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The Elementary Program at German International School builds on 3 core pillars:

The competency-oriented, curricula comes from Thuringia, Germany & Beijing, China

The framework of the International Baccalaureate (IB) Primary Years Programme (PYP).

Integrated German & Mandarin language acquisition from Preschool through 5th grade.

We believe in providing our students with opportunities to develop into lifelong learners.

In elementary school students continue the journey they started in preschool and kindergarten by connecting their personal experiences with classroom learning. We implement multidisciplinary content topics using inquiry-based learning and authentic assessment. Our teachers differentiate instruction for learning groups to allow for meaningful learning. As guided in the IB PYP, learning is organized in Units of Inquiry that allow for student agency, foster our students’ natural curiosity and provide authentic and meaningful learning opportunities. 

All students participate in German or Chinese as a second language instruction as part of their regular schedule. This class supports language learning in a more structured way, and where applicable, is connected to current classroom themes.

Our students collaborate in our small school garden, maintain and plant in our creek area and learn hands on what it means to take on responsible stewardship for our environment.

Field trips and expert visits connected to units of inquiry enhance our students experience.

Find out more about our Chinese track here.

Introducing Fast Track

GIS is excited to announce the addition of our new Fast Track program for both our German and Chinese language tracks!

As part of our commitment and mission to offer bilingual education to a wide range of students, this program allows motivated students entering grades 1 and 2 with little to no Mandarin or German skills to join GIS.

Fast Track is a one-year accelerated program that embeds students in a language-immersion style curriculum with intensive language support. Small class sizes, dedicated teachers, and lots of hands-on learning opportunities guide these students through a rigorous and rewarding program.

Contact Admissions at for more information.

Frequently asked questions about Elementary


No! A child can enroll in Preschool or Kindergarten with no exposure to the German or Chinese language.


Yes! All GIS students receive music, art and PE each week


Near-native or native fluency of the German or Chinese language is a requirement for all teachers who instruct in German or Chinese, including Head classroom teachers. Teaching assistants are either native or proficient in the language. All English teachers are native English speakers. Read all about our staff!


We are the only school (preschool-5th grade) in the Portland metro area that offers German language as an immersion program; our graduates will speak German fluently upon graduation. The addition of a Chinese track option gives parents even more language-immersion choice. Our academic standard is very high, we hire experienced teachers, keep class sizes small, and teach using a German curriculum within the International Baccalaureate framework, recognized and respected by the world’s leading universities.

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German International School

3900 SW Murray Blvd.

Beaverton, OR 97005

PH (503) 626-9089

FX (503) 626-9730

International Baccalaureate® (IB) World SchoolPrimary Years Programme
Zentralstelle für das AuslandsschulwesenConsulate General, San FranciscoCertificate of ExcellencePasch

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