Teaching subjects in German - DFU

The abbreviation DFU stands for „deutschsprachiger Fachunterricht“, which means the teaching of subjects in German at schools of mutual encounter like the Deutsche Internationale Schule Kapstadt, where pupils of various mother tongues meet and are taught. This diversity of languages poses a challenge to everybody involved in the school, but it also entails a big opportunity.
The pupils of the DSK, unlike other schools, are provided with the chance of reaching higher levels of accuracy in both English and German.
Especially the fact that other subjects than German are taught in the German language as well plays a very important role, as the pupils are constantly given the opportunity to use and practise their newly acquired words and structures. This is a basic condition required for successful language acquisition.
Being encouraged to use the German language in so many different situations also has a very positive effect on the pupils’ range of vocabulary.
Research in Germany has shown that content which pupils have learnt in bilingual streams using a foreign language is better retained, and these learners have had better results than the ones being taught solely in their mother tongue.
DFU is practised at all German Schools worldwide and it has proved to be a very successful method of language acquisition if it is thoroughly introduced.
This means for the DSK that …

  • already in grade 5 all subjects contain phases that are taught in German.
  • in grade 6 these phases will become longer and more frequent.
  • from grade 7 onwards the subject Biology will be mainly taught in German. The German phases in the other subjects will continue on a more advanced level.
  • from grade 8 onwards all not NSC relevant topics in Physics will be taught in German. The German phases in the other subjects will continue on an advanced level.
  • at the end of grade 9 the learners will be prepared to successfully obtain the German Language Certificate I (DSDI).

Grade 6 Geography lesson partly in German

Please contact me if you have any further questions
Thomas Graben
DFU Coordinator

Weltverband deutscher Auslandsschulen Partnerschulen Weltweit
Deutsche Internationale Schule Kapstadt
28 Bay View Avenue • Tamboerskloof
8001 • Cape Town • South Africa
Tel: +27(0)21 480 3830 • Fax: +27(0)21 480 3863, info@dsk.co.za