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How best to teach my nephew German

Gday everyone. Now I have a nephew. He is about 8 months old. I would like him to learn German as a young child so he can speak to me in German. This is just a little project but I think that it will be difficult since I only see him a few times a year for just a little while. So when I'm with him I speak German to him but I don't know if this is enough. I know that little people can learn very quickly. But with the only exposure to German is me and I only see him a few times a year. Should I develop a flashcard system? I think this may be interesting so that he could do it and maybe start him on lessons with me like putting him in front of the screen when I'm practicing my German. Read German stories. When he gets a bit older help him to write in German. What does the German community, Duolingo think the best techniques are?

October 26, 2017



Do you really expect a child to learn a language with exposure to the language "a few times a year for just a little while"?


I agree. Kids don't pick up on languages quickly. It takes them years of constant exposure and practice saying the same words and phrases over and over. Adults actually learn language faster because we can just look up the grammar rules and the meaning of the words we want to learn.

[deactivated user]

    Singing in German. (Children Songs) Just don't make him do some stupid textbook shit. Teach him through fun and play.


    Okay, I kind of see your situation. You want to teach your 8-month nephew German right away. Maybe....check with your sibling about that first? I mean, maybe your nephew's parents might not want their son learning two languages at once, since most people want to start off with one basic language. I suggest, though, maybe waiting until he's older, like maybe 2 or 3, if you want him to learn german. I think it may be easier for both the parents AND the kid if you waited. That way, after the kid knows more of english, his first language, then you could start teaching him a little german, bit by bit. I think you also maybe misinterpretated "little people can learn very quickly" kind of thing. I know that babies learn MOTIONS faster, but words not so much. I think that when they mean "little people", they mean 2-3 year olds.


    ok. I think his parents are fine with it cause they kind of look at it as a joke. The thing is that if I don't start training him straight away then he may not learn it as growing up. I wouldn't like him to learn it as a subject but as he grows he get's better as he does with English. Lot's of foreigners' children learn English along with their mothers and fathers language, I don't see any problem with them. Do you have examples of people getting mixed up permanently with two languages?


    A friend of mine speaks to her kids (at least to one) only in English (especially when she is telling him what to do ;-)). That way, he has a "mother's language" and a "father's language" for his father only speaks German with him. He is pretty good with both languages by now. There was no hint of being confused by two words for one thing. They say that kids pick up language better than adults so it can't be wrong to raise his interest for a foreign one.

    I think it would be helpful to talk to him mostly in German, especially when you offer him his birthday presents. He will see you as the nice uncle with the weird words. If you are the COOL uncle with the weird words he will be interested in more of the language, just to be as cool as you.

    I am German. When I was younger, my kids came in while I was watching movies until they saw that they were in English. But instead of being turned off, they worked on improving their language skills until it was more of a magnet instead of a kid repellant. So, your speaking German might get him to the point of acquiring German on his own free will. But be careful, it might cost you a trip to Germany one fine day - you should start saving money:)


    Thankyou for the encouragement. I always thought it would be cool for him to speak German with me. I like your idea giving birthday presents in German. I think I'll write all my letters in German. And I think he will be able to catch on if I start talking to him on the phone 'when he's a bit older' in German. I am quite excited about being the Uncle with as you say 'the weird words'.

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