The Rilke Schule German School of Arts and Sciences follows the Anchorage School District prescribed curriculum and the Alaska State Standards in most subjects except German and Math. The standards for German are based on the National Foreign Language Standards, which include the Alaska and ASD world language standards. You can learn more about the Anchorage School District curriculum programs at http://www.asdk12.org/depts/cei/
Assessment and Grading
Each student’s math and language arts skills are assessed to determine proper academic individualization within the program. To determine placement, assessments provided by the publishers of textbooks and specially developed for Language Arts for the Rilke Schule will be used. Academic boot camp is available after school in English and German subjects for students who need help. Students are assessed regularly, using both oral and written assessment tools. Standardized tests are administered as per ASD requirements. The staff and the APC review the overall results of both the standardized tests and the German assessments to determine how the program can be improved.
The kindergarten report cards are narrative style from both the German and English instructors. All other grades receive report cards showing the American letter grades according to the percentage scale listed below. The new district-wide database program, Zangle, is not yet well suited to displaying the German equivalent grades, but we are working on a way to get them displayed on the report cards that doesn’t involve extra work for our teachers.
German Grade English Equivalent Percentage
|German Grade||English Grade||Percentage|
Rilke Schule also participates in all Anchorage School District standardized testing. Testing dates can be found on the Anchorage School District website.
At Rilke Schule we have a special way to encourage the children to improve their German speaking skills. For first grade students and above, the children are encouraged to speak only German during the German half of their school day. If they succeed in speaking a minimum amount of German (Nur ‘Ja’ oder ‘Nein’ ist nicht o.k.!) and NO English, they will earn a Sprachmeister point. After a child has spoken ONLY German for 25 days in their German class, they receive their first Sprachmeister award, a painted wooden German flag to keep and wear around their neck. Subsequent flags from German speaking countries are awarded as follows:
25 points German Flag
50 points Austrian Flag
75 points Swiss Flag
100 points Luxembourg Flag
125 points Liechtenstein Flag
150 points European Union Flag
Children who earn 100 points or more during the year receive a gold medal at the spring awards ceremony and will get their name engraved on the school’s annual Sprachmeister Plaque. The kindergarten teachers start the Sprachmeister program with their children sometime after Christmas break, and the students earn a flag for every 10 days of German only spoken in class.
Kindergarten Curriculum Notes
German curriculum: Handson stations, German vocabulary and alphabet, German songs, counting andsimple math, science, crafts, daily classroom jobs for each child.
English curriculum:Pearson Kindergarten math with EDM supplements, Houghton Mifflin Kindergarten reading, Station Rotations, reading aloud, Journal keeping, English songs, whole group activities.
First Grade Curriculum Notes
Math is taught in both German and English (especially. time, money, and story problems). German math focuses on addition and subtraction with numbers 1-20, beginning story problems, and telling time. Science is taught in German (some explanations in English when needed). Materials are translated into German from the ASD science box. Health and Nutrition is taught in German, emphasizing a healthy eating program. Social studies (like geography and American history) are taught in German along with European history.
English literacy focuses on reading, writing, spelling, listening and speaking in an integrated and balanced way. Reading and writing is individualized (guided reading groups, writing workshop with self-selected and directed writing, whole group instruction in reading, writing and spelling).
Third and Fourth Grade Curriculum Notes
The German curriculum focuses on listening, speaking, and writing.
The third graders study Alaska history and geography in social studies. The 4th graders study ancient civilizations (Stone Age, Rome, Egyptians,etc.). Most work is done in German with a little English used for clarification.
Fifth Grade Curriculum Notes
In 5th grade Social Studies and Geography are taught in German.
Students interact and develop their language skills through songs, games and creative projects, and speaking German is the focus of this class. Writing and Grammar are developed along the way.
Sixth Grade Curriculum Notes
Math, Language Arts, and Social Studies are taught in English.
The German side covers the recommended science curriculum from ASD, some health studies, and social studies (Geography). The English side teaches history and civics.
Seventh/Eighth Grade Curriculum Notes
Students speak and write in German. The class reads authentic German texts, expands vocabulary and covers all German tenses. The German cases, pronouns, sentence structure and adjective endings are introduced. Students will receive High School credit for Foreign Language/ Germanone and should be able to test out of German 2 after successful completion of this class. Social Studies and Geography are also taught in German.
Grades K – 4 use authentic German materials supplemented by translations of American materials to cover areas neglected in German Math (e.g. the American measurement and money systems). Our Math curriculum is taught completely in German in grades K – 2. As these true immersion students progress upward, more and more Math will be done in German using German materials (international PISA test scores for Germany are considerably higher than the USA’s).
Grades 3 & 4 are taught most Math in German and some in English.
Grades 5 – 8 learn Math in English. They currently use the Scott Foresman series (grades 5 & 6) and Pearson Prentice Hall series (grades 7 & 8), which both meet Anchorage School District standards.
Rilke Schule is using ‘accelerated Math’ from second grade on. This lets students advance at their own speed and work with others at their level.