"Fußballfieber" in America: the German Soccer Adventure 2012
Enlarge image Learning to play soccer and speak German at the same time! (© aufballhoehe.de) This summer, as Poland and Ukraine host the UEFA EURO 2012 tournament, Fußballfieber is not just sweeping Europe. Passion for the “beautiful game” is spilling over to North America as well, as hundreds of youngsters take part in the German Soccer Adventure 2012.
Students between the ages of 10 and 18 with an interest in soccer, and not necessarily with any prior knowledge of German, will improve their soccer skills with the help of German soccer coaches at seven summer camps held across the United States, from Ellenville, New York, to Portland, Oregon. As they learn to pass, dribble, shoot, and work as a team like the pros, they will simultaneously be introduced to vocabulary and grammar of the German language: an adventure fusing language-learning and sport!
Enlarge image A pleasant way to learn German (© aufballhoehe.de) Like the German Summer Soccer Camps which took place as part of the “do Deutsch” campaign in 2011, the program seeks to trigger in young learners an interest in German and Germany by combining language acquisition and promotion of a modern image of Germany with the medium of soccer at summer camps. Through this approach, outside the traditional classroom and textbook-centered language instruction, language is taught in a "playful" manner. For learners who have good language skills in German, the program offers an opportunity for real-world application of those skills in a fun and interactive way.
The German Soccer Adventure 2012 is supported by the German government via the Netzwerk Sprachvergnügen program for promoting German language learning in the US. It is being coordinated via a cooperation between Waldsee, the German Language Village of Concordia Language Villages in Minnesota, and the German non-profit organization Auf Ballhöhe, promoting youth education through soccer.
Over the course of the summer, as camps take place across the country, we will update this page with stories and impressions from the German coaches, as well as links to their blogs. Keep an eye out for it!