GISSV's bilingual education provides our students with a head start for today's globalized society.
Our dual-immersion concept is designed for the needs of international students, regardless of the language spoken at home. It offers children an effortless, natural language acquisition in both German and English. At GISSV, both languages are used for social as well as academic communication.
Why Bilingual Education?
Immersion in a second language equips children not only with an amazing capacity for language acquisition, but also a deep understanding of and appreciation for other cultures. Studies show that bilingual children display more creativity in problem-solving skills and possess a greater sensitivity to cognitive flexibility such as divergent thinking, concept formation, verbal abilities and general reasoning. A second language enables children to reinforce reading and writing skills as well as comprehension in their native language. And what’s more, it gives them a head start in language requirements for high school and college and offers them increased educational and career opportunities.
Video: GISSV SF Campus (old location in the Presidio)
Bilingual Concept at GISSV and Admission Requirements
Depending on the child’s ability in both German and English, GISSV offers special programs at all grade levels that support language acquisition and fluency.
While we welcome children in our Kibili program (preschool & kindergarten) with no prior knowledge of German, we recommend its acquisition as early as possible. For non-native speakers, our early education program - featuring a 50/50 immersion program - is the best entry point into our school.
In elementary school and up, admission decisions are made individually based upon language assessments.
In grades 1 and 2, German is the primary language of instruction. For English, the emphasis is initially on oral language acquisition and comprehension, with more formal instruction and subject areas added as students progress through the grades. Upon high school entry, the distribution of classes taught in German and English is again 50/50.
For students entering GISSV in grades 5 and 6 - with advanced oral skills or Level A2 language skills - we offer our German Fast Track Program. Learn more.
German is the language of Beethoven, Goethe, Einstein and many other famous thinkers and artists as well as the inventors of several innovative brands. Not to mention the soccer world champions! The most widely spoken language in the European Union, German is spoken by 120 million people and currently being taught to more than 17 million people worldwide. Germany is one of the world’s strongest economies and the home of some of the most preeminent cultural, scientific, educational and entrepreneurial institutions.
One language sets you in
a corridor for life.
Two languages open every door along the way.
Frank Smith, psycholinguist
Learn more about our language concept through the grades:
Resources on Bilingualism