Little did Karl Baresel know when he was a freshman in high school enrolling in the first of eight successive years of German language classes that would extend through college that someday he would teach that pluricentric language known as Deutsch to high school freshman for a living. So schließt sich der Kreis wieder, oder? (It all comes full circle, doesn’t it?)
“I never thought I’d teach German, but I’m happy to be doing it,” says Baresel, who graduated from the University of Northern Iowa in 2013 and is now halfway through his first year on the job at Valley Southwoods Freshman High School in West Des Moines where he also leads students in another class entitled Success Center.
Baresel says he was lucky to land his first teaching job at Southwoods after the school’s former German language teacher retired. In addition to having studied German for eight years, he lived in Berlin for a few months during college.
“It’s important to learn another language. It also teaches you a lot about yourself and broadens you,” he says.
Students in his German I class first learn the German alphabet, followed by words and how to carry on a simple conversation.
“They have to spend a considerable amount of time outside of class, but they work hard for me,” says Baresel, who hopes his students will complete the German language program at Valley High School and someday visit Germany.
The new teacher says he enjoys instructing freshmen and working at Southwoods.
“It’s a fun group. Lots of energy. They’re new to high school, but they’re eager to move up to Valley.
“Southwoods is a great school. The administration is very helpful, as are the other teachers. It’s a great community for a school.”