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I'm going back to German classes

I've gone to German class on and off since before we moved and then to a couple after we got here. I never really stick with it because I find it soooo boring and I hate the little back and forth grammar exercises you do with your classmates, etc.  *sigh*  My German has sort of plateaued. I can get by, understand at least the gist of conversations, go to German doctors, etc., however my speech is awful.  I have some German friends I could speak with but I get so embarrassed with speaking and how much I can't say that I usually stay quiet unless we switch to English. I think since we'll probably be here for the long haul and my daughter is half German I should suck it up and try again. 

Any suggestions for sticking with it, staying motivated that have worked for you?  Any fun ways to learn? 

Re: I'm going back to German classes

  • I learned heaps just by watching re-runs of shows I knew on tv, going to movies, and reading magazines and easy books. If you find the right people, it wont matter to them how many mistakes you make, and they will usually be willing to help you when you ask, but not interrupt all the time. GL!
    mc: 5w3d 11/11/07 missed mc: 7w or 8w, d/c @11w 4/16/08 mc: 6wks 12/24/08 Pregnancy Ticker
  • First, congratulations to you for making the decision to go back to classes!  That's really the first step!  I totally understand, I've been doing the same off-and-on for the past 7 years. 

    For me, the most motivating factor was definately the German friends thing.  We have a friend who only speaks German, but he's always here, so I could not communicate with him without speaking German.  Or, even better, find someone nice in your class who doesn't speak English :)

    I have tried some online vocabulary trainers that are amusing for a while, but then I lose interest.  Really, it is more a practice thing.  Try talking through your thinking when you're alone, even though you may feel like a nut.

    I wish I had better tips.  Good luck!

  • I wish I could help.  I have plateaued at a just getting by level too.  I work in english and my DH is american so I only speak German for appointments, etc.  I played on a sports team and that was a good casual environment to practice in.  But really my speech is just too painful too, so we always just switch to english as well Sad  Maybe like a mom's group or some activity for your DD where you can just chat on the side with other parents?  The only way I guess is to power through the awkward stages until you improve, its hard though!
  • i think you and i are at the same place right now - in terms of language level.  I don't have any tremendous advice except to say that you WILL be so glad and feel so much more confident when you know more and are able to communciate better.  I have some friends who were in this same spot and once they went back and started the intensive/integration courses, they are such happer more content people.  They are really starting to feel like they fit in (i am indeed jealous!). 

    Anyhow, GL and good for you for having another go at it!  Be proud!  Can you manage the time to do an intensive course?  That seems to be what works best for ppl I know. 

  • I wish I knew. ?I start Danish classes on Monday. ?My only real motivation, sadly, is that if my Danish is better, my FIL's really lame stories will take a lot less time to listen to. ?I tried joining a Danish mothers' group but I'm not getting their emails anymore. ?I told them we were all sick and apologized for not making a couple of meetings, then when we were finally better and I was ready to go, everyone else canceled the next meeting and I haven't heard from any of them since. ?Ugh.
  • Cee-jay, I could've written your post word for word, just replace German with Norwegian.

    I'm starting a vocab program I call 10 Words Per Day.  I read my textbook (and when I run through that the dictionary, or a newspaper, whatever) and when I run across a word I don't know it goes on the list.  Everyday I'll study 10 words and make sure I learn them.

    If all goes according to plan I should know 3650 new Norwegian words by this date next year.  That's on top of everything I already know.  Hopefully that's somewhere near fluent...GOOD LUCK with your German!

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