The first chapter basically lets the reader get the feel of what was going on in the beginning of the war. Annemarie and Ellen were racing to get home from school, being normal 10 year olds. When they heard the Nazi solidier yell, "Halte", they both froze in their tracks. Ellen a couple of yards behind Annemarie because it was much more dangerous for her to approach the solidier, being that she was Jewish. This chapter lets us see just how much control that the Germans were getting over Denmark at that time.
When the girls arrive home, they reluctantly tell their mothers and the mothers looked concerned. I believe that the first chapter gives us insight or lets us predict that the worst is yet to come.