A couple of months ago I started to learn German, without any aim, just because I was curious!
The German language always seemed to me a difficult one because of its grammar cases, genders, word order and even pronunciation. However, more I learn and more I notice the similarity with English. It is not surprising, as both of these languages are Germanic.
For example, you may noticed that for example, English “sh” becomes “sch” in German or “t” becomes “d” : fish – fisch, good – gut. Unfortunately (or not), there are so many words that are completely different, so it is more difficult to learn them. By the way, that’s funny to find similar to Russian words too! For example Kartoffel or Benzin.
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DID YOU KNOW THAT …
German has about 229 million of speakers around the world. That is quiet impressive and gives me a desire to be a part of this huge family.
A LITTLE TRICK
To memorize all German genders can be quite difficult. When I learn some new nouns, I try to imagine them in different colors. For example, masculine is icy blue, feminine is red and neutral is green. You can practise and create in you imagination stories with words that belong only to the green color or only to the red one.
Besides, is it enough just to have a book and some audio to listen to for learning a language in a short period of time? Of course not. The best way to learn any language calls “language immersion”.
WHAT DOES THE LANGUAGE IMMERSION MEAN AND HOW DOES IT WORK?
Language immersion is a method when you only use the language that you learn. It should be everywhere – stickers in your apartment, web sites, music, radio, movies, everything in your target language. To my mind the best way of language immersion is to visit the country that speaks the language you learn. You can practice your oral skills and for example, order a taxi, book a hotel, order some food in a restaurant or simply talk to a native speaker. Even when you’re eating in a restaurant or just walking a city you can hear your target language from everywhere. Isn’t it perfect? Just because you hear your target language every day and use foreign words, your brain gets used to the new language and considers it as an important information. That is why you memorize it much more better.
MY VISIT TO GERMANY
Last week I traveled to Germany for a couple of days and I am happy to share with you my opinion. To tell the truth, my aim was to get to know better the German culture rather than learn their language. Honestly, I regret that I wasn’t able to speak German fluently. On the one hand almost everyone speaks English there, but from the other hand I felt the difference in the attitude (mostly from the part of waiters). So, maybe it can explain why some waiters asked for tips. For me that was strange.
I really liked their old architecture, churches and castles. In the month of October you can see some shops that sale souvenirs and decoration for Christmas. There, I felt like in a fairy tale – Christmas trees, nutcrackers, stars…
What I liked the most in Germany is that their streets are clean, they respect this rule. Speaking about the rules, German people don’t cross the street on a red color. Even if there are no cars they wait for a green color. This is the difference between French people who usually do this. If compare this two nations, I would say that German people who work in cafés, shops, pharmacies and so on, they smile less to their clients. Here is one of differences in mentality, that is more similar to Eastern countries.
In conclusion, this small trip gave me more motivation to learn the German language and be able to speak fluently. I would like to know more about their culture, habits and its history.