Recently I started teaching German to a 7 year and 9 year old. They are my friend’s children and they have no prior knowledge of German. It was tricky finding the right curriculum. I was surprised that there are actually choices for children younger than High-School. We first tried a middle school curriculum but soon decided it was too dry and and hard. Then I found this Mc Graw Hill program for ages 3-10.
It comes with a lesson book that track with two CD’s. There is also an activity book to practice their learning. The way it works is that children listen to the lesson on CD and use their course book to answer questions. Each lesson has simple songs, though cheesy at times, that help with the memorization. There are no home-work assignments just a list of vocabulary words to memorize.
There are 10 lessons covering introducing yourself, going to school, counting, going to the supermarket, etc.
Here is an example of the activity book.
I find this to be a great introduction for younger kids. The games and song keep the kids interested. The lessons are about 20 minutes long, just right for their attention span. Before every lesson I spend about 10 minutes of review and conversation. The program does not do reviews, which to me are essential for retention.
The program is designed for children to learn on their own, but I would say it would be much more helpful if they had someone to practice and review with.
For those of you who like me are German native speakers trying to teach your children: I have been including my 9, 7, and 5 year old during classes. Here is an assessment on them. This program is too easy for my 9 year old. He is not learning anything new. Still I have him there to review and realize how cool it is that he knows so much and he can help his friends. Part of cementing what you learn is teaching others. The program is perfect for my 7 and 5 year old. My 7 year old knows some but is learning right alongside. My 5 year old is learning a lot. I can see how lax I have been teaching her….
They like it, its fun, not dry at all.
I bought the program on Amazon.
Viel Spass beim Lernen!
3 thoughts on “Teaching German to Elementary Kids: German for Children”
Thanks for sharing about this resource!
Looks great and thank you for including the photos of inside. I’m trying to get my son interested in reading/writing German (he has a good passive understanding and will speak a bit but says reading it “gives him a headache!) so finding good resources that will appeal to him is very tricky.
I’m glad this is helpful. Don’t give up, teaching your children a language is hard work. But the fact that he speaks German is gold. You are much further than most of us. Have you tried German u tube videos of shoes he likes? All the best on your language journey!