https://www.duolingo.com/lappenfe

Easy way to remember genders in Languages

Just thought I would post a possible helpful hint for some people beginning a new language. German (and other languages) will have genders for each of the nouns. Perhaps a good way to remember what noun is what gender is through what are called pegs. Pegs are self-created (best way to do it) images that you can assign for numbers and/or Genders. You can use a Snowman to indicate a masculine Noun for instance, and creatively play out a scenario of a Snowman interacting with a beetle (a masculine noun in German) (A snowman playing with his best friend, a beetle, or the beetle protected from the cold by entering a snowman house) ....and do the same kind of thing for Feminine and Neutral...It will be much easier to remember an image, rather than a gender. In time, it will come natural to you. Hopefully this helps someone.

1 year ago

13 Comments


https://www.duolingo.com/ghaok
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It sure is a good hint. I had never thought of that. But it is also always good to have in mind that the ending of a word tells us a lot. The german nouns have a lot of suffixes, and most of the time we can tell the word's gender by only looking at it.

for instance: words ending with: heit, keit, schaft, sion, tion, ung, etc... will always be femine...

... and so on.

1 year ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Grace142070

Yes, I found this post very helpful in outlining the general rules for identifying gender (https://www.duolingo.com/comment/575903/THE-GENDER-OF-GERMAN-NOUNS)

1 year ago

https://www.duolingo.com/lindakanga
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That is a great idea !
Thank you for sharing.

This is also a great learning tool - the telling of curious and weird stories - for remembering all sorts of things.
Take note - as you point out - it is good to make it weird and odd - the stories you make up. As it really helps your remember things.

This is also why it is good to learn silly sentences. Because they are also much more fun for our minds to learn. Yes - routine and high frequency sentences are what you most often will use. However for something that really engages you and helps you learn - in all sorts of areas - it is the odd and whimsical things that research I have read, and also personally tested out - that is the most effective.

Things that help you engage other senses - such as touch, smell, feelings, music, memories, etc. - that also reinforces and greatly improve the speed of your learning and the long term retention.

Again - thank you for bringing this issue up !

1 year ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Lea.1717
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It's also important to always write and memorize the word with its article, like "en stol / ei bok / et hus".

Another good way is to associate colors with each gender. Everytime you see a feminine article or noun, it's red; every neuter noun is green, etc... My brain does this automatically now.

1 year ago

https://www.duolingo.com/tchachkii
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it is a good idea, but like @ghaok says, suffixes do help. as I don't do German, I can't say about gendered words in that language, but as someone who does French it is also the same -- if a word ends in -tion, then it is always feminine. sometimes silly phrases do help, but at times if you just look a word then it can be easier to remember.

1 year ago

https://www.duolingo.com/lappenfe

German is random, I thought there was a rule to everything...and even if there was a set rule...like any rule, there are so many exceptions. Quite annoying

1 year ago

https://www.duolingo.com/tchachkii
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I haven't done any German since year 7 [and that was 4 years ago] so I can't comment. sometimes you have to learn things the hard way and just learn the rules, but sometimes the silly things do help. depends on the rule: the -tion rule in French has no exception to it, so depends, I guess.

1 year ago

https://www.duolingo.com/lappenfe

I know for English there are more exceptions to the rule than words that follow the rule at times. Based on what I have seen for German, it seems to be this way as well.

1 year ago

https://www.duolingo.com/tchachkii
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as a native English speaker, I can definitely agree with that. there are many different ways of pronouncing a word -- "tear" and "read" are examples of this. although we don't have gendered words and use "the" for all nouns, English is one of the hardest languages to learn because of the pronunciation and spelling. I'm glad I'm a native English speaker in that respect!

1 year ago

https://www.duolingo.com/YozakuraHime

Thanks! That was really helpful! Going to try it out with the Portuguese words that I keep forgetting the genders for.

1 year ago

https://www.duolingo.com/ichbinelefante

This is such a great idea! Will definitely try it out. Thank you!

1 year ago

https://www.duolingo.com/CaptainCIarky

indeed. although i have never used stories to remember genders, when learning Japanese at school i used stories to help me remember what the characters looked like. mostly now i just use tinycards.

1 year ago

https://www.duolingo.com/LanguageTourist
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Similar rules apply to Dutch. However, in general this may differ from language to language, but i feel that these rules are more important in languages that use articles to denote gender. Say, slavic and baltic languages denote gender by the ending of the word glued to the word, so it is not omitted when looking for meaning, unlike in the article-related cases. Still, I would like to see if there are rules in no-article cases as well, as some of my non-native friends confuse endings, though it is very rare.

1 year ago
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