Overview

The German Summer Study Program provides a three-week homestay and school experience. Students live with a German family, attend classes, visit regional attractions, and experience German language and culture firsthand. 

A Learning Experience Immersed in German. There is no better or more effective way to learn a language than to be immersed in the culture. The German Summer Study Program provides high school students an opportunity to improve their global awareness and intercultural understanding—and improve their language skills. Living and studying in Germany is a great way to develop international friendships that last a lifetime!

Live With a German Family.Students experience Germany as part of a family. Each student is partnered with a host brother or sister who attends the local high school. Host families are carefully chosen and every effort is made to match students with similar interests. Connecting with young Germans and being integrated into their daily life creates a unique and memorable experience.

Attend Classes. The host Gymnasium (academic high school) is still in session when the American students arrive and special arrangements are made to integrate American students into the German school. Program participants have German lessons tailored to meet their needs and also attend regular classes with their host brother/sister during the day.

Visit Fascinating Places. It’s not all about school! Local educators lead students on excursions to explore nearby cities, museums, castles, monuments and the great outdoors. On weekends, host families generally plan trips to show their visiting "son" or "daughter" the surrounding area.

Adult Supervision. Immersion in the German culture is exciting, and there is a lot to learn. From departure to Germany to arrival back in the US, students are chaperoned by a qualified American high school teacher of German. The chaperone supervises excursions, serves as a liaison with the German school, and provides the support students need when they’re away from home.

Cost and Session Information

Course sites and dates will be finalized in fall 2018 and posted on the AATG website.

4 Participant Reviews

Write a Review
The Experience of a Lifetime

The Experience of a Lifetime

5
Reviewed on 11/1/2019 by

I began my trip by taking a nervous flight to meet the group at the Chicago O’Hare international airport. That was my first time flying, so it was definitely a little nerve racking. After a while of waiting I met my group of fellow study program people and instantly I knew the program was going to be fantastic. Each one of us had our own interests and hobbies from a variety of different backgrounds, but we all shared the excitement for learning German. We got their and it was very intimidating at first. For most of us, it was the first time leaving the North American continent. Obviously the thought of everything we knew being on the other side of the Atlantic was incredibly terrifying. That being said, when we met our host families all of our tensions eased. Every host family was so excited and willing to give us the best time they possibly could. My host family took me to the grocery store and let me pick out our dinner from a German grocery store. It was full immersion into the language and culture the entire time. Do not get me wrong, there was some confusion with the language, as I am sure there will always be, but my host sister and her family were very understanding and did their best to adjust to my language abilities. Not only that, but they made sure that I knew the vocabulary for important aspects of life. By the time I was back home, I felt comfortable and fully confident in speaking and communicating in German. Overall, this is an experience I will cherish for a long time. It was definitely worth it!

Living in German and in Germany

Living in German and in Germany

5
Reviewed on 11/1/2019 by

The AATG German summer study trip to Bad Reichenhall was a fantastic opportunity and an amazing life experience. My parents had a lot of confidence in the homestay and school program which AATG has organized and offered for many years. Other students from my school had previously taken and recommended the three-week study trip. For me, the AATG trip was the culmination of my German language and culture studies. All of the elements of study came together to enable me to live life in Germany and in German. My own family does not speak German, so living with a German family and immersing in the language was a great opportunity to improve my vocabulary and speaking and comprehension skills. I made myself speak only German with my host family and was so glad I did. I enjoyed every moment with my host sister and family. They could not have been more warm and wonderful. I hiked in the mountains and a gorge with my host siblings, and we swam in the local river. We played board games together on rainy days and some evenings. My host family also took me to visit Salzburg and a huge ice cave in nearby Austria. One of my favorite moments of my homestay was when my host dad taught me to drive the tractor on their farm. I traveled to Bad Reichenhall with 19 other American rising juniors and seniors and an AATG teacher/chaperone. Our travel group took many day excursions including trips to Munich, Schloss Herrenchiemsee, and Königssee in Berchtesgaden. Our teacher was a great guide and support, and I am still in touch with many of the other students and my host sister. The trip was well organized both in the United States before our departure and during our time in Germany. I returned from the summer study trip changed positively by the language and cultural immersion but also by the opportunity to grow personally and become more independent. I plan to study abroad for a semester or a year in Germany when I am in college, and the AATG summer study trip has helped me to prepare and left me excited for the future. I absolutely recommend the AATG summer study trip as an amazing learning experience in both the language and the culture, and it will be an experience you will remember throughout your entire life.

Best Trip Ever!

Best Trip Ever!

5
Reviewed on 9/19/2018 by

When I and 12 other eager American students arrived in Germany, we felt like we were crossing the Rubicon. We weren't sure what to think of this exotic, larger-than-life opportunity yet. But, by the time the three weeks had passed of the AATG Summer Study, we'd all had the time of our lives, and didn't want to leave. I attended the AATG Summer Study in Leipzig, for 3 weeks, staying with a German host family, and attending school with my host brother most days. My family was very welcoming, and ensured I always felt at comfortable and at ease. All the host parents were caring, responsible adults who did their best to ensure the American exchange students had a good time. Everyday of the trip was full of new experiences and things to do, all planned and coordinated by AATG and the German host school. Most days, we attended school with our host brother or sister, but also did a variety of amazing excursions. On some days, we went paddling in scenic lakes, we went on trips to beautiful cities like Dresden and Berlin, and visited famous monuments and sights. Overall, we always felt excited about the new adventures and experiences the next days would bring. The total immersion in the German language worked wonders for all of our speaking/writing skills. I had difficulty understanding both written and spoken German, which, before the trip, seemed difficult to me. However, living with a German family for three weeks, and being in Germany itself, MASSIVELY improved my skills. I now feel like I have a great mastery of the language, and speak with confidence. The need to speak German wherever you go on the trip FORCES you to get good, and boosts your skills tenfold. There's something about being totally immersed in the language that no school textbook can ever match. Putting it simply, the immersion offered by the AATG Summer Study is unmatchable in its ability to hugely improve German skills. If anyone, no matter what their skill level, from beginner to advanced, wants to get better at German, go on the AATG Summer Study, and watch their German skyrocket!

A taste of freedom and maturity

A taste of freedom and maturity

4
Reviewed on 8/24/2018 by

While in Kiel, Germany, I learned a lot about myself and the world around me. I was certainly pushed to my limits on how to cope emotionally without my family and friends. The trip helped me feel more prepared for college and the world that I'll be entering soon. I guess if you can handle a foreign country, going away to school does not seem as bad anymore. It was awkward at first, there were a lot of manner things I was unsure of, and I was nervous about being around my host family constantly. Despite my nerves, I, fortunately, ended up with a wonderful host family that made me feel so welcome in their household. If anything, the school and the AATG did a good job at placing me with a family that I fit in with because my two younger host sisters reminded me of my own sister and myself. In addition, the excursions were to scenic cities such as Hamburg, where we learned lots about the history. It was also nice to spend time with the Americans, which in a way may seem like a waste to some people because when in Germany you should spend time with Germans. Regardless, it helped to have people who were going through the same culture shock process to rely on if things became too much. There were some issues with organization that should be improved upon, however, I will say that I needed this trip, and I will recommend it for dedicated students who want to get a taste of the real world in the best way possible.

4 Participant Reviews

Write a Review
The Experience of a Lifetime

The Experience of a Lifetime

5
Reviewed on 11/1/2019 by

I began my trip by taking a nervous flight to meet the group at the Chicago O’Hare international airport. That was my first time flying, so it was definitely a little nerve racking. After a while of waiting I met my group of fellow study program people and instantly I knew the program was going to be fantastic. Each one of us had our own interests and hobbies from a variety of different backgrounds, but we all shared the excitement for learning German. We got their and it was very intimidating at first. For most of us, it was the first time leaving the North American continent. Obviously the thought of everything we knew being on the other side of the Atlantic was incredibly terrifying. That being said, when we met our host families all of our tensions eased. Every host family was so excited and willing to give us the best time they possibly could. My host family took me to the grocery store and let me pick out our dinner from a German grocery store. It was full immersion into the language and culture the entire time. Do not get me wrong, there was some confusion with the language, as I am sure there will always be, but my host sister and her family were very understanding and did their best to adjust to my language abilities. Not only that, but they made sure that I knew the vocabulary for important aspects of life. By the time I was back home, I felt comfortable and fully confident in speaking and communicating in German. Overall, this is an experience I will cherish for a long time. It was definitely worth it!

Living in German and in Germany

Living in German and in Germany

5
Reviewed on 11/1/2019 by

The AATG German summer study trip to Bad Reichenhall was a fantastic opportunity and an amazing life experience. My parents had a lot of confidence in the homestay and school program which AATG has organized and offered for many years. Other students from my school had previously taken and recommended the three-week study trip. For me, the AATG trip was the culmination of my German language and culture studies. All of the elements of study came together to enable me to live life in Germany and in German. My own family does not speak German, so living with a German family and immersing in the language was a great opportunity to improve my vocabulary and speaking and comprehension skills. I made myself speak only German with my host family and was so glad I did. I enjoyed every moment with my host sister and family. They could not have been more warm and wonderful. I hiked in the mountains and a gorge with my host siblings, and we swam in the local river. We played board games together on rainy days and some evenings. My host family also took me to visit Salzburg and a huge ice cave in nearby Austria. One of my favorite moments of my homestay was when my host dad taught me to drive the tractor on their farm. I traveled to Bad Reichenhall with 19 other American rising juniors and seniors and an AATG teacher/chaperone. Our travel group took many day excursions including trips to Munich, Schloss Herrenchiemsee, and Königssee in Berchtesgaden. Our teacher was a great guide and support, and I am still in touch with many of the other students and my host sister. The trip was well organized both in the United States before our departure and during our time in Germany. I returned from the summer study trip changed positively by the language and cultural immersion but also by the opportunity to grow personally and become more independent. I plan to study abroad for a semester or a year in Germany when I am in college, and the AATG summer study trip has helped me to prepare and left me excited for the future. I absolutely recommend the AATG summer study trip as an amazing learning experience in both the language and the culture, and it will be an experience you will remember throughout your entire life.

Best Trip Ever!

Best Trip Ever!

5
Reviewed on 9/19/2018 by

When I and 12 other eager American students arrived in Germany, we felt like we were crossing the Rubicon. We weren't sure what to think of this exotic, larger-than-life opportunity yet. But, by the time the three weeks had passed of the AATG Summer Study, we'd all had the time of our lives, and didn't want to leave. I attended the AATG Summer Study in Leipzig, for 3 weeks, staying with a German host family, and attending school with my host brother most days. My family was very welcoming, and ensured I always felt at comfortable and at ease. All the host parents were caring, responsible adults who did their best to ensure the American exchange students had a good time. Everyday of the trip was full of new experiences and things to do, all planned and coordinated by AATG and the German host school. Most days, we attended school with our host brother or sister, but also did a variety of amazing excursions. On some days, we went paddling in scenic lakes, we went on trips to beautiful cities like Dresden and Berlin, and visited famous monuments and sights. Overall, we always felt excited about the new adventures and experiences the next days would bring. The total immersion in the German language worked wonders for all of our speaking/writing skills. I had difficulty understanding both written and spoken German, which, before the trip, seemed difficult to me. However, living with a German family for three weeks, and being in Germany itself, MASSIVELY improved my skills. I now feel like I have a great mastery of the language, and speak with confidence. The need to speak German wherever you go on the trip FORCES you to get good, and boosts your skills tenfold. There's something about being totally immersed in the language that no school textbook can ever match. Putting it simply, the immersion offered by the AATG Summer Study is unmatchable in its ability to hugely improve German skills. If anyone, no matter what their skill level, from beginner to advanced, wants to get better at German, go on the AATG Summer Study, and watch their German skyrocket!

A taste of freedom and maturity

A taste of freedom and maturity

4
Reviewed on 8/24/2018 by

While in Kiel, Germany, I learned a lot about myself and the world around me. I was certainly pushed to my limits on how to cope emotionally without my family and friends. The trip helped me feel more prepared for college and the world that I'll be entering soon. I guess if you can handle a foreign country, going away to school does not seem as bad anymore. It was awkward at first, there were a lot of manner things I was unsure of, and I was nervous about being around my host family constantly. Despite my nerves, I, fortunately, ended up with a wonderful host family that made me feel so welcome in their household. If anything, the school and the AATG did a good job at placing me with a family that I fit in with because my two younger host sisters reminded me of my own sister and myself. In addition, the excursions were to scenic cities such as Hamburg, where we learned lots about the history. It was also nice to spend time with the Americans, which in a way may seem like a waste to some people because when in Germany you should spend time with Germans. Regardless, it helped to have people who were going through the same culture shock process to rely on if things became too much. There were some issues with organization that should be improved upon, however, I will say that I needed this trip, and I will recommend it for dedicated students who want to get a taste of the real world in the best way possible.

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