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View Full Version : So, I have to learn german in about two weeks.



Tenebrion
04-13-2010, 22:16
Anyone happen to know of any fun or easy websites / programs / books for learning basic German in under two weeks? I have some history with and understanding of the language, but do not yet speak it fluently.

FatRednekk
04-13-2010, 22:19
Simply put you are about to get shit on.

Good luck.

StrawberryClock
04-13-2010, 22:20
I would advise you to use Rosetta Stone. It requires practically no understanding of any language, and I've used it to improve my conversational French although I've forgotten it.

FatRednekk
04-13-2010, 22:22
I would advise you to use Rosetta Stone. It requires practically no understanding of any language, and I've used it to improve my conversational French although I've forgotten it.

Yeah, Rosetta Stone is probably your best bet. It's come highly recommended to me before.

Seddoron
04-13-2010, 22:23
Just use z instead of th and don't talk about nazis and you'll be fine.

Ausei
04-13-2010, 22:30
Just use z instead of th and don't talk about nazis and you'll be fine.

This will get you anywhere in life.

Tenebrion
04-13-2010, 22:37
I have no doubt that I'm going to learn the language within two weeks. The only question is what tools I'll use to do it.

StrawberryClock
04-13-2010, 22:40
I have no doubt that I'm going to learn the language within two weeks. The only question is what tools I'll use to do it.

Rosetta Stone. Its the best language program, by far.

Rachsucht
04-13-2010, 22:46
You're fucked dude, German is probably one of the hardest languages to learn. And, for some reason, really hard to speak for Americans.

Zadok
04-13-2010, 23:14
Rosetta Stone hands down man.

nate4449
04-13-2010, 23:29
You're fucked dude, German is probably one of the hardest languages to learn. And, for some reason, really hard to speak for Americans.

Out of curiosity, what makes it so hard?

And of course, what would be the easiest languages to learn?

Tzacharu
04-13-2010, 23:40
I don't have fluent German and I took courses on it spanning six years. Maybe its just me, but I found it very difficult learning German at first, even though I half my family is of German origin and I visited Germany three times during those years. Once you get through the basics, it'll be easier to understand.

If you want to learn German quick though, as other people said, Rosetta Stone is the way to go.


Out of curiosity, what makes it so hard?

And of course, what would be the easiest languages to learn?

Most of all, sentence structure depends entirely on tense and what nouns you are using. For example, in past tense, most of the time verbs go at the very end of the sentence. So when you want to say "The dog ran fast", it would translate word to word into "The dog fast ran". It all gets very confusing when you add more objects to the sentence, then you need to order them correctly. It takes quite a bit of practice to get this down.

Like other languages, there's also a gender associated with each noun. For example, dog is masculine, so it is assigned "der", so you would say "der Hund" when referring to "the dog". Most of the nouns' genders are easy to guess (except for the wierd ones, like, for whatever reason, the word "tie", as in a "suit and tie", is feminine). There are also neutral nouns that use "das", and feminine nouns use "die".

To make things even more difficult, certain verbs and conjunctions can change the "case" of the noun. There are four cases that are used that change the "der/die/das" into, for example, "dem/der/dem" in certain situations. What these gender associations basically come down to is memorization, but its easy doing it in small batches over a long time. But this is just one thing that makes it a difficult language to learn in a short time.

Then, if you have more than one verb in a sentence, you can end up with them all tagging at the end of the sentence. I took this one from Wikipedia since I couldn't think of one off the top of my head:

German: Man nimmt an, dass der Deserteur wohl erschossenV wordenpsv seinperf solltemod
English word to word translation: One suspects that the deserter probably shot became be should

It's just very counter-intuitive going from English to German (and probably from German to English as well). I'm not sure if other languages have similar functionality, I only learned a small bit of French and Spanish in middle school, but I found those as some of the earlier hurdles you encounter when learning German.

Brother Justin
04-13-2010, 23:46
You're fucked dude, German is probably one of the hardest languages to learn. And, for some reason, really hard to speak for Americans.

Eeh, no?

German is pretty easy. Alot of languages have similarities to German.

Icelandic or Finnish.

Now there is a challenge

FatRednekk
04-13-2010, 23:47
Eeh, no?

German is pretty easy. Alot of languages have similarities to German.

Icelandic or Finnish.

Now there is a challenge
Is English your first language?

Edit. I ask this because most, well actually all native English speakers I have met personally that have attempted to learn German conveyed that they had a lot of trouble learning German, even just a few phrases.

Rachsucht
04-13-2010, 23:49
Out of curiosity, what makes it so hard?

And of course, what would be the easiest languages to learn?

The grammar is extremely complex, alone the fact that German has 3 articles der (male) die (female) das (neutral) instead of "the" makes it immensly hard to learn.

English is a fairly easy to learn laguage, aside from the fact that many words aren't pronounced the way they are written.

I've heard from many people that Russian is a really easy to leran, once you've learned the alphabet.

Viluin
04-13-2010, 23:50
English and German are pretty similar. If you think German is hard to learn you must be language-retarded. Of course any language will be hard to learn, but relatively speaking German should be pretty easy for anyone whose mother language is Germanic.

FatRednekk
04-13-2010, 23:56
English and German are pretty similar. If you think German is hard to learn you must be language-retarded. Of course any language will be hard to learn, but relatively speaking German should be pretty easy for anyone whose mother language is Germanic.

Just typing into google "Learning German for English Speakers" a lot of the websites say it's easy, or not as hard as first percieved. But simply it is a quite a challenge. I for some reason grasped Mandarin Chinese much much faster then German.

Perhaps I surround myself with language retards :rolleyes:

Falokis
04-14-2010, 00:00
I always figured German would be easy(ish) to learn from an English speaking person's point of view because isn't English a Germanic language?

FatRednekk
04-14-2010, 00:00
I always figured German would be easy(ish) to learn from an English speaking person's point of view because isn't English a Germanic language?

Yes.

Falokis
04-14-2010, 00:02
Yes.Ah Christ, I just saw your location. Your not a fucking Tide fan are you? Judging from your screen name, you must fucking love them.

FatRednekk
04-14-2010, 00:05
Ah Christ, I just saw your location. Your not a fucking Tide fan are you? Judging from your screen name, you must fucking love them.

Hell yeah.

GFH_Spike
04-14-2010, 00:27
Pimsleur and Michel Thomas are both useful for learning German, as supplementary material alongside Rosetta Stone. They're in audio format only, which is why I would be hesitant to recommend either as a primary program. However, for applying the grammar and vocabulary in actual conversation, they're ideal. Your pronunciation will be important, and that is what Rosetta Stone lacks, despite its insistence on mic tests (which are too lenient).

Rachsucht
04-14-2010, 17:39
English and German are pretty similar. If you think German is hard to learn you must be language-retarded. Of course any language will be hard to learn, but relatively speaking German should be pretty easy for anyone whose mother language is Germanic.

I speak German fluently, and I can tell you its hard as fuck. Just because some words are similar doesn't mean its going to be easy to learn.

Oo_
04-14-2010, 17:54
For example, in past tense, most of the time verbs go at the very end of the sentence.

This is probably one thing that fucks with people who are used to (stereotypical) American discussion culture where you constantly talk over each others. Hard to interrupt when the keyword is saved for the last.

FastEddy
04-14-2010, 18:39
You are to dumb to learn another language.

I suggest, killing yourself and hoping reincarnation exists and you come back as someone that can speak German

Oo_
04-14-2010, 18:44
You are to dumb to learn another language.

I suggest, killing yourself and hoping reincarnation exists and you come back as someone that can speak German

that might take over two weeks

Odie
04-14-2010, 18:46
dont even start learning.. german suck ass...

CattBoy
04-14-2010, 19:07
Rosetta stone all the way.

Otherwise I have been youtubing, "Learn xyz language" and surprisingly there are a lot of people out there that host there very own language courses, just subscribe to there page and its actually pretty cool.


Otherwise, I cant find the link but there is a company using SKYPE for tutoring over the web. Like a tandem language partner... If I find it I will PM.



Let us know with what you decide on and GL, german is pretty quick if you can grasp the basics.

Silverhandorder
04-14-2010, 19:11
I think Roseta Stone just walked in and said use me bitch! :)

Makgyver
04-14-2010, 19:48
you need to be able to order beer, then you're fine

Koveras
04-14-2010, 20:01
Tell them lazy Germans to go and learn English instead.

Rachsucht
04-14-2010, 20:19
Tell them lazy Germans to go and learn English instead.

The already do, it is mandatory from 5-13th grade.

CattBoy
04-14-2010, 20:20
Tell them lazy Germans to go and learn English instead.

They already know it :)

Makgyver
04-14-2010, 20:37
The already do, it is mandatory from 5-13th grade.

they still dub a lot of stuff and the germans english isn't especially good compared to other european countriess english

Rachsucht
04-14-2010, 20:44
they still dub a lot of stuff and the germans english isn't especially good compared to other european countriess english

They dub everything in Germany, which is the main reason why the Dutch or Swedes are typically better at speaking English.

The dubbing is done very well though, not at all like Korean/Japanese movies dubbed into English.

Rochus
04-14-2010, 21:00
dubbing is just a result of population, more than 100 million native german speakers in europe is enough reason to dub i´d say

btw don´t blame me for my english, i´m one of those ~ 100 millions...

HauptmannHP
04-14-2010, 23:10
The grammar is extremely complex, alone the fact that German has 3 articles der (male) die (female) das (neutral) instead of "the" makes it immensly hard to learn.

English is a fairly easy to learn laguage, aside from the fact that many words aren't pronounced the way they are written.

I've heard from many people that Russian is a really easy to leran, once you've learned the alphabet.

Isn't Russian grammar considerably more complex? German has three grammatical cases. If I remember right, Russian has nine or eleven.

Odie
04-14-2010, 23:28
Isn't Russian grammar considerably more complex? German has three grammatical cases. If I remember right, Russian has nine or eleven.

stupid greedy russians taking all the grammatical cases! leave some for the rest of us!

StrawberryClock
04-15-2010, 00:22
French has several as well. I would think most languages actually do.

The English just thought of a way to equalize words and save time by using the same word for everyone. We're not selective/discriminatory and its more efficient.

Monkeyninja
04-15-2010, 01:21
Pretty sure polish or something shits on people thanks to its grammar and stuff and by compairson makes german look easy. Then again my foreign language knowledge stops after the words uno ola and taco, so i might not be an expert in this field.

alfaroverall
04-15-2010, 04:25
English as a native tongue is easier for learning German than something like Spanish even, because the really basic grammar is very similar. All this complaining about grammatical gender is stupid, as it's easy albeit frustrating; but for spoken usage it doesn't even matter, as real German speakers have basically made up another article that they use when they can't remember a word's grammatical gender anyway (although I forget what it is exactly, might be something like "dat"). Cases are somewhat more frustrating especially if you're not familiar with them from other languages (I would say that an English speaker with some background in Latin would probably only struggle with the sentence structure things people have talked about and vocabulary, for example).

Anyway, yeah, although I don't know anyone that's used it I think I'd also suggest Rosetta Stone. I would also suggest a supplementary grammar and a dictionary.

Teth
04-15-2010, 05:14
Isn't Russian grammar considerably more complex? German has three grammatical cases. If I remember right, Russian has nine or eleven.
Russian has three genders and six primary cases. It rapidly goes to hell from there.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Russian_grammar


Nominal declension is subject to six cases – nominative, genitive, dative, accusative, instrumental, and prepositional – in two numbers (singular and plural), and obeying absolutely grammatical gender (masculine, feminine, and neuter). Up to ten additional cases are identified in linguistics textbooks,[1][2][3] although all of them are either incomplete (do not apply to all nouns) or degenerate (appear identical to one of the six simple cases). The most well-recognized additional cases are locative (в лесу, в крови, в слезах), partitive (сапог, чулок, вольт), and several forms of vocative (господи, деда, батянь).

And to top it off Russian's not even consistent with its own internal logic (end result of being an ugly mix of synthetic, Greek Orthodox, and archaic Slavic dialects), so you've basically got the worst parts of German and English mixed into one demon-tongue.

But it has an awesome sound, so...hey.

Rachsucht
04-15-2010, 15:21
real German speakers have basically made up another article that they use when they can't remember a word's grammatical gender anyway (although I forget what it is exactly, might be something like "dat").

Where did you get that information? This is 100% untrue.

alfaroverall
04-15-2010, 15:33
Where did you get that information? This is 100% untrue.
I should've lessened the strength of that statement to something closer to "some real German speakers" and shouldn't have gone so far as to say it doesn't matter in spoken usage, but this is from a high school teacher I had who lived in Germany for much of her life and was actually born in Germany (to American parents however). By what she said, you blank out on a gender, you say that, and people know what you mean even though you sound like an idiot. We have similar things in English.

Rachsucht
04-15-2010, 15:44
I should've lessened the strength of that statement to something closer to "some real German speakers", but this is from a high school teacher I had who lived in Germany for much of her life.

No offense, but your highschool teacher is full of shit. I grew up in Germany but I've never heard anyone try to replace an article because they didn't know what to use.

I hear stuff like this all the time from friends, German teachers, claiming first hand knowledge, telling their students things about Germany that I've never experienced in the 20 something years that I lived there.

Examples:

-In Germany, people use knife and fork for everything. Even hamburgers and french fries!

-In Germany, people usually drink their milk warm.


There's a lot more than that, even crazier stuff, which I, unfortunately, can't recall at the moment.



On the other hand, my English teacher (a U.K citizen) in Germany told us things about the U.S. that were completely untrue. "In America, only gang members wear baseball caps backwards!".

alfaroverall
04-15-2010, 18:12
A local thing, perhaps? Or even an outdated thing that doesn't happen anymore? (She's 50+ and has probably been bilingual from the start, but IIRC she also grew up on a military base.) Germany's a pretty big place, and 40+ years is a pretty wide timespan.

Crulty
04-15-2010, 18:33
I would start with watching german porn, so you can pick up some basic lines.
:lmao:

Rachsucht
04-15-2010, 19:21
A local thing, perhaps? Or even an outdated thing that doesn't happen anymore? (She's 50+ and has probably been bilingual from the start, but IIRC she also grew up on a military base.) Germany's a pretty big place, and 40+ years is a pretty wide timespan.

Good point, the military bases are all located in the south of Germany which is very different from the north (think Texas vs New York) where I grew up. I haven't noticed it when visiting the south though so it would probably be a combination of the two.

Paradoxon
04-15-2010, 19:48
Where did you get that information? This is 100% untrue.

No, it's exactly 50% untrue. A lot of dialects use one word for the neutral aswell as the feminine noun. In Bavaria for example you'd say "des", in the Ruhr-area or the Rheinland you'd say "dat" etc. The male noun though is never changed in any dialect i can think of right now.

So yes, it's kind of a local thing. I wouldn't recomend learning any form of dialect though, since it can totaly change gramar and vocabulary and make it very hard to understand people from any other part of Germany.

HauptmannHP
04-15-2010, 22:37
On the other hand, my English teacher (a U.K citizen) in Germany told us things about the U.S. that were completely untrue. "In America, only gang members wear baseball caps backwards!".

Oh shit, wearing my caps backwards doesn't make me cool? My whole life is based on a lie.

88Chaz88
04-15-2010, 22:45
Good point, the military bases are all located in the south of Germany which is very different from the north (think Texas vs New York) where I grew up. I haven't noticed it when visiting the south though so it would probably be a combination of the two.

There's also a huge difference between east and west Germany.