What do playing football and learning German have in common?
We have discoverd a few things, which is why we sent twenty of our PASCH students from the school SMS Sultan Iskandar to the digital ball for a fortnight in November/December last year.
Our project with "Auf Ballhöhe" is already a tradition here in Malaysia and went into its third round in 2021. Under Covid conditions, however, we had to make some changes and could not hold the project on the football pitch where it actually belongs. So, without further ado, a digital project was created.
On six different "match days", the football-loving pupils met their coach Oli Rathenow from "Auf Ballhöhe" and were given linguistic and practical tasks in addition to content-related impulses on the topic of the ball. All this was compiled in a football booklet specially designed for this project and made accessible with links and QR codes.
In addition, there were a lot of fun facts about the sport that were new even for die-hard connoisseurs. Did you know, for example, that a Malaysian footballer was awarded the FIFA Puskas Award in 2016?
The project was divided into six match days:
1. Match Day
2. Match Day
Football in German- vocabulary around the ball
3. Match Day
Football in Germany
4. Match Day
Football in Malaysia
5. Match Day
6. Match Day
Insights into the project in the form of videos and photos can be found here!
The organisation "Auf Ballhöhe" has existed since 2004 and is based in Germany. Activities include:
Running coaching courses
Training of children and young people
Language acquisition through sport
Referee training courses
Educational courses on handicraft topics
The aim of the project work is to promote education through sport in the broader sense as well as exchange and mutual understanding between young people from different parts of the world, thus contributing to intercultural understanding and promoting tolerance.
Through sport, children, youths and young adults get to know and appreciate people from other cultures. Participation in the project thus contributes to the development of self-confidence, intercultural competences as well as professional and social skills. The aim is also to generate a sustainable positive social impact far beyond the project phase.
We are very pleased that the cooperation between the Goethe-Institut Malaysia and "Auf Ballhöhe" could be continued in digital form despite Covid-19. You have found a great coach in Oliver from our "Auf Ballhöhe" team ;-). Have fun at the digital football camp!
Matthias Eiles -Chairman of the Advisory Board and Founder of Auf Ballhöhe-
About coach Oli
Since summer 2013, Oliver Rathenow has been part of the volunteer trainer and project team of "Auf Ballhöhe" and since 2020 he has been a member of the project advisory board.
His main job since 2019 has been as a talent judge for FC Bayern Munich. He previously held a similar position at 1.FC Union Berlin. Before that, he gained many years of experience as a youth coach at the Eisernen, but also at Hertha BSC.
At the same time, the sports science graduate is a lecturer in football education at the Sports Institute of the Humboldt University in Berlin.
In addition to his many years as a youth coach, Rathenow was also involved for "Auf Ballhöhe" in various intercultural football projects in the USA, Namibia and Pakistan.