First Day of School in Germany. Traditions. School Cone

The First Day of School in Germany is always picture perfect. See what makes the Einschulung so sweet and memorable.

First Day of School – Starting Primary School!

In my day, the beginning of the school year started in spring and not after the summer break. The first day of school or Einschulung, as we say in Germany is a very festive event and celebrated with traditions.

My godmother gave the new backpack called Ranzen to me, and my mother made sure that the traditional school cone was finished and filled with chocolate and goodies. 

Dressed in my best cloth I was prepared to attend the ceremony at the school. After the introduction to my new teacher, we walked to our classroom to receive our schedule followed by taking a group picture. We proudly held our school pretzels for the girls decorated with pink ribbons and for the boys with blue ribbons. (See picture above).

The first day of school ended with a celebration at home sharing the pretzel with family and friends. 

First Day of School in the fifties and sixties in Germany.

  First day of school Germany

I was very proud on my first day of school and felt very special. I thought every school year would begin this way. But to my surprise, the following year, there was no pretzel and no school cone. I realized that this was a one-time event. No wonder that Einschulung day is still so vivid in my mind.

Safety First

Most of the children in Germany are still walking to school. The children wear a bright yellow/orange cap to protect them in traffic and to make them easier seen by passing drivers.

First day of school Germany

I wish every newcomer to school life a great start and hope their first day of school is as exciting as mine was.

Yours, Oma

(Click titles or photos to go to featured post.)


School Pretzel


School cone


Invitation for download


German School Cone Tradition

Treat your kids to a great first day of school. Make a School Cone (Zuckertuete/Schultuete). Here’s how!

German School Cone Tradition!

The first day of elementary school can be an anxious time for any kindergartener or first grader. Make this day a little sweeter with a Zuckertuete, a German school cone tradition. This kinder cone (literally translated: sugar bag) is a German tradition that dates back to the early 1800s. Parents or grandparents would present their young ones with a big cardboard cone, beautifully decorated and filled with toys, chocolates, candies, school supplies, and other various goodies and surprises. Keep this German school cone tradition alive by making your own Zuckertuete. You will see those frowns turn upside down.

Getting started is easy. Just follow the step-by-step instructions and custom-create the school cone also known as the kinder cone or Schultuete yourself—or with your child. The project from start to finish should take only about 40 minutes. But the memories will last a lifetime.

Make your own Zuckertuete. The Oma Way! 

Click on the pictures to enlarge    

German School Cone Tradition

It’s easy. Just follow the step-by-step instructions and custom-create the sugar cone yourself—or with your child. The project from start to finish should take only about 40 minutes. But the memories will last a lifetime.

Preparation for a German School Cone:

Tools and Materials:

 1. Poster-board 22″ x 28″
2. Crepe Paper 50cm x 2.5 m (19.6” x 2.7 yard at arts & craft stores or amazon)
3. Measuring tape
4. Trim (available at arts & craft stores)
5. Ribbon (available at arts & craft stores)
6. Universal glue (Uhu available at arts & craft stores, Amazon)
7. Double-sided tape
8. Pair of pinking shears
9. Pair of scissors
10.Pencil with cotton yarn
11. Decorative stickers with letters and school themes (see below)

German School Cone Tradition   image4


Mark your poster board on the length side at 22”. Take about 26” of yarn and tie it onto the pencil in a knot. Hold the pencil with the yarn in one corner of the short side and draw a circle, till you reach the 22” mark on the length side. You have drawn a quarter of a circle.

image5   German School Cone Tradition

Cut out the semi circle and roll it into a cone—leaving a 9” opening at the top. The edges of the opening should be overlapping.

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Glue the edge of the cone and roll it into the proper direction—attaching it to the glued edge.

German School Cone Tradition  image10

Cut away the overlapping poster board so that the opening edge is even. Use double-sided tape to secure the cone’s overlapping paper on the inside double sided tape to put them together.

photo11  photo12

Use your double sided tape and glue it against the outside top edge all the way around the cone. Have the creppe paper still on the roll and glue it against the cone with the tape. When you finished the round let the creppe paper overlap about 3 inches and cut it lengthwise. Glue the end of the creppe paper together with the already attached creppe paper with double sided tape.

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After cutting the creppe paper lengthwise, start on the overlapping side of the creppe paper (open side) and turn the creppe paper careful towards the opening of the cone till you have reached the lower edge of the tape glued creppe paper.Work with you index finger around the edge and fold the creppe paper.

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Grab the creppe paper and and bind a bow around it. On top cut about 8 inches of the creppe paper off with the pinking shears.


Start first with the trim on the top edge. Leave it on the roll. Start at the seam in the back and put some glue onto the trim. Glue it about 0.5 inch under the edge of the creppe paper and work it around the cone.


Your school cone is ready to be decorated. No limitations to it. You either use your own imagination or just use some hints, I have given.

German School Cone Tradition     German School Cone Tradition

First Day School Invitations

Make an invitation for a First-Day-of-School Celebration. It’s easy with these templates!

First Day School Invitations!

In Germany, the first day of elementary school is a major life event. One worthy of a celebration. Make your child feel extra special by adopting this German tradition. Have a First Day of School Party! Just like any fun-filled event, it starts with an invitation. Below you will find first day school invitations in a variety of colors, which I designed and prepared. Just pick your favorite by clicking the image to download. Then, just print, cut out, and decorate. These invitations are easy and fun to make, so get your child involved in the process. And get ready for a day they will never forget.

Click a template to download First Day School Invitations:

WhiteInvitation YellowInvitation PinkInvitation BlueInvitation GreenInvitation PurpleInvitation


1. Have your child pick the color he or she likes.

2. Cut out the school cone on the inside of the lines.

3. Fold in the center with the writing facing outside.

IMG_4339  IMG_4341  IMG_4342

(Open)                                                                                            (Front)                                               (Back)

4. Cut the top edge either straight or with pinking shears.

5. Cut ribbon width 1/8″ to make a bow on top.

Making First Day School Invitations

6. Decorate your invitation with your child’s choice of stickers and you’re ready to go.


What’s the First Day of School like in Germany?

The day usually starts with a special church service. Afterwards, there’s a welcome ceremony at school, hosted by the principal and classroom teachers—featuring performances by the older students. Following the ceremony, the children celebrate at home with close family, friends, and neighbors. And for a good reason! These children, after all, are entering a new and important phase of their lives—one that will help them grow and shape their future with a great education.

Whether in Germany, in America, or anywhere else in the world, let’s make sure our kids get the attention they deserve on this very special day. Send out invitations for their First-Day-of-School party!


Preparation Back to School

Prep for school. The Oma Way.

Preparation Back to School!

School is just around the corner—time for parents to do their homework early. After all taking the necessary steps for preparation Back to School is the key to a successful, stress-free start of the year. Along with the typical supplies you can find on your kid’s school website, here are some tried and true German products, materials, and customs that continue to make the grade for students of all ages.

Elementary-School Supplies:

Preparation Back To School

1 – Backpack (Herlitz)

1 – Lunch box

1 – Water bottle

1 – Small purse or wallet for lunch money

1 – Weekly calendar with magnets for school schedule

1 – Fun locker or cubby accessory

6-8 – Book covers

12 – # 2 Pencils

24 – Crayons (Crayola)

2 – Glue sticks (“Uhu”)

1 – Box of tissues

1 – Pink eraser

8 – Broad-tip markers

1 – Pair of kids scissors (Fiskar)

1 – Pencil Case (Herlitz)

1 – Wide-ruled, spiral-bound notebook

3 – Pocket folders

12 – Pencil crayons (Twistable Crayons by Crayola)

Extra Credit:

Make the first day of elementary school extra special with a School Cone Zuckertuete.” Find out what this fun, German, cone-shaped tradition is all about.

Prep for school

Middle-School Supplies:

 1 – Backpack (Kipling)

1 – Lunch Box

1 – Water bottle

1 – Purse or wallet

1 – Stylized locker accessory

1 – Bag for PE clothes

3 – Clothes hangers

6-8 Book covers or you make your own

12 – #2 pencils

2 – Mechanical pencils

2 – Glue sticks (Uhu)

1 – Bottle of white glue (Uhu)

1 – Pkg. washable felt markers

1 – Pair of scissors

1 – Pencil case (Herlitz)

6 – Pocket folders

2 – Pkg. lined notebook paper

1 – Pkg. plain copy paper

4 – Lined composition notebooks

2 – Blue pens

2 – Red pens

1 – Ruler

1 – Pkg. Map Colors

2 – 1” Binders

1 – Pkg. of subject dividers

1 – Scientific calculator

1 – Pocket dictionary

1 – Pencil sharpener

3 – Highlighter pens

1 – set of post it taps 1” and 0.5”

1 – Set of watercolors (Pelican)

High-School Supplies:

1 – Backpack (Kipling)

1 – Lunch Box

1 – Water bottle

1 – Purse or wallet

1 – Locker accessories picked by individual needs

3 – Clothes hangers

1 – Bag for PE clothes

6-8 Book covers 

12 – #2 Pencils

2 – Mechanical pencils

2 – Glue Sticks (Uhu)

1 – Bottle of White Glue (Uhu)

1 – Pink eraser

1 – White eraser

1 – Pair scissors

1 – Pencil case (Herlitz)

10 – Pocket folders

2 – Pkg. lined paper

1 – Pkg. plain paper

10 – Blue pens

3 – Red pens

1 – Ruler

1 – Pkg. pencil crayons (Twistable Crayons by Crayola)

2 – 1” Binders

8 – Subject dividers

1 – Scientific calculator

1 – Geometry set (Staedtler) also available at arts & craft stores

1 – Pocket dictionary

1 – Thesaurus

1 – Pencil sharpener

3 – Highlighter pens

1 – Agenda book/Student planner

1 – Staple remover

1 – set of post it taps 1” and 0.5”

1 – Set of watercolors (Pelican)

If you follow the tips of preparation Back to School, you might enjoy with your children the First Day of School.


School Pretzel Bread

School Pretzel Bread – Schulbrezel for the First Graders First Day of School.

School Pretzel Bread

A School Pretzel Bread is called Schulbrezel in Germany. The First Graders carry it to their first day of school. The pretzel has a colored ribbon, for the girls pink and the boys blue. I grew up with this tradition and made sure, that my children also had their School Pretzel on their First Day of School.

Ingredients for School Pretzel Bread:

  • 600 g (1.32 lb.) of flour
  • 1 ½ packages of dry yeast 
  • 125 g (4.4 oz) of sugar
  • 250 ml (8.45 oz) of lukewarm milk
  • 125 g (4.4 oz) of melted butter
  • 1 pinch of salt
  • 2 eggs XL
  • 2 tablespoons of milk

Ingredients for School Pretzel Bread

Preparation of School Pretzel Bread:

Sift the flour in a mixing bowl, add the dry yeast, sugar, and salt to the flour and mix the ingredients with a spoon. Make a hole in the center of the flour mixture and place one egg and one egg white into it. Cover the eggs with the flour mix. Place the second egg yolk aside for later use. Warm up the milk in the microwave for about 25 seconds and add to the flour. Warm up the butter for about 35 seconds in the microwave until it’s melted. Add it to the flour. Use the kneading hooks of a handheld electric mixer or a stand mixture and knead the mixture, until the dough is smooth. The dough should be moist but not stick to the sides of the bowl.  Cover the dough and let it rise for about 2 hours or until it has doubled in size.


Knead the dough with your hands. If the dough is sticky, coat your hands with some flour. Create a roll about one yard long and shape your pretzel. Make sure you attach the ends of the roll at the back of the pretzel. Place the pretzel on a baking sheet lined with baking paper.

Cover the pretzel with a kitchen towel and let it rise another hour. Mix the two tablespoons of milk with the saved egg yolk and brush the pretzel on all sides.

Preheat your oven to 190°C – 200°C (375°F – 400°F) and bake the pretzel for about 25 – 30 minutes on the fourth rack from the bottom.

Let the School Pretzel cool down on a cooling rack and pull your ribbon through. Your child will love the Pretzel.

School Pretzel Bread