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German GrammarPod

Updated 6 days ago

Education
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Language Learning
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German GrammarPod is a podcast about German grammar for people learning the German language.

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German GrammarPod is a podcast about German grammar for people learning the German language.

iTunes Ratings

61 Ratings
Average Ratings
39
8
6
5
3

So well-done

By Ajscdd - Jan 02 2012
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Laura, the podcaster, does an excellent job. Keep up the great work!

Pretty Good For Reviewing Grammar

By cikavac - Mar 09 2008
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Not for beginners. My only complaint: She talks WAY too quickly. Otherwise, very good.

iTunes Ratings

61 Ratings
Average Ratings
39
8
6
5
3

So well-done

By Ajscdd - Jan 02 2012
Read more
Laura, the podcaster, does an excellent job. Keep up the great work!

Pretty Good For Reviewing Grammar

By cikavac - Mar 09 2008
Read more
Not for beginners. My only complaint: She talks WAY too quickly. Otherwise, very good.

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Cover image of German GrammarPod

German GrammarPod

Updated 6 days ago

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German GrammarPod is a podcast about German grammar for people learning the German language.

Rank #1: Cases: The Nominative Case

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This podcast is about cases, which are a way of showing what role the different words are playing in a sentence. German has four cases:
  • Nominative
  • Accusative
  • Dative
  • Gentitive
This podcast describes how cases work in general, then goes on to look at the nominative case in more detail.
To listen to the audio file directly on your computer, click here. Or, if you'd like to subscribe to the podcast, click the link on the top left of this blog.

Oct 28 2012

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Rank #2: Word Order - Multi-Clause Sentences

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To listen to this podcast on your computer, click here.

Apr 05 2011

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Rank #3: Past Tenses: How to Use The Perfect

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The perfect tense is one of three German past tense forms. It's also the one that's most commonly used in spoken German, so very useful to learn. The perfect tense is a compound tense. This means it uses two verbs: an auxiliary (or helper) verb and a main verb. Most of the time, the auxiliary verb is haben, which means to have. But for some verbs, especially intransitive verbs of motion and intransitive change-of-state verbs, the auxiliary verb is sein, which means to be. The main verb then shoots along to the end of the clause and appears in the form of a past participle. As a rule of thumb, you create the past participle of a verb from its infinitive by adding a ge- on the beginning, and sometimes you switch the or the on the end for a . Two examples of how you make a perfect tense sentence are:

Ich habe ein Eis gegessen - I have eaten an ice cream
Ich bin in die Schule gegangen - I've gone to school

You can listen to this podcast directly on your computer by clicking here.

While I was researching this podcast, I found a couple of particularly useful websites. Here are the English ones:

A description of when to use the different German past tenses:
http://german.about.com/library/verbs/blverb_past.htm

A description of how to use the German perfect tense:
http://en.wikibooks.org/wiki/German_Grammar:Verbs:Past_Tenses:Perfect_Tense

Exercises (particularly suitable for beginners) to practise using the perfect tense:
http://atschool.eduweb.co.uk/rgshiwyc/school/curric/German/Revision/German_Perfect_Tense/index.htm

And here are the German ones (two descriptions of when Germans say you should use the perfect tense and when the simple past (also known as the imperfect tense or the preterite)):

http://de.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pr%C3%A4teritum
http://home.schule.at/cometo/latein-griechisch/grammatikmerkblaetter/perfektimperfektverwendung.htm

Oct 22 2007

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Rank #4: General Tips & Tricks

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This podcast gives you a wide range of tips and tricks for learning a language. It focuses on German, but these tips and tricks could be applied to learning any language.

To listen to this podcast on your computer, click here.

Apr 05 2010

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Rank #5: The Conditional - Part 2

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This episode is about more of the really practical stuff you need to know about the conditional.

To listen to the episode directly on your computer, click here.

Aug 12 2011

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Rank #6: Adjectives and Adjectival Endings

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To listen to this podcast directly on your computer click here.

Apr 05 2011

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Rank #7: Word Order in a Standard Main Clause

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German word order in a completely standard, neutral main clause is a follows:

* nominative subject,
* conjugated verb,
* accusative then dative pronoun,
* nouns with definite determiners, in the order dative, accusative
* most adverbials
* nicht – or other negation particles
* adverbials of manner
* nouns with indefinite determiners, in the order dative, accusative
* the complement, and finally
* any other verbs.

My podcast on German word order contains more information about what those terms mean, and also a more detailed version of word order. You can listen to the podcast directly on your computer by clicking here.

Apr 06 2008

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Rank #8: Adjectival nouns

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Please click here to listen to the adjectival nouns podcast directly on your computer.

Aug 19 2012

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Rank #9: When to Use the Perfect Tense

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This podcast is about when to use the perfect tense. The perfect tense is the ich habe es getan tense and corresponds in form to the I have done it tense in English. But the rules on when you use the tense are rather different in German. The German one is often interchangeable with the simple past tense (the ich tat es tense), whereas in English, past tenses are usually not interchangeable with each other.

As a rule of thumb, Germans use the perfect tense to express the past tense in spoken German, except with certain verbs and except in certain situations. The verbs with which the perfect tense is usually not used (apart from for situations for which the perfect tense is the preferred tense) are the auxiliary verbs, modal verbs and, in Central and Northern Germany, also certain other common verbs. These are used in the simple past instead.

If you'd like to listen to this podcast on your computer, you can do so by clicking here.

I've put a list of which verbs aren't generally used in the perfect tense on my geocities site, where I put grammar tables and transcripts of the episodes: http://sites.google.com/site/germangrammarpod/past. The website also includes a table showing the information I've given in my podcasts so far about when to use which tense.

It's always tricky to describe when a tense should be used in a foreign language, and there's a lot of seemingly contradictory information out there. To compile this episode, I mainly used German-language Wikipedia:

http://de.wikipedia.org/wiki/Perfekt and
http://de.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pr%C3%A4teritum

which, slightly disturbingly, both seem to have been rewritten since I used them for information (although a native speaker did recommend the sites at the time I used them, so at least one native speaker did think they were supplying correct information as they were).

I also used the book Hammer's German Grammar and Usage (in my case the second edition). Here's a link to the fourth edition on Amazon: Hammer Grammar, although I recommend any edition of it that you can get your hands on.

I also liked the information in about.com on this topic: http://german.about.com/library/verbs/blverb_past.htm

Jul 21 2009

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Rank #10: Commands

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To listen to this podcast directly on your computer, please click here.

Jul 17 2011

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