Saturday, March 19, 2011

G Is For German



Guten tag (goo ten tawk)

We are participating in the Christian Home School Hub's Passport to the World journey. This week, we're exploring Germany. Below are some interesting facts we've learned about Germany and some useful links that different homeschool families share at http://christianhomeschoolhub.spruz.com/ .

Some Interesting Facts:
- On a German Autobahn (superhighway), there is no speed limit.
- The country's full name is the Federal Republic of Germany.
- Germany shares borders with nine other countries and has coasts on the North and Baltic Seas.
- In 1961, the East Germans (communists) built a concrete wall 13 feet high to prevent East Berliners from leaving for West Germany. The wall has been knocked down in 1990; West Germany and East Germany were reunited after 40 years of separation.
- Albert Einstein and the brothers Jakob & Wilhelm Grimm taught at Humboldt Universtiy.
- Germany consists of 16 states, or Lander. The biggest state is Bavaria which was a separate kingdom until 1918.
- The Oktoberfest is Munich's famous beer festival. It 16 days, ending on the first Sunday in October.
- The Bavarian Motor Works, maker of BMW cars, is located in Munich, Germany's third largest city.
- Stuttgart, in the region called Swabia, is the home of Porsche and Mercedes-Benz cars. Mercedes-Benz is the world's oldest car factory. The first Mercedes was built in 1901.
- Ludwig van Beethoven was born in Bonn. His house is now a museum.
- The world's biggest inland port is at Duisburg, a steelmaking city on the Ruhr River.
- Pigeon racing is a favorite pastime in the Ruhrgebiet.
- Wolfsburg is the home of Volkswagen. The factory started here in the 1930s.
- German's famous sausages, known as Wursts, are made with pork.
- Some famous Germans include Johann Wolfgang von Goethe (playwright, 1749-1832), Thomas Mann (novelist, 1875-1955), Johann Sebastian Bach (composer, 1685-1750), Ludwig van Beethoven (composer, ), and Richard Wagner (composer, 1813-1883).

Some Useful Links:
- http://travelforkids.com/Funtodo/Germany/germany.htm
- http://gogermany.about.com/od/sightsandattractions/ig/Germany-with-Kids/
- http://www.historyforkids.org/learn/germans/index.htm
- http://countries.mrdonn.org/germany.html
- http://www.germany.info/kids
- http://kids.yahoo.com/reference/world-factbook/country/gm--Germany
- https://www.cia.gov/library/publications/the-world-factbook/geos/gm.html
- http://www.germanculture.com.ua/index.html
- http://www.learnhistory.org.uk/germany/

German belongs to the group of languages known as Germanic. Throughout Germany, people speak Hochdeutsch (Standard German) as well as local dialects. Written German is the same everywhere, based on the language used by Martin Luther when he translated the Bible in the 16th century.

Some Useful Words and Phrases:
Guten Morgen = Good morning
Auf Wiedersehen = Good-bye
Bitte = Please
Danke = Thank you
Wie geht es Ihnen? = How are you?
Danke, sehr gut  = Very well, thank you.

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