Memorizing "sein" (to be)

Today in my German 1 class at school we learned a neat little poem for memorizing the conjugation of the verb sein (to be). You may have heard of it, or you may have not heard of it. I'm posting this here because conjugations on Duolingo seem to be tricky, so hopefully this will help you memorize the conjugations.

Ich bin hier

Du bist da

Er ist in Amerika

Wir sind groß

Ihr seid klein

Sie sind an dem schönen Rhein

It rhymes in German, but not so much in English.

I am here

You are there

He is in America

We are tall

They (you all) are small

They are on the beautiful Rhine

September 11, 2014


Very nice, Thanks for sharing!

September 11, 2014

Careful, buddy. "Ihr" is the 2nd person plural not the third, thus "ihr" is "you" (plural) and not "they". The line "They are small" should be "You are small". Anyway, thank you for the awesome rhyme. Much appreciated.

Viel Glück mit deinem Deutsch!

September 11, 2014

My German teacher uses this poem: There was a verb that had a name, And sein was its name-o! Ich bin, ich bin cool, Du bist, du bist cool, Er, sie, es ist, And sein was its name o! Sie sind! And at the end, she says Y'all dies, since y'all is ihr and the ihr form is seid- dies backwards.

September 12, 2014

Thank you! This is great!

September 11, 2014

I hope my family likes this rhyme because they are going to be hearing it a lot! xD This is gonna get so stuck in my head. :-/

September 11, 2014


That's how I've learnt to count from 1 to 10:

Eins, zwei, Polizei,

Drei, vier, Grenadier,

Fünf, sechs, alte Hex',

Sieben, acht, Gute Nacht!

Neun, zehn, schlafen geh'n.

(in English it sounds weird)

September 14, 2014

I've been wanting to learn things like these, thanks!

September 11, 2014

I don't see the rhyme in German, apart from klein and Rhein.

September 11, 2014

da / Amerika and klein / Rhein. Also the German version has a definite beat to it whereas the bet in the English version falls apart in the last line.

September 11, 2014

In Spanish, a rhyme starts at the last stressed vowel, and there are two types of rhymes, in one of them all the sounds are the same, in the other only the vowel sounds, and as far as I know, Amerika is stressed at the 'e', that's why I don't see the rhyme. Klein and Rhein rhyme because they have the same sounds beginning with "ei".

September 11, 2014

Ahm, you are partially right. But because the stress in "Amerika" is in the third to last syllable, the rhyming phonemes would be "e_ka" which partially ('asonante') rhymes with "da". The phoneme "ri" is considered lost for the rhyme, as it is not stressed and is formed by a non occlusive consonant and a soft vowel. So here we are talking about what in English is called an imperfect rhyme (in Spanish is also called that way), that uses a dactyl as the foot of one of the verses.

It also most be noted that a rhyme is a phonetic phenomenon that deals mainly with sounds. Hence, the way a verse is written does few to show the rhyme. The way it is pronounced is what ultimately defines it. The prosody of the Germanic languages (and even more, Germanic rhymes) is considerably different from that of Italic languages. The way a native speaker of a given language pronounces (mentally or orally) a verse written in a different foreign language, directly affects the manner in which said speaker understands the verse. That is why it is difficult to read poetry in verse in another language, and even more difficult to translate it.

Having said that, and in a more philological note, we should also consider that here we are probably dealing with a child's rhyme, and thus comparing it with verses in classical poetry would be like trying to fit an elephant trough the eye of a needle.

September 13, 2014

Beautiful and helpful poem

September 11, 2014

oh cool! i will definitely remember this :)

September 11, 2014

Thank you!! I like having all the conjugations of a verb laid out together so I can see the differences, it's much easier for me to memorize.

September 12, 2014

Longe vivu nia verda stelo! :-)

September 12, 2014

When the esperanto course is ready, i will probably take it.

September 12, 2014

Mi sxangxis mia foton por montri ke mi apogas la kurso.

September 12, 2014

Neat... has a cool beat. xD

September 12, 2014

it's really helpfull (Y) Thaanks :)

September 14, 2014

Ooooh, this is so cool! Thanks! At first, I didn't get the rhyming parts as well, but I realized that it's basically just like a 4 line stanza. :)

September 14, 2014

I just laughed out loud reading that to myself.

September 15, 2014
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