In accordance with the specific profile of our school, we place the subject and pedagogical focus of our lessons on bilingual education in German and English as well as broadening mathematical, scientific and information technolgy topics, and their use in questions and areas relating to careers and everyday life.
In our school, we teach using the Berlin Curriculum Framework and plan our teaching based on the Berlin timetable. Subject teaching is spread across the six primary school levels as well as the secondary school levels and is taught equally in both English and in German. The ratio of teaching in German/English can vary between individual year levels.
We design our teaching to be methodically and didactically goal oriented. This is achieved through internal differentiation, Team-Teaching and Support-Teaching, learning support in small groups, cross-curricular project days, group and partner work, station work, discussions, presentations, learning methodology training, media supported teaching, and also through classic forms and methods such as frontal teaching (in particular the instructional phase), direct literacy input and various forms of dictation.
How is the day organised?
- Lessons begin at 8:10
- Lessons conclude at 15:30
- Early leaving time on Mondays at 13:30 for Years 1 and 2 and at 14:10 for Years 3 and 4
- Early leaving time on Wednesday at 14:50 for Years 7 to 10
- Early leaving time on Fridays at 13:30 for Years 1 to 6 and 10
Daily schedules may vary from time to time due to lessons in DaZ (German as a Second Language) or EAL (English as a Second Language) or swimming lessons in Year 3.
In order to make the school day as comfortable as possible in all year levels and to allow everything to run smoothly, the daily schedule of Years 1 and 2, Years 3 and 4, and Years 5 to 10 are varied. By doing this, we guarantee a peaceful lunchtime, relaxing break times in the school yard and optimal use of the subject rooms. Every class receives a timetable and daily routine schedule at the beginning of the school year.
At our school, individual lessons last 40 minutes as opposed to the regular 45 minutes, which allows us to run bi-weekly project days. We teach in 40, 80 or 120 minute blocks.
We meet the natural needs of our students through the regular change of phases, which require higher levels of concentration (teaching blocks), with phases of relaxation (40 minute breaks). Through this rhythmic daily routine, we achieve optimal learning conditions for the children and young people in all subjects and at all times of the day.
Timetable Primary School
We base our timetable on the standard Berlin Timetable and complement it by placing emphasis on the following:
- English from Year 1
- Strengthened Social Science teaching with digital contents
- Swimming lessons in Year 3 (1 hour per week)
- Bicycle riding test in Year 4
- Elective courses in the school year 2021/22 in Year 5 and 6: music, theatre, ceramics, art as communication, robotics, S.T.E.A.M.(Sciences/Technology/Engineering/Art/Mathematics) and creative writing
|Subject||Years 1 to 4||Years 5 and 6|
|English (1st foreign language)||4||5|
|Science and Social Studies||4||–|
Timetable Secondary School
We base our timetable on the standard Berlin Timetable of the Gymnasium (high school or grammar school). We complement this timetable by placing emphasis on the following:
- an additional weekly English lesson
- Natural Sciences are taught starting from Year 7 with 6 lessons per week, divided into the subjects Biology, Chemistry and Physics
- Spanish as a second foreign language (4 hours per week)
- Elective subjects are removed because the students cover a variety of different themes through bi-weekly project days.
|Subject||Years 7 to 10|
|English (1st foreign language)||4|
|Spanish (2nd foreign language)||4|
|Economics, Work, Technology (WAT)||2|
Questions and Answers on teaching
In the secondary level, we teach Spanish from Year 7 onwards and is obligatory for all students. We even exceed the number of hours required according to the Berlin timetable for the second foreign language in Years 9 and 10 by one lesson per week. In preparation for the Abitur, our students have completed enough lessons and years in the second foreign language to be admitted to the Abitur.
This gives all students who want to take the Abitur flexibility in choosing courses in the gymnasiale Oberstufe, whether they wish to continue learning Spanish or start a new foreign language.
- Team-Teaching or Support-Teaching provides the opportunity to split the class into two groups or between two rooms if necessary.
- Team-Teaching or Support Teaching allows differentiated lessons with opportunities for supporting and challenging all students e.g. German as a second language (DaZ), English as an Additional Language (EAL) for , students with reading and writing difficulties (LRS), problems with calculation (Dyscalculia), special support needs and special talents.
- Through Team-Teaching and Support-Teaching, the individual learning needs of the students can be integrated into regular lessons.
- Team-Teaching and Support-Teaching simplifies the diversity of teaching methods and the use of free teaching forms, and makes it easy to carry out projects and go on excursions.
- It allows for a variety of perspectives: the preparation and practising of content is accompanied by encouraging and developing the competencies and working techniques.
Team-Teaching and Support-Teaching is utilised in the following subjects:
- German (approx. 4 hours with subject teachers)
- English (approx. 4 hours with subject teachers)
- Mathematics (approx. 2 hours with subject teachers)
- Social Science, Years 1 to 4 (the majority of lessons with class Erzieher*in)
- Science, Years 5 and 6 (the majority of lessons with class Erzieher*in or subject teacher)
- Music, Years 1 to 10 (most of the lessons with class Erzieher*in or subject teacher)
- Art, Years 1 to 6 (the majority of lessons with class Erzieher*in)
- Sport, Years 1 to 6 (the majority of lessons with class Erzieher*in)
Through team teaching and support teaching, we allow for more individual attention, tailored instruction, and thus better learning outcomes for all students, not to mention better individualized catch-up for learning gaps that may have been created through lockdown and alternate instruction.
- Team-Teaching or Support-Teaching
- German as a Second Language (DaZ) in beginners courses and as integrated support in German and subject teaching.
- English as an Additional Language (EAL) with integrated support in English and subject teaching
- A wide range of teaching and learning resources, learning tools, differentiated activities in lessons and differentiated homework
- Study time in primary school
- Consultation in secondary school
- A focus on individual and self-organised learning under the supervision of our teachers and Erzieher*innen through project days, our Work & Travel program and through Co-Curricular Enrichment activities.
Our goal is to help the students organise their own learning process, as well as provide them with a variety of opportunities to deal with educational content. The type, scope and checking of homework vary according to grade, subject, theme, and the individual abilities and needs of the students. Homework is only given in very small amounts in Years 1 and 2, often in the form of small exercises for reading, writing and calculating. The older the students, the more complex the homework. Homework can give students the opportunity to further prepare for lessons and can be in oral or written form.
Every Monday and Friday afternoon, we offer a Homework Room for all students in Years 3 to 10 with a quiet workplace where they can do their homework. Also a teacher or Erzieher*in is always present and supports as needed. This is a voluntary offer. The children and teenagers can decide for themselves whether they want to do their homework at school or at home. The checking of homework in the classroom is carried out in various ways, for example, through conversation, a small presentation of results, or through a partner or teacher check.
The students enter their homework and the dates for exams and tests independently into their homework books. At home, parents can best support their children by speaking and reading with them in their mother tongue, and by practising writing and calculating regularly.
The 40-minute study period takes place in the classroom, twice a week, for students in Years 1-6 and is led by the class Erzieher*innen.
It is particularly important to us that during this time, the children try out different learning techniques in addition to those learnt in lessons, practice how to concentrate for long periods of time, learn to work independently on questions from lessons and solve problems that arise through reflection and research before asking a classmate or Erzieher*innen for help.
Study time decreases the amount of home learning and leaves more time for family and leisure. Nevertheless, we recommend that parents regularly read, write and calculate with their children – in the mother tongue of the respective parent – and also help their children when completing homework.