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  • Writer's pictureJack Caine

Resources to learn German 🇩🇪

Willst du Deutsch lernen? Lernst du schon Deutsch? Do you want to learn German? If so, then this blog post is for you.

 

Last week I posted a video on my TikTok (@Jackcaine1) outlining some of the resources that I recommend for those learning German. Many of those resources were online, and so I wanted to make a longer more detailed version of that video where I can also include some links to said resources.

 

So, without further ado, here are my top resources for learning German [WITH LINKS]

 

1️⃣ Grammatik Aktiv (A1-B1 & B2-C1) For all of my fellow grammar geeks out there, this grammar book (or rather these grammar books) is my go-to guide for studying and revising grammar points in German. They are written in German so you can practice the language at the same time. The grammar points are explained clearly and concisely, using several real-life examples to illustrate a single grammar point. There are two separate books depending on your level; the first is the A1-B1 book. Then, for the more advanced learners, there is the B2-C1 book. This is the book I used when studying for my bachelor’s degree in German, and it was an absolute lifesaver.


2️⃣ Collins German Grammar & Practice If you are a beginner or would simply prefer to study German grammar in English, then I’d recommend the Collins German Grammar & Practice book. This book compiles a wide range of grammar points, explains them in detail, and then provides several opportunities to practice that particular piece of grammar. It’s really useful for those who are just starting with German, or perhaps if you haven’t studied a foreign language before. If it is, in fact, your first time learning a foreign language, I’d recommend starting with this book and then perhaps moving on to the Grammatik Aktiv books mentioned above.


3️⃣ Easy German YT Channel Practicing your listening is extremely important when it comes to language learning, especially in German where there are so many different accents and dialects. Easy German is a YouTube channel that allows you to watch people conduct street interviews in Germany, Austria, and Switzerland. The beauty of these videos is that they have subtitles in both German and English so you can watch the videos no matter your level.


4️⃣ News in Slow German I’ve recently got into listening to podcasts, and I’ve got to say that they are great. They can be a real asset to language learning too! The News in Slow German podcast is a great way to not only stay up to date with current events in Germany and the wider world but also allows you to practice your language skills daily. The podcast episodes last roughly 5-10 minutes and so you can listen to an episode whenever you get a chance, whether that be in the car on the way to work, when you’re cooking dinner, when you’re walking the dog, or whatever suits you best.


5️⃣ Tagesschau I have been using Tagesschau for years now, and I am a huge fan of it. Tagesschau is a German news broadcasting service, similar to the British BBC. On their app/website, you can watch live news, read news articles about current affairs, or watch a summary of the daily news in 100 seconds. This feature, which is perhaps my favourite feature, is called Tagesschau in 100 Sekunden (roughly meaning daily news in 100 seconds). These summaries of current affairs use fairly simple language and allow you to stay up to date with not only the news but your German skills too.


6️⃣ Short Stories in German | Erzählungen auf Deutsch If you’re an avid reader and want to be able to start reading in German as soon as possible, I’d recommend getting a copy of the Erzählungen auf Deutsch book. This is a collection of short stories in German AND English. On one side of the page you have the original German text, then on the other side you have the English translation. This dual language style of writing allows learners of every level to start to enjoy reading in their foreign language, which is a real moral boost!  

 

CEFR is the Central European Framework of Reference for Languages. The scale ranges from A1 (complete beginner) to C2 (fluent/native speaker).


You can see the breakdown of all of these levels in the photo to the right. ➡️

As this is a widely recognised levelling system for language learning, many companies are now developing resources that are specific to a certain level. The Goethe-Institut has a list of books that are relevant to each of the CEFR levels, which means that you can buy a book written at the right level for you and your language skills. As your language skills progress, you can buy the next level’s book and start working on it. Let’s take level A2 for example. Once you feel comfortable, try reading the A2 book. Then, start studying the A2 level German (all of which you can find online) and then re-read the A2 book once you feel confident with the language level and see how much easier it was to read the book the second time. Even though I have a degree in German, I find that these books are a great way to top up my vocabulary. I quite often find myself forgetting simple words for things, as I don’t use the vocab in my daily life, and so skimming over an A2 or B1 book can be a good way to go over some of that long-forgotten vocabulary!

 

Well, there you have it. My top 8 resources for learning German. Hopefully, you will be able to use some of these to help you with your journey to speaking German! If I find any more useful resources, that I think would be useful, I will leave a link to them on my social media, so make sure you give me a follow on the following accounts:







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