The KDG offers bilingual education for pupils who wish to put a special emphasis on improving their English. It is possible to join the bilingual branch from Class 7 onwards. In addition to the ongoing regular English classes, there is full immersion in the English language in the subjects Geography (from Class 7) and History (from Class 8). Both subjects are taught in English and, as far as possible, all communication in Class is in English. However, the lessons are not foreign language courses but Geography and History lessons. Therefore the guideline is “message before accuracy” and pupils are allowed to communicate in German as much as necessary to enable them to participate in the lessons. Experience shows that pupils manage increasingly complex communication in English already during years 7-10. The bilingual branch is open for every pupil with a special interest in the English language and good marks in English during years 5 and 6.
The bilingual lessons follow the regular curriculum for each subject. So bilingual pupils study the same content as the German language classes in the respective subjects. There is however an additional focus on English speaking cultures (e.g. in History the American Revolution, Anglo-German relations between the world wars). This provides a shift in perspective which benefits both the immersion in the target culture and the multiperspectivity aimed for in the subjects.
During years 7 to 10 the bilingual subjects intermittently have additional lessons allocated to them in the timetable. This serves the purpose to help pupils with mastering the increasing requirement to express factual content in a foreign language. For both Geography and History there is now a wide range of English school books and teaching materials available.
In years 7 and 8 there is a cooperation with the bilingual Carolus Clusius College in Zwolle, Netherlands. This encompasses a collective trip to the Archaeological Park in Xanten and a German visit in Zwolle. During these activities the communication between pupils is in English.
For pupils in the non-bilingual classes there is also an option to participate in a bilingual module as part of the differentiation in Classes 8 and 9.
In the „Oberstufe“ (years 11-13, EF, QI, QII) the bilingual education leads to the certfification of a bilingual Abitur. During EF normally both bilingual subjects are kept, during QI and QII pupils take an English advanced course (Leistungskurs) in combination with one of the bilingual subjects as a requirement for the bilingual Abitur.
Since the school year 2018/19 we also have an exchange with Giardini-Naxos on Sicily, which is thematically connected to the bilingual branch. Participants prepare presentations regarding historical and geographical topics and present them to each other in English. Because Italian will not be taught at the KDG as a foreign language in the foreseeable future, the language of the exchange is English.