Learning German !!! [ German people , Please help]

:smiley: , Hi , at the first semester of year [ii] at uni , i will start learning German language !!!

i skipped spanish , hebrew , french , and started to learn German :yes: instead, for the ones who are curious . Mechatronics Eng , well , we have somthing like 40 subjects to choose 3 from , and i chosed , architictural arts , sports and health , German language as free subjects …

ok , in the month holiday before i start , i want some of your tips please , … to improve the process , specially from german people on this board who can give some tips … :o

thanks a lot


Can’t help ya, but I think chicks prefer spanish :wink: or french…
I had german in school 3 years (3 years ago) and didn’t learn anything but few words :stuck_out_tongue:
Must say it isn’t hard language to learn (on a basic or mid-advanced level).
You speak as you read, not like in english. At least it looks that from my polish point of view.
If I only would want to I would sprechen :yes: like a german 13 years old kid rignt now :stuck_out_tongue: Insteed I speak like 13 years old english kid, that didn’t like school very much.

Way to go, it isn’t hard. Good luck:eyebrowlift:

To think I was close mates with a couple of Germans - I wish I had kept their details as they were nice folks and would have been so willing to help. Good luck with your German studies!

Well, that is true if you know the etymology of the words you are using. If they are plain germanic words, then it is easy. If they are based on foreign words, which is true for quite a couple of words, it gets complicated. Germans tend to transfer not only the word but even the pronouncation and sometimes the grammar of foreign words into their own. Don’t try to use one of the several ways of plural possible in german for Cappuccino, use the italian one. It takes a few hundred years to use german spelling for some foreign words (like for the last reformation of the german orthography, which did this for some but not all words, which is still not widely used and which took place nearly a hundred years after the last reformation).

I am a german native speaker and I think it is quite a hard language to learn and to teach.

There are so much rules, subtleties and exceptions to rules… in fact, for a typical rule there are more exceptions than cases following the rule. There is one big mistake you can make when using german: building analogies. It doesn’t work! It may look logical, it may look like the same word with the same stem - but in most of the cases it just doesn’t work.

And for the same pronouncation: There are at least four different ways to pronounce an “e”. That is if the word is plain germanic and not a foreign word…

So, my advice: Don’t try to talk perfect by learning. Try to get 80% right, try to be able to passivly understand certain constructs and then use it to get better.

An example for a hard to get construct are particle verbs, verbs that consist of several parts that are torn apart when using pushed in parts of sentences.
“Leutnant Klinke fiel bei der Schlacht bei den Dueppeler Schanzen, in der die preussischen Truppen Daenemark im deutsch-daenischen Krieg endgueltig schlugen, nachdem sie vorher einige Monate Krieg fuehrten, was im Endeffekt zur deutschen Einigung und der Gruendung des deutschen Kaiserreichs fuehrte|, eine neue Methode der Reinigung der Zuendnadeln der Gewehre ein.”
(The content of this sentence is quite made up).
The verb is “einfallen”. It is torn apart to “fiel…ein”. “fiel” int the context of a battle means “killed in a battle”. So up to the | you think that Leutnant Klinke was killed in the battle. Only then you get a clue that something totally different may go on. With the last word you see that the verb is “einfallen” which means “having an idea”. Well…

Hey inmare,

thanks to your explanation I am now wondering how in the blue hell I (being a native speaker, wohlgemerkt) was able to learn that language in the first place. :smiley:

Well, it seems concerning punctuation, and how many rules apply to a language concerning past present and future…dutch is the hardest language. (I read that somewhere) And dutch looks similar to german in some ways! I had german for 2 years at school, and go to germany once a week or so :stuck_out_tongue:


Well, one can learn anything. I just had a discussion about the german kind of numbering. Like in danish or old english you say “four-and-twenty” for “twenty four”. That gets complicated when you have this at the hundreds postion or at the hundreds and the thousands position… result of our discussion was that it is possible to learn, it is not overly complicated - but completely pointless to use this system. Waste of time, should be changed. Others mix up months and days in numbering even if it is useless, provokes errors and is contrary to international agreements. Tradition maybe.

Esperanto is so much more fun to learn… but a little less useful. :wink:

Oh, and not to be too negative: Learning something is always useful. Learning a language is especially useful. And no one needs to be perfect when using a foreign language [1], that should not be the target of learning it.

So if you have some concrete questions or task, just ask!

So I am into Finnish this year. Quite a different language… different to all the other european languages. Quite easy to switch between the western european languages or within the eastern european… but this one is really something different.

[1] I try to set an example in not being perfect by my posts here. :wink:

Your description of German sounds a lot like English to me, Inmare.;):yes: True, I am a native English speaker and I think its every bit as hard if not slightly harder than that.:stuck_out_tongue:

I am German too.

What I have noticed with people have problems trying to learn German:

-German has three articles, “der”, “die” and “das” unlike the one article “the” of the English. “der” is male, “die” is female and “das” is neutral. But there is no consistent logic in using these article, for instance it’s “der Becher” - meaning “the cup” - but why is a cup male :slight_smile: So you have to learn this for every noun.
-There are no strict rules for singular and pural, you basically have to learn the singular AND plural form for every noun.
-There are four cases for nounes (der Mann, des Mannes, dem Mann, den Mann, die Frau, der Frau, der Frau, die Frau, das Kind, des Kindes, dem Kind, das Kind).

There is lots more to it but don’t let this discourage you to learn German.


Hey, what do you think about making an universal concept of using animation in language learning? Are we able to do that? Like style Muzzy in Gondoland (or whatever it was): Tikku-ukko oppii suomea. The Stickman learns some finnish. Strichmännchen lernt Finnisch.

Do you remember the italian television cartoon “La Linea” from early 1970’s? He would be a nice example.

You want my tip? Learn vocabulary and take a longer trip to a German speaking country (preferably Germany :slight_smile: ) and actually speak it. I found there is no replacement for learning a language then speaking it. That’s how I learned English.
Don’t be afraid to make mistakes! I also find it a lot easier to write in a language when you actually speak it.
I think the only reason I know German and learned it is because I grew up here :slight_smile:

Don’t get discouraged and keep studiing the vocabulary as you go along.

And as said above feel free to ask and we will try to explain stuff to you. Just don’t ask Grammatic as I suck at Grammatic.

I had German in high school, haven’t really needed it since. I remember reading a cheap German detective novel from to train my vocabulary and language instinct. Reading whatever, like German news sites, even if you don’t understand all the words, can be helpful.

(Just don’t start with Kant’s Critique of Pure Reason, that is the epitome of verb-abuse that Inmare was talking about)

ive had a german girlfriend she taught me two words


she also taught me xxx the german way

Great to hear it! :slight_smile: I’m also learning German, and I think the most difficult things about it are what bobtronic pointed out.

I think the best tip I can give you is to start reading Shakespeare (www.sparknotes.com is a great place to do so) and get used to Early Modern English. You will notice a lot of similarities between it and German, and I know it helped me quite a bit.

Also, as you probably already know, don’t expect to become fluent, or even mediocre, at actually speaking the language unless you’re speaking it all day, every day. I’ve taken two semesters (I know, that’s not terribly much), and even though I can write decently, I would really have no hope of holding a conversation in German. Being able to read a good bit of the German I come across is quite satisfying for now, though.

send me an email if you need help

or skype me so we could talk

skype: cekuhnen

email: [email protected]

Ze German

Even better is reading the original Beowulf, then it basically is German!

I can basically read German, but don’t ask me to speak it… :wink:

from what i’ve seen german is similar to french. i imagine after learning two languages the third will be much easier, so german is next after i get a bit better at french

Sie konnten hier beginnen.

Danger !!! DO not use those services !!!

I get the most funniest emails because people try to translate into German.

BTW the best way to learn it is to make a trip to there.