Better German Podcast with Susi

Susanne Schilk-Blümel

Episode 11 - My 7 Favourite Tips to Learn German

2023-11-09 13 min

Description & Show Notes

In this episode, Susi offers her top seven tips for individuals trying to learn the German language. These include practical for learners of all levels, no matter if they are already attending a course or not. So, if you are learning German and want to make faster progress or have more fun doing it, or if you want to get started – this episode is for you!

In this episode, Susi Blumel shares her 7 favourite tips for learning German. Whether you're following a German course or learning German through her podcast, these tips will enhance your learning experience and help you improve your German language skills. From finding a language partner to focusing on learning new words and practising them, to watching German movies with subtitles, Susi provides practical advice to make your language learning journey more effective and enjoyable.
Sequence of topics covered in the text:
1. Finding a language partner
   - Importance of having a language partner
   - Accountability and discipline in learning with a partner
   - Benefits of learning with a partner
2. Focusing on learning new words
   - Emphasizing nouns for beginners
   - Importance of focusing on vocabulary over grammar initially
   - Organizing new words in a notebook or binder for easy reference
3. Practicing new words
   - Techniques for practising vocabulary, such as pointing and touching objects
   - Creating sentences with new words to reinforce learning
4. Watching movies or TV shows with subtitles
   - Accessing German movies and TV shows with subtitles on streaming platforms
   - Benefits of watching with subtitles for language learning
5. Following the Better German podcast
   - Using the podcast as a structured course for learning German
   - Upcoming topics and episodes mentioned in the podcast
6. Not overemphasizing grammar initially
   - Balancing focus on communication and grammar in the early stages of learning
These topics cover a range of practical and effective tips for learning German, creating a comprehensive guide for language learners to follow.
Next Episode: Episode 12 Let’s improve our vocabulary in the classroom or office!
·      Additional Materials
·      Interactive German Movie Guide

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Welcome to the Better German podcast. My name is Susi Blümel, and I will teach you German and everything around the language , the countries and the culture. Hello. In this episode, I'm going to go over a few tips that I think are good if you follow, that will make it easier for you to learn German or any language. So, whether you follow my podcast or you're a student of mine or you're learning German somewhere else, and follow my podcast, these are the things that are suggested to do that will make things easier. Tip number one, find a partner. This could be a partner that speaks German, your target language, or a partner that speaks your own language or both. I mean, you can also work with two people. So if you find a partner that speaks German, you can help him, learning your language and he, or she helps you learning German. Or, you find a partner, that you learn German together with. This is super practical, super important, because together you can practice. And you can use and apply what you learned, and this will help you, improve your German learning speed and experience tremendously. Another thing is, obviously it adds accountability. If you are working with a partner and you have times you meet, then it's a good thing. It helps raising the discipline, it helps putting the time in and so on. So that's also a very, very good point of doing that, and it's more fun if you're learning together. Okay, next thing. With or without a partner, my next tip is focus on learning new words. And particularly when you're a beginner, focus on learning new nouns. Nouns are words like table chair, lamp, love, light, sun. So, focus on those first. Because they're easier to learn and easier to practice and then add some others, but generally focused on learning new words. Don't worry so much about grammar in the beginning. Most courses and most books jump right into the deep grammar, things of life or German in particular. So don't worry about that too much, focus on learning new words. And then, it's sounds maybe not very spectacular, but I'm telling it, because I have so many students that don't do that, unless I tell them to: get a notebook or a binder, and put everything in there, like write it up nicely, write up new words, that you learn nicely, write up everything that you practice nicely and put it in this book or in this binder in sequence. One after the other. That is a very good thing, you will need it. Because tip number four, practicing, you need to practice much, much, much more. Don't worry so much about learning new things. Practice the things that you start to understand, to a point where you basically don't think about them anymore. So when you learn those new words that I said before, the nouns mainly, practice them. How can you practice them? If you have your partner, or even alone, you can point on the different things. Even touch them if possible. And say: der Tisch (the table). die Lampe (the lamp) die Wand (the wall) das Bild (the picture). By the way, these are all words. From, episode number 11, these are all words, that we're actually learning in the next episode. These are words from your environment. There is a list of words, like that, that we're going to learn in the next episode. So come back for that. So if you have words like that, or you have words like die Nase (the nose) - these are body parts from episode six - so if you have words like die Nase (the nose), then you can touch it. You can point to it. And another thing you can do is you can make sentences. Yes, use as many German words, that you already know in a sentence, but you can mix it with your native language or English. So I would make a sentence like: Die Nase is small. Or. Das Bein (the leg) is long. You can do that because you're just focusing on this word and make many sentences with every single word. Make so many sentences that you are sure that you remember this word. I don't know how you tried to learn new words so far. When I was in school, I was sitting there with my vocabulary book and it was trying to memorize it. I was trying to memorize, let's say I was learning, the word, the table in English. My native language is German. So. I would maybe say, okay, the table, Tisch to table Tisch. Tisch Tisch. I have to remember that - the table. Okay. I think we've all done that. If you haven't, then you probably wouldn't be listening to this podcast, because you would already be speaking German. What, do you do instead you take this new word, that you're trying to remember der Tisch and instead of, by force trying to force your brain of remembering this, you just use it, you look at your table and you say, Der Tisch is white. Der Tisch is not big. Or whatever, you can say about your table or the table, that you have right there. So that's another way how you can practice it. You can come up with different ways of practicing. If you have a partner, you can probably even practice this easier. So that's tip number four, practice new words. Do that both, as I said with speaking, but also write these things. My next tip is Tip number five. Watch movies or TV shows with subtitles. You can find movies or TV shows. With subtitles on Netflix, on Amazon, and on Disney+. So if you have access to any of them and you probably have that, if you can listen to this podcast, you can probably get Netflix, Amazon, or Disney plus as well. And you can watch original German TV shows with subtitles. But even if you can't find an original, you can do something like. put on them. for example, a Disney movie. Put the audio on German and the subtitles in English or in your native language. So even that helps, you can do that. But all three of these, have German original movies or TV shows. Now with subtitles, I have an episode coming up, about this one specifically. And how you can use these to learn German. This is maybe something that works best, if you're not a total beginner, if you have learned a little bit of German already, but honestly, It will even work if you are a beginner, as long as you stick with it. I know people that learned German just by watching Austrian TV. Because it was the TV, they liked better than the TV in their own language, in their own country. So it is entirely possible, and it's fun. It's entertaining, you don't have to be like, okay, I'm learning now. You can just watch this TV show with subtitles. Some of my students, do it even like that they watch the movie first in their own language, if it's available in their own language. And then they switch it to German and turn on the subtitles. You can play around whichever works best for you. Or you can watch a movie that you already know very well and change the language to German, if it's possible. But ideally I would suggest to you, watch a movie that is German original and put on English or your native language, if possible, subtitles. So that is something that in itself is super, super helpful, and it will also help you with the speed. Because when you learn German and you just learn it from the books and. a little bit in the class, maybe, and then you tried to speak to native speakers. It will be very, very fast in comparison. That's normal, but watching movies will help you with that. My tip number six, follow this podcast, for more. Basically, if you follow this podcast from episode one on, you have a course, more or less, I'm recording these podcasts episodes, more or less in the sequence that I will hold a course. There's also courses coming up next year, but for now you can just listen to the podcast, follow the podcast. So my tip number seven. Is. Don't worry about grammar, meaning You should try to speak correctly obviously. But do not put so much attention in the beginning on grammar. Communication is way more important, than grammar. So in the beginning, you need to focus on learning new words. And focus on using them, getting enough practice and on using them in real communication. And not so much about the grammar. It's a point of what is more important, particularly for beginners grammar and communication, and learning enough words, is always more important, than learning the grammar. And then once you have a lot of words and you're able to communicate, then you learn, you improve your grammar and make sure that you get better at that. Okay, good. So these are my seven tips, that will help you to speed up learning German, wherever you are, whatever course you're doing, or if or if you're just learning German by following my podcast, this is going to help you. Okay, so stay tuned, I'm going to link to the podcast episodes that I've just mentioned that are coming up. The next podcast episode, as I said before is a word list about things that you would find in a classroom or in a room around you, or in an office space. And the next episode is an episode, about like learning German, with shows with subtitles. I'm going to give you a little bit more information about that, and I'm gonna share a few of my favorite tips for students to watch. And then, we're going to have more coming up so see you, then stay tuned and do well If you liked it and, it was helpful for you, please share it with other people and let them know that this exists. And if you are looking for a course and you want to learn German online, then you can, of course, find all the infos as well on www. bettergerman. info. So, see you there and see you in the next episode. Bye bye!


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