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German I

Course Description

This course is an introduction to the language and cultures of the German-speaking world. Students will demonstrate knowledge of the sound system and verb structures in the present, past and near future tenses. They will describe themselves, ask questions to elicit information about each other, discuss school-related activities, likes and dislikes, hobbies and pastimes. Students will experience culture through music, films, newspapers, magazines, television programs and researching various German-speaking locations. They will develop their proficiency through daily oral participation, role-playing, class discussions, listening, reading and writing activities.  Students will complete daily homework assignments and will show proficiency through oral interviews, written quizzes, presentations and unit exams.

Grade Level(s): 8th grade (also available in high school)

Related Priority Standards (State &/or National):  Missouri Course Level Expectations - World Languages

Essential Questions

How does learning a language help you understand the cultures that are different than yours?
How am I part of a global community?
How will I use my language skills outside of the classroom?
How can I be competitive in a world job market?
How does language connect individuals and cultures promoting empathy and tolerance?

Enduring Understandings/Big Ideas

The study of a world language and the ability to communicate with it foster a life-long appreciation and an open mind for cultures different from our own in a 21st century global society: "knowing how, when, and why to say what to whom (ACTFL 2006)."

Course-Level Scope & Sequence (Units &/or Skills)

Unit: Communication

Students will communicate effectively in more than one language in order to function in a variety of situations and for multiple purposes.

  1. Interpersonal Communication - Students will interact and negotiate meaning in spoken, signed, or written conversations to share information, reactions, feelings, and
    1. Students will engage in conversation including descriptions on selected topics about themselves and others.
    2. Students will ask and answer a variety of questions, giving reasons for their answers.
    3. Students will state personal preferences and feelings with some explanation.
    4. Students will give possible solutions to a problem related to a personal need.
    5. Students will ask for simplification and suggest alternative words to ensure understanding.
  2. Interpretive Communication - Learners will understand, interpret, and analyze what is heard, read, or viewed on a variety of topics.
    1. Students will understand selected materials on topics of personal interest.
    2. Students begin to derive meaning through use of prediction, prefixes, suffixes, root words, words similar to English, contextual clues, and word order.
    3. Students will understand spoken and written language that incorporates familiar vocabulary and structures.
    4. Students will comprehend the main idea and some supporting ideas of selected authentic materials.
  3. Presentational Communication - Learners present information, concepts, and ideas to inform, explain, persuade, and narrate on a variety of topics using appropriate media and adapting to various audiences of listeners, readers, or viewers.
    1. Students present student-created and/or authentic short plays and skits.
    2. Students write and deliver short presentations.
    3. Students give simple directions to a classmate in order to complete a task.
    4. Students tell a story incorporating some description and detail.
    5. Students write short compositions and letters.

Unit: Cultures

Interact with cultural competence and understanding.

  1. Relating Cultural Practices to Perspectives Duration - Learners investigate, explain, and reflect on the relationship between the practices and perspectives of the cultures studied.
    1. Students interact with culturally appropriate patterns of behavior in everyday situations.
    2. Students compare and contrast activities from other cultures to their own.
    3. Students identify some common beliefs and attitudes within the cultures studied and compare them to their own beliefs and attitudes.
  2. Relating Cultural Products to Perspectives - Learners investigate, explain, and reflect on the relationships between the practices and perspectives of the cultures studied.
    1. Students compare objects and symbols from other cultures to those found in their own culture.
    2. Students identify some major contributions and historical figures from the cultures studied that are significant in the world today.
    3. Students identify some historical and contemporary influences from other cultures that impact today's society.

Unit:  Connections

Students connect with other disciplines and acquire information and diverse perspectives.

  1. Making Connections - Learners build, reinforce, and expand their knowledge of other disciplines to develop critical thinking and to solve problems creatively.
    1. Students talk about topics from other school subjects..
    2. Students begin to comprehend short developmentally appropriate sources in target language on topics being studied in other classes.
    3. Students present simple oral or written reports on topics being studied in other classes.
  2. Acquiring Information and Diverse Perspectives - Learners access and evaluate information and diverse perspectives that are available through the language and its cultures.  Students read, watch, listen to, and talk about age and developmentally appropriate authentic materials.

Unit:  Comparisons

Learners access and evaluate information and diverse perspectives that are available through the language and its cultures.

  1. Language Comparisons  - Learners use the language to investigate, explain, and reflect on the nature of language through comparisons of the language studied and their own.

    1. Students will use cognates to enhance spoken and written language.
    2. Students begin to recognize the role of dialect, slang, and age/status/gender-differentiated speech.
    3. Students will begin to demonstrate awareness that languages have critical sound distinctions that must be mastered in order to communicate meaning.
  2. Cultural Comparisons - Learners use the language to investigate, explain, and reflect on the concept of culture through comparisons of the cultures studied and their own.
    1. Students will hypothesize about the relationship between cultural perspectives and practices (e.g., holidays, celebrations, work habits) by analyzing selected practices from the target and native culture.
    2. Students will contrast verbal and non-verbal behavior in activities among friends, classmates, family members, and teachers in the target and native culture.
    3. Students will hypothesize about the relationship between cultural perspectives and expressive products (e.g., visual and performing arts, both traditional and contemporary) by analyzing selected products from the target culture and their own.

Unit:  Communities

Students will communicate and interact with cultural competence in order to participate in multilingual communities at home and around the world.

  1. School and Global Communities - Learners use the language both within and beyond the classroom to interact and collaborate in their community and the globalized world.
    1. Students will communicate orally or in writing with members of the target culture regarding topics of personal interest, community, or world concerns.
    2. Students will interact with members of the local community to learn how they use target language in their professional and personal lives.
    3. Students will participate in activities that benefit the school or community.
  2. Lifelong Learning - Learners will set goals and reflect on their progress in using languages for enjoyment, enrichment, and advancement.
    1. Students will read materials and/or use media from the target languages for enjoyment or personal growth.
    2. Students will play sports or games from the culture.
    3. Students will consult various sources in the language to obtain information on topics of personal interest.
    4. Students will plan real or imaginary travel.
    5. Students will attend or view via media cultural events and social activities.
    6. Students will use various media from the language and culture for entertainment.

Date Last Revised/Approved:   2014