Echt 1 and 2
Anneli McLachlan, Mariela Affum and Marcus Waltl
Oxford University Press, 2020 (Echt 1), 2021 (Echt 2), 151pp, £21.50
ISBN: Echt 1: 978-0-19-849471-3; Echt 2: 978-0-19-849472-0
Echt 1 and Echt 2 are German textbooks suitable for KS3. Echt is ideal for teaching a two-year course at KS3, and also suitable for the three-year course. Each textbook has six units. In Echt 1 students cover personal information, family & pets, free time, school and food. In Echt 2 the focus is on holidays, home, healthy living, clothes and technology. Unit 6 focuses on more cultural information, such as famous German authors and fairy tales in Echt 1, or Berlin in Echt 2.
Each unit is divided into five chapters, and each chapter covers the four language skills, which students are tested on in their GCSE. Each chapter also provides an opportunity to practise translations from the target language into English or vice versa. The activities are very clearly laid out in an appealing fashion, making learning fun with lots of authentic and relevant content.
Each chapter also provides a section exploring the culture of Germany and German-speaking countries. Whether it is about school life, football, fashion and traditions or famous authors, artists, architecture and the history of Berlin, Echt is informative in a way young people can relate to and gives plenty of inspiration to explore the wider world.
Grammar is also covered in each chapter and regularly revisited throughout the course. This spaced approach helps students memorise key language and gives plenty of opportunities to fully engage with the grammar for a better understanding.
Particularly useful are the sections ‘Was kann ich schon?’ and ‘Vorangekommen!’. These sections provide both teacher and students with an opportunity to see what level the individual student has reached. The results give clear feedback for a differentiated approach to further develop the students’ language skills. The textbooks also include strategies and exam-style questions for each unit to prepare students fully for the GCSE exams.
Haberdashers’ Adams School, Newport