I'm leaving for Germany soon with my parents, and my Dad wants me to surprise his mom by speaking in German. The. Whole. Time. I'm not really good, and now that school started I am VERY busy. Trust me, I don't have time to learn German in two weeks! What do I do?
Update: TYSM for all your help! My trip was AMAZING! Lingots for all of you!
Any chance that you can, practice your German. Use Duolingo (along with another source such as Memrise) to get you started. Then immerse yourself in the language. Duolingo just started a social experiment where Duolingo users can meet each other in real life. Look under the "Labs" option on the computer and see if there is a meetup happening near you, and if you can, attend it. Another option is to listen to German music and watch TV in German.
Read, watch videos, and practice. You don't have to spend 1 hour everyday, you can just repeat some sentences when you're going to school or waiting for the bus. Like -" how do we say "I'm waiting for my friend" in german?" . You can subscribe to a german youtuber (Julian bam, simon desue, Concrafter, etc...) and watch 1 video everyday to feel comfortable when someone speaks german. It doesn't take a lot of time! And you will see that after 3 days in Germany, speaking with other people, you will learn a lot of new things. :) good luck!
You have my sympathies. On the upside, at least you have family over there that you'll be interacting and speaking with and so you probably will learn at a quicker pace than others just trying to learn from afar. Try not to stress and try to look at this as a huge ( positive ) learning opportunity to get to know your extended family, roots, and a new language. : )
All the things the others mentioned are right. One addition: read/watch things you like or even know already (almost every major book has been translated to German, most series have been dubbed) so you can understand where the stories end without the need for understanding every single word. That will speed you up.
Concentrate on learning a couple of key phrases to amaze the natives in Germany. Smile a lot and don't be afraid of admitting that you do not know it all. Skip grammar - nobody is expecting you to be perfect. A coworker of mine from Iowa, married to a German, has been living in Germany for some twenty years but his handling of the German grammar is like if he came fresh from the States. Try your best, nobody can expext more.
You might say, "Tag, Oma! Kannst du mir helfen, mehr deutsch zu lernen?' She might have fun helping you.