German lesson, pre-school and new scholarships

Of course, there are news, interesting events…that could be reported, but I have had lots of problems here at the hotel with internet connections during the last three days. So, I have to watch out for good moments to get connected.
Tuesday morning, I started German lessons with a big group of grade 8 and 9 students. I taught them last September already, but not regularly, because I took three groups in turns, which means that I did not see them too often. We worked in the new school library, a useful room for this purpose. We made two groups of this big one. So, only a few are absent from regular lessons, and with such a small group, there is more progress and students can participate and answer more often.
They still remember quite well to introduce themselves in German, to talk about their age, where they live, if they have brothers and sisters and how many….The biggest problem is German pronunciation ( – I can understand, because I know how difficult Singhalese pronunciation is for me  ). The biggest problem for me is to make the students speak up, speak loudly. Their voices are often not strong enough to make themselves understood. So, we do some vocal exercises and try to shout as loudly as they can. They can. For a short time at least. A loud voice is important in these class rooms near the road, where all kinds of vehicles make a terrible noise. Good communication becomes difficult and the students do not really seem to be used to that way of teaching. But I am, and now they will have to cope with that method. We learn about the negation in German. The two English words “not” and “no” correspond to the German “nicht” and “kein”. And the students finally understand quite well what it means to say in German: “My father does not work in Colombo, he works in Matara”, or “Mrs Pinger has no car in Sri Lanka”. We do some more sentences, practice grammar and pronunciation, and then the lesson is finished. To be continued tomorrow.
Our president, Mr. Bernd Mertgen, arrived yesterday. That is a big pleasure and help for me. We have a look at Anura premises and discuss what the school suggests and asks for and what can be done. They discuss to start a pre-school. It seems to be a useful idea to work with pre-school-children and attract and prepare them for primary school and, later, to stay for college education. The president and I, we will talk with our constructer and make a plan. We do not have any big donations anymore; perhaps we can mobilize some humble funds that will help us to carry out such a project.
There are two more scholarship children accepted in our programme and we are lucky enough to have found corresponding sponsors. We always feel deeply touched when we feel the gratefulness, and we are happy that these “drops in the ocean” mean more than the metaphoric expression. Everything is prepared for the first support end of January, or – because of the coming weekend – beginning of February. Being accepted in our scholarship programme is a big chance for the children (when parents use this help in the way we discussed it) and emphasizes our successful work.