Sustainable shopping: A workshop for German learners

Updated: Feb 13, 2020

We had a very special workshop last week and we wanted to share with you what we did.

It was a very very fast-paced session that gave our participants an idea of what it is to learn German with us while learning about how to be more conscious shoppers.

After a warmup exercise to get to know each other, the session began with our participants learning the relevant language for the topic. They first did a brainstorming activity to collect all the words they already know regarding sustainability in German.

Then they looked at different verbs in context. This had the goal of seeing how the verbs are used and to deduce their meaning from the sentences. They also played a memory game with the verbs.

Some of the verbs they studied were:

  • sammeln

  • verschwenden

  • wiederzuverwenden

  • vermeidet

  • bleichen

  • verbrennen

  • wegzuwerfen

  • nähen

It was time for the second part of the session to start: the workshop!!

Arantza, the founder of Alache Sustainability and an environmental consultant, talked (in German) about how not all clothes are made equal and what is important when shopping.

Next, there was a very interesting activity with sewing buttons to understand the working conditions of many workers in the manufacturing industry.

Arantza talked about the different materials you can buy and which are better than others. She also taught participants about the importance of labels and how to interpret the different information on them.

Participants then went "shopping". Each team needed to come up with a unanimous ranking that included all the pieces in the "store". They then presented their choices and justified them... in GERMAN!! *bravo!*

The workshop ended with participants learning about what they can do as individuals with the things that are already in their closet.

Tips to be a more sustainable shopper

  1. Buy secondhand.

  2. If you buy do buy something new, try to buy sustainable fabrics like hemp or wool.

  3. Buy clothing made with only one material, 100% polyester is easier to recycle than 80% cotton, 15% polyester, and 5% spandex.

  4. Fix the stuff you have.

  5. Wash less, not everything needs to be washed every single time you use it

  6. Try to use everything you buy at least 30 times.

  7. If you don't like something anymore, swap it or donate it BEFORE it goes out of style. Don't wait 5 years.

  8. Look for certifications like Oeko-Tex.

  9. Read the labels every single time.

  10. Shop what's in your closet.

It was a very exciting event for us and for the participants!

Thank you for coming! :)

BONUS: Did you know that "shoppen" in German only means buying clothes? If you refer to buying food, you use the verb "einkaufen".


What to join us at our events? Click here and sign up!

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