School Uniform and Rules

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School Uniform and Rules

Whether you like it or not, most school pupils in the U.K. have to wear a school uniform. You may need to be able to describe it in your speaking exam. In talking about clothes, we often say what colour they are. Colours are describing words, i.e. adjectives. You need to be able to understand how adjectives work in German.

Have a look at this summary:

1. When the describing word (adjective) comes after the word it's describing, then it doesn't change and you don't have to add an ending to the adjective.

For example:

Mein Pullover ist grün = My pullover is green

2. If the adjective comes in front of the word it is describing (the noun), then you have to put an ending on it.

For example:

Ich trage schwarze Schuhe = I wear black shoes

You have added an -e on to schwarz. You would do the same when talking about socks, boots, sandals, trainers... anything where there is more than one.

3. In describing your uniform, you would say things such as "I wear a black skirt, a white blouse... etc."

In saying this, you have to add an ending to the adjective, depending on whether the noun is masculine, feminine or neuter, because the adjective comes before the noun. Remember to learn your genders!

For example:

Ich trage einen schwarzen Rock (Rock is a masculine word) I wear a black skirt.
Ich trage eine weisse Bluse (Bluse is a feminine word) I wear a white blouse.
Ich trage ein blaues Kleid (Kleid is a neuter word) I wear a blue dress.

Now, as long as you know whether the item of clothing is masculine, feminine or neuter, you can do the same for anything else.

Giving Opinions

You probably have a strong opinion about your school uniform!

Giving opinions in your speaking exam or in your written work will always gain you extra marks, so make sure you can always say how you feel about things!

1. I don't like my school uniform because it's ugly. Ich mag meine Schuluniform nicht, weil sie hässlich ist.
2. My school uniform is very practical. Meine Schuluniform ist sehr praktisch.
3. I like my school uniform because it's comfortable. Ich mag meine Schuluniform, weil sie bequem ist.
4. I like my school uniform because it's green - my favourite colour! Meine Schuluniform gefällt mir gut, weil sie grün ist - meine Lieblingsfarbe!
5. I don't like my school uniform because it looks dreadful. Meine Schulunform gefällt mir nicht, weil sie furchtbar aussieht.

Any organisation has rules, whether we like them or not! In English, the rule usually starts off with something like "You must ... You may..." or "One must ... One may ..."

The same is true in German, the only difference is that the other verb (doing word) in the sentence comes at the end.

For example:

One must go to school until you are 16.

Man muss bis sechzehn Jahren zur Schule gehen.

There are a very small number of verbs, called Modal Verbs, which work in this way. We will just look at müssen = to have to and dürfen = to be allowed / expresses the idea "may".

Here are the complete forms of these two verbs to remind you:

  müssen dürfen
ich muss darf
du musst darfst
er/sie/es muss darf
wir müssen dürfen
ihr müsst dürft
sie/sie müssen dürfen

In this exercise, look at the pictures of classroom rules and then click on the correct german phrase before marking your answer:

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