What will your students be able to do at the end of the program
Below is a table showing an example of a possible progression of foreign language proficiency levels according to the ACTFL Proficiency Guidelines by the American Council on the Teaching of Foreign Languages. This progression is based on a program operating approximately 50% in German (Rilke Schule German School of Arts and Sciences in Anchorage, AK). You will note that speaking, reading, listening and writing progress at different rates, with listening and reading progressing often more quickly than speaking and writing.
|Kindergarten||Novice Mid||Novice Mid||Novice Low||Novice Mid|
|1st||Novice Mid||Novice High||Novice Mid||Novice Mid|
|2nd||Novice High||Novice High||Novice Mid||Novice High|
|3rd||Novice High||Intermediate Low||Novice High||Novice High|
|4th||Intermediate Low||Intermediate Mid||Intermediate Low||Intermediate Low|
|5th||Intermediate Low||Intermediate High||Intermediate Low||Intermediate Low|
|6th||Intermediate Low||Intermediate High||Intermediate Mid||Intermediate Low|
|7th||Intermediate Mid||Advanced Low||Intermediate Mid||Intermediate Mid|
|8th||Intermediate Mid||Advanced Low||Intermediate High||Intermediate Mid|
ACTFL in cooperation with the National Council of State Supervisors for Languages (NCSSFL) has also created Can-Do statements which more specifically illustrate what learners “can do” at the different levels. These criteria statements focus on proficiency as opposed to deficiency. Can-Do statements serve as a curricular support document and assessment tool. The Can-Do statements are student-centered and intended to be a self-assessment tool. Students use the Can-Do statements to consider the quality of their own work and indicate, to the best of their ability, how well they are performing in relation to grade level expectations. Teachers use Can-Do statements for assessment, communicating with students and parents, and for planning for instruction, e.g., lesson plans, unit plans, year plans. The Can-Do statements are also designed to help stakeholders outside the classroom, such as parents and administrators, understand how language proficiency will progress over time.
ACTFL-NCSSFL Can-Do statements are organized into Proficiency Benchmarks supported by more specific Performance Indicators. Taking these as a starting point, the teachers at Rilke Schule created even more specific indicators for every grade level that reflected the content and language progression in their program. Below you can download examples of their Benchmarks and Indicators at four different grade levels and four different areas (speaking, listening, reading and writing).
Below you can download an example of a possible progression of grammatical elements for grades K-6. This is based on a program operating approximately 50% in German. You will notice the progression from the student being able to use the grammatical element in first modeled situations, then structured situations and finally independently and consistently. The full documents illustrating the K-9 and 10-12 Programs of study and corresponding progression of curricular outcomes in Language Arts is available from the website of the Alberta Ministry of Education (Canada), under "Programs of Study" here.