Habitat for Humanity Romania Day 2

Today was the first day of construction work. The 12 students and two teachers were split into groups of five.

Each group was assigned different tasks. The first group was tasked with removing nails from wooden planks. Once they finished, the group helped remove water from the flooded lower level of the building.

The second group constructed cement armaments throughout the day.

The third group covered wooden beams with water and rot resistant paint. Towards the end, individuals from all groups joined together to secure small and large wooden beams which are to be used for the roof of the building.

Throughout the work day, we stopped for several breaks. During these breaks, we enjoyed cold water, lunch, and other snacks. We also met several dogs that followed us around the worksite. They were so cute!

Once the workday ended, we enjoyed dinner and some chose to bowl. Others looked around the mall and some went back to the hotel. Overall, everyone had a fun day!

 By Anika and Janne

Former H.I.S. Student Headed Back to Mayana

We had some news from Christian, a former H.I.S. student. His family left the school at the end of last year to move back to the US.

During their time at H.I.S., the family travelled to Mayana, as part of an MCP (Make Change Possible) Friends Trip. Christian will be going back to Mayana this summer. He wrote to share the following with us:

“Hello from Christian – I was a student at H.I.S and moved back to the USA last summer. Notice the frozen Lake Michigan behind me! This upcoming summer I am going on the Make Change Possible  trip to Mayana, Namibia. While I am there I will be helping the local MCP team with using computers, I am also going to help the local school with their computers.”


Saving The Seas

We are now producing nearly 300 million tons of plastic every year, half of which is for single use.

More than 8 million tons of plastic is dumped into our oceans every year.

Everyone should be aware by this point that we humans are slowly, but steadily destroying our planet. We are polluting the air and filling the sea with artificially created products, most of it is plastic.

When plastic was created in 1907, by Leo Hendrik Baekeland nobody could have prophesied that this discovery would be a leading cause for the biggest challenge humanity faces today. The death of our home. 

We have two homes when we come to this planet, our earth and our bodies. However, the one-time use of plastic and insufficient recycling of it, is indirectly harming our bodies too! Chemicals in heavily polluted waters can make their way back to us and cause serious health issues like: reproductive problems hormonal difficulties, kidney damage and nervous system damage. Therefore plastic pollution will not only harms the various different living organisms we share out planet with but also out own health, yet we are too lazy to use and reuse it mindfully.

The responsibility of taking care of our planet is not only towards all the other species that we share our planet with but also for the future generations. Every year 100,000 marine creatures die from plastic entanglement and these are only the ones found! Humans are the only species producing plastic! We talk about Zoos and animal testing being wrong, but what about the birds and the fish that we brutally murder without second thought?

You might think the plastic floating around in the oceans has nothing to do with you, because you don’t own factories or throw things into rivers. But that doesn’t mean you aren’t contributing to the problem in some way! Everyone has an influence on the situation and with that influence comes a responsibility to use it for the good. It is always easy to blame governments or companies for our dying planet, but when are you going to do something about it? Even little changes to your lifestyle can make an impact on the planet. If everyone cuts out a ecologically unfriendly habit it will improve the sea bit by bit. 

Join out campaign from the 8th-12th April. I will be be awarding ocean themed bake goods at the end of the week as prizes for the people who successfully changed one of their unsustainable habits. These can range from: cutting down on the usage of the plastic bottles, separating and recycling your trash or using re-usable shopping bags. There will also be an art installation on the first floor at the library foyer raising awareness about plastic pollution, check it out if you have time! And remember…You can never cross the ocean unless you have the courage to lose sight of the shore. You can never achieve anything unless you make sacrifices, sacrifice your usage of plastic to keep our planet alive. 

By Ishikaa and Laura

German Cultural Evening

Wie viele Schlösser gibt es in Deutschland?

Hättest du gedacht, dass es 25.000 Schlösser und Burgen in Deutschland gibt? Welche Universität ist die älteste Universität in Deutschland? Richtig! Die Karl-Ruprecht Universität Heidelberg wurde 1386 gegründet. These and more questions were part of a German Quiz presented at the German Cultural Evening.

A slideshow with German sights informed guests of historical, cultural, architectural and culinary highlights of the host country. Have you spent time at the German seaside? How many countries share a border with Germany? Thanks to the members of the CWG (Cultural Working Group) the evening turned out to be entertaining as well as informative.

A variety of German food and drinks awaited the guests as well as the musicians Claus and Klaus, who played a selection of German and international hits. “Über den Wolken – aijaijaijai – muss die Freiheit wohl grenzenlos sein….”!

Um dem Abend einen würdigen Rahmen zu geben, konnten sich Gäste im Eingangsbereich der H.I.S. vor einem Panoramabild der Heidelberger Neckarwiese fotografieren lassen. The “frame photos” will be available soon for guests to pick up and keep in memory of a fantastic evening.

Many thanks to my fellow CWG members for investing so much effort, Zeit und Herz to make the German Evening a success, ihr seid spitze!



H.I.S. Human Rights Exhibition 2019

We are very grateful to the Interkulturelles Zentrum for their initiative to include schools in a project to recognise the 70 years that the Declaration of Human Rights has been in existence.

Over the last 2 months, the MYP students have grappled with reasons behind each of the 30 articles, how they are observed and how they are, at times, trampled upon. Following their in-depth consideration of the Declaration across several subjects, the students produced thought-provoking and empowering responses. The resulting poetry, art work, biographical posters and cartoons, were the basis of our Exhibition.

The originality of the pieces of work, reflect the encouraging learning environment created by their inspirational teachers. I believe our future is in safe hands when we see the level of understanding, demonstrated by our MYP students, of the very complex topics raised through studying Human Rights.

text: KM

A Day of Service

The IB Programmes at H.I.S. facilitate a holistic approach to education. As well as academic lessons, the students have opportunities to develop their creativity, physical health, their social and emotional skills – as well as have fun.

Service is one aspect of the curriculum that is common to PYP, MYP and DP. Of course, it looks a little different depending on the age of the student, but the idea of giving our time for the good of others, is the same throughout.

To be able to identify with the experiences of our students and in turn to be able to support them effectively, the H.I.S. staff took Monday 1st October as a day of service to the Heidelberg community. We were involved in three projects; helping to sort and sell second hand clothes at the German Red Cross (DRK) store in Epplelheim, clearing weeds from the carpark at the Hoffnungskirche and supporting the keepers in various areas of the Heidelberg Zoo.

Back in school on Tuesday 2nd October, we reflected on our experiences and presented our reflections to one another.

There was an awareness of being part of a bigger picture – our small sorting or weeding contributions did not necessarily finish a job, but definitely helped!

The development of a team within a task led to increased efficiency and learning to anticipate one another’s needs – how quickly sand can be distributed!

It was rewarding to receive feedback whether verbally from those instructing us or from watching the pigs roll around excitedly in their new bed of woodchips!

We gave our day for the agenda of another, we persevered through the heat and the smells, we challenged ourselves physically… and we look forward to the next time!