From the start of KS3 until the end of KS5, the department aims to provide an enjoyable, stimulating and effective language learning experience.
At all levels we work to improve the students’ skills in German and push them to be happy and confident language learners.
- Ability to speak and understand spoken German.
- Ability to read and understand written German.
- Ability to write accurately in German.
- Ability to organise time and work; to take an active part in learning; to work in a team; to follow instructions for a task.
Key Stage 3
Students begin presenting themselves in detail, learning to discuss school, family and friends and then move to covering free time, film and television, healthy eating, holidays and a variety of topics across past present and future tenses by the end of Year 9. There are two lessons each week for all groups in Years 7 and 8. In Year 9, students studying two foreign languages have three lessons of each language. Students studying only one foreign language have four lessons.
Students are assessed across all four core skills during the course of the year: listening, speaking, reading and writing. Students sit four formal assessments during the year.
Home learning is set weekly and students may be asked to review vocabulary and structures covered in the lesson, or to research and prepare work for an upcoming lesson.
Key Stage 4
We prepare students for the AQA GCSE German (8668) exam. Students continue to develop their knowledge of KS3 language and discover more tenses and structures to enable them to deal with the rigour of the new GCSE exam.
Students are assessed four times over the year and as they finish one topic, we review and test that topic and prior work to keep previous vocabulary and structures fresh. Throughout the year we cover a mixture of skill sets and the Year 10 exam assesses all four skills. Students also sit a full mock exam in the November of Year 11.
Home learning is set weekly and students may be asked to review new vocabulary and structures covered in the lesson, or to research and prepare work for an upcoming lesson. They may be asked to complete grammar exercises or prepare oral answers to review questions. There is an expectation that students will also independently review vocabulary and grammar on an ongoing basis.
Key Stage 5
The KS5 curriculum continues to develop students’ core skills with an increased level of complexity; students are expected to be aware of current affairs in German-speaking countries and to be able to discuss more complex ideas. We prepare students for either AQA AS level (7661) or A level German (7662) exam. We also study film and literature which the students analyse and discuss in essays in the final exam. In Year 13, students prepare an individual, independent research project on a subject of their choice, which they present and discuss in their oral exam. The students also have weekly lessons with a foreign language assistant in order to hone and perfect their speaking skills.
Students will be set small assessments each half term, with a strong focus on the threshold exams in June of Year 12. A mock exam is usually held in the January of Year 13. Assessment will cover all core skills, including translation in and out of German and a 15 minute speaking exam.
Home learning at KS5 is broad and varied. As well as the expectation that students are consistently working on grammar and vocabulary, students will be set work by each teacher as required. Home learning will vary from writing short paragraphs to completing essays, translations or preparing short presentations. KS5 staff regularly ‘Tweet’ articles relevant to the topics studied and students must focus on increasing their awareness of German culture and society.
Year 7 residential trip to the Rhineland
Year 9 and Year 12 German exchange visits
Stretch & Challenge
Year 7 MFL “Spelling Bee” competition
Where can German take you?
Careers with languages are varied. Students are able to combine a language with other subjects (ranging from Accountancy to Zoology) at degree level. Previous students have gone on to study languages with Law, History, Politics and Maths and have found careers, not just in teaching, but in business, industry and the transport sector.
How parents can support their child’s learning?
Parents can help by checking our weekly home learning and asking what the English words mean in German. Accurate spellings and use of websites are also beneficial. Students could extend their home learning by reading further online, using sites recommended by their German teachers. Getting used to speaking out loud helps students and they can practise their pronunciation.
To see the frequently asked questions, please click here