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5 Ways to Re-Use your German and Learn More

5 Ways to Re-Use Your German & Learn More in the Process

There is one key ingredient to students who learn the most in their German lessons:  they repeat, repeat, repeat, repeat, repeat.

My first German teacher was (and surely still is) an excellent instructor. She told me if I wanted to learn a new word in German, I'd have to use it 28 times.

28 times!! That's a lot of repetition. (If that's an average, sometimes it goes faster--say 20 repetitions, and sometimes it takes longer, say 40 repet…

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wohnen vs. leben

wohnen vs. leben

IKEA Germany advertises with a catchy slogan:

Wohnst du noch, oder lebst du schon?

Are you still living, or are you already living?

Sehr lustig.

This works in German since wohnen ≠ leben. But the difference is significant. Here's how to tell the difference between wohnen and leben and which one to use when.

wohnen

"wohnen" is used for short-term situations.

"Ich wohne bei meinen Eltern" ...because I'm at home for the summer.

"Ich wohne bei einer Freundin" ...because I'm waiting for my new apartment to o…

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kennen vs. wissen

kennen vs wissen which one to use when

"Kennen" is not the same as "wissen" and it can be very confusing trying to tell the two apart.

Here you will learn what "kennen" means, what "wissen" means, and finally how to tell the difference.

There are example sentences, too, and I highly recommend you grab your German notebook and write them down so you can refer back to them later.

kennen

Ich kenne... is for things you can get to know. You might not have always known your German friend Marius, however you got to know him once, which …

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End of an Era at Aldi

End of an Era at ALDI

The brothers Albrecht founded the discount chain Aldi in Germany after World War II. Now, four years after his brother Theo, Karl Albrecht has passed away, signaling the end of the first generation at Aldi.

The brand Aldi has grown to become a world-wide chain of discount stores, with their own Aldi-branded products and efficient store layouts, with weekly specials on special purchases--a different theme every week.

Karl and Theo AlbrechtOne of the things the brothers Albrecht were best known for was their incredib…

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Typical German Music: Schlager!

Typisch Deutsch Schlager

Schlager is a form of music unique to German--it's its own genre. Comprised mainly of catchy tunes (that lead to ear worms), straight-forward forms and uncomplicated texts, you can hear Schlager at Oktoberfest, pretty much any Karneval celebration anywhere in Germany, and of course on German television.

You can easily dance to it and it's a good bet that you can dance with your kids to it and not worry about the texts.

A lot of Schlager shows are shown on TV in the evenings and are recorded p…

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It's OK to Cry When You Don't Understand: 3 Ways to Bust Through

Students of foreign languages sometimes get upset when they get frustrated. They get really frustrated and really upset because what they want most is to speak a foreign language, they've done their homework, they've studied, and somehow the pieces just don't fit together or the pieces they want don't come together when they speak.

It's a hard-core experience.

Some students think I learned German easily because I learned it quickly--it was not easy and my German skills were and are hard-won with…

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Visit the German Settlement Cemetery in Hudson, Wisconsin

Last week you learned about the German Settlement in St. Croix County and the bake house/smoke house that is still used for bread baking demonstrations. Not far from there is the German Settlement Cemetery. Be sure to visit it when you head out for the bread bake. It's set beautifully and is a peaceful reminder of where so many of us have come from (another place) and connects you with another time.

GermanCemetery1

As the sign implores, it's a place to "Reverently read the old gravestone names of those pione…

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Live Demonstration: Brick Oven Bread Baking. June 1, 4-6 p.m.

The German Settlement Heritage Society of Hudson, Wisconsin is hosting a bread bake at the restored brick oven on June 1, 2014 from 4-6 p.m.

The restored brick oven is at 837 County Rd. N, Hudson, WI 54016 (5 miles east of Hudson, WI) and is on the site of the first German settlement in the area, the Nicholas Schwalen farm.

Nutrition and Outreach Specialist Ross Safford will be conducting the demonstration with his humor, dough-tossing techniques, and stories of baking bread.

Here are a few phot…

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Sprachkurs Schwäbisch

Sprachkurs Schwäbisch

Harald Schmidt, who has since given up his late night spot on German television, is to Germany was Letterman and Leno were to the US. He's also a Schwab, he's an incredible mimic and can reproduce pretty much any German dialect.

Here his Sprachkurs (Crashkurs) Schwäbisch.

If you're not yet familiar with Swabian, here's a comparison that should help you understand how it relates to German:

Swabian is to German as Creole is to North American English.

Swabian and German are related, but just as…

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Karneval / Fasching / Fastnacht

Karneval Fasching Fastnacht Fifth Season in Germany

Karneval is known as "die fünfte Jahreszeit" --the 5th season. It's known as Karneval, Fastnacht, or Fasching in many places in southern Germany.

Karneval is a big deal.

Their costumes are pretty fantastic, one of Heidi Klum's favorite things, and their costumes are no exception at the parade on Rosenmontag. But let's back up a few days and a few months to give you the best idea of Karneval.

 

It begins on November 11th at 11:11 a.m. because 11 is known as the "narrische Zahl," the fool's nu…

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