math. Units of study culminate in grade-wide presentations where children share with their families what they have learned. These presentations center the thematic learning from social studies (in both German and English), but highlight the skills they have acquired in all subjects (e.g. writing skills, scientific thinking, reading and public speaking).
Art, music, and movement are taught in German and English to children beginning in kindergarten. Spanish-language instruction will be introduced in 3rd grade.
Academic instruction is complemented with plenty of free play and daily visits to local parks.
How do we support our students?
Children play, learn, and explore in a thoughtfully structured classroom environment. From day one, teachers work with children to cultivate a classroom culture built upon rituals that center the child and that creates a safe and joyful learning experience. The school day begins with a morning circle and then transitions into rotations of whole-group, small group, and independent learning. This allows teachers to differentiate learning and to meet each student where they are academically and social-emotionally. Our progressive, well-rounded approach guides children in meeting all American and German learning competencies.
Manhattan parents are lucky to have two excellent German Preschools to choose from. Pusteblume, as well as Rella’s Spielhaus graduates enjoy preferred admissions.
The lower school years are a precious time. Our young learners develop skills, knowledge, and strategies to grow academically, creatively, and socially. Students build a strong academic foundation while also pursuing their unique interests as their identities develop along the path of becoming lifelong learner. German School Manhattan’s lower school academics are based on two main curricula: the German Curriculum from Thüringen and a Common Core aligned curriculum. This bilingual approach prioritizes full language immersion during the time when children are developmentally able to become entirely fluent in both English and German.
We are excited to resume our After School programming this fall! The program will be open to both GSM and non-GSM students. We will again have an exciting and diverse offering in both German and English including theater (with our longtime partners Galli Theater), outdoor soccer (with Socroc), music studio, library time, open play, and homework support. After School programs will run from 3:45PM to 5:15PM and follow the NYC Public School calendar with slight changes. The program is suitable for German and non-German speakers ages 4-12.
Our partner Galli Theater NYC runs their popular German theater camps on the days the GSM is closed for holidays. The camps follow strictest Covid Protocols. Camps run from 9AM to 3PM and can be booked on the Galli Website. For the 2022 Summer Camps GSM has partnered with Galli Theater and Deutsche Sprachschule to offer bilingual classes in July and August. Check out a wide variety of weekly themes that will appeal to young explorers ages 4-12! All camps are open to GSM students and non-GSM students.
US & German School Structure
GSM will organically grow into a full K-5 program, one grade per year.
Good to know: The US Lower School/Elementary School consists of grades, K-5.
In Germany “Grundschule” means grades 1-4. Kindergarten in Germany usually is for all kids ages 3-5 (the equivalent of preschool/pre-K/Kindergarten).
Even though our educational program is heavily influenced by the German curriculum (we refer to it as a 50/50 mixed model), we use the American terminology when we talk about Kindergarten, meaning the single year grade that leads up to first grade.
Being an independent school in the middle of NYC, we are always aiming to align our school calendar with the NY public school vacation times and holidays.