At Shireland we strongly believe in languages as a skill for life and want German to be a subject that you really enjoy and find rewarding. Our objective is to enable you to develop your languages skills to your full potential, giving you the knowledge to communicate with confidence in German.


Learning German opens up so many opportunities that you may never have even thought about, not just in business but in the fields of medicine, law, engineering, architecture, art, science and of course travel and tourism.

Studied German at Aston University, including a year spent abroad in the Südpfalz, followed by a PGCE in German and French at Westminster College, Oxford.  Began teaching at Shireland in 2002 and after a short break to bring up 2 children, returned in 2016 to lead the Languages Department.



In Year 7 German, students are given a firm basis for their future language learning.  We encourage the students to be passionate about languages and after an initial essentials course we move on to study the areas of Family, School, Free-Time, House and Home and Food and Drink.

In Year 8 German, students are given every opportunity to build upon the many skills they acquired in Year 7.  Through the topics of Town, Daily Routine, Fashion, Body and Health and Holidays we continue to reinforce key structures and grammar which will provide the students with a better understanding of the requirements of a GCSE in German.

In Year 9 students spend the first term studying two of the GCSE topics – TV, Film, Media and Festivals and Traditions – in preparation for option choices before Christmas.  After Christmas we start the AQA GCSE course beginning, in the Spring term, with a unit revising and refreshing Years 7-8 in preparation for the first unit ‘Self, Family and Friends’ in the second part of the Spring term.

In Years 10 and 11 we continue to work through the themes from the AQA course using the AQA textbooks with their interactive course ‘Kerboodle’ to enhance the students learning experience.

KS4 Course


The aims of the course are to enable students to develop an understanding of German in a variety of contexts. It also allows you to increase your knowledge of German vocabulary and structures, to transfer language learning skills and to communicate effectively in German. Finally, the course aims at helping students to understand counties and communities where German is spoken.

Students study all of the following themes on which the assessments are based:

Theme 1 : Identity and Culture

Theme 2 : Local, national, international and global areas of interest

Theme 3 : Current and future study and employment

Each of these broad themes is broken down further into sub-topics which we cover over the 2-year course.  many of the topics will have been covered briefly in Years 7-9,  allowing us to study and analyse a topic in much more depth over the GCSE.

A new feature of the GCSE is the emphasis placed on cultural awareness.  You will be learning about the customs and traditions of German speaking countries alongside the more traditional language structures, vocabulary and grammar.


Not only is Germany one of the UK’s most important trading partners but German itself is spoken by 120 million people as a first language and by many millions as a second and third language.  German is the second most commonly used scientific language in the world and many of the Western world’s most important works of philosophy, literature, music, art history, chemistry, physics, engineering and medicine are written in German and continue to be produced in German.

Studying German can also lead to careers in translation – for business and communities -  and education – Primary, Secondary and Higher.  We are not just thinking about the global arena either: BMW manufactures engines on the outskirts of Birmingham and Thomas Dudley, a local company, does the majority of its trade with Germany so there are opportunities here in our own region for students with German.


Scheme of Assessment (AQA German)
There are two tiers of entry : Foundation (Grades 1-5)  or Higher (Grades 4-9)

Paper 1 – Listening  (F 35 Minutes / H 45 Minutes)

( 25% of GCSE)
Understanding and responding to different types of spoken language.

Paper 2 – Speaking   (F 7-9 Minutes / H 10-12 Minutes)

(25% of GCSE)
Communicating and interacting effectively in speech for a variety of different purposes.
There are 3 parts to the speaking exam:

  1. Role-Play
  2. Describing a photo card
  3. Talking about 2 topics from the above Themes.  (You get to choose one of them!)

Paper 3 – Reading  (F 45 Minutes / H 1 Hour)

(25% of GCSE)
Understanding and responding to different types of written language.
There will be a selection of questions to answer in English and German and also a translation from German into English.

Paper 4 – Writing (F 1 Hour / H 1 Hour 15 Minutes)

(25% of GCSE)
F – Describe a photo in 4 sentences, 40 word question, 90 word question, 5 sentences to translate from English – German
H – 90 word question, 150 word question and a short paragraph to translate from English to German.


The qualification requires students to:

Develop the ability to listen to and understand spoken German in a range of contexts and variety of style

  • Communicate in speech for a variety of purposes
  • Read and respond to different types of written language
  • Communicate in writing for a variety of purposes
  • Understand and apply a range of vocabulary and structures
  • Develop language learning and communication skills which can be applied broadly