Germany

"Failure makes smart."

German proverb
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This free ESL lesson plan on Germany has been designed for adults and young adults at an intermediate (B1/B2) to advanced (C1/C2) level and should last around 45 to 60 minutes for one student.

Despite only becoming a country in 1871 (or 1990 if you count the more recent unification), Germany quickly rose to become the dominant economic power in Europe, and in the short period of time, Germany has had quite an eventful history. Today, Germany is known for its industrial might, for having some of the best beer in the world, and for being the birthplace of Protestantism. In this ESL lesson plan on Germany, students will have the opportunity to discuss and express their opinions on German history, culture and tourism.

This lesson plan could also be used with your students for Germany Unity Day, which takes place in October. For more lesson plans on international days and important holidays, see the calendar of world days to plan your classes for these special occasions.

For advice on how to use this English lesson plan and other lesson plans on this site, see the guide for ESL teachers.

PRE-CLASS ACTIVITIES

Reading activity
Before the English class, send the following article to the students and ask them to read it while making a list of any new vocabulary or phrases they find (explain any the students don’t understand in the class):

Lonely Planet | 16 stunning places to visit in Germany

The article lists a number of spectacular places to visit in Germany, including the alternative culture of Berlin, fairy tale castles, and the beautiful Black Forest. What do they think about the places listed in the article? Can they think of any other places that should be added to the list?

Video activity
To save time in class for the conversation activities, the English teacher can ask the students to watch the video below and answer the listening questions in Section 3 of the lesson plan at home. The questions for the video are styled in a way similar to an exam like the IELTS.

The video for this class is a called “The rise and fall of the Berlin Wall” by TED Ed which explains why the Berlin Wall was built and what led to its end.

IN-CLASS ACTIVITIES

The focus in the class is on conversation in order to help improve students’ fluency and confidence when speaking in English as well as boosting their vocabulary.

This lesson opens with a short discussion about the article the students read before the class. Next, the students can give their opinion on the quote at the beginning of the lesson plan – what they think the quote means and if they agree with it. This is followed by an initial discussion on German culture including the best places to visit, the best German food, and the best German music and films.

After this, students will learn about some important German people, which is accompanied by a speaking activity. In this activity, students will speak about famous German people they know about, and what they think about German people in general.

If the students didn’t watch the video before the class, they can watch it after the vocabulary section and answer the listening questions. Before checking the answers, ask the students to give a brief summary of the video and what they thought about the content.

Finally, there is a more in-depth conversation about Germany’s place in the world. In this speaking activity, students will talk about issues such as what Germany gave to the world, how Germany compares to other countries, and what the future has in store for the country.

HOMEWORK

After the class, students will write about their opinion of Germany. This could be a short paragraph or a longer piece of writing depending on what level the student is at. The writing activity is designed to allow students to practise and improve their grammar with the feedback from their teacher.

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