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Need help with German!

Does anyone have any tips (besides listening to natives) on speaking better German? I don't sound right apparently but I've been listening to natives speak....HELP

April 26, 2018



Duolingo also has a feature called Stories, in which you listen and read along and answer questions.


For German you need a lot of patience the first time. In Germany we often forget that we speak our native language very fast. If you want to train I would say children songs (in German "Kinderlieder") can be good for to learn the sound.

Some points for you: 1st: If you have a vocal followed by a "ß" or a "h" it is long spoken. If you have doubled consonants you short up the vocal.

2nd: If you have a "s" it is softly spoken. A "ss" is hard like if you want to make a hiss. A "sch" is roughly spoken like in "Kirsche". A "ch" can have two sounds depending on the word: It can be soft like in "Kirche" or hard like in "Bach" which sounds like if an animal would snort and roll the breath. Youtube is often times good because you can stop every time you want to make a break and you can choose the points where you want to start and stop :-)


a little bit fast but a good training: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=28lHO3DOaB0

Here are some older slow folksongs in High German: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JTcN63cXZ28 https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=suWSHtaZiH0

Or you can look for poems like this: (a little bit sad but well known from Goethe:) https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5BeblqhNyj0

or a little bit faster podcasts like this: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ez0QyozJbEU=PLXquLwDbNqi-z_4EIiSAizY3ejlBXfBIo

to have something to smile: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0cMRhmBfAQY

also nice:



"Some points for you: 1st: If you have a vocal followed by a "ß""

The "ß" shortens the vowel, like in Hass, Pass, Kuss, but there are exceptions, like a Maß of Beer.


thx. gmbka, your explanation is beautiful. The "ß" is mostly a sign for a long vowel.

Also interestant (maybe) are doubled nouns (compositas). Here the first noun is morstly spoken a little bit higher with the voice and between them you make a very very short break:

Türklingel Speckstein Winkelmesser Kiesstein Kissenhülle...


Find a German music group that you really like. Or, find German groups who do popular American songs, but in German. Watch German t.v. with English subtitles, or the other way around. Find video games that you like and switch the language to German, if possible.


There are also two good podcasts, Coffee Break German (two seasons!) https://coffeebreakacademy.com/p/coffee-break-german-season-1

Slow German with Annik Rubens (very good) https://slowgerman.com/


Slow news in German https://www.newsinslowgerman.com/

Just listen to the last two to get the rhythms and cadences. Don't bother trying to understand, though they do have translations attached I believe


I used to read Stern or Spiegel aloud - it really helps


I think this helps in every language to learn to accept the sound we are not usually use. Our ears learn with us

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