Does anyone have any good hints for effectively learning German Grammar? - without all the jargon about conditional/reflex verbs and blah blah blah - my dyslexic brain can't handle that! Layman's terms would be massively helpful!
I'm dyslexic too and for me (spanish/french mostly) it helped immensely to get a textbook with all the grammar points in it and clearly laid out so if I think ah today I will work on this tense then I know exactly where it is and I only have to go find the page number and not find a good enough site on the internet which takes longer and distracts me.
As for which book, I think you just kind of have to go to a shop and open up a few pages and look at which ones are good for you. For me I tried to find ones with a more open plan of the page and a font I could actually read. My s/o actually has these colored see through sheets that you put over a page and it makes it quite a bit easier to read due to the reduction in contrast of black and white, I just perfer putting a rular under the line I am reading though if it gets to difficult or saying the most important parts outloud
I think if you can formulate a more specific question, that would help us to give you clearer feedback. Which particular aspects of the language are you finding most difficult at the moment? You mention the conditional mood and reflex verbs. Those aren't really so tough.
Think of the conditional voice/mood as language for wishy-washy people (coulda, shoulda, woulda). It's also used to be super polite. We do the same in English: I would like a glass of water versus I want a glass of water.
So in German:
Ich will (want) ein Glas Wasser
Ich möchte (would like) ein Glas Wasser.
Or to express something that might (possibly perhaps) happen:
Das wäre toll, wenn du mitkommen könntest. That would be great if you could come.
You deal with the conditional mood a lot when talking about wishes, desires, possibilities, impossibilities etc. Again, almost exactly like we do in English so not a stretch for us native English speakers. If you are not a native English speaker, German might prove more tricky. We have an unfair advantage because the languages share so many similarities (from my personal experience). That doesn't mean German is easy, but it means at least we share some common ground upon which to stand as we lurch forward with our awkward baby legs into this complex and sometimes perplexing language.
Reflexive verbs are also not so tricky to master because we do the same thing in English:
I see myself in the mirror. I amuse myself with this iPhone game.
Ich sehe mich im Spiegel. Ich amüsiere mich mit diesem iPhone Spiel.
Hope that helps, but it does absolutely nothing in terms of helping you learn all the multitudinous options you could use in other situations. For that, you just have to learn thousands of verbs and their thousands of conjugations by heart. But remember, with regular verbs there are patterns and once you understand the underlying patterns that automatically unlocks much of the language's secrets for you. Have fun, and remember we are all part of a community here to help one another!
viele Grüße aus Berlin,