At Hohenfels Castle the Lower School pupils, children of 10 to 13, live in a very special atmosphere – in an old castle in delightful natural surroundings and with many animals. The daily timetable [PDF file, approx. 17 KB] and the Hohenfels rules establish fixed routines and define clear limits – crucial points of reference for children at this age.
The people who live and work in a boarding school are the most important factor – particularly for Lower School pupils. Our teachers and their families and our educational assistants live together with the 84 pupils in the castle. Every pupil is part of a small group, a so-called mentor group. The mentors accompany the children throughout the day, training them, helping them, comforting them and encouraging regular contact with the parents.
An equally important aspect for the children is living together with friends of the same age in two and four-bed rooms. Sharing their daily life and discovering that they can rely on each other becomes an enriching experience for them.
The pupils have a responsibility to shape life in the castle: from helping in the kitchen to acting as a pupil representative, from distributing the post to being the school chronicler, from rubbish disposal to bell-ringing – the children take on a great variety of tasks and offices. This does not mean there is never time for fun. Whether in the choir, or learning to play a musical instrument, climbing on the climbing wall or building a hut in the woods, in a creative writing workshop or in the circus club – the children have many opportunities to discover their talents through play and put them into practice. In the course of Salem's history many customs have grown up in the Lower School which make the time spent at Hohenfels unique. The festivals we celebrate regularly each year, the school uniform, which is worn during lessons and on special occasions, or the grace said before every meal as a sign to be still – all these things are examples of the many traditions which are observed at Hohenfels.