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You may have heard people saying German is hard to learn and they may have a point: the word Kraftfahrzeughaftpflichtversicherung certainly seems nightmarish. However, if you give German a chance, soon you’ll realise it’s a lot easier than you thought, especially when it comes to compounds like the one mentioned above. German is a logical language, with very consistent rules. Once you understand and internalise them, you’ll be able to speak German like a native!
And the best part is that you can still learn German even if you don’t have a knack for acquiring new languages. The internet is full of interactive, fun resources for you to take your skills to the next level using songs, films, books and even games. Of course, you also have the option to start learning with an experienced, qualified native German tutor who will understand your every need and will guide you in this challenging journey towards German proficiency.
Either way, we can help you get fluent in this challenging language. Take a look at the following guide on how to learn German today and take the bull by the horns!
Language Trainers organizes German courses in almost any destination!
All classes are taught by qualified, native speaker German trainers and can be arranged at your office or home for any day of the week (including weekends) in the morning, afternoon or evening.
1. Why Learn German Today
When you think about all the complexities of the German language (from endless compounds to dozens of declensions and cases), you ask yourself “why should I subject myself to this torture?”. Well, there are good reasons why being fluent in German is an asset today. Plus, it’s not that hard and we will prove it! Find here the reasons why you should start learning German without delay.
For Professional Reasons
If you are looking to broaden your professional horizons, then learning German is the perfect choice for you for a number of reasons. First, Germany is an economic powerhouse, being the fourth largest economy worldwide and the biggest in Europe. Therefore, being fluent in German is an asset if you plan to relocate to Germany or if you wish to expand your business to a German-speaking country.
In addition, knowing German will also be useful for your career at home. While German exports to the UK totalled 66.9 billion euros in 2020, imports surpassed 3 billion, making Germany one of the most prominent trade partners of the UK. Plus, an array of German companies like VW, City bank Deutsche or BMW have a presence in the UK. Most of them look for bilingual employees, so learning German will give your CV a very competitive edge.
Here are a few extra resources you can use to boost your knowledge of Business German:
”I have only positive things to say about my instructor and lessons! Brad was the perfect instructor for me and gets an A+ rating! He is an excellent teacher: Professional, knowledgeable of the German language & culture, personable, responsible, kind, and patient! He really helped me to improve speaking, reading, and writing in German, as well as to learn more verb tenses, vocabulary, and to become comfortable conversing about everyday life in the German language. I am so grateful to Language Trainers for the opportunity you gave me to help further my German language learning! It was truly a wonderful experience taking lessons from Brad!”
Shawney Garbe - German course in Birmingham (Alabama)
To Communicate With In-Laws and Family
Learning German to communicate with family is crucial in many situations, such as falling in love with a person whose family only speaks German or discovering you have a German-speaking family yourself. While it’s true that most people in Germany, Austria, Liechtenstein or Switzerland speak fluent English, learning somebody’s native tongue is a sign of respect and good faith appreciated everywhere. Additionally, it will improve your chances of getting your message across and communicating effectively.
Because You Love a Good Challenge
Learning German is certainly demanding and time-consuming, but your efforts will pay off! Also, there’s nothing more rewarding than achieving German fluency after spending so much time practising. So, if you are up for a challenge, learning German can be a great choice due to:
- A very rich lexicon, with a lot of synonyms and phrases that are completely different but mean the same. For instance, the German words illegal and ungesetzlich both mean unlawful.
- Nouns have 3 different genders and they are usually completely random.
- Many sounds are not like ours in English and become difficult to pronounce, such as the guttural R.
- Verbs can be separated, with the declension placed at the beginning of the sentence.
- Articles have declinations (cases) so they change their form depending on their function within the sentence.
With a lot of patience and practice, soon you’ll master all of these complicated aspects of German and you’ll communicate fluently in many different situations.
As you may know already, German is not only spoken in Germany: it’s also the official language of countries like Austria, Liechtenstein, Belgium, or Switzerland. Furthermore, it’s a minority language all over the world, from Italy to Namibia, Poland and even Espiritu Santo in Brazil. This means that being fluent in German is an asset if you plan to travel around the world and would like to communicate with locals and learn more about their culture. Start studying German today and discover hidden gems like the lakes in Bregenz, Austria without the limitations of not knowing the language!
2. Learning With a Teacher vs Learning German on Your Own
Are you ready to start your German journey but you are not sure how to do it? Some options now lay ahead of you: start learning with an experienced tutor or use free online resources to study German. Here are some pros and cons of both options so you can make an informed decision.
Learning with a teacher
Learning German with a tutor is a brilliant idea, especially if you are only a beginner and you don’t know where or how to start. Your teacher will not only explain even the most complicated grammar topics in an engaging manner but they will also teach you the cultural aspects and values you need to understand if you plan to be fluent in German. Other compelling reasons to study German with a teacher include:
- To feel motivated at all times. Learning a language is a long-term investment and, at times, a frustrating endeavour, as it requires sustained, consistent practice without immediate results. Mastering the German verb system can take months, if not years, so it’s easy to lose motivation along the way. However, if you decide to learn with a teacher, they will be there every step of the way, pointing out your strengths and celebrating even the smallest of victories.
- To learn without distractions: When learning alone, it’s easy to feel distracted by social media, the TV or even by the people who live with you at home. A trained tutor, instead, will help you stay focused and make the most out of the hours you spend studying per week.
- To ask as many questions as needed: Whenever you have doubts, your teacher will be there to address them and help you understand even the most complex topics about German grammar, vocabulary, pronunciation or any other formal or informal aspect.
- To practise the language as much as possible: There’s one major advantage to learning German alone: the lack of spoken practice. The only person you can speak to is yourself, and even if this is useful to spot mistakes or improve your pronunciation, you are missing out on important skills you need for conversation, such as turn-taking or asking for clarification. But if you study with a teacher, this problem will be solved!
Learning German alone for free
If you are an independent learner who prefers to take their learning process into your own hands, you can always start studying with free online materials. You can find books, movies, YouTube channels, games and even social media accounts dedicated to sharing interesting materials for language learners. This has a number of advantages and disadvantages depicted in the table below
|You have complete control over your schedule and the materials you want to use.||It’s not easy to select appropriate materials for your level or even know where to start, what type of vocabulary to select, what grammar rules are relevant in your case, and so on.|
|You don’t have to pay a penny or commit to a long-term language course.||It will be hard to learn more about the culture of German-speaking people.|
|If you are shy, you won’t suffer because you don’t have to speak in front of anyone.||You won’t have anyone with whom to practise your speaking skills or give you feedback on your written production.|
|You’ll have access to almost an unlimited number of resources to choose from.||"Nobody will clear up questions you may have about the materials.|
So, if you find yourself in this situation and you are not sure how to learn German effectively, the next section is for you! We share our top tips to acquire the language without suffering and in a short time.Become Fluent in German With Our Teachers!
3. Some Tips to Learn German Effectively
Use Verb Conjugators as Support
Learning the verb system in German is a daunting experience, especially if you speak only English or other languages where verbs don’t vary extensively (like Chinese). To make your life a bit easier, there are a number of tools that can support your learning process. For example, verb conjugators like Verb Formen or Conjugator Reverso are fantastic resources to practise and clear up doubts about how to conjugate verbs in all the tenses that exist in German.
Don’t Limit Yourself to the Formal Aspects of the Language
Sure, you should learn about grammar and pronunciation rules, but being fluent in German entails much more than that. Don’t forget to learn about culture, especially if you are planning to move to a German-speaking country soon! The best way to understand culture is, of course, by interacting with native speakers.
But if this is not an option for you, you can always resort to songs, movies, TV series and even social media to start picking up important traditions and beliefs from your target variety. For instance, here is an interesting article about the 5 things no one tells you about moving to Germany.
Blog Posts and Articles to Help you Learn German
Five amazing artists to follow if you are learning German.READ THE ARTICLE >
How to improve your German accentREAD THE ARTICLE >
More tips to perfect your German pronunciation.READ THE ARTICLE >
5 films to watch as a German learner.READ THE ARTICLE >
A short guide to learning the German article system.READ THE ARTICLE >
10 German expressions for your business trip to Germany.READ THE ARTICLE >
4. How to Learn German Speaking
We can all agree on one thing: learning how to speak fluently and accurately in a foreign language is the most difficult part of all. And this is even harder if you are studying German without the help of an expert teacher. But don’t fret: here are some tips and recommendations on how to learn German spoken discourse.
Read the basics before you start
Speaking in a foreign language can be intimidating, especially if you are shy but you can bridge this gap by reading books and articles about how to speak German before you start. This will give you more confidence and, in turn, more accuracy when facing a native speaker. Some examples include:
Use as Much Input as Possible
The key to speaking like a native speaker is to have as much input as possible. If you cannot find a German speaker to practices with, then use all the free resources you can find to expose yourself to your target accent! Some options include audiobooks, recorded conversations in YouTube channels or social media, CD’s included in course books, recordings from pronunciation dictionaries and songs.
Ger Familiar with the International Phonetic Alphabet
Have you ever heard of the phonetic script or International Phonetic Alphabet? If not, then you should learn the basics of this writing system! It’s a way of representing sounds instead of letters, many of which are shared across languages. For example, the sound /s/ as in “sister” is the same as in “Suchen” in German.
Let’s take a look at another example:
Rot is /ʁot/ in IPA
If you have knowledge of the International Phonetic Alphabet, then, you’ll never mistake the English and the guttural R again! Here are a few resources that can be of help:Contact us & get the practice you need!
5. Key German Phrases
If you are travelling to Germany, Austria or any other German-speaking country soon and you don’t really have the time to learn the language exhaustively? We are here to help. Find in the table below some phrases that will help you get by on your next trip to a German-speaking country. And you can also find even more greetings in German in our article!
|English Version||German Version|
|Greetings||Hello / Hi||Hallo|
|How are you?/ How are you doing?||Wie geht es dir?|
|Good Morning.||Guten Morgen?|
|Thanking others||Thank you!||Danke|
|I appreciate it.||Ich schätze es|
|Asking for forgiveness||Apologies||Entschuldigung|
|I'm sorry /I'm very sorry||Es tut mir Leid.|
|Asking for help||Where is... the bathroom?||Wo ist die Toilette?|
|Can you help me with my luggage?||Können Sie mir mit meinem Gepäck helfen?|
|Accepting an invitation||Yes, thank you!||Ja Dankeschön!|
|Presentation||My name is…||Ich heisse…|
|What’s your name?||What’s your name?|
All in all, the journey towards German proficiency may seem intimidating, but with patience, good materials, and an expert German teacher, your learning experience will be really enjoyable!
Reach out to us at Language Trainers today and start learning German at your home, office, or a public space! Meanwhile, you can follow us on Facebook or Instagram, where we post interesting content for language learners like you. And don’t forget to visit our blog, updated weekly!
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”The lessons have been fantastic and my teacher Regina was brilliant tailoring the course to exactly what I needed.”German course in Cambridge, Analyst, Cantab Capital Partners LLP
”It is some time since I had German lessons however their usefulness remains invaluable to me.”German course in Exeter, HR Advisor, Heathcoat Fabrics Limited