Das deutsche Wort des Tages

by Barbara Classen

The German Tuition video flashcards - your bitesize dose of daily German

How long does it take to learn German?

“How long does it take?” is one of the most common questions I hear when I first chat to new students of German, usually followed by “to get to a conversational level” or to get to level B1 or any of the other levels of the European framework of languages.

Generally, my response is: It totally depends. What I then explain is the importance of your own investment of time and mind space when learning German. Do you make it part of your daily life? Are you looking forward to your daily “German time” rather than a seeing it as a chore that you do for someone else like your German partner or your employer…? If your answer is YES, you are on track to learn German fast and this process will turn into your own personal adventure with a new world opening up.

As a rule of thumb: Match your weekly German lesson of 60 or 90 minutes with the same amount of homework and self-study, more is a bonus. Additionally, do something every day to keep you engaged with the German language. Exchange a few words on the phone or by email with your German colleague, friend or partner. Listen to podcasts while cooking or under the shower… With the internet possibilities are endless. I recently added one more project called: “Das deutsche Wort des Tages” to our new Facebook page with a focus on shortness and vocabulary building in a fun way. Each Video flash card is less than 60 seconds long and centred around one main term usually linked to additional and related German vocabulary. German subtitles help you to learn via listening AND reading and a short introduction with a “tip of the day” help you to get into the video, particularly if you are relatively new to German. The levels of the videos vary and I have deliberately not specified the level within the European Framework of languages for individual clips.

However, you can use them differently depending on your level.

Is your current level of German A1 or A2?

 Read the English short introduction and watch the video several times. Use the pause button whenever necessary and write down new vocab in your digital or paper vocab book. (Watch flash card “Das Vokabelheft”, 2 July on various ways of documenting and learning new words). If anything is not clear, use commentary to ask.

Is your current level of German B1 or higher?

Proceed as instructed above, but faster and without the pause button. Focus also on the colloquial expressions I use and try to integrate them in your active vocabulary. “Alles klar?”.

Finally, on a personal note, please be generous with likes and use the commentary for questions and suggestions. A lot of my time and love goes into this project. Your honest feedback and participation are highly appreciated.

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