German Learning Resources
Over the past few months, I have collected plenty of German learning resources from Duolingo (such as these excellent threads: http://www.duolingo.com/comment/3900921 and http://www.duolingo.com/comment/3446824) and other sites. I am compiling everything that I know of in this single thread to share it with everyone. I try to categorize them to make them easier to find and use but the split is not perfect since most websites contain various learning resources. Enjoy!
PS about musicians/bands: I am only including some in this list because there are a lot of them. If you to know more, feel free to look at the comments section in this thread.
- Duolingo: of course!
- DW Deutschkurse
- LanguageGuide.org: only vocabulary
- Italki: learn with native tutors
- German.net: plenty of exercises
- Foreign Service Institute
- German for English Speakers
- Grimm Grammar
- German Island
- Mein Deutschbuch
- Canoo: German to German to dictionary
- Duden: this is probably THE German dictionary
- Pons: my favorite dictionary, very restrictive but accurate.
- Wiktionary (offline)
- Bliubliu: articles in German, hover to see the translation
- DeutschPerfekt: simple articles
- Lingocracy: allows you to read texts, does hover translation on words for faster translation, collect words, practice those words, also has Chrome extension
- Lingua.ly: similar to Lingocracy
- Linguee: sample sentences
- Lingq: similar to Lingocracy
- Lingro: makes websites clickable for faster translation
- ReadLang: similar to Lingocracy
- Tatoeba: sample sentences
- Lang-8: do you want to have your writing checked by native speakers? This is the place!
- DW Top-Thema mit Vokabeln: various German topics with the vocabulary included
- Forvo: pronunciation by native speakers
- Langsam gesprochene Nachrichten: slowly spoken news, vocabulary is difficult
- Nachrichtenleicht: easy news
- Slow German: various topics spoken slowly
- Children Books and Audio
- Children's Books Forever
- Children's Library
- Project Gutenberg: choose "DE Kinderbuch (Bücherregal)" for easier books
Youtube Shows and Lessons
- Deutsch für Euch: lesson
- Deutsch Lernen: TV shows
- Easy German: street interview
- GermanCourse: lesson
- GermanPod101: lesson
- Germany vs USA: culture
- Get Germanized: culture
- GumBubble08: lesson
- Herr Antrim: lesson
- Kurzgesagt DE: science
- Slow German: various topics
- Was Geht Ab: various topics
- Adel Tawil: pop
- Bushido: rap
- CRO: rap
- Die Ärzte: punk
- Frida Gold: pop
- Glasperlenspiel: pop electronica
- Herbert Grönemeyer: pop/rock
- Helene Fischer: pop
- Rammstein: metal
- Tokio Hotel: rock
- Xavier Naidoo: soul/rap
- Goethe Institut Spotify List
- Der Letzte Bulle: tough detective who wakes up from 20 years comma
- Der Tatortreiniger: crime scene cleaner
- Pastewka: humor similar to Seinfeld
- Unsere Mütter Unsere Väter/Generation War: 5 friends during the second world war
- Das Leben der Anderen: a spy who spies on a couple
- Der Untergang: Hitler's last days
- Das weiße Band: Germany before the first world war
- Die Welle: demonstration of fascism that becomes more than what it should be
- Good Bye Lenin!: a mother who was in comma and now wakes up
- Lola Rennt: make money or something very bad will happen
- More German movies
Good resources! Extremely helpful! I do have two things to add: A TV Show named "Stromberg" which is the German version of The Office; all episodes can be watched for free here: http://www.myspass.de/myspass/shows/tvshows/stromberg/ Here is a German YouTuber who makes product reviews and other videos and makes German covers of popular American songs! http://www.youtube.com/user/AlexiBexi
i really like Tatort http://www.daserste.de/unterhaltung/krimi/tatort/index.html
Wow, that's an awesome long list, thank you!
On first sight: do you know http://www.german-grammar.de/ ? I think, I did not see it in the list. (It's a whole set of pages, explaining German grammar for English, Spanish, Italian and French native speakers, at times also the inverse direction.)
A couple more:
- reddit.com/r/german A german board. Reddit speaks for itself.
- german.stackexchange.com A place to ask questions about German. Natives are here and answer your questions quickly. I'm partial because I'm a programmer who uses the main stackexchange site Stackoverflow, but this place really is a great community..
Wow, that is quite an impressive research you did there.
concerning music: there are also some quite fun german "rap" bands, such as SDP stonedeafproduction: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cr-dDkrljDU here are the written lyrics to it: http://www.magistrix.de/lyrics/513760-sdp/Fragen-ber-Fragen-246493.html https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=d9rbFIqAtn8 that song is also worth listening to if you want to learn german + it's entertaining ;) though they use a bit, really just a bit of slang.
The german youtubestars Ytitty also have nice and fun german songs, https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZbHYq3xGVMY this one here is for example about boners. Ständertime = Time for ❤❤❤❤❤(s) well lit. BonersTime - worth giving it a try!
These resources look delicious. My ravenous mind cannot wait to devour them. But I must balk and have a query answered. Should I strive to finish learning German in Duolingo first and go on a sequential ride? Or should I also consult these resources simultaneously and somehow avoid being overwhelmed by information? Please answer quickly.
I'm not the original poster, but perhaps I can be of use to your hastiness, my friend. Personally, I don't just stick with Duolingo. I've got an account on dang near everyone of these free sites mentioned. I also have made friends with an actual Germen, it really helps to be able to chat with someone who know what they're talking about. =P Know the old adage - Haste makes waste - ? Well, just because you can repeat it today doesn't mean it's there stay. Take your time, make sure you know it and go back over it. Ask questions and look for answers. I say have at it, but never put more on your plate then you can actually eat. ;)
A fantastic list. I would also suggest Linguee (http://www.linguee.com/english-german/search?source=autoquery=somit) as a great way to look at a work in context.
i've just noticed that it also enables you to seach for mulitple words. ie search for "einzeln und individuell" and it will give back examples that use both words. Really great when you want to know the difference between words! http://www.linguee.de/deutsch-englisch/uebersetzung/einzeln+und+individuell.html
thank you very much, i am using some of this sources for a while now and i found something useful here , and i would like to point out some points : - the music pop/punk are playing with words and rhyming in their songs, which is way way out of the league of a learning new language , you must be at least fluent to get the meaning . - the channels in german are dedicated for native speaking german , so if you are not, you won't understand much, maybe word here and there - most learning sites are filled with much small texts and are not interactive and very boring . duolingo is the best learning site for beginners . - children books are surprisingly filled with many advanced words and i often found my self translating every other word which is a bummer . i want to enjoy the reading along with the learning - you need to pay the good sites in order to learn better, and of course it makes sense to charge the client if you provide a good service, but not everyone can pay for it . - the plot in authentic german movies are based a lot on the life and/or history of germany. and it's hard to get along with the movies . i learned english that exact way , and i would loved it if there was something like that in german
I agree that many songs need a good of understanding of German, for example Rammstein's Du Hast, which can mean two different things.
However I still find them very helpful to listen to their songs. An example is when I was learning prepositions, the song "Spielt mit mir" reminded me that "mit" requires dative. Also, the song "Ohne dich" reminded me that "ohne" requires accusative. So even though I don't understand the real meaning behind songs, they are still helping me! Now that's awesome!
Good job going through all these discussions and formating it all like that!
When someone proposed a similar idea for the French resources, I've created a page on the unofficial Duolingo wiki to keep a trace of all of them (since the discussions tend to end up burrowed under the more recent ones). I think most of the learning websites can also be found on it. And those that can't should be added.
My favorite dictionary is bab.la, because you can see example sentences for all the words (taken from European Parliament documents, TED, etc.). It really helps to understand how the words are used, not just what they mean. You do have to actually look at the example sentences, though, because sometimes they'll list mistranslations with the wrong word highlighted.
Here are some resources / approaches that worked well for me as a beginner:
1) Focus more on INPUT at the beginning and don’t get too caught up in OUTPUT (e.g. speaking, writing) too soon.
Listen to lots of music, watch shows, dissect the meaning of news articles / books / etc.
Resources: children’s shows on Netflix & Amazon, children’s music on YouTube, young reader books (not children’s books, which are read aloud by adults!)
2) Learn to speak ONLY when you have the help of at least one fluent speaker who can correct you. Terrible accents are hard to fix down the road.
Resources: Back when I was a beginner student, free platforms such as iTalki didn’t exist, so I worked with personal connections. Of course, you can now also easily find an online German tutor, too, if you’re happy to pay.
3) Be wary of instant gratification (e.g. just learning vocabulary on here on Duolingo but not knowing grammar structures that allow you to actually USE it).
Instead, put in the hard work at the beginning (e.g. learning grammar!), which sets you up for faster learning from there that doesn’t have to be painstakingly fixed (<-- if you even can fix any bad German habits at that point).
Resources: grammar guides I’ve written at www.germanwithlaura.com and various grammar workbooks you can find on Amazon or the like (e.g. Verb Drills, Grammar Drills, Schaum’s). I also love Barron’s 501 German Verbs.
4) WAIT to visit German-speaking countries until you’re at an A2/B1 level, to really get the most out of your stay. It’s too overwhelming to be thrust into a new language when you have zero prior foundation.
I know waaay too many people who lived in Germany for months (if not years), but -- because they got there with no previous German study under their belts -- ended up learning very little while they were there (probably because they were thrown into needing to use “survival German” from the get-go instead of being able to systematically improve German skills they’d already started).
Resources: I’d suggest trying to stay away from any situation that would have you surrounded by a bunch of English-speakers you already know (e.g. many university study abroad programs, esp. those without homestays). Instead, maybe think about being an au pair or any other program that would have you be alone with just natives.
5) Seek to understand German grammar in terms of overarching principles and underlying patterns -- you get way more bang for your buck this way.
For example, rather than memorizing each new noun with its gender (der, die, das) in an isolated fashion, working with noun groups and especially noun suffixes (e.g. nouns ending with -keit and -heit are always feminine nouns [die]) is MUCH more efficient (i.e. faster because you can automatically know the gender of dozens, if not hundreds, of nouns when they all end with the same suffix) and effective (i.e. patterns are easier for your brain to hold onto vs. info that seems random).
Resources: If you’re a beginner, try reading this guide and going from there: https://germanwithlaura.com/der-die-das/ If you’re a bit more intermediate, check out this way of learning declensions: https://germanwithlaura.com/declension/