Grade Six Update

Thursday 15th September 2016

Upcoming Important Dates

Welcome to the 2016/2017 school year!

Dear Parents,

Welcome to grade six! The entire teaching team is excited to be back in action for another school year. With a new curriculum and an excellent teaching team, we're excited about the challenges and successes ahead of us all in the coming months.

This newsletter is the first of many we'll send out throughout the year - every second Thursday the Grade Six Update will be sent out to parents, and will be full of information about and pictures of the learning taking place in our classrooms.

This week we have introductions of the members of our team. Look for the next newsletter in a fortnight to read the first update about what's been going on in the classroom!


The Grade Six Team

6th Grade Teaching and CCEP Team

Ms Lynne Hope: 6a

Hi, my name is Lynne Hope. Hopefully I'm a familiar face to many of you, having previously taught in 4th and 5th Grade as well as doing substitution during my sabbatical last year. This is my 6th year here at BMS and I am very excited to be a 6th Grade Homeroom Teacher this year.

I am originally from Manchester in England and have taught in England as well as in international schools in Tanzania, Ethiopia and Libya.

Mr Riley Knight: 6b


I'm from Melbourne, Australia, where I studied History and Politics before moving onto the rather more employable discipline of Education. In May 2014, I moved to Berlin to irresponsibly squander my youth - and instead, ended up becoming a Responsible Adult with a Real Job. Things worked out pretty well, all things considered.

This is my third year at BMS. I love working here, and I'm looking forward to sharing a classroom with the children in 6b, as we read, write, sing, learn, and have a great time all year. I'm always available if you need to have a chat about anything, so please get in touch with any questions or concerns.

Mr Gavin Lamb: 6c

Hi, my name is Gavin Lamb and I am new to BMS this year. I have been teaching for over twenty years in Australia, Vietnam, and China. I have taught mostly in years 3 through 6 but I have also taught computing skills, PE and science and technology. I am excited to be teaching in upper primary again and I'm looking forward to the exhibition.

Ms Melissa Lake: 6d

Hello! I'm Melissa Lake. This is my first year here at BMS. I've moved to Berlin from Baltimore in the USA. I taught in Baltimore for many years, and before that I worked at a school in Germany for a year. My teaching experience has mostly been with upper primary, having taught sixth grade for the past 4 years. I'm very excited to be working as a sixth grade classroom teacher this year!

Frau Carina Stark: German, 6a and 6c

Welcome to the new school year!

My name is Carina Stark and I am new to BMS. This year I will be teaching German in three classes: 5d, 6a and 6c.

I am originally from Meckenheim near Bonn, but I moved to Cologne to go to University and to obtain my teaching credentials in German, Math and Science/Social Studies. I then taught at an IB school in Cologne for five years. Inspired by the international setting, I wanted to live and teach abroad myself and moved to Los Angeles in 2013 to work at a bilingual IB school.

I just recently relocated to Berlin and I feel fortunate to be joining the BMS community and to be working with your children.

If you have any questions please do not hesitate to contact me.

Frau Sarah Gerth: German, 6b and 6d

As the German teacher of 6b and 6d I would like to welcome you to a new school year at BMS and introduce myself to those of you who do not know me yet.

I am originally from Berlin but having lived in Augusta, Georgia and Perth, Australia I really appreciate the atmosphere of an international school.

After finishing my MA at Potsdam University with a degree in Primary School Education in 2015 I started working at BMS. This is my second year at BMS now and I am very excited to be teaching grade 5 and 6 this school year.

If you have any questions do not hesitate to send me an email!

Mr Jacob Christensen: CCEP, 6a

Hi, my name is Jacob Christensen. I have recently joined the BMS as a CCEP Educator. I have a Bachelor in Social Education from Denmark. In my career, I have worked with children as well as with adults with special needs. My last job was working with autistic children at a school in New York City.

I'm excited about being a part of the 6 grade level team and CCEP.

Ms Tanja Linke: CCEP, 6b

Hello my name is Tanja Linke and I am happy to be working with the students from 6b and last years teaching team. I've been working two and a half years with younger grades and I'm looking forward to a great year with the oldest students in Primary.

I grew up in Berlin but speak English and Spanish, due to personal experiences.

During my time in high school I spent one school year in Ireland. Before I started my career, I worked as a volunteer in Argentina and did a 6 month traineeship in Seville (Spain).

In my free time I love to travel, ride my bicycle, sing and dance, meet friends and do all sorts of outdoor activities.

Ms Elif Sievers: CCEP, 6c

Hi, my name is Elif. This is my second year at BMS, and I am excited to be a part of the Grade 6 team.

In 2010, I finally decided to do an apprenticeship as an Erzieherin, while studying psychology and chemistry at university. I have experience working in intercultural education settings and especially enjoy the dynamic of working with students from different cultural backgrounds. I myself, went to high school in Italy. While I lived in England, I worked as an intern at a school and later went on to work extensively with bilingual children (English/Spanish and English/German) for a few years.

I am the in-class assistant for 6c and part of the afterschool care programme at BMS. You can find me either in the CCEP area or outside on the playground!

Mr Tim Becker: CCEP, 6d

My name is Tim Becker and I am 23 years old.
I have just finished my job training as an educator in June and I am now a proud member of BMS. I predvious worked in the Kindergarden for over 3 years. This was due to the special in-service training that I chose.The first two weeks at BMS have been really great and I really appreciate the advantages of working with an international staff.

Ms Allison Eichvalds: Music

My name is Allison Eichvalds (Miss E) and I am the music teacher for the sixth graders at BMS! My aim is to engage your children with music on both a practical and theoretical level, and to help foster enthusiasm, appreciation, and understanding of music from a variety of genres. I very much look forward to working with your students this year!

Ms Felicity Mangan: Art

My Name is Felicity Mangan and l will be teaching your child Art this year.

I have been working at BMS for five years across the primary and secondary school as an Art teacher. This year 6th grade students will be refining their drawing skills and learning to develop ways to express their ideas through various media such as assemblage, collage, paint and drawing while often linking with the unit of inquiry.

Ms Karen El Falaki: Drama

Originally from Manchester, England I have lived now in Berlin for the last 28 years.

I have been a drama teacher for nearly 20 years.

I am looking forward to working with the 6th grade students this term, on many interesting and exciting projects.

Mr Angus Crisp: Physical Education

I am a Physical & Outdoor Education teacher from Tasmania. Born and raised in Hobart, I have a big interest in the wilderness, and taking students adventuring into the wilderness. I am a qualified Outdoor Guide with interests in a variety of activities.

In my free time, I enjoy bush-walking with my friends, going skiing or snowboarding up in the mountains, and taking a pleasurably Sunday to enjoy a book (or two). I've been lucky to travel some of the world, and have taught Health & Physical Education in Vietnam. I now look forward to teaching your students at BMS.

Ms Ivana Grujicic: Physical Education


I come from Serbia. I have been teaching Physical Education in Berlin Metropolitan School for three years. I am looking forward for a new school year and achieving new goals together.

Ms Jane Sayner: Learning Support Teacher

My name is Jane Sayner, I am a learning support teacher working across all grade levels. This year I will predominantly be focusing on supporting students in Mathematics. I will be running several small groups offering a variety of stimulating activities to boost learning and help foster a love of mathematics!

Ms Laura Beccherini: Learning Support Teacher

My name is Laura Beccherini, and I am delighted to be the newest member of the Learning Support team at BMS!

Originally from Montreal, Canada, I hold a Master of Educational Psychology degree from McGill University. With a specialization in Inclusive Education, I worked as a behaviour consultant/learning specialist for various private schools in Greater Montreal Region for the past ten years. I look forward to supporting Grade 6, both academically and socially, to help create a harmonious learning environment.

My educational philosophy is centered on inclusion and differentiated instruction. I am an avid user of technology in the classroom and whole-heartedly believe in dynamic, tactile and kinesthetic approaches to learning. My student expectations in school are modeled around the three R's: Respect, Responsibility and Resiliency, and I aim to foster autonomy through these principles.

Jyoti Huettlinger: English as an Additional Language

My name is Jyoti Huettlinger and I am the English as an Additional Language teacher for grade 6. Your children will know me as Ms. H. I am originally from the UK and this is my fourth year at Berlin Metropolitan School. I have taught adults and children from all around the world for the past 5 years. I worked with the current sixth grade last year, so I know everyone pretty well and I'm really excited to get involved in the new units and exhibition this year!

Contacting the Grade Six Team

Class Teachers

6a: Lynne Hope -

6b: Riley Knight -

6c: Gavin Lamb -

6d: Melissa Lake -

German Team

6a, 6c: Carina Stark -

6b, 6d: Sarah Gerth -


EAL: Jyoti Huettlinger - jyoti.huettlinger

Learning Support: Laura Harrington -

Learning Support: Laura Beccherini-

Learning Support: Jane Sayner -

Art: Felicity Mangan -

Drama: Karen El Falaki -

Physical Education: Ivana Grujicic -

Physical Education: Angus Crisp -

Library: Rana Douglas -