You are here

Educational Concept

A school, a second home. 
 
We are very proud of our students, not only because they achieve excellent academic results but also because they see BBS as their second home. 
 
One thing in advance: Berlin Bilingual Secondary school is not only only a “Gymnasium”, but also a Secondary School that has an  integrated upper level grammar school and we are supporting this concept with complete conviction. Our aim is to do the right thing for our students, whatever their individual goals and needs are, regardless of their academic achievement.
 
While our standards are set high, we follow and support each student on their own personal path of learning and growing until they will leave our school. BBS students can achieve their GCE ordinary level (MSA +) after year 10, iGCSE in science in English language in year 11 (which is optional) and the German Abitur after year 12 or 13. 
 
We are so successful because generally each class has no more than 20 to 22 students and we offer extra lessons as well as educational support structures for each students’ personal development. As such, our humanistic approach is at the heart of our educational concept. This means, for one thing, that we set a high value on social sciences like History, Geography, Political Education and Ethics. Secondly, it implies that we consider our students as individuals and as vital members of our society. They will learn to be students that are active and self-aware.
 
No matter which degree they may achieve: our goal is for our students to take pride in their personal development, instead of only measuring themselves by their academic successes and failures.
 
Our wonderfully diverse international community consists of students, their families and our staff from more than 30 countries. It creates an environment that nurtures a life-long love of learning and thus prepares students for an ever-changing world. Usually our students leave us only when they have either finished school or they decided to go back home. 

 

BBS - Personal Development Curriculum

At BBS we understand that the world our young people live in is as challenging as it is exciting. We are aware of the fact that they will need to develop more than just academic knowledge and competencies to meet these challenges. Our personal development curriculum has been created with this in mind. Simply put, the PD curriculum aims to instil four competencies in our students: confidence, knowledge, empathy and the ability to take action. These competencies are developed through teaching and project work in the areas of sex and relationships, anti-racism, nonviolent communication, drug education, online safety and anti-bullying education. Our forward-thinking curriculum is rooted in our commitment to being inclusive, factual, sex positive and anti-racist. At BBS we don't believe in trying to scare our students into making choices we have deemed appropriate. We want to inform and empower our students to make choices that are right for them.

Study and Career Orientation

The Study and Career Orientation programme follows the Berliner Programm Vertiefte Berufsorientierung (BVBO 2.0) which is a cooperation between a number of Berlin governmental agencies and schools. It aims to offer students a timely insight into their own ambitions and competencies and how these might be converted into a career or further education after finishing school.  An important aspect of the BVBO is the idea that a good understanding of themselves, combined with a thorough knowledge of the available options after the MSA or Abitur will help students to make well-informed decisions about their future.

At BBS every year students participate in a number of workshops (from Year 7 on) that focus on understanding their own ambitions and competencies. They will learn about the variety of educational opportunities and careers available after finishing school. Students will regularly visit events such as career days, open days at colleges and universities and job fairs. A key component of the programme is an internship in Year 9 where students are required to complete a full-time, two-week work placement at an organisation or company of their own choosing. 

In a nutshell, the aim of our study and career orientation programme is part of the wider BBS philosophy of empowering students to make carefully considered choices that are right for themselves, whatever those choices might be.

Workshops

In our secondary school (Gymnasium) workshops are an integral part of our holistic educational concept. In addition to the academic education it is important to us to offer our students possibilities to broaden their horizons and try new things.

Therefore our students can attend a 90 minute workshop of their choice. In Grade 7 and 8 they can choose two workshops, in grade 9 and 10 one workshop per week. After eight weeks a different selection of workshops is offered so the students can discover a new subject area. There are no workshops for grades 11 to 13.

It is very important for us to offer a wide range of workshops. The following are available:

  • Sport Workshops like Skateboarding, Rugby, Floor Hockey, Functional Training, Yoga, Dancing
  • Artistic Workshops such as Pottery, Photography, Painting, Drawing, Sewing, Crocheting
  • Academic Workshops such as Book Club, Eco Club, World Politics, Berlin History, Outdoor Science
  • Workshops that make everyday life easier like Cooking and Baking, Indoor Gardening, Homework Club, Learning Skills.

There surely is something for everyone!

Social worker/Student counsellor 

As day to day life for a teenager comes with a variety of challenges we see it as our responsibility to offer support for our students’ social and emotional well-being.

Our Students are always welcome to visit our social worker/counsellors office. They can come in to simply share their story in confidence, ask for advice or receive support.

Students can come to our counsellor’s office spontaneously or by appointment but always on a voluntary basis. From time to time they might get encouraged by staff or parents who believe students could benefit from it, however, it is never mandatory. During the visit students are free to talk openly without feeling judged. Our social worker/counsellor has an encouraging role which will help students to build up their self-confidence.

Our social worker/counsellor also has an advisory and intermediary  role to our staff and parents. She/he also supports our personal development teaching staff especially at  sex education, prevention workshops or the like.