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Ribston Hall High School

Ribston HallHigh School

Modern Foreign Languages - German


Key Stage 4 

Exam board



The GCSE German course enables students to be successful both in the examination and in their career development, and inspires them with enthusiasm for the subject. We ensure that students of all abilities build on their prior knowledge of vocabulary and grammar to enable them to access the GCSE course successfully. This is achieved using personalised, examination-focused resources and assessments, as well as in-class differentiation. All lessons include opportunities to review and reinforce prior learning, while we build on the students’ cultural knowledge and awareness both in lessons and on trips abroad.

Plenty of opportunities are included for students to practise a range of GCSE-style exam questions. They develop a self-awareness and mastery of techniques to tackle GCSE tasks, as well as strategies to acquire and retain language structures. We focus on phonics in the language students are learning and the development of accurate pronunciation.


The GCSE course is linear, which means that students will sit all the exams at the end of the two-year course. The topics covered are organised around three main themes: Identity and Culture; Local, National, International and Global Areas of Interest; and Current and Future Study and Employment.


There are four papers:


Paper 1: Listening (25% of GCSE)

Paper 2: Speaking (25% of GCSE), based on a role-play, discussion of photo card and general conversation

Paper 3: Reading (25% of GCSE)

Paper 4: Writing (25%of GCSE)



Topic 1: Theme: Current and Future Study and Employment: Auf in die Schule (School Life)

Knowledge: Talking about school subjects, teachers and clothes; describing a school day; discussing school rules, school exchange, extra-curricular activities; discussing what you are and are not looking forward to; learning about different types of German schools; comparing education systems.


Topic 2: Theme: Identity and Culture: Zeit für Freizeit (Free-time Activities)

Knowledge: Discussing leisure activities; discussing reading habits, music, film, television, sport and other forms of entertainment; learning about celebrations and festivals.


Topic 3: Theme: Identity and Culture: Menschliche Beziehungen (Family and Friends)

Knowledge: Describing people, family and friends; discussing relationships; talking about what makes a good friend; exploring different views on marriage; discussing weekend activities.


Topic 4: Theme: Identity and Culture/International, Global Areas of Interest: Willkommen Bei Mir (House and Home)

Knowledge: Describing your house and home; describing food and drink items; discussing mealtimes and daily routines; talking about healthy lifestyles; discussing use of social media and technology.


Topic 5: Local, National, International and Global Areas of Interest: Ich Liebe Wien (Planning a Trip to Vienna)

Knowledge: Making hotel bookings; describing accommodation and associated problems; asking for and understanding directions; ordering at a restaurant; shopping for souvenirs; describing illness and accidents.

Topic 6: Local, National, International and Global Areas of Interest: Im Urlaub Und Zu Hause (Home and Away)

Knowledge: Talking about popular holiday destinations and the weather; discussing different types of holidays and holiday experiences; discussing holiday plans; describing where people live and the advantages and disadvantages of the local area.

Topic 7: Theme: Current and Future Study and Employment: Rund Um Die Arbeit (Work and Future Plans)

Knowledge: Describing jobs and places of work; understanding job descriptions; talking about your dream job and ambitions; discussing the benefits of languages.

Topic 8: Local, National, International and Global Areas of Interest: Eine Wunderbare Welt (A Wonderful World)

Knowledge: Describing international festivals and sporting events; explaining how social problems affect young people; understanding texts about homelessness and poverty; discussing environmental issues and environmentally friendly actions.

Cultural Enrichment: European Day of Languages Celebrations; Christmas and Easter traditions in the German-speaking world.

Extra-curricular opportunities 

Trip to the German Christmas market in Birmingham; inter-cultural exchange with partner schools in Göttingen; German film and conversation club.