German Heritage Language School    


We offer classes for children and adults for various levels. The classes for children are structured according to age and language background, based on the Common European Framework of Reference for Languages (see a description of key learning activities here). Lessons take place once a week for two hours on Thursday afternoons and evenings. German language skills (reading, writing, speaking, listening) are taught by qualified teachers. Children start as young as age four and are encouraged to speak German through play and music. In the children 4 and 5 classes, students prepare for the German Language Diploma (DSD = Deutsches Sprachdiplom). The curricula for our adult classes are also based on the Common European Framework of Reference for Languages (CEFR).

Children 1 (ages 4 & 5):

Children learn the basics of the German language through play, music and crafting. Children are immersed and learn the German language through songs, arts and circle games that are being played indoors as well as outdoors (weather permitting). The games often include the recognition of animals, letters, numbers or colours. In addition, German children books are being read and discussed together.

Children 2 (ages 6 & 7):

Children will describe things and situations using simple sentence structures. They communicate in German and understand easy questions and statements. On this level, children will start writing words in German and will be made familiar with basic grammatical structures in a playful manner, using short dialogues, songs, and games.

Children 3 (ages 7-9):

Children will focus more on pronunciation, listening comprehension, and writing. They will be introduced to a wider range of grammatical structures and will improve their vocabulary by discussing and reading about various topics. Stories, plays, poems, songs, games, art.

Children 4 (ages 10-15):

Level A1. Preparation for the German Language Diploma. Dialogues in pairs and small groups; language experience approach; mind maps; role-play; sentence frames; games; singing; basic sentence structure; puppet shows; board games; small presentations; learning everyday vocabulary.

Children 5 (ages 14-17):

Level A2/B1. Preparation for DSD 1. Dialogues in pairs and small groups; language experience approach; quiz; role-play; sentence frames; games; writing dialogues; expressing their preferences; talking and writing about everyday topics and situations; role plays; writing letters; talking about time/transportation/hobbies/profession/ family/food/holidays/seasons/weather/friends. Dialogues; debating; reading simple newspaper and magazine texts; writing about their own opinion; games; discussing current events; reading books, watching German films; projects; videotaping interviews; discussing school/bullying/fashion/current events; learning how to write a summary.

Adult Beginner 1:

Level A1. No previous knowledge of German required. The student will be able to understand and use familiar everyday expressions and very basic phrases aimed at the satisfaction of needs of a concrete type. Can introduce him/herself and others and can ask and answer questions about personal details such as where he/she lives, people he/she knows and things he/she has. Can interact in a simple way provided the other person talks slowly and clearly and is prepared to help.

Adult Beginner 2/Intermediate 1:

Level A1/A2. Can understand sentences and frequently used expressions related to areas of most immediate relevance (e.g. very basic personal and family information, shopping, local geography, employment). Can communicate in simple and routine tasks requiring a simple and direct exchange of information on familiar and routine matters. Can describe in simple terms aspects of his/her background, immediate environment and matters in areas of immediate need.

Adult Intermediate 2:

Level A2/B1. Can understand the main points of clear standard input on familiar matters regularly encountered in work, school, leisure, etc. Can deal with most situations likely to arise whilst travelling in an area where the language is spoken. Can produce simple connected text on topics which are familiar or of personal interest. Can describe experiences and events, dreams, hopes and ambitions and briefly give reasons and explanations for opinions and plans.

Adult Advanced 1 & 2:

Level B2/C1. Can understand the main ideas of complex text on both concrete and abstract topics, including technical discussions in his/her field of specialisation. Can interact with a degree of fluency and spontaneity that makes regular interaction with native speakers quite possible without strain for either party. Can produce clear, detailed text on a wide range of subjects and explain a viewpoint on a topical issue giving the advantages and disadvantages of various options.
Can understand a wide range of demanding, longer texts, and recognise implicit meaning. Can express him/herself fluently and spontaneously without much obvious searching for expressions. Can use language flexibly and effectively for social, academic and professional purposes. Can produce clear, well-structured, detailed text on complex subjects, showing controlled use of organisational patterns, connectors and cohesive devices.