I am Asad. I am living in Germany right now. I am a full-time student here at the university level and downside is, my course is in English language. I have been here for 2.5 years and I lived a very lonely life because not knowing the local language. I just learned a few repetitive phrases that shop keepers say to you all the time. Just being in your target country is not itself enough. At the end of the day, you need to immerse yourself on your own at home with movies and reading books. That is one golden nugget of wisdom as I learned along the way.
Thanks to Covid-19 , not all subjects are being offered online so I have a lot of free time now which I am spending on watching TV series in German.
The purpose of writing this post is to gather inputs from other learners about starting reading in German.
Should I focus on getting used to the language and its sound system through massive exposure to TV series and movies in German. Let’s say for the next 3 months and then start reading books in German?
I am spending 12 hours daily watching TV series and I am very amazed within a week or so of daily watching TV series for 12 hours(7*12). I am picking up phrases in the right context because these phrases are being repeated many times.
I did not use any dictionary or did not study any grammar. Just relying on my brain to sort it out.
Since I have no audio for my German texts, I am kind of confused should I also supplement reading texts in German RIGHT NOW?
Your feedback regarding this will be highly appreciated.
No, you needn’t wait to start reading. As a matter of fact it is usually assumed that watching TV or films is in fact more difficult than reading so most people would be advised to do the exact opposite. Now, that is not always the case but it still doesn’t make sense to get a lot of media exposure before starting to read. If you are interested in reading, just do. Find some book that you like and which is at a level that you find pleasant to work with and go for it. Reading usually helps build a much larger vocabulary and deeper comprehension of the nuances of the language.
With reading there is always a danger of incorporating wrong pronunciation of words because of that sub-vocalization thing and even more so if you are starting from scratch in a foreign language. This is why I was kind of contemplating about this issue. I am just experimenting with this process right now. Actually, what I am doing is reading something in English and in parallel reading its translation in German and then looking up difficult words in a dictionary and then try listening to the texts in Google translate.(Using its audio option).
Many German lessons on Lingq have audio, voiced by a native speaker. You should read in tandem with watching shows.
Make sure to make some german friends when everything opens back up! Many germans like to speak English and will switch to that language if you are only a beginner in German… so keep studying hard until you can hold a decent conversation and they shouldn’t switch so often.
I think which approach(es) you use will depend on your goals. If you’re looking to speak and communicate with people then I would focus on creating a very strong core of words and grammar that you can produce in order to communicate simply. This would involve maybe 500 words that you can easily recall the definition/declensions immediately. Also, take some common verbs and drill the conjugations. This will build a solid A1/2 level (which is very important for producing communication). On the other end of the spectrum is understanding spoken language. You will need to do lots of reading and even more listening to make sufficient progress.
If you only do reading/listening then your production will remain terrible and you’ll be confused/scared to speak. If your goal is communication then I would really focus on creating a very strong base of words which youre very comfortable with using. Don’t be afraid to talk to yourself (in your head) and simply describe your feelings and things around you.
I think you’ll be wasting time watching tv series if just beginning. I’m not going to say it’s useless and certainly getting used to the sounds and words can be helpful. As you point out you may pick out some phrases here and there. However, you are just going to understand too little imo to progress there quick enough.
On the Lingq site, I’d take a look at the Mini-Stories which have a lot of the most useful words. Also the courses “Ab jetzt lerne ich Deutsch! German Now!” and "
Thanks for your recommendations, very much appreciated. I am going to order these books from amazon.de as they are not expensive as I see. Worth a try.
I was also inspired by watching this video and wants to learn German language through her method. See how it goes. Alexandra Stepien - Netflix and chilll like a boss: How to learn languages the lazy way - PG 2017 - YouTube
Hey there your english skills are excellent.
Wenn deine Deutschkenntnisse genau so gut werden sollen, wäre es fantastisch wenn du hin und wieder mit einem real existierenden Deutschen etwas “Smalltalk” betreibst.
Ich selbst beschäftige mich schon seit Jahren mit der englischen Sprache und habe jetzt in wenigen Wochen fast 8000 Wörter eingesammelt.
Einige neue Wörter habe ich auch tatsächlich schnell im Zusammenhang (Context) gelernt.
Es macht viel Spaß mit LingoQ zu arbeiten. Diese App habe ich erst zu Ende des letzten Jahres (2019) für mich entdeckt.
So jetzt muß ich gleich mal im System umschalten und mit meinem Französich weiter machen um endlich entscheidend voranzukommen.
Wenn du Jemanden gelegentlich zum “Quatschen” brauchst, könnten wir uns ja mal über Skype verabreden.
Laß mal wieder von dir hören.
Liebe Grüsse “Gerfried”
I would love to write to you in English and you can write back to me in German via e-mail. I need to collect a lot of German sentences that are spoken/written by a German native speaker.
email: asad100101 AT yahoo.com
I am about to finish my degree in Business Administration with Informatics. I live in a small town called Soest. It is a small place with mostly elderly people but has all the modern amenities available at hand from the H.M store to Macdonalds. The summer is always beautiful and lively with outdoor activities, however, due to COVID-19, the current summer is quite bland. Dusseldorf is my favorite city in NRW and a very modern city. On weekends I usually go there and enjoy the atmosphere of a big city. Similarly, Munster is also a beautiful city. On the whole, German cities are beautiful and walking friendly.
danke für deine schnelle Antwort.
Dein gutes Englisch ist für mich leicht zu lesen, so dass ich dafür kein Übersetzungsprogramm benötige.
Ich bin ein pensionierter Polizeibeamter und habe in Niedersachsen über 42 Jahre in der Volkswagenstadt Wolfsburg meinen Dienst versehen.
Täglich habe ich Verkehrsunfälle und andere Vorfälle, wie häusliche Gewalt und Straftaten wie zum Beispiel Körperverletzungen und Diebstähle, oder auch Betrugsfälle, aufnehmen müssen. Da in Wolfsburg viele Ausländer leben, haben mir meine Englischkenntnisse oft geholfen.
Nur einmal musste ich beinahe kapitulieren, das chinesische Ehepaar mit dem wir zu tun hatten, sprach nur “Mandarin”.
Aber meistens konnte man immer Jemanden telefonisch erreichen, der die entsprechende Sprache (Übersetzter oder mehrsprachige Personen aus Firmen oder Behörden) sprach, so dass wir die Angelegenheit immer regeln konnten.
Das bedeutet, dass ich in meinem Leben schon ein paar tausend Berichte in die Schreibmaschine und später in den Computer getippt habe
Der Schichtdienst war über die Jahre gesundheitlich sehr anstrengend.
Jeden Tag hatte ich quasi einen anderen Dienst. (Früh-Spät-Nachtdienst) Ich habe fünf erwachsene Kinder und bereits 7 Enkelkinder mit meiner Ehefrau.
Meine älteste Tochter, wohnt genauso wie du in NRW. (Bochum)
Vielleicht kannst du ein Forum einrichten (Skype oder dergleichen) in dem wir hin und wieder direkt sprechen können.
Ich könnte dann mein Englisch und du dein Deutsch deutlich verbessern
Bis bald. “Gerfried”
My Skype: asad.khan1214
As far as English goes, all my German professors read Harvard Business Review voraciously and they speak super excellent English. They have such an amazing range of vocabulary and sometimes I feel like their first language is English, not German. They all hold a Ph.D. It is a German law that you can not be a Professor and can not deliver a lecture if you do not hold a doctorate degree.
It is a long term investment in yourself if you purchase a yearly subscription of HBR. It comes at 66 EUR a year (which is really peanuts) but the good thing is you get to read the good quality of writing and get to read various topics under the sun.
I have yet to come across a German person who speaks bad English. I am more than sure your English is equally excellent and it is just that Germans like to be humble about it. It is one of many other personality traits that they possess, namely, being a stickler for punctuality.
Have a good weekend ahead!
I really like audible.com and read along with transcripts/book separately available on the kindle. Available in German. Lots of titles, so many great books available! Professional narrating and audio quality and titles are often available in multiple languages on kindle for reading and translating. Note: I am not an amazon employee! I have read and listened to dozens of titles in Spanish and French and also some German. Or else use the library at lingQ. Comes with transcript and audio and has some fun tracking and motivating features like 30/90 day challenges, activity and milestone tracking.