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To manage classes that are taught three or five lessons per week there are two common ways. At some schools teaching 90 minutes periods there is still one minute lesson each day, mostly between the first two blocks; at other schools those subjects are taught in weekly or termly rotations. The range of offered afternoon activities is different from school to school however, most German schools offer choirs or orchestras, sometimes sports, theater or languages. Many of these are offered as semi-scholastic AG's Arbeitsgemeinschaften — literally "working groups" , which are mentioned, but not officially graded in students' reports.

Other common extracurricular activities are organized as private clubs, which are very popular in Germany. There are three blocks of lessons where each lesson takes 45 minutes. After each block, there is a break of 15—20 minutes, also after the 6th lesson the number of lessons changes from year to year, so it's possible that one would be in school until 4 o'clock. In grades 11—13, 11—12, or 12—13 depending on the school system , each student majors in two or three subjects "Leistungskurse".

These are usually taught five lessons per week. The other subjects "Grundkurse" are usually taught three periods per week. The class is supposed to train the students' scientific research skills that will be necessary in their later university life. There are huge differences between the 16 states of Germany having alternatives to this basic pattern such as Waldorfschulen or other private schools.

Adults can also go back to evening school and take the Abitur exam. In , six percent of German children attended private schools. In Germany , Article 7, Paragraph 4 of the Grundgesetz , the constitution of Germany, guarantees the right to establish private schools. This article belongs to the first part of the German basic law , which defines civil and human rights.

A right which is guaranteed in this part of the Grundgesetz can only be suspended in a state of emergency , if the respective article specifically states this possibility. That is not the case with this article. It is also not possible to abolish these rights. This unusual protection of private schools was implemented to protect them from a second Gleichschaltung or similar event in the future.

Ersatzschulen are ordinary primary or secondary schools which are run by private individuals, private organizations or religious groups. These schools offer the same types of diplomas as in public schools. However, Ersatzschulen, like their state-run counterparts, are subjected to basic government standards, such as the minimum required qualifications of teachers and pay grades.

An Ersatzschule must have at least the same academic standards as those of a state school and Article 7, Paragraph 4 of the Grundgesetz, allows to forbid the segregation of pupils according to socioeconomic status the so-called Sonderungsverbot. Therefore, most Ersatzschulen have very low tuition fees compared to those in most other Western European countries; scholarships are also often available. However, it is not possible to finance these schools with such low tuition fees: accordingly all German Ersatzschulen are subsidised with public funds.

Some students attend private schools through welfare subsidies. This is often the case if a student is considered to be a child at risk: students who have learning disabilities, special needs or come from dysfunctional home environments. After allowing for the socio-economic status of the parents, children attending private schools are not as able as those at state schools.

At the Programme for International Student Assessment PISA for example, after considering socioeconomic class, students at private schools underperformed those at state schools. Some private Realschulen and Gymnasien have lower entry requirements than public Realschulen and Gymnasien. There are several types of special schools in Germany such as:. Only one in 21 German children attends such a special school.

Teachers at those schools are qualified professionals who have specialized in special-needs education while at university. Special schools often have a very favourable student-teacher ratio and facilities compared with other schools. Special schools have been criticized. It is argued that special education separates and discriminates against those who are disabled or different. There are very few specialist schools for gifted children.

As German schools do not IQ-test children, most intellectually gifted children remain unaware that they fall into this category. The German psychologist, Detlef H. Rost, carried out a pioneer long-term study on gifted children called the Marburger Hochbegabtenprojekt. Those who scored at least two standard deviations above the mean were categorised as gifted. A total of gifted subjects participated in the study alongside controls.

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All participants in the study were tested blind with the result that they did not discover whether they were gifted or not. The study revealed that the gifted children did very well in school. The vast majority later attended a Gymnasium and achieved good grades. However, 15 percent, were classified as underachievers because they attended a Realschule two cases or a Hauptschule one case , had repeated a grade four cases or had grades that put them in the lower half of their class the rest of cases.

The report also concluded that most gifted persons had high self-esteem and good psychological health. Gifted children seemed to be served well by Germany's existing school system. The assessment in the year demonstrated serious weaknesses in German pupils' performance. In the test of 41 countries, Germany ranked 21st in reading and 20th in both mathematics and the natural sciences , prompting calls for reform.

In response, Germany's states formulated a number of specific initiatives addressing the perceived problems behind Germany's poor performance. By , German schoolchildren had improved their position compared to previous years, being ranked statistically significantly above average rank 13 in science skills and statistically not significantly above or below average in mathematical skills rank 20 and reading skills rank The PISA Examination also found big differences in achievement between students attending different types of German schools.

But what they prefer to forget is that this success came at the cost of a catastrophe in the Hauptschulen. Germany has high standards in the education of craftspeople. Historically very few people attended college. In the s for example, 80 percent had only Volksschule "primary school" -Education of 6 or 7 years.

Only 5 percent of youths entered college at this time and still fewer graduated. In the s, 6 percent of youths entered college.

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In there were still 8, cities in which no children received secondary education. In fact, many of those who did not receive secondary education were highly skilled craftspeople and members of the upper middle class. Even though more people attend college today, a craftsperson is still highly valued in German society. Historically prior to the 20th century the relationship between a master craftsman and his apprentice was paternalistic. Apprentices were often very young when entrusted to a master craftsman by their parents. It was seen as the master's responsibility not only to teach the craft, but also to instill the virtues of a good craftsman.

He was supposed to teach honour, loyalty, fair-mindedness, courtesy and compassion for the poor. He was also supposed to offer spiritual guidance, to ensure his apprentices fulfilled their religious duties and to teach them to "honour the Lord" Jesus Christ with their lives. The master craftsman who failed to do this would lose his reputation and would accordingly be dishonoured - a very bad fate in those days.

The apprenticeship ended with the so-called Freisprechung exculpation. The master announced in front of the trade heading that the apprentice had been virtuous and God-loving. He had two options: either to work for a master or to become a master himself. Working for another master had several disadvantages. One was that, in many cases, the journeyman who was not a master was not allowed to marry and found a family.

Because the church disapproved of sex outside of marriage, he was obliged to become a master if he did not want to spend his life celibate. This was called "Waltz" or Journeyman years. In those days, the crafts were called the "virtuous crafts" and the virtuosness of the craftspersons was greatly respected. Nowadays, the education of craftspersons has changed - in particular self-esteem and the concept of respectability. Also certain virtues are ascribed to certain crafts.

For example, a person might be called "always on time like a bricklayer" to describe punctuality. Today, a young person who wants to start an apprenticeship must first find an "Ausbilder": this may be a master craftsperson, a master in the industrial sector Industriemeister or someone else with proof of suitable qualifications in the training of apprentices.

The "Ausbilder" must also provide proof of no criminal record and proof of respectability. The Ausbilder has to be at least 24 years of age. The Ausbilder has several duties, such as teaching the craft and the techniques, and instilling character and social skills. In some cases, the Ausbilder must also provide board and lodging. Agreement is reached on these points before the apprenticeship begins. The apprentice will also receive payment for his work.

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An Ausbilder who provides board and lodging may set this off against the payment made. In the past, many of those who applied for an apprenticeship had only primary school education. Nowadays, only those with secondary school education apply for apprenticeships because secondary school attendance has become compulsory. In some trades, it has even become difficult for those holding the Hauptschulabschluss to find an apprenticeship because more and more pupils leave school with the Realschulabschluss or Abitur.

The apprenticeship takes three years. During that time, the apprentice is trained by the Ausbilder and also attends a vocational school. This is called the " German model " or " dual education system " "Duale Ausbildung". Germany's universities are recognised internationally; in the Academic Ranking of World Universities ARWU for , six of the top universities in the world are in Germany, and 18 of the top The dual education system combines both practical and theoretical education but does not lead to academic degrees.

It is more popular in Germany than anywhere else in the world and is a role model for other countries. The oldest universities of Germany are also among the oldest and best regarded in the world, with Heidelberg University being the oldest established in and in continuous operation since then. While German universities have a strong focus on research, a large part of it is also done outside of universities in independent institutes that are embedded in academic clusters, such as within the Max Planck , Fraunhofer , Leibniz and Helmholtz institutes.

Other degree-awarding higher education institutions may use the more generic term Hochschule. Some universities use the term research university in international usage to emphasize their strength in research activity in addition to teaching, particularly to differentiate themselves from Fachhochschulen. The excellence initiative has awarded eleven universities with the title University of Excellence. Professors at regular universities were traditionally required to have a doctorate as well as a habilitation.

Since , the junior professorship was introduced to offer a more direct path to employment as a professor for outstanding doctoral degree. Fachhochschulen have a more practical profile with a focus on employability. In research, they are rather geared to applied research instead of fundamental research. At a traditional university, it is important to study "why" a method is scientifically right; however, this is less important at Universities of Applied Sciences.

Here the emphasis is placed on what systems and methods exist, where they come from, what their advantages and disadvantages are, how to use them in practice, when they should be used, and when not. For professors at a Fachhochschule , at least three years of work experience are required for appointment while a habilitation is not expected. This is unlike their counterparts at traditional universities, where an academic career with research experience is necessary. Prior to the Bologna process , Fachhochschule graduates received a Diplom.

FH Max Mustermann for a graduate engineer from a Fachhochschule. The FH Diploma is roughly equivalent to a bachelor's degree. An FH Diploma does not qualify the holder for a doctoral program directly, but in practice universities admit the best FH graduates on an individual basis after an additional entrance exam or participation in theoretical classes.

For Fachhochschulen , the Abitur , the Fachgebundene Hochschulreife certification or the Fachhochschulreife certification general or subject-restricted is required. Lacking these school leaving certifications, in some states potential students can qualify for university entrance if they present additional formal proof that they will be able to keep up with their fellow students. Such is the case, for example, in Hamburg. While there are numerous ways to achieve entrance qualification to German universities, [58] the most traditional route has always been graduation from a Gymnasium with the Abitur; however this has become less common over time.

As of , less than half of university freshmen in some German states had graduated from a Gymnasium. Even in Bavaria a state with a policy of strengthening the Gymnasium only 56 percent of freshmen had graduated from a Gymnasium. High school diplomas received from countries outside of Germany are, in many cases, not considered equivalent to the Abitur, but rather to a Realschulabschluss and therefore do not qualify the bearer for admission to a German university.

However, it is still possible for such applicants to be admitted to a German university if they fulfill additional formal criteria, such as a particular grade point average or points on a standardized admissions test. These criteria depend on the school leaving certificate of the potential student and are agreed upon by the Standing Conference of the Ministers of Education and Cultural Affairs. For example, holders of the US high school diploma with a combined math and verbal score of on the SAT or 29 on the ACT may qualify for university admission.

Foreign students lacking the entrance qualification can acquire a degree at a Studienkolleg , which is often recognized as an equivalent to the Abitur. The one-year course covers similar topics as the Abitur and ensures sufficient language skills to take up studies at a German university. The process of application depends on the degree program applied for, the applicant's origin and the university entrance qualification.

According to German law, universities are not permitted to discriminate against or grant preferential treatment to persons on basis of race, ethnic group, gender, social class, religion or political opinion. Public universities in Germany are funded by the federal states and do not charge tuition fees. However, all enrolled students do have to pay a semester fee Semesterbeitrag. This fee consists of an administrative fee for the university only in some of the states , a fee for Studentenwerk , which is a statutory student affairs organization, a fee for the university's AStA Allgemeiner Studentenausschuss , students' government and Studentenschaft students' union , at many universities a fee for public transportation, and possibly more fees as decided by the university's students' parliament e.

In , the German Federal Constitutional Court ruled that a federal law prohibiting tuition fees was unconstitutional, on the grounds that education is the sole responsibility of the states. Due to massive student protests and a citizens' initiative which collected 70, signatures against tuition fees, the government of Hesse was the first to reverse course before the state election in ; other state governments soon followed.

Several parties which spoke out for tuition fees lost state elections. Bavaria in and Lower Saxony in were the last states to abolish tuition fees. Even after the abolition of general tuition fees, tuition fees for long-time students remain in six states. There are university-sponsored scholarships in Germany and a number of private and public institutions award scholarships—usually to cover living costs and books. Furthermore, students need to have a prospect of remaining in Germany to be eligible; this includes German and EU citizens, but often also long-term residents of other countries.

For international students there are different approaches to get a full scholarship or a funding of their studies. To be able to get a scholarship a successful application is mandatory. It can be submitted upon arrival in Germany as well as after arrival. Therefore, many foreign students have to work in order to finance their studies. Since the end of World War II , the number of young people entering a university has more than tripled in Germany, but university attendance is still lower than that of many other European nations.

This can be explained with the dual education system with its strong emphasis on apprenticeships and vocational schools. Many jobs which do require an academic degree in other countries such as nursing require completed vocational training instead in Germany. The rate of university graduates varies by federal state. The number is the highest in Berlin and the lowest in Schleswig-Holstein. The organizational structure of German universities goes back to the university model introduced by Wilhelm von Humboldt in the early 19th century, which identifies the unity of teaching and research as well as academic freedom as ideals.

This model lead to the foundation of Humboldt University of Berlin and influenced the higher education systems of numerous countries. Some critics argue that nowadays German universities have a rather unbalanced focus, more on education and less on research. At German universities, students enroll for a specific program of study Studiengang. During their studies, students can usually choose freely from all courses offered at the university. However, all bachelor's degree programs require a number of particular compulsory courses and all degree programs require a minimum number of credits that must be earned in the core field of the program of study.

It is not uncommon to spend longer than the regular period of study Regelstudienzeit at university. There are no fixed classes of students who study and graduate together. Students can change universities according to their interests and the strengths of each university. Sometimes students attend multiple different universities over the course of their studies. This mobility means that at German universities there is a freedom and individuality unknown in the US, the UK, or France. Professors also choose their subjects for research and teaching freely. This academic freedom is laid down in the German constitution.

Since German universities do not offer accommodation or meals, students are expected to organize and pay for board and lodging themselves. Inexpensive places in dormitories are available from Studentenwerk , a statutory non-profit organization for student affairs. However, there are only enough places for a fraction of students. Other common housing options include renting a private room or apartment as well as living together with one or more roommates to form a Wohngemeinschaft often abbreviated WG.

Hochbegabte Kinder im Kindergarten-erkennen, begleiten, fördern

Furthermore, many university students continue to live with their parents. One third to one half of the students works to make a little extra money, often resulting in a longer stay at university. Recently, the implementation of the Bologna Declaration introduced bachelor's and master's degrees as well as ECTS credits to the German higher education system. Previously, universities conferred Diplom and Magister degrees depending on the field of study, which usually took 4—6 years.

These were the only degrees below the doctorate. In the majority of subjects, students can only study for bachelor's and master's degrees , as Diplom or Magister courses do not accept new enrollments. However, a few Diplom courses still prevail. The following Bologna degrees are common in Germany:.

In addition, there are courses leading to the Staatsexamen state examination. These did usually not transition to bachelor's and master's degrees. For future doctors, dentists, veterinarians, pharmacists, and lawyers, the Staatsexamen is required to be allowed to work in their profession. For teachers, judges, and public prosecutors, it is the required degree for working in civil service. Students usually study at university for 4—8 years before they take the First Staatsexamen. Afterwards, they go on to work in their future jobs for one or two years depending on subject and state , before they are able to take the Second Staatsexamen , which tests their practical abilities.

While it is not an academic degree formally, the First Staatsexamen is equivalent to a master's degree and qualifies for doctoral studies. On request, some universities bestow an additional academic degree e. The highest German academic degree is the doctorate.

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Each doctoral degree has a particular designation in Latin except for engineering, where the designation is in German , which signifies in which field the doctorate is conferred in. The doctorate is indicated before the name in abbreviated form, e. Max Mustermann for a doctor in natural sciences.

The prefix "Dr. Outside of the academic context, however, the designation is usually dropped. While it is not an academic degree formally, the Habilitation is a higher, post-doctoral academic qualification for teaching independently at universities. It is indicated by appending "habil. Max Mustermann. The holder of a Habilitation may work as Privatdozent. Scientific research in Germany is conducted by universities and research institutes. The raw output of scientific research from Germany consistently ranks among the world's best.

Additionally, the Union of the German Academies of Sciences and Humanities acts as an umbrella organization for eight local academies and acatech is the Academy of Science and Engineering. Every year, Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft awards ten outstanding scientists working at German research institutions with the Gottfried Wilhelm Leibniz Prize , Germany's most important research prize.

Nowadays however the person least likely to attend a Gymnasium is a "minority youngster from the ghetto", [83] who is "the son of immigrants" [84]. The influence of social class on educational achievement is much greater in western Germany than it is in eastern Germany former GDR. An analysis of PISA data on Gymnasium pupils for the year showed that, while in western Germany the child of an academic was 7. Some people believed that immigrants were responsible, because more uneducated immigrant families lived in western than in eastern Germany.

This assumption however could not be confirmed. The difference between east and west was even stronger when only ethnic German children were studied. Social class differences in educational achievement are much more marked in Germany's big cities than they are in the rural parts of Germany. In cities with more than , inhabitants, children of academics are Males are less likely to meet the statewide performance targets, more likely to drop out of school and more likely to be classified emotionally disturbed. A lack of male role models contributes to a low academic achievement in the case of lower-class males.

Children from poor immigrant or working-class families are less likely to succeed in school than children from middle- or upper-class backgrounds. This disadvantage for the financially challenged of Germany is greater than in any other industrialized nation.

The poor also tend to be less educated. After allowing for parental education, money does not play a major role in children's academic outcomes. Immigrant children and youths, mostly of lower-class background, are the fastest-growing segment of the German population. So their prospects bear heavily on the well-being of the country.

After controlling for parental education, ethnic group does not play a role in children's academic outcomes. Immigrants from Pakistan, India, China and Vietnam perform exceptionally well. In eastern Germany, Vietnamese and Chinese of lower-class backgrounds outperform students from European backgrounds despite the fact that in most cases their parents are poorer and less educated than the parents of their European-born peers. Teachers in eastern Germany have also been shown to be more motivated than teachers in western Germany.

That might be another reason for this Asian achievement. It was carried out in Berlin, where some of the pupils started at a Gymnasium after the 4th grade, while others stayed in primary school until 6th grade and started at different schools after the 6th grade. Factors correlated with academic achievement tend to be intercorrelated that means that they are also correlated with other factors that determine academic achievement. The number of books owned by a pupil's parents, for example, is correlated with the parents' education.

Because of this Multiple Regression Analysis was used. Multiple Regression allows us to understand the influence of one variable when the other variables are held fixed. It was revealed by the study that the most important variable determining mathematical performance in the 6th grade was mathematical performance in the 4th grade. Children who have a head start in the 4th grade keep it until the 6th grade.

It was also revealed by the study that some variables were immaterial. If a language other than German is spoken in the home that was correlated with poor mathematical performance in other studies. However correlation does not imply causation and the ELEMENT-study revealed that if other factors were taken into account for the language spoken at home, this had no effect on mathematical performance. One finding is that those admitted to a Gymnasium after the fourth grade had showed better mathematical ability than those who stayed in primary school, ab initio.

That was true for all social classes. Another finding was that children of all social classes did better in the sixth grade when they were at a Gymnasium. By the end of the sixth grade, those attending a Gymnasium were two years ahead of those attending a primary school. Did the Gymnasium boost students ability? There are different opinions about this. Some argue that this is the cases and even after testing performance in grade four, those who were admitted to a Gymnasium outperformed their peers who were not at grade six. Lehman, who did the study. He stated: The findings indicate that the Gymnasium help students of all social classes reach their full mathematical potential.

The data is of high political relevance as those who are in favour of the tripartite system and those who are in favour of comprehensive schools both use it to prove their point. Those, who are in favour of comprehensive schools, claim that the data shows that the primary schools which resembles a comprehensive schools boost children's ability, while those in favour of the tripartite system argue that the data shows the Gymnasium boost students ability. Children whose families receive welfare, children whose parents dropped out of school, children of teenage parents, children raised by a lone parent, children raised in crime-ridden inner-city neighbourhoods, children who have multiple young siblings, and children who live in overcrowded substandard apartments are at risk of poor educational achievement in Germany.

Often these factors go together, making it very hard for children to overcome the odds. A number of measures have been assessed to help those children reach their full potential. Kindergarten has been shown to improve school readiness in children at risk. I remembered his passion for construction plans and suddenly the idea of letting him construct a car with a construction plan came to my mind. In order to facilitate his integration into the group he is still rather lonely , I decided to let those boys join the project, whom Max had listed in the questionnaire.

Each of them would get to construct their own vehicle, also helping each other throughout the process in both — defining individual tasks and putting them into practice. At first, I constructed a prototype see photo , so that I could present my idea of a manufacturing method to Max. I wanted to know whether he was interested in this kind of project. Unfortunately, one of them was going on holiday just around that time. The other boy, Peter, also an experienced LEGO-constructor, turned out to be rather keen on the project as well.

He, too, disposes of good experience in building LEGO following a construction plan. I then created a poster, so the children could check the materials and tools needed for the project. The objects were partially glued to e. The children were to manage the higher level of difficulty of having to identify the objects by way of my drawings. Later on, in the step-by-step instructions, they had to identify the sketches. I compiled five sketches as step-by-step instructions in DIN A4-format. Max designed a sixth sketch. Due to lack of time, I only created them either one day ahead of time, or immediately before the activity.

The instructions were always designed in the way that on the left side of the poster you could see the starting point of the particular construction phase, which was to be continued, as well as the necessary tools and materials for this phase. On the right, the individual steps of this construction-phase were portrayed in successive order. Drawing these sketches was rather challenging. Drawing a roof, perforating and gluing accordingly. Drawing the points for the axes and inserting these. First, we studied the materials- and tools-poster together. To make sure they had understood and identified everything correctly, they would tell me what they saw.

Their levels of knowledge and comprehension complemented one another well. Afterwards, we talked about the content of the first set of instructions. Both of them grasped the context and interrelations very well. Some of the more difficult parts of the plan were easier to understand by looking at the prototype.

Both went ahead rather enthusiastically, distinguishing and sorting out the needed parts from a pile of materials and tools. This took no time at all. The different size nuts, which were often hard to distinguish at mere eye-sight, posed a somewhat greater challenge. They needed four pieces of each size and came up with the idea of comparing them with the nuts glued onto the material-poster. They quickly had gathered them up and were keen on getting started with the construction.

So, by turning to the plan once more, we figured out the first constructional step together. We distinguished and picked the necessary materials and tools for this step from the already compiled collection. My unintentional mistake with one of the stencils was compensated by the boys without greater difficulty or unease. I had originally chosen a stencil fitting the surface of the box, with had a cut-away in the middle, to be transferred to the box.

By mistake, I had drawn the following steps wrong — a correction was not possible due to lack of time. Drawing the points for the axes was difficult. On the left side, you could use the stencil just as usual, but for the right point you had to turn it over and use the mirror-inverted side.

Much to my surprise, Peter immediately noticed this and was able to implement the idea. He then helped Max to transfer his points as well. What were my observations? Both children treated each other very politely and were very considerate of each other. Neither of them laughed at the other, if they made any mistakes or said something wrong.

Immediately after the activity, both children wanted to stay in the same room and play table-football, wanting no other children to join them. Afterwards, they also spent a long time building fantastic buildings with Kappla-construction-blocks together. When I asked Max at the end of the day, whether he had had a good day at the kindergarten, he smiled at me, nodded and said:. The second stage of the construction process comprised two sets of instructions: Folding and glueing the hood, as well as painting the cardboard frame with paintbrushes in colours of individual choice.

His behaviour that morning was significant. Max was the only child to leave the circle, and waiting for me so we could finally continue constructing the car. The construction steps were rather difficult to illustrate in a sketch , so we turned to the prototype for help and I set the corresponding impulses. The way the car was to be painted was easier to tell from the prototype.

Two of the older girls wanted to watch, what he was doing, and he agreed. They actually helped him hold the car, so he could reach the hidden corners, without smudging freshly painted parts. He was obviously enjoying, having won the interest of the older girls. The collaboration of the three children was quite harmonious, even though both of the girls would rather have joined this project themselves.

Since they had taken part in a previous project on letters, which was also limited to only a few children, they had no problem accepting the situation the way it was. Peter is catching up with the second and third constructional steps and Max is assisting him.

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  8. Both deal with the fourth set of instructions: Max and Peter looked at the complicated instructions on folding and glueing the hood. Max explained everything to Peter and then helped him implement the plan. Afterwards, Peter painted his car single-handedly and full of joy and creative urge, telling us, as he was painting it, why he was painting each part in which colour.

    He was completely relaxed and calmly mentioned how much he enjoyed painting. During this phase, Max accomplished to figure out the next constructional step by himself. He immediately identified the necessary materials, even though they were only displayed as sketches, as opposed to being exposed as real objects as they had been on the first poster. The number of circles which he was to draw onto corrugated cardboard and cut them out confused him.

    The car only has four wheels. After turning to the prototype, the answer became evident. Max needed my assistance when drawing and cutting out the tyres because they were rather small and cutting corrugated cardboard can be quite hard. Both children were working in a relaxed and quiet atmosphere. They were talking to one another and were in good spirits. Afterwards, both boys wanted to play table-football again, in the same room and alone.

    He had witnessed my assisting Max and now did not need any help. After Max had glued his tyres together, he made a drawing of the following constructional step: Prickling the holes in the wheels and pushing them onto the axes. In the mean time, the glue was drying, so that Max could prickle the axis-holes into his wheels immediately afterwards.

    This appeared to cause him some difficulty. Peter worked very consistently and single-handedly. On this day again, there was also a great sense of harmony between the two boys. This way, both children were at the same stage of the construction process, and Max felt good because he could develop a plan, which Peter could use afterwards. Now the buttons and pearls needed to be glued on as lamps, according to the instructions and the wheels had to be slipped onto the axes with washers as illustrated in the sketch and fastened to the car.

    The children independently identified the material as well as the constructional steps. They needed some assistance in fastening the lamps on the right side of the car. Fastening the wheels onto the axes was more of a challenge. Their self-reliance was undeminished despite the level of difficulty. Now only the wheel mounting had to dry. Max came up with the idea of attaching an antenna, which both found fantastic. Firstly, it was rather pleasing to see both of them wanting to play together in the Kappla-corner again after the activity. Their mood during this activity was once again rather pleasant and considerate.

    One could note a sense of excitement, now that the last steps of construction had been accomplished and the anticipation of the final steps and the resulting product grew. Final assembly of the car, mutual reflection of the project and documentation of the results with a camera. The Motivation was exuberantly high on this day, because the boys knew, they would finish their cars and be allowed to take them home. Afterwards, we took another look back at the initial material and tools-poster, as well as the instruction sheets of the entire project mutually.

    Both of them took turns talking, reporting, reflecting and remembered all the steps and events well. Both of them had enjoyed the project and wanted to do something similar again in the future. Then we took the photos. The end of the project was joyful, happy and full of emotion. Of course, I was rather happy about the positive feedback. Taking pictures was a lot of fun, because with the digital camera we could look at the photos immediately after taking them. The topic and level of difficulty of this project were just right, for both Max and Peter. This became evident time and again during the course of our mutual collaboration.

    The children were able to work single-handedly during the entire project, except for a few instances. My experiences concerning the making of instructional sheets: The steps need to be well prepared and intricately thought-out. Having enough time for such preparations would be helpful. Undergoing some sort of preliminary test-run with e. I found my sketches not exactly ideal, but rather good, if considering the prevalent conditions. The coincidence which led to the third boy, who was originally intended to participate, not being able to take part in the project, proved to be for the better in retrospect.

    Often a group of three can be an unfortunate constellation because two may team up and the one left has to compete with the team. This way, two boys found each other, at least over the course of the on-going project, and discovered their common interests in construction. It was a joy to see them, playing together not only during the constructional phases, but also for the hours following the activities. However, this happened only when they were alone. As soon they went outside, where there were other children present, this close connection was no longer upheld.

    Plans, Drawings, Sketches, Mind-Maps. Date of publication in German: Though I was not unfamiliar with the topic of giftedness, I was more aware of it with regard to youths and adults. In order to take part in the course I was required to spend one day per week for 2 years at a kindergarten for practical work experience. I did so along with my usual work load as a freelance teacher in adult education, and I worked in two different kindergartens consecutively.

    A 3-year-old is interested in writing. The progress the boy makes is astonishing, and so is the joy and the playful ease with which he explores writing. I was well accepted into both kindergartens. There was no monetary compensation for my work but a few of the colleagues in the team showed interest in the topic and supported my projects.

    Jerome 3;8 caught my attention the very first day. His verbal skill sticks out. Without difficulty he casts his thoughts into compound sentences with main and subordinate clause. All the while his speech is fluent, not like that of many others in the group who, as very small children often do, need to take a breath in between parts of a sentence. After a few games and talks with Jerome and a talk with his parents I started spending half an hour with Jerome alone on some of the days I was at the kindergarten.