In 2020, the Corporate Sustainability Handprint (CSH) Thailand team under the Social Responsibility Dimension organised a “Basic German language learning” course for GIZ Thailand and the Academy for International Cooperation (AIZ) staff. Within the period from October to December 2020, the CSH Thailand team organised the German language course online, adjusting to the COVID-19 situation by considering travel restrictions and social distancing.
This activity aimed at encouraging cooperation within the organisation through participation in classes as well as providing an introduction to basic German language for staff to enhance their skills. Ms. Stefanie Mayr and Ms. Ratchanok Suwatthanabunpot, both GIZ Thailand staff, designed and taught these “Basic German Language” classes, which covered practices on self-introduction, reading out loud in German, starting with pronouncing vowels and consonants correctly, moving on to expanding vocabulary, building sentences using household items, clothing or daily life situations such as ordering food and beverages at a restaurant. The classes included activities to practice speaking in conversations, grammar and homework exercises.
Altogether, the course consisted of 8 classes. Participants attending at least 6 of these classes were eligible to receive a certificate from Mr. Reinhold Elges, GIZ Country Director of Thailand and Malaysia. These certificates were distributed in December 2020 when completing the class, which included a test to check the learned skills.
“Learning a language is to create another soul. It is an opportunity to learn a different culture in a different way, so learning another language from your own language is like growing a second soul.”Mr. Reinhold Elges said on the final class when handing over the certificates to the students.
Based on the feedback of the students, the CSH Thailand team hopes that this activity will encourage staff to be more interested in learning German and able to apply the knowledge gained to benefit their work.
“The first impression for the Deutschkurs is that the German language is fun and a brain tricking for me. There are many things to remember, such as die Endungen of each adjective, verbs, nouns, and the orders of making a sentence. Taking the basic German class helps me understand vocabularies and useful sentences for daily communication and GIZ HQ emails. I learned not only the German language but the German culture throughout every lesson…Really appreciated! I am also looking forward to the next German course. ” Ms. Lanchakorn Prathumratana, EU SWITCH-Asia: Promoting Sustainable Consumption and Production (SCP) project.
“… I found it useful as I learn some vocabularies related to work and I get to learn some German culture as well. It feels superb when I can understand some sentences in the emails from HQ without scrolling down to an English version. If there will be an advanced German course, I will definitely join. ” Ms. Juthamanee Khotchasarnmanee, Improving Occupational Safety for Healthcare Workers in Public Hospitals in Thailand project.
“German is quite new to me and I was very excited about this class. The challenging part of learning German is noun gender (masculine, feminine and neuter). It takes time for me to remember and understand the rules …Why should a skirt (rock) be masculine and a clock (uhr) be feminine? Pronunciation is probably the hardest for me. I freaked out every time when I saw long and complexed words like “Hausaufgabenauflösung” “neunzehnhunderdvierundneuzig”. From this class, it boosted my confidence to speak German by starting with Guten Morgen!! Tschüss!! to my colleagues. Last but not least, I was so delighted to be a part of this pilot German class. I love my classmates and teachers and was excited to attend every lesson. Thank you CSH team for making it happen. Tschüss!!” Ms. Nichaya Surbsuk, Agriculture and food cluster.