Until we move to the newly refurbished forestry commission building, the Freie Aktive Schule Syke is using the Wolkenwaldwinkel seminar rooms in Syke's Friedeholz Forest. Syke, in the northern German state of Lower Saxony, is just 20 km south of Bremen (see map below).
The school opened in August 2013 and provides schooling for two mixed-age teams at primary and secondary level. A kindergarten for pre-school children is planned to open for the 2014 autumn term, while an upper secondary learning team leading to the higher education entrance qualification will be added as pupils grow older.
Our teaching, which is aligned to the state curriculum, places particular emphasis on individualised learning methods, practical work experience, and challenging projects. It is based on the idea that children have an innate thirst for knowledge which, if supported by attentive teachers, the right materials, and a prepared learning environment, they are keen to follow independently.
English is taught through the immersion method by native speakers in each learning group. Since this new language will be used to convey subject matter, primary level children will learn it naturally.
Syke (pronounced see-kay) is a small and pleasant market town surrounded by the rolling farmland typical of the coastal sandy heathlands of northern Germany. Its villages and hamlets, with their historic farms, paddocks, and orchards, are worth exploring by bicycle or on horseback. Small museums offer a glimpse of life long past.
Syke is linked by convenient local rail connections to the lively university town of Bremen, with its historic centre, museums, art gallery, and concert hall. Travelling from Bremen airport to Syke by public transport takes less than an hour. Further afield, frequent high-speed trains connect Bremen to Hamburg and Hannover (1 hr), Berlin (3 hrs), and Frankfurt (3 hrs).