Bilingual Education

Successful bilingual learning is at our core
Contact us

Your Expectations

At a bilingual school, all children regardless of their native language or cultural background should feel equally comfortable, welcomed and challenged. We use our students' diverse cultural backgrounds as a chance to foster such an environment.

‍Your child will experience a challenging and internationally minded learning environment in which they can develop optimally.

German-speaking children will experience English like they would in a native language environment while meeting the goals of the Swiss National Curriculum, Lehrplan 21, in both languages at the highest level.

English-speaking children will be able to integrate into the local environment by learning German, experiencing the regional dialect and gaining a deeper understanding of the local culture.

Simultaneously, they continue to cultivate their native language as they would in an Anglo-Saxon educational system. This includes reading and writing skills, which, through the Swiss Matura or the International Baccalaureate (IB), gives them access to universities worldwide.

Immersive, Bilingual Education

We do not merely teach two languages. We teach in two languages. English and German are more than just subjects. They are used in both speaking and writing across the entire curriculum. Our teachers are German or English native speakers and can embed the culture of the language into their teaching, ensuring a fully immersive environment.

Bilingual Curriculum

We are a state-approved school and fulfil all requirements and goals of the Swiss National Curriculum, Lehrplan 21. We also meet international standards, using carefully selected elements from international curricula. As a result, bilingual education at our school is not limited to the respective language as a subject but encompasses all subjects. We set the same challenging requirements in both languages in all four areas (listening, speaking, reading and writing).

Educational Success in Four Key Areas

A school is responsible for more than just imparting knowledge. We emphasise the development of four core competencies to prepare your child for the world of tomorrow.
Professional expertise
To acquire knowledge and learn how to apply it.
Methodical expertise
To equip students with solid techniques and approaches to learning.
Social competence
To effectively interact with other children through age-appropriate communication and conflict management.
To encourage intrinsic motivation, independence, resilience and self-esteem.


What makes bilingual education so beneficial?

A bilingual education from the early years comes with various advantages that last a lifetime. Being able to acquire both English and German like a native speaker is clearly the largest advantage. Even if a child transitions to a monolingual education system after Primary School, the acquired language stays with them for the rest of their life. Additionally, research suggests that the brain of a bilingual learner forms differently and fosters skills such as adaptability and cultural competency, allowing one to make conceptual connections more easily.

How do bilingual classes work?

In both Pre-Kindergarten and Kindergarten, each class has one English and one German-speaking class teacher teaching together. Like in a bilingual family, children are simultaneously exposed to both languages. In Primary School, students are instructed in English and German. One native English-speaking and one native German-speaking class teacher share the responsibility for the class and coordinate their planning closely. The class has an English week where all subjects, including Mathematics and Environmental & Social Studies, are taught in English. The following week the same applies in German. Specialist subjects, such as Music, Physical Education, etc., are taught in either English or German.

What is the difference between a bilingual school and a public school?

We offer a fully immersive English and German (50:50) programme with equal instruction in both languages. As an academically rigorous school, 60 % of our students transition to a Gymnasium (secondary university prep school) compared to the local school average of 20 %. As a day school, we offer comprehensive care, including Day Care (before and after school care), catered lunches, extra-curricular activities, and a door-to-door school bus service. We celebrate our school community by organising events for our students and parents. Our small class sizes, the small and familiar environment as well as our qualified and experienced educators who view teaching as a vocation are further characteristics that make a difference towards our school. At Lakeside School, parents are viewed as partners in their child’s education.

Is bilingual education difficult?

When joining a bilingual school, it is advantageous to do so from the earliest possible point. Acquiring the additional language is easier at a young age. The older children get, the more it changes from language acquisition to an effort of language learning. However, we do accept monolingual students at primary age. For monolingual students joining us after Grade 3, we carefully assess whether our curriculum and pace of learning is suitable for the individual child.

What is the difference between a bilingual school and an international school?

As a bilingual school, we offer the best of both worlds. During the German weeks, students experience school life as they would in a German-speaking country, while their English week provides them with an experience of a school in an English-speaking country. Unlike international schools, accepting local students (Swiss passport holders) is not subject to a limited duration.

Does my child’s German suffer at a bilingual school?

A German-dominant child reaches at least the same level in German as they would in a monolingual school. For children with other language dominances, German language acquisition is slower than if they were taught in a purely German-monolingual school. In the bilingual setting, however, they benefit from also reaching a native-speaker level in English in the areas of reading and writing.

Your question was not answered?