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Are you planning on studying a foreign language this year? If so, you should consider learning German, one of Australia's most popularly studied languages. There are many reasons why you should do this, which include accessing better-paid jobs, expanding your social life and getting to explore some of the most fascinating cultures out there. On top of that, you’ll find that German is not nearly as hard to acquire as you think it is, especially for an English speaker, since it shares the same Germanic root with English and as a result has thousands of similar words that are pretty easy to learn. Moreover, you won’t have to worry about learning a new alphabet, and you’ll find that because the language is so logical, once you learn its rules you’ll be able to really get the hang of it.
In short, with a little help from a German teacher and some resources you can get for free, you’ll be able to master this wonderful language much faster than you think. Don’t believe us? Then take a look at this detailed guide, which will give you all the information you need to become the fluent speaker we know you can be.
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
With all the interesting languages out there you could be learning, you might wonder why you should choose German in the first place. To answer that question, here are some of the reasons why you should start learning German today.
To Access Higher Education
As you probably know, Germany has some of the best universities in Europe, so if you’re planning on studying abroad, learning German is one of the smartest things you can do. In addition to offering some of the best education in the world, German universities are known for having very low or non-existent tuition fees, so if you manage to enter any of them, you won’t have to worry about student debt. Although there are many great institutions where you’ll be able to study once you learn German, some of the best include the Technical University of Munich, Ludwig-Maximilians University and Ruprecht-Karls University.
Are you planning on studying in Germany? If so, then check out theLanguage for Exam Preparation Courses we offer which will help you pass any entry exam and understand all your classes at university.
”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 Travel Around the World
German is one of the best languages you can learn if you like travelling, as it will allow you to get by in countries like Austria, parts of Italy, Liechtenstein, Luxembourg, Switzerland and of course, Germany. On top of that, German is the second most-spoken language in Europe, as it has served as lingua franca for centuries all around the continent. This means you’ll be able to communicate with millions of Europeans much more easily, especially in eastern European countries like the Czech Republic, Poland and Hungary.
To Take Your Career to the Next Level
Once you can communicate fluently in German, you’ll be able to apply for well-paid corporate positions in top German companies that operate from Australia like BMW Group, Siemens, and Bayer. Additionally, you’ll become an asset for big local companies like Commonwealth Bank of Australia, BHP Group and CSL Limited, who are always looking for bilinguals that can help them improve their economic relations with German companies, so you’ll get a lot more job offers no matter where in Australia you live. Alternatively, if you own a business or are planning on starting one soon, speaking German will increase the chances of accessing international markets, as well as attracting foreign clients, which can be a great way to ramp up your sales and become a much more successful business person.
Learning German is also key to doing business in Germany. Want to know more about this? Check out some of these articles from our blog:
To Enjoy Literature, Music, Art and Philosophy
Learning German will open many doors for you to get more familiarised with the works of some of the world’s best writers, musicians, artists and philosophers. Once you become bilingual, you’ll be able to read Goethe, Herman Hesse, Kafka, and many others in their original language, as well as appreciate more deeply the music of top composers like Bach, Mozart and Beethoven, so if you want to expand your knowledge of general culture, don’t hesitate to learn this fascinating language.
2. Learning German with a Teacher vs Learning on Your Own
If you’re now ready to start your journey to fluency in German, you now have to make another decision and that’s whether you want to do it on your own or whether you want to start a language course with a qualified tutor. If you’re not sure what you should do, take a look at the comparison between these two options.
Learning with a Teacher
Want to learn German but don’t know how to plan your own lessons? Don’t worry, because if you book a lesson with us, one of our language professionals will tailor lessons based on your language goals and interests. Still not convinced? Then check out some of the most important reasons why you should study with a tutor.
One of the advantages of learning with a teacher is that you’ll get to ask any question you might have, and seek clarification for tricky areas of grammar or pronunciation. This means you will save a lot of time, as you won’t have to spend hours in a public library trying to find the answers to your questions, and you’ll have someone to explain to you some of the hardest aspects of the German language. On top of that, a tutor will be able to share many tips and recommendations that are impossible to find in books or online, so you’ll have access to an invaluable source of knowledge.
• If you study with a tutor, you’ll get a lot of practice time with a language professional, which means you’ll get plenty of opportunities to boost your conversational skills with someone who can correct all your mistakes and help you speak confidently in a short time. This can really make a difference, especially for shy learners who find it hard to talk to native speakers and need to work on their confidence.
Learning about German culture is a really important part of studying the language, and there’s nobody more qualified to teach you about that than a native German teacher. If you start learning German with us, you’ll be able to learn all about German traditions, art and interesting facts about this wonderful country, which will help you understand the way Germans see the world and what their values are.
If you’ve tried to learn German before but always end up quitting, that’s probably because you didn’t have a teacher who could give you the support and motivation you needed to achieve all your language goals. This time, get the help of a qualified professional, and you’ll see how you’ll be able to overcome any stumbling blocks that come your way.
Learning On Your Own For Free
Although many learners attempt to study German on their own because it’s completely free, there are a few things you should take into consideration before you decide to try this yourself. First, you need to be really disciplined to make any progress, which can be difficult without someone guiding you through the process. Secondly, keep in mind that searching for free updated materials to design your lessons won’t be as easy as it sounds, and very time-consuming. Thirdly, unless you have German native friends, it will be pretty challenging to get the weekly practice time you would get with a teacher, so you won’t be able to put your skills to the test very often. In short, even though learning on your own means you’ll be saving money, unless you really commit to it it’s really easy to end up unmotivated and frustrated in the long run.Become Fluent in German With Our Teachers!
3. Tips to Learn German More Effectively
f you’ve decided to become fluent in German and want some useful tips to make the best use of your time, don’t miss out on the following tips and recommendations.
Always Learn Words In Their Grammatical Context
As you probably know, it can be pretty tricky to remember which German nouns are masculine, which are feminine and which are neuter, so something you can do from the beginning is to learn new nouns with their corresponding article. Instead of learning the German word for time, which is Zeit, on its own, it’s much more efficient if you learn it as Die Zeit, which will help you remember it is a feminine noun. To help you start learning new German nouns, here’s a list with some common ones divided by grammatical gender.
- Der Mann: Man
- Der Tag: Day
- Der Vater: Father
- Der Ort: Place
- Der Name: Name
- Die Mutter: Mother
- Die Frau: Woman
- Die Door: Door
- Die Hand: Hand
- Die Nacht: Night
- Das Kind: Child
- Das Auge: Eye
- Das Volk: People
- Das Haus: House
- Das Auto: Car
Learn Modal Verbs As Fast As Possible
German language, like English, has many useful modal verbs you can learn. You use them in English all the time every time you make sentences with the verbs can, must, might, and may to express ideas of possibility, permission, desire and obligation, and if you learn how to conjugate them in German, you’ll be able to make a big variety of sentences, which will really improve your fluency. Once you master them, you’ll be able to say things like:
|I can play tennis.
I have to play tennis.
|Ich kann Tennis spielen.
Ich muss Tennis spielen.
|I can go to school.
I have to go to school.
|Ich kann zur Schule gehen.
Ich muss in die Shule gehen.
|I can learn German.
I have to learn German.
|Ich kann Deustch lernen.
Ich muss Deutsch lernen.
Immerse Yourself in German Culture As Much As Possible
In addition to learning new vocabulary and working on your grammar, it’s really important that you immerse yourself in German culture as early as possible. There are many entertaining ways you can do this, so choose whichever you prefer.
Watch German films and TV shows: This is one of the most effective ways of picking up new words and phrases that are commonly used by native speakers, while at the same time learning about the different German traditions and customs. It’s even a great way to understand the German sense of humour, which is pretty different from Australian humour. If you don’t know what to what, you should check out the many excellent German TV shows you can find on Netflix, like Dark, Biohackers and Charité.
Listen to German podcasts: If you want to improve your listening skills while learning about all things German, you should start listening to podcasts in the language. You could start with Speaking of Berlin, a podcast that was specially made for English speakers who are learning German and follows different speakers who are exploring Berlin. This podcast is for beginner and intermediate learners, so if you want something more challenging, you should check out Elementarfragen, which features interesting interviews with experts on a vast variety of topics.
Connect with native speakers: Once you’re able to have a basic conversation in German, you can start talking with German speakers from all around the world. If you can’t find any around your city or town, you can visit amazing online communities like Interpals or MeetUp, where you can make friends from all around the globe in the comfort of your home.
Read as much as you can: Another useful way of learning about German culture is to read as much as you can about it. You can start by reading the news in German on beginner-level websites like Nachrichtenleicht, Der Spiegel and Deutsche Welle, or check out the many amazing articles on German that we have on our blog such as:
Is the German Language as Hard As It Seems? The Definitive AnswerREAD THE ARTICLE >
Speak German Like a Native With This 10 GesturesREAD THE ARTICLE >
Prost! Your Survival Guide to OktoberfestREAD THE ARTICLE >
Long Work Week? Germany’s Top Ten Weekend GetawaysREAD THE ARTICLE >
Alsatians: The Middle Child of a Century’s Old Territorial DisputeREAD THE ARTICLE >
4. Useful Techniques to Learn German Vocabulary
Learning new words and phrases in another language can be challenging, especially at the beginning. Fortunately, you can use your own imagination to create useful mental images that help you link new German words with their meaning. Don’t believe us? Then take a look at these fun mnemonic techniques you can start using right now.
When you encounter a new word, like for example the German word Baum which means tree, it’s really useful to create a mental image in your mind of a tree while you repeat the word. To make it easier to remember, try to link words with mental images that have some meaning to you, for example, while you repeat the word Baum, you could think about a tree that was in your childhood home or one that you can see from your window every day. You can use this simple technique with most words, especially nouns, and it will definitely make a difference.
To learn new verbs, a useful technique you can use is to imagine a famous actor or someone you know performing the action described by the verb. For example, if you want to remember the word Tanzen which means to dance, you can imagine Kylie Minogue dancing to one of her most popular songs.
The third technique is for those who don’t like using visualizations and consists of using music to learn words. Instead of learning long word lists, it’s much more effective to just look for German singers you like and learn their songs. This will help you improve your vocabulary effortlessly while also enjoying yourself, so you should definitely try it. Don’t know any German singers? Then take a look at these five amazing German artists.
5. Resources to Improve your German Pronunciation
Are you struggling to make yourself understood when you speak to natives? If so, you might have to work on improving your pronunciation. To help you out, here are some resources you can use in your free time to improve the way you sound.
There are many amazing YouTube channels you can follow to work on your German sounds, such as EasyGerman, which has many videos that feature native speakers talking about different subjects, and GermanPod101, which has a large collection of clips where native teachers break down German vowels and consonants.
If you’re not sure how a word or phrase is pronounced in German, there’s a great website you can use calledRhinoSpike where you ask native speakers to read it aloud. You can even ask them to record themselves reading a whole text or listen to the many audio files that are already uploaded on the website. Using this language tool is great because you’ll be able to imitate the way native speakers read a vast variety of texts, which can be really helpful to improve your pronunciation.
There are great apps you can use to learn German, like Memrise, Drops and Duolingo, but if you want to improve your pronunciation, you should try Bravolol, which has a really useful recording feature that allows you to compare the way you sound saying a word or phrase to a recording of a native speaker.
6. Survival German Phrases
If you’ve just started learning German and you can’t say much, take a look at these survival German phrases that will come in handy on any trip to Germany.
|My name is…
|Wie heißen Sie?
|What’s your name?(formal)
|Wie heißt du?
|What’s your name?(informal)
|Woher kommst du?
|Where are you from?
|Ich komme aus…
|Wie geht es dir?
|How are you?
|Ich kann nicht (so gut) Deutsch sprechen
|I can’t speak German very well
|Sprichst du Englisch?
|Do you speak English?
|Kannst du das bitte wiederholen?
|Could you repeat that?
|Nett Sie kennenzulernen
|Pleased to meet you
|Wie viel kostet…?
|How much is…?
|Do you have…?
|Wo finde ich…?
|Where can I find…?
|Wo sind die Toiletten, bitte?
|Where are the restrooms, please?
|Kann ich mit Kreditkarte zahlen?
|Can I pay by credit card?
|Kann ich bar bezahlen?
|Can I pay in cash?
|Eine Fahrkarte nach …bitte
|One ticket to…please
|Was kostet eine Fahrkarte nach …?
|How much is a ticket to…?
|Wann fährt der nächste Bus/Zug nach …?
|When does the next bus/train leave to…?
|Sind noch Zimmer frei?
|Do you have any rooms available?
|Wie viel kostet ein Einzelzimmer?
|How much is a single room?
|Wie viel kostet ein Doppelzimmer?
|How much is a double room?
|Ich möchte auschecken
|I’d like to check out
Want to learn more phrases? Take a look at these Essential French Phrases You Need To Know Before You Travel To France and these 5 French Slang Terms to Know in Order to Speak Like a Native.
Are you ready to become a fluent French speaker? If so, send us a quick enquiry today, and one of our team members will get in contact with you within 24 hours to help you find the perfect French course that fits all of your requirements.
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