German group

An area with study groups for various languages. Group members help each other, share resources and experience. Study groups are permanent but the members rotate and change.
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Chung
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Re: German group

Postby Chung » Wed Dec 28, 2016 10:40 pm

Cavesa wrote:The links to the lectures look very promising, thanks!

Looking for a resource on declinations. I am now using Duolingo and hoped I was wrong. Unfortunately, I still struggle with the same things, so my theory "Duolingo is great as futher exercise source or as the first sample of German learning, but nothing more" seems to hold. I think I have seen workbooks on declinations but cannot remember names, I'll try to google the stuff. However, would anyone remember or does anyone have a good recommendation, please? I need tons of exercises and examples. I more or less understand the issue, I get the real basics, I get quite a lot of things right, but I still make tons of mistakes and it's a shame and it is one of the things standing between me and progress.


I've used Schaum's Outline of German Grammar and German Grammar Drills to varying degrees to drill German inflectional endings specifically. The workbook Hammer's Practising German Grammar is similar to the previous two but is meant to accompany the reference manual Hammer's German Grammar and Usage. Almost every exercise in Hammer's workbook links to an explanation in the reference book right down to explicit mention of the subsection number.

You can also practice the case endings indirectly by using Practice Makes Perfect German Pronouns and Prepositions and Practice Makes Perfect German Sentence Builder since learning to use prepositions and/or constructing sentences correctly can often mean you have to get the declension right.

Any of these books (especially an edition excepting the most recent one) can be found for pocket change on Amazon Marketplace and similar but be careful about buying used copies of workbooks since these can already be marked up by previous owners. Since you're in Europe, it'd probably be better to order through Amazon UK Marketplace or similar to reduce the chances of being charged a lot for shipping and customs.

You could even use FSI German Basic Course to practice handling the case endings. Look especially at the substitution and conversion/transformation drills instead of the variation, vocabulary and translation drills since the latter three wouldn't be ideal for simple drilling based on one cue or pattern. Look through the grammar notes of both books and do the drills for topics for which you want extra practice. Obviously you could do these drills by writing down your answers rather than saying them aloud as intended.
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Cavesa
Black Belt - 3rd Dan
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Languages: Czech (N), English (C1), French (C2), Spanish (intermediate), German (somewhere on the path), Italian (passive advanced, active basic)
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Re: German group

Postby Cavesa » Wed Dec 28, 2016 11:04 pm

Thanks, Chung! I'll certainly get hands on some of these. I left my grammar workbooks mostly at home, but I've still got some stuff with me and can get a bit more.
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aokoye
Black Belt - 1st Dan
Posts: 1688
Joined: Sat Jul 18, 2015 6:14 pm
Location: Portland, OR
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Re: German group

Postby aokoye » Thu Dec 29, 2016 8:21 am

Cavesa wrote:The links to the lectures look very promising, thanks!

Looking for a resource on declinations. I am now using Duolingo and hoped I was wrong. Unfortunately, I still struggle with the same things, so my theory "Duolingo is great as futher exercise source or as the first sample of German learning, but nothing more" seems to hold. I think I have seen workbooks on declinations but cannot remember names, I'll try to google the stuff. However, would anyone remember or does anyone have a good recommendation, please? I need tons of exercises and examples. I more or less understand the issue, I get the real basics, I get quite a lot of things right, but I still make tons of mistakes and it's a shame and it is one of the things standing between me and progress.

I second the recommendations that Chung gave and would add on the Hueber Grundstufen-Grammatik für Deutsch als Fremdsprache and also Nancy Thuleen's worksheets which are free. The Heuber book has also been translated into a number of languages.

I would suggest Kimberly Sparks' German in Review but it's not worth the price compared to other books. I only bought it because it was required for a class I took years ago and turns out it's actually pretty good.
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Prefered gender pronouns: Masculine

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aokoye
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Re: German group

Postby aokoye » Thu Dec 29, 2016 10:25 am

Also in terms of exercises the Deutsch Akademie's grammar website is chock full of them. They don't have any explanations and their website is not the prettiest and occasionally it has issues but it works and again, full of exercises.
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Prefered gender pronouns: Masculine

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Soclydeza
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Location: United States
Languages: English (N)

Actively Studying:
German (B2)
Italian (False beginner)
Norwegian (Beginner)

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French (Lower intermediate)
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Re: German group

Postby Soclydeza » Thu Dec 29, 2016 7:28 pm

Hey guys, I'm just wondering what your intermediate routines are. I mean that point where you've moved beyond anything standard courses have to offer and can converse a bit but still can't fully (or mostly) understand native materials.

Each day I go through a DW Aktuell article, mark unknown words, study the words and listen to the audio over and over again (what I like to refer to as "Assimil Style"). I read on my Kindle too but, depending on the book, the amount of words that I have to look up can really put a damper on the flow of reading. I also watch shows and sometimes listen to the radio and also do weekly Italki conversational lessons. I'm hoping that all this is actually helping but sometimes I'm doubtful, since progress seems slow (and even regressive at times).

So what are your routines? What have you found helps during this "no man's land" phase of guidance-lessness learning?
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END OF YEAR
: 108 / 108 Babbel Italian (Beginner)
: 47 / 47 Babbel Italian (Intermediate)

CONTINUOUS
: 27 / 100 Assimil Italian

gsbod
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Location: UK
Languages: Native: English
Also speaks: German
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Rusty: French
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Re: German group

Postby gsbod » Thu Dec 29, 2016 10:47 pm

Soclydeza wrote:I'm just wondering what your intermediate routines are. I mean that point where you've moved beyond anything standard courses have to offer and can converse a bit but still can't fully (or mostly) understand native materials.


Actually, I think German is one of those languages where you can carry on working with courses (among other things) right the way up to advanced levels. There are plenty of coursebooks out there up to C1 and even some for C2, if that is of interest to you.

In terms of breaking into native materials, as long as you have built a good enough foundation, there comes a point where you do just have to get on with it. Learning how to handle texts and audio which combine a number of unknowns with things that you ought to be able to understand is a skill within itself. What I try to do is combine reading and listening for the gist with books, TV shows, podcasts, etc and detailed study of shorter texts/audio/video where I look stuff up and try to memorise it.

I think it helps to pick appropriate materials to work with when listening/reading for the gist. The content should be interesting enough to you (which of course is personal) and the language used needs to be comprehensible enough not to make you too frustrated (again this is personal). Having the Kindle helps because you can download a load of samples and get a feel for how the first few pages read before you commit. The following list is the books I have read in German so far, in the order I finished reading them - I have no idea if they fit your interests but they may fit in with comprehensibility:

Der Kleine Prinz, Antoine de Saint-Exupéry
Der Vorleser, Bernhard Schlink
Kafka am Strand, Haruki Murakami
Couchsurfing im Iran, Stephan Orth
Eine Unbeliebte Frau, Nele Neuhaus
Taxi, Karen Duve
Mordsfreunde, Nele Neuhaus
Russendisko, Wladimir Kaminer
Verblendung, Stieg Larsson

I also got halfway through Tintenherz, which is quite nicely written, but I found the story started to drag and haven't found the motivation to finish it. Add to that Die Vermessung der Welt, which had an interesting subject matter but I found the language too challenging and will try again later.

The other thing with German is the way that a lot of words are built out of a combination of other words and/or smaller components. Sometimes it helps to just slow down your reading a little bit to allow your brain to figure these combinations out, before reaching for the dictionary.

For listening, I think you are probably doing things right already, by watching lots of shows, listening to the radio and supplementing with more detailed study. I often find with listening to native materials that when the improvement happens, it happens quite suddenly, so keep going and you should make some progress soon!
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: 8100 / 10000 German Books (10,000 pages)

Corrections are welcome

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M23
Orange Belt
Posts: 105
Joined: Wed Dec 09, 2015 6:58 am
Location: Colorado (USA)
Languages: English (N), Spanish (intermediate), German (n00b)
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Re: German group

Postby M23 » Sat Dec 31, 2016 5:30 am

Count me in for the German group this year. This past year has been horrible for me in the language learning department. I cannot remember a time when I have been this unproductive for this long. I might have another year ahead of me full of obstacles to getting some serious language study in... but my hope is to at least make this year more productive than 2016 was.

I am still working on getting out of neophyte land with the following resources:

1. Pimsleur German audio course
2. DW Interactiv course
3. German Made Simple by Arnold Leitner
4. Duolingo


The DW course and the book have been pretty idle this past year, and I have been chipping away at my Duolingo tree and getting Pimsleur lessons in when I have my cardio days at the gym. I saw that Duolingo recently added a "Clubs" feature to their mobile devices application and was wondering if anyone in this group was interested in using it as an extension of what we have going on here.

My goal for this year will be to finish one or all of the resources from the list above.
Last edited by M23 on Sat Dec 31, 2016 9:33 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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WalkingAlone13
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Languages: English (N) German (B2) Finnish (beginner) Swedish (beginner) Polish (beginner)
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Re: German group

Postby WalkingAlone13 » Sat Dec 31, 2016 5:31 pm

Hallo Leute! Einen guten Rutsch ins neue Jahr!

I just thought I would let everyone know, in case there is interest, as I remember we have a lot of Star Trek fans among us, Amazon currently have "Star Trek: Voyager - The Full Journey Limited Collector's Edition [48 DVDs]" reduced to 33 euros. I purchased one just now and with postage to the UK it came to £34 which is pretty impressive in my opinion. They do have a few of the others reduced a little but nothing as big as the aforementioned.

*patiently waits for Deep Space nine to see a similar reduction*

And also, I mentioned earlier another series that I could not think of the name of. The name of the series is "In aller Freundschaft - Die jungen Ärzte" and it is actually quite a new series so currently there is only two seasons. It is a series concerning doctors however, this series is set in Erfurt, which seems to be a popular destination for exchange students - I myself hope to be studying here next year - but this alone may make this series interesting for some. I have to say I have not yet watched it due to its price, despite my Star Trek purchase, I am actually trying to be quite savvy this coming year to allow me to save a little for my time in Germany.
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Brun Ugle
Black Belt - 2nd Dan
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Re: German group

Postby Brun Ugle » Sat Dec 31, 2016 5:47 pm

WalkingAlone13 wrote:Hallo Leute! Einen guten Rutsch ins neue Jahr!

I just thought I would let everyone know, in case there is interest, as I remember we have a lot of Star Trek fans among us, Amazon currently have "Star Trek: Voyager - The Full Journey Limited Collector's Edition [48 DVDs]" reduced to 33 euros. I purchased one just now and with postage to the UK it came to £34 which is pretty impressive in my opinion. They do have a few of the others reduced a little but nothing as big as the aforementioned.

*patiently waits for Deep Space nine to see a similar reduction*

And also, I mentioned earlier another series that I could not think of the name of. The name of the series is "In aller Freundschaft - Die jungen Ärzte" and it is actually quite a new series so currently there is only two seasons. It is a series concerning doctors however, this series is set in Erfurt, which seems to be a popular destination for exchange students - I myself hope to be studying here next year - but this alone may make this series interesting for some. I have to say I have not yet watched it due to its price, despite my Star Trek purchase, I am actually trying to be quite savvy this coming year to allow me to save a little for my time in Germany.


You are a bad influence on me. It looks like I just bought myself a belated Christmas present. Now I'll finally get to see the last few years of Voyager. I never saw them because I left the US and didn't get to see them here.

If you do see DS9 or TNG at a discount like that, let me know.
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Speakeasy
Black Belt - 2nd Dan
Posts: 2092
Joined: Mon Jul 20, 2015 5:19 pm
Location: Canada (Montréal region)
Languages: English (N), French (C2). Studying: Italian, Spanish, Portuguese, German, Dutch, Polish, and Russian; all with widely varying degrees of application, enthusiasm, and success.
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Re: German group

Postby Speakeasy » Tue Jan 03, 2017 2:20 am

I will introduce myself to the group at a later time. In the interim, I thought that the members of the German Group might be interested in the following document that I discovered just a few moments ago while searching the Internet for audio-lingual materials for the study of German:

Die Audiolinguale (ALM) und Audiovisuelle Methode (AVM)
http://www.google.ca/url?sa=t&rct=j&q=& ... 9868,d.cGc
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