Language Challenge 180: German

by Corey · 51 comments

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This is the Language Challenge 180 page for German. If you are working on this language, please leave a comment below letting other speakers know a little about you and your language skills. Also tell us who will be working on this language (you, your child, etc.) and what you hope to achieve.

Please leave comments with resources that you recommend in this language (online language learning, fun websites, good books in the language, online TV programming, audio programs, online stores where products in the language can be purchased, etc.).

We’ll be updating this page based on the suggestions you make in the comments section below – so add a comment today!

Resources

  • Coming soon! Tell us what resources you recommend for learning this language (in the comment section below) and we will add them here!

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{ 51 comments… read them below or add one }

1 Amanda Kendle March 2, 2012 at 5:33 am

I’m nowhere near an expert on this and I’m sure there are plenty of German speakers with excellent resource ideas out there (starting with Corey) so I am just waiting to see what appears here! What I would really love is lists of truly excellent kids/toddler books in German (I order lots from amazon.de but can’t always find great ones – my in-laws in Germany have no useful suggestions!), as well as some iPad app suggestions.

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2 Kate March 2, 2012 at 6:44 am

I’ll start out with a number of Eric Carle resources we’ve found:
One of my favorite resources for my 2-year-old is a German version of an Eric Carle DVD: Die kleine Raupe Nimmersatt. My son loves it, and I enjoy it, too! Between the DVD and the German version of the book, he can practically recite the entire story now. You can get the DVD through Amazon.de or Alphabet-Garten.com (it might not be on their site, but I contacted them about it, and they said they could order it).
We have several of Eric Carle’s books in German and love them all! We recently got one called Tier-ABC. As far as I know, it only exists in German! Someone else wrote the text, but it uses Eric Carle’s drawings – one animal for each letter of the alphabet.
While we’re on the subject of Eric Carle, there is also a song by Stephen Janetzko called “Das Lied von der Raupe Nimmersatt” – again only in German!! You can download it from iTunes or Amazon.com or look up his site. It’s one one of his CDs, but I forget which one. Janetzko also has many, many other original children’s song!
There is also a great audio CD of 6 Eric Carle stories by Rolf Nagel (Jumbo Neue Medien & Verlag Gmbh, 2008). I could only find it in Germany on Amazon.de. Just be careful … there is also a version in Sächsisch by Uwe Steimle (Jumbo Neue Medien & Verlag Gmbh, 2009)!! I got that one by accident, too :)
Hope this gets you going!!

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3 Elizabeth March 2, 2012 at 7:14 am

I second Alphabet Garten.com That’s a great resource with reasonably priced items. There’s also a site called abckinderladen.com, which is similar and similarly priced. I don’t know the age of the children you’re looking for, but mine are 6.5 and 5 years old. They have always loved (and still love) the Bodo Baer books, the Bobo Seibenschlaefer books, the Mini Lesemaus series and the Lesen Leicht Gemacht fairy tales published by Eli. All of these are excellent resources for building everyday vocabulary. Lots of pictures and enjoyable. Other books that are just plain fun and sort of modern classics are “Klopf An!” by Anna-Clara Tidholm (this one’s aimed at younger readers), “Henriette Bimmelbahn” by James Kruss (this one was a great favorite when my son was 3 and he had it completely memorized), “Mama Muh Schuakelt” by Jujja and Tomas Wieslander, and “Gute Nacht Karlchen!” by Rotraut Susanne Berner (and the entire Karlchen series, for that matter). At least, my impression is that these are among the classic books that all German kids read — not being German myself, I’m in the same boat as most of you of trying to figure this out from the outside looking in. Actually, now that I’m thinking about it, two other resources come to mind. GLP International (glpnews.com) carries lots of German magazines and one, in particular — Geo Mini — is perfect for this age of kids. It’s a monthly magazine kind of on the order of National Geographic Kids. Lots of photos, activities, short articles of interest to young kids. The other is the family week camps at Waldsee (Concordia Language Villages: clvweb.cord.edu). My kids are too young for sleep away camp, but the family camp weeks fill the bill for total language immersion and they’re great fun for all ages — even adults. Plus, it’s cheaper than taking a trip to Europe (and free for children 3 and under and I think only $500-600 per week for others). As for iPad app suggestions… I’m all ears — haven’t really found any great ones yet. Thanks for the suggestions everybody!

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4 Alex April 2, 2012 at 5:19 pm

Elizabeth, I found some iPad apps, and they have proven to be very good. The best one so far was KinderApp, and they have a website, so you can see the video there. Now , by what you said it seems that your kids have a great German vocabulary , so it shouldn’t be difficult. The next was EFlash German. It’s great because you can switch the settings to “Question” and it will do it for you. The list is longer, LinguPingu, Mieze Mozzi, LinguKid ,and Snakestein. These our 7 year old and 9 year completely adore. Hope this helps!

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5 Natalie March 2, 2012 at 8:50 am

Books by Janosch are beautiful and definitely a German classic in the kids department, there are even some audio books of them, with the stories being read by German actors and also a movie (oh wie schoen ist Panama) that’s great.
A great place to order books and other materials is globalbooks.de – if you spend 55 Euros they ship for free to the US (takes about 3 weeks to arrive)!
For girls Prinzessin Lillifee is very popular these days, but classics would also be Heidi and Pippi Langstrumpf.
For those of you that are learning with your kids, there are some free german lessons online, that could get you started : http://www.knowitall.org/instantreplay/content/LanguageIndex.cfm?CFID=5282306&CFTOKEN=12717245&jsessionid=5630dd38f0aab2a0ab80273bb6e133938205

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6 Susan March 2, 2012 at 10:00 am

Our family, primarily my 10 year old son Jacob and I, will be focusing on German. We lived in Switzerland for over 4 years and are really needing to brush up on it after 1.5 years in the US.
Resources? I hope we hear about some! I am happy to hear about how to get German magazines. When we were in CH Jacob loved getting German magazines. It is always fun for kids to get things in the mail and all the better if they learn something too. :) We loved the Geo magazines too, especially the “extra” editions that would focus on a topic like Roman or whatever.
I think the one thing that has built my German more than almost anything is reading progressively advanced kids books to my child. So! We will dust off some neglected titles (we don’t have many but it will work for a start). I would welcome the suggestions for a tween boy reader. Fiction and non-fiction is fine. This is our favorite way of increasing our vocabulary and it is fun too.
Maybe it is time for some Globi! Anyone out there know this Swiss icon? The older ones are VERY un-PC and definitely skip-worthy but the newer ones were real favorites for our family especially Globi bei der Feuerwehr. Hard to learn German with these books as they are in verse form, but they are lots of fun if you are fluent already (we’re not but we do OK).
Anyone out there know where to get some more 3 ??? Kids or any Kwiatowski? These two boy adventure/detective series were also favorites and would be a great way to brush up on things…
Anyway, great to have you all here! I am so glad to have help with focusing on our second language!

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7 Alex March 20, 2012 at 6:05 pm

Dear Susan,
We are a family in the US , and trying to reincorporate German back in our lives . ( Mom spent seven years in Germany) Do you have any books to suggest to a middle school/elementary aged kids?

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8 Olga Nikitina March 2, 2012 at 1:08 pm

Hallo!
Mein Name ist Olga, ich komme aus Russland, aber jetzt wohne ich in Deutschland. Ich studiere Deutsch, weil ich denke, es waere toll, mit deutsche Leute auf Deutsch zu sprechen. Als Ressourcen, benutze ich eine alte deutsche Grammatik und Abbyy Lingvo online-Woertebuch (http://lingvopro.abbyyonline.com/en). Ich habe auch ungefaer zehn deutsche Buecher, die ich bei Amazon gekauft habe.

Also, jetzt auf English.

Hello!
My name is Olga, I come from Russia, but I live in Germany. I study German, because I think that it would be great to talk German to Germans. My resources are an old German grammar book and Abbyy Lingvo online dictionary (http://lingvopro.abbyyonline.com/en). I also have about ten German books that I have bought online at Amazon.

Bye! Tschuss!

O.

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9 Kate March 2, 2012 at 6:58 pm

It’s me again! Thanks to the challenge and this page, I’ve finally written a page of resources for my blog. Something I’ve been meaning to do for some time!! It’s already quite a long list of books, DVDs, music, and websites – perhaps too much to put in here?? You can check it out at http://germanintheafternoon.wordpress.com/resources/
Keep in mind, my son is 2, so everything is geared toward that age.
I’m looking forward to checking out the other resources that are already being collected here!!

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10 Thea March 4, 2012 at 5:33 pm

We are going to be working on our German language skills as a family – myself, hubby (fluent), and our 2 kids (8 and 10) who are quite fluent. We have a lot of cds, dvds and books. As the kids get older it is harder to maintain the German due to competition from school work, friends, etc. So we are using the LC180 to help build in the habit of using German.
My 10 yr old son loves comic books like Tim und Struppi, Asterix and Lucky Luke. He also enjoys fantasy and mystery books, including the Alex Ryder and Percy Jackson series. My daughter likes princesses and ponies. The read along book “Prinzessin Rosalea und das Geheimrezept” was a big hit :-) Luckily they both read at grade level in German, so we also search for translated books so that even if it’s in German, it’s something that their American peers have read.
For resources, don’t forget to check your public library to see if they have access to German language books and DVDs. For younger kids, many libraries have the MANGO software to help them learn basic words.

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11 Amanda Kendle March 5, 2012 at 4:18 am

Wow, just as I expected you people are an amazing wealth of information, thank you so much! Have so many leads/links/sites to explore now.

The only other thing I forgot to ask about – can anyone recommend any interesting German blogs to read? I’m a blogger, so it’s natural for me to be interested in reading other blogs, but when I try to search for interesting German ones (not too fussy on the topic, although travel is my favourite) I find it hard to come across something good – blogs seem to be something you find better “via” something or someone rather than just googling – so any interesting blog suggestions are very welcome!

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12 Kate March 5, 2012 at 11:11 am

First, I am so excited by this amazing project. A big thanks to Corey for all the hard work she’s doing to help us all out!!!

I realized I didn’t quite introduce myself. I’m a non-native speaker of German. I started as a freshman in high school and just kept learning right on through my PhD in German Lit. I’ve lived in Freiburg, Mainz, & Weimar. Almost 5 years ago, I married a wonderful man from the Netherlands. (Hurray – and excuse to keep going back to Europe!) Only months after defending my dissertation, I gave birth to our son Aleksander. He’s now just over 2 years old. He started talking 3 months ago, and it gives me even greater motivation to continue speaking German with him!! I don’t follow any particular method. I decided to split my days between English and German. I just couldn’t give up the English/American side of me! For various reasons, my husband does not speak Dutch with Aleksander. He gets a little exposure from his grandparents, whom we see about 3 times a year. You can read more about our bilingual adventures on my blog! I look forward to getting to know more of you through this fantastic project! Now on to more resources and questions….

I was wondering if anyone has any good podcasts to recommend for a 2-year-old? Probably something that mixes speaking and music would be ideal.

And for myself, how about some movie recommendations? I have to admit, the films I’ve seen (and I admit it’s been quite a while since I’ve seen anything in German!) tend to be a little heavy for me. My absolute favorite German film is Bella Martha (Mostly Martha, in English). Any other suggestions? Or websites to watch movies?

One last question goes to Elizabeth: I was looking for the Lesen Leicht Gemacht fairy tales published by Eli that you mentioned, but I can’t find them. Any tips there? We have one books of Märchen called Mein erster Märchenschatz published by Ravensburger, 2012. Aleksander doesn’t yet sit with all the stories, but he’s interested, and I know it will be one he can grow with.

Danke!!

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13 Dolinda April 24, 2012 at 8:29 pm

Hi Kate,
This has nothing to do with German but I was just being nosy and looking at the other languages….anyway, I just have a quick question for you. How does your hubby’s family feel about him not teaching your son Dutch? My daughter will be 2 next month and both times we have visited my family they have asked if we will be teaching her Dutch. I have told them that we will teach her some but it is very unnatural for me to speak Dutch (I have lived in the US since I was 17) plus it doesn’t seem like a very useful language to learn and i dont particularly likeit. I love French. I am not fluent by any means (and have lost a lot of it over the years) and am getting back into it and learning new words every day by reading to my daughter and speaking to her as much as I can (limited by what I know/don’t know). She has picked up a lot of it already. There are zero resources for Dutch here in the US (maybe not zero but very hard to come by anyway) which makes it even harder. Anyway, long story short: I’d prefer for my daughter to learn French even though I know it will be unlikely she will be fluent. I am sure my family (mostly my mother) will disapprove (my father will secretly love it). So I was just wondering how your husband’s family felt about your son not being taught Dutch. My daughter will get some exposure but not near enough to learn a ton. I hope you might be willing to share some of your husband’s reasoning of why he doesn’t want to teach your son Dutch and how his family feels about that. Thanks!

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14 Kate April 28, 2012 at 4:28 pm

Hi Dolinda,
My husband says the same thing about Dutch – it’s not the most useful language to learn. And although he’s only lived in the US for 7 years, he feels speaking Dutch is already awkward for him. (I’m so jealous – I will never feel more comfortable in my 2nd language than my native!) He has actually started reading a little more in Dutch to Aleksander, mostly b/c Aleksander asks for Dutch books. I’ve been amazed at how much he understands, and he can even fill in words when they’re left off at the end! That may be one way to approach it – it’s easier to read the words that are already there than just speak freely. (Do you know the Bobbi series? So adorable!! And of course there are the Nijntje books.)
But you asked about my in-laws. I’ve never really discussed it with them. I imagine they are somewhat disappointed. Their English is outstanding, so communication is not a problem. And since I’m the one speaking German (not my husband – and I don’t speak Dutch), they do support it. They even join in sometimes. I’m really lucky to have such wonderful in-laws. They are very respectful in all of our decisions about how we raise Aleksander. I am actually hoping they will speak more Dutch with him when we visit them next month. At least at this point, Aleksander seems to soak up language, so I’d like to encourage as much language exposure as possible. We’ll just have to see how much it sticks in the future.
I hope this is helpful to you. Good luck with whatever language(s) you pursue!!

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15 Dolinda April 28, 2012 at 8:15 pm

Hi Kate
Thanks for your reply. It is nice to see I’m not the only Dutch person not too interested in working hard on teaching my daughter Dutch. We do have a few Nijntje/Dick Bruna books and she does ask to have them read to her occasionally. My sister is coming soon and she will bring a few more. We also listen to kinderliedjes so she is getting some exposure that way (and trying to sing one of them, very cute!) I will have no problem if my relatives want to speak Dutch to her. Unfortunately the 2 weeks a year we spend there isn’t much. But I figure any exposure is going to be helpful especially at this age and whatever she picks up is a bonus!
Thanks again for your reply and good luck with your language endeavors as well :-)

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16 Emma March 5, 2012 at 3:42 pm

I’ve let my German languish a good bit but my extended family members keep moving there in dribs and drabs so I’d like to brush it up, increase my vocabulary and work on all the basics and child-friendly German with my son.

We also like Eric Karl’s ‘Die Kleine Raupe Nimmersatt’ and we wonder why it’s not ‘Die Kleine Raupe Hast Hunger’ because that’s where we’re at. Like others we love Henriette Bimmelbhan, and we like ‘Der Gruffelo’ in every language and find ‘Rat mal, was da brummt’ very amusing.

I’m short of German songs but have been looking at amazon and have my eye on a couple of CDs. I’d like some good, sing-a-long suggestions for small children, particularly action songs. Currently planning to search for ‘Fingerspiele’ suggestions on YouTube.

I can’t make local German classes for children as they’re on a Saturday when I work, unfortunately.

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17 Thea March 5, 2012 at 8:58 pm

Emma – re: sing-a-long music for younger kids, we liked
– “Singen und Bewegen” by Detlev Jöcker, you can also buy a book explaining actions.
– Donikkl is for slightly older (early elementary would be my guess); “Das Fliegerlied” and “Stark wie ein Tiger” are active and fun. His music has a lot of reggae and world music influence; he also has a song on one of the Putamayo’s Picnic Playground called “Milch” (I think the video is on YouTube as well).
– Sternschnuppe – “Auf der Mauer, auf der Lauer” traditional folksongs
– Rolf Zuckowski – lovelly songs, great variety

I’m told Donikkl and Sternschnuppe have Bavarian accents, but I don’t hear it :-)

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18 Thea March 6, 2012 at 9:02 am

@Kate:
Here’s a link with ISBNs for the Märchen: http://www.elionline.com/?q=en/node/761
Ravensburger Verlag has a nice series of well known fairy tales for toddlers. Here’s the link to Dornröschen http://www.ravensburger.de/shop/buecher/bilderbuecher/erste-maerchen-dornroeschen-32478/index.html

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19 Emma March 6, 2012 at 9:58 am

Thea – danke sehr!

Another learners link:
https://sites.google.com/site/frauengartsdeutschklasse/home

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20 Elena March 6, 2012 at 5:02 pm

Hello everyone! We are an Italian family. We would like to learn German because is “uncle and auntie”‘s language. My three children and I are just beginners. Any suggestions on videos or songs or online step-by-step course we should try?
In the meantime, I’m looking for the books you have already suggested…Thank you!

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21 Amanda Kendle March 9, 2012 at 5:46 am

Emma – I’ve had a couple of fun singalong CDs from amazon.de –
most fun (with actions etc, best for 3+ I’d say, my 2yo is just starting to like them though) is
Die 30 besten Spiel- und Bewegungslieder – Kinderlieder und Babylieder
http://www.amazon.de/gp/product/B003ZE2M9U/

And I love this one as it also comes with a book with the music (and more songs which aren’t on the CD), a nice mix and many which my (German) husband knew
Kinderlieder aus der guten alten Zeit
http://www.amazon.de/gp/product/389736574X/

We also enjoy “Die Lieben Sieben” CDs.

Hope that helps!

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22 Emma March 9, 2012 at 12:38 pm

Danke sehr, Amanda. I had my eye on Die 30 besten Spiel… so that confirms it! Kinderlieder is now in my sights, a great collection by the sounds of it.

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23 Thea March 9, 2012 at 7:58 pm

Is anyone else using Pinterest to gather resources?

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24 Corey May 2, 2012 at 10:20 pm

Hi Thea – YES! I have actually repinned quite a few from you! If anyone is interested in pinning things onto the Multilingual Living “For the Love of German” board, I would be happy to give you pinning permission! I feel like I am not doing the German board justice! I have waaaaaay more on the French board. ;-)

Also – I hope people will say if they have a Pinterest board with German resources. I’d love to learn about more resources!

Corey

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25 Tina March 17, 2012 at 8:04 am

For german resources try:
-http://alphabet-garten.com/
I also agree is a great resource, they don’t have a massive selection but deliveries come in the mail faster than a bigger company, and they have tips and tricks etc that make it a great resource to have
http://www.abckinderladen.com/index.php
I have ordered from them before and they have a bigger selection than alphabet garten with games, dvds, books, and some toys etc. I have had very good service from them before, and I have ordered quite a few times! I got Thomas the train in german from them, it has simple sentences structures and easy to follow story lines
– Amazon.com
also has some comics in german (Tin tin, asterix…) as well as a selection of kids books, when searching I often search german edition, or pick a random animal in german and sometimes get lucky (ie. kleiner eis bӓr,
– Ebay.com
I have found pixi books (http://www.pixibuch.de/) on ebay before, they have tons of books, I would say the books are made for 4 – 10 year olds, depending on the kid
– Itunes
I have only found a couple german resources on the Canadian Itunes, so the version in the states might have more but my favorites are:
– Pelemele!
a rock kids group song examples ~ gartenpiraten
~Wenn der Elefant in die Disco geht
~Wo ist Conrads Nase?
– WDR 5 Bärenbude: Kuschelbären
podcast updated once or twice a week, two teddybears discussing
things that their family does, only vocal no video
– Sendung mit der Maus
Video podcast aimed at 4 and up kids I would say
– if you search “geshichten” or “märchen” I have found a couple fairytales
-Blogs
http://nonnativebilingualism.blogspot.ca/
http://intrepidlybilingual.blogspot.ca/
http://www.psychologytoday.com/blog/life-bilingual
not really a blog but an expert who has a couple articles up about being
bilingual etc.

I hope this helps, this is where my german level is at, so that’s what I do :-)

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26 Jo-Anne March 17, 2012 at 3:57 pm

This project is certainly good for motivation. I am beginner level, my husband is German and we are trying to raise our son bilingual. I have been checking out the resources you have listed so many thanks for that.

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27 Ursula Recker March 19, 2012 at 8:14 am

I love the idea of the language challenge. My kids are 11 and 16. I worked really hard on their German when they were little, and they speak fluently, but now it seems to be difficult to schedule it in and this is a great reminder to do something extra.
I wanted to share that they absolutly loved the Ritter Rost series (books with a CD that reads the book and sings songs) when they were about 4/5/6 years old and later graduated to Radio Schrottland CDs that I played in the car.
I have the rule to only have German CDs in the car, which by now is mostly German musik from the 80 and 90.
Does anybody have any great links for online magazines or… that would be fun for teenagers? Or suggestions on more up to date music that might be their taste?

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28 Kate April 28, 2012 at 4:32 pm

I bought a CD by ich+ich a few years ago, which your kids might like. For yourself, do you have anything by Ina Müller? I really enjoy her. Other than that, I’d love to get more suggestions for current music, too!

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29 Dominick March 19, 2012 at 10:16 pm

Hey all,
I created an open spreadsheet on Google Docs, editable by anybody even if they don’t have a Google account, where people can add their sentences and translate sentences that others have added into their native language, I have included about 60 English sentences with Italian translations already, I think it could be a good collaborative effort among everyone…

http://tinyurl.com/Speaking-with-children

Original url: https://docs.google.com/spreadsheet/ccc?key=0Agl_4wKJhZWOdG5ub3NYejdvZTNnOHF1U3JfOWpfUmc

I was inspired by this open document of “conversation connectors” translated into many languages: https://docs.google.com/spreadsheet/ccc?key=0AnOfo4k1YGOxdHd6ZXdvWXY1bjIwMjI5MXIzTTFGOVE

-Dominick

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30 Kate March 20, 2012 at 10:30 am

Dominick, what a great idea!! I love that we can also see all the different ways to say things in other languages, too (once they’re filled in). I added some German, but I confess I’m not 100% sure about a lot of the phrases. So I hope others continue to add to it! They’re such useful things to say.
I don’t know much about google docs – how do I continue to access it without always having to come here first? Thanks again!!!

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31 Dominick March 20, 2012 at 3:30 pm

Hey Kate, you should just be able to favorite/bookmark the spreadsheet. Thanks for starting to fill in the German, I can’t wait to start that language, but I have to hold off until I get good enough at Spanish first

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32 Kate March 20, 2012 at 10:40 am

Hey all – I just stumbled on to another site for buying books in German (and other languages, too)! It’s: http://www.bookdepository.com/
Their prices are amazing! And get this – free shipping to most cities around the world!! They had a great selection of children’s books in German. Although I didn’t really look into it, they also seem to have all kinds of books, some DVDs and CDs. And they have a whole list of languages to choose from. Hope you find it as useful as I have so far!

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33 Thea March 20, 2012 at 10:41 am

If you sign up for the Alphabet Garten newsletter, you receive a free e-book titled “Parenting auf Deutsch – German prases for parens of bilinugal families”
http://www.alphabet-garten.com/store/index.php?app=ccp0&ns=display&ref=subscribe

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34 Corey May 2, 2012 at 10:21 pm

I love this booklet!

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35 Alex April 2, 2012 at 4:05 pm

I found this great website for kids, it’s called http://WWW.The Voyage-kids.com It is mainly in English, but it gives activities in German and there are German stories. It’s good for the child who is not with the parent, as it is easily navigated.

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36 Kate April 2, 2012 at 4:55 pm

Alex – I couldn’t follow your link. Is this the right site:
http://www.ukgermanconnection.org/kids-home-uk
Thanks!

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37 Alex April 2, 2012 at 5:07 pm

You are perfectly correct Kate! Thanks.

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38 Rachel April 9, 2012 at 4:46 pm

Hello, just wanted to introduce us. We speak non-native German. It was easy when we lived in Germany, not so easy since we came back to the States. Our language has become stale and no one wants to use it. It is easier to revert to English. So, this is more of a commitment to refresh our language. There is me, my husband (who doesn’t speak much, but understands), my 4 yo who is resistant, and the baby who doesn’t know the difference yet, thankfully. My goal is to speak 85% German and to establish a daily habit of using the resources we have. My husband and I are also learning Modern Greek for a missions trip at the end of the year. Thanks to those that organize this. It is just what we needed to gets going,
Rachel

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39 Alex April 9, 2012 at 9:07 pm

Welcome Rachel!

Have you heard of the Language Littles dolls? Those are fantastic for keeping children interested in a Target language. You can find them online, and the German doll is named Emma. She is a bilingual doll.

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40 Rachel April 21, 2012 at 9:49 am

Has anyone checked out the Kindle books on Amazon? I saw a lot of freebies. I love to read. It helps me think in the language.

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41 Heather April 24, 2012 at 4:33 pm

I’m learning German for myself, not with children, so am looking for somewhat different resources. Maybe what I’ve found so far will be helpful to some of you.

I use Lang-8, http://www.lang-8.com to write journal entries (really, anything) in German, and native Germans correct my grammar, word choice, etc. It is free, but for $5 a month you can get rid of the ads and save important corrections in your notebook.

For downloading höerbucher and eBooks, I like Libri.de, which is fairly inexpensive and I can find a lot of the books I like. They also have paper books and DVDs, etc. and their shipping is more reasonably priced (to the US) than amazon.de.

I also like reading German blogs. http://www.Mami-netz.de might be useful to a lot of you, as it is for parents (and expecting parents) of young children.

DVDs are great for learning Deutsch, though most of the ones I can find are dubbed from English. My favorites of these are Harry Potter, Star Trek Voyager, and nature shows. I’m always looking out for native Deutsch shows and movies, so the mouthes move in time with the words (much better), like Bella Martha, Rosenstraße, M, der Schreklicher Mädchen, Lola Rennt!, and Die Sendung mit der Maus.

Does anyone know of other good TV shows or movies in German?

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42 Thea April 28, 2012 at 5:06 pm

Heather,
We borrowed “Soul Kitchen” from our public library. It’s a pretty funny DVD for adults. Here’s the link from IMDB http://www.imdb.com/title/tt1244668/
Our public library often gets the prize winners, so you might want to check your library and see if it has any or through it’s consortium. I’m also waiting to get a German movie with Peter Falk, “Wings of Desire” is the English title.
Thea

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43 Heather April 24, 2012 at 4:34 pm

I’m learning German for myself, not with children, so am looking for somewhat different resources. Maybe what I’ve found so far will be helpful to some of you.

I use Lang-8, http://www.lang-8.com to write journal entries (really, anything) in German, and native Germans correct my grammar, word choice, etc. It is free, but for $5 a month you can get rid of the ads and save important corrections in your notebook.

For downloading höerbucher and eBooks, I like http://www.Libri.de, which is fairly inexpensive and I can find a lot of the books I like. They also have paper books and DVDs, etc. and their shipping is more reasonably priced (to the US) than amazon.de.

I also like reading German blogs. http://www.Mami-netz.de might be useful to a lot of you, as it is for parents (and expecting parents) of young children.

DVDs are great for learning Deutsch, though most of the ones I can find are dubbed from English. My favorites of these are Harry Potter, Star Trek Voyager, and nature shows. I’m always looking out for native Deutsch shows and movies, so the mouthes move in time with the words (much better), like Bella Martha, Rosenstraße, M, der Schreklicher Mädchen, Lola Rennt!, and Die Sendung mit der Maus.

Does anyone know of other good TV shows or movies in German?

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44 Susan June 15, 2012 at 10:56 pm

Thanks for these great links! Very helpful.

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45 Heather April 28, 2012 at 6:22 pm

For more German music ideas, try:

Die Prinzen, a tongue-in-cheek pop-rock band with great vocals.
Roger Cicero, who plays “big band” style.
Nena, an ’80s band–they sang 99 Red Balloons.
Nino de Angelo, for a smoother sound; a lot of love songs and such.
PUR, a band that sings more environmental, save the world, political themes, with very catchy tunes.
Silbermond, has a femal lead vocal, sometimes sounds like Enya and sometimes a bit like (light) heavy metal.
Tim Bendzko, for very catchy, fun lyrics.

For kids music, try these albums:
Fischparty by Astrid Hauke
Tierlieder by Geraldino
Klassiker für Kinder bz Jonina
Kommt ein kleiner Bär bz Steffi Denk
Gedanken Wollen Fliegen bz Toni Geiling
Der Vergessene Zauberspruch bz Toni Geiling
Kennt Ihr Blauland–a really cute musical

Some of this I got on iTunes and some on http://www.legalsounds.com

Anyone have other music ideas? I’m always looking for new good (and clean) artists, and stores that will sell DE music in the US.

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46 Natalie May 2, 2012 at 2:00 pm

I had seen a link her last week or so for a website with german tv – it was a subscription service with a free trial, but it seems that the comment was taken down? I don’t see it any more and I had actually responded to the poster with a question….does anybody know what I’m talking about? I thought I had bookmarked the link, but I guess I didn’t and so far I haven’t been able to find a good source for german kids shows online….
Thanks!

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47 Kate May 2, 2012 at 2:52 pm

Hi Natalie,
I’m not sure about the link you’re talking about. But have you tried anything on YouTube? My son is 2, and we watch Kleiner Roter Traktor, Sesamstrasse, Bob der Baumeister, etc. Hope that helps!

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48 Corey May 2, 2012 at 10:23 pm

FYI Natalie: I haven’t removed any comments. Maybe the author removed the comment?

Corey

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49 Alex May 4, 2012 at 10:56 am

Thanks for the Sesamstrasse, I have been looking all over for something that is like it’s English one, and only had Bob der Baumeister. Yay for Sesamstrasse on YouTube. I will try to buy the videos on DVD soon.

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50 Heather May 16, 2012 at 7:50 pm

Hi folks,

Someone mentioned on one of the other posts, a magazine called “Deutsch Perfekt,” and I subscribed. I’m not sure how to access the audio parts though, on their website. There are sections of the magazine that come with audio portions, or are read aloud by native speakers, but how do I access that? Will someone with a subscription please help guide me through this? Thanks!

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51 German Learner December 19, 2012 at 12:14 pm

Hi,

I’m also trying very hard to improve my German, as I would like to study in Austria next year. The method that has been working for me is reading a lot of books, to build a substantial vocabulary, and also learning the grammar (I’m also building a blog with some of the grammar rules as I learn them, for me and for others).

Good luck everyone.

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