Anyone up for learning German together this summer using this book and Google+?

Google+, in case you don’t know, has this hangout feature where you can have a live conference chat over the pc. Nifty wee little thing.

Anyway, I was thinking. Maybe those of us who would like to learn German, or those of you who know German, could get together, say on a Thursday evening for about an hour, and go through this book:

learning german quickly
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For those wanting to do German for college credits, you can always take a CLEP test(s). If I am reading this correctly, passing both German tests available via CLEP qualifies you as having taken two full years of German (or, say, having a German mastery of two full years (not just semesters) of German).

This would be a fun way to go through this book, especially if we had someone who knew German and could walk us through some of the stuff.

Joel L. Watts
Joel L. Watts holds a Masters of Arts from United Theological Seminary with a focus in literary and rhetorical criticism of the New Testament. He is currently a Ph.D. student at the University of the Free State, analyzing Paul’s model of atonement in Galatians. He is the author of Mimetic Criticism of the Gospel of Mark: Introduction and Commentary (Wipf and Stock, 2013), a co-editor and contributor to From Fear to Faith: Stories of Hitting Spiritual Walls (Energion, 2013), and Praying in God's Theater, Meditations on the Book of Revelation (Wipf and Stock, 2014).

24 thoughts on “Anyone up for learning German together this summer using this book and Google+?

  1. Great idea, Joel! I took Theological German last summer and am going through my grammar text again for review. I wish that I could work it out so as to participate in this discussion. Maybe I can pop in on occasion!

    1. Google+ account (mine can be found on this page, under the Connect With Me) and a web cam.

      It might be helpful if everyone connects via Google+

    1. fantastic. Does anyone have a preferred time and date? I’m all up for more than a few for myself. I say and just throwing this around – June 14th. we can start anytime 5 eastern on. What sayeth ye?

      1. At the minimum, see if the book has an audio counterpart. And Assimil, while Audio, has a book, but teaches Grammar through audio. And the grammar is the TOUGHEST part of German. As per Mark Twain’s famous paper: “There are ten parts of speech, and they are all troublesome. An average sentence, in a German newspaper, is a sublime and impressive curiosity; it occupies a quarter of a column; it contains all the ten parts of speech — not in regular order, but mixed; it is built mainly of compound words constructed by the writer on the spot, and not to be found in any dictionary — six or seven words compacted into one, without joint or seam — that is, without hyphens; it treats of fourteen or fifteen different subjects, each inclosed in a parenthesis of its own, with here and there extra parentheses which reinclose three or four of the minor parentheses”

  2. Ich misstraue dieser Methode. Ich hab’ elf Sprachen bei Pimsleur und Assimil gelernt. Habe ich getestet und fast jeden Sprachkurs in Dasein verwendet, und nur diese lehren Gelaufigkeit. Sie duerfen Geld kosten, aber sie werden die Kosten wert.
    Achtung! Obwohl ist Deutsch leicht aussprechen,die Grammatik ist zu voellig bekloppt!

    1. Pimsleur ist eine hervorragende Methode, um Aussprache und das “Gefühl” der Sprache kennenzulernen (ich kenne Assimil nicht, aber es scheint ähnlich), aber bezüglich auf Wortschatz und Grammatik kommt man nicht sehr weit.

      That is to say, I also would highly recommend using something like the Pimsleur Method to get a better feel for the language (the CDs are expensive to purchase, but many library systems have them to check out), but that is no substitute for close work with a grammar, such as Wilson’s. Particularly if your goal is to be able to read German, Pimsleur (which is almost entirely oral) can only get you so far.

      1. Das stimmt. Assimil hat die Grammatik, aber in abgestuften Audio. Der Kurs nutzt auch lustigen geschichten, um Speicher zu erlechtern.

        Basically, Assimil is the “grammar” part. Assimil is like Pimsleur, but focused on funny stories and dialogue so you can remember the German grammar.

          1. Pimsleur is highly recommended by several scholars that I know of, but it is, as one person noted, audio and thus, not helpful for really reading German. It is a start, no doubt. It comes on a series of cds, I believe.

          2. The Pimsleur method is absolutely fantastic. While it teaches enough German to converse with natives, it does NOT teach the written language. But we learn to speak before we write, nicht war? That’s why I always reinforce my language learning with Assimil. It teaches grammar through audio with a book for the visual learner. Having learned up to 16 languages myself with this method, I recommend it. I’ve tutored Greek this way for seminary students.

  3. Tempting as this is, the voice of reason (aka. my wife) reminded me that my priority this summer is my thesis. If you want to do french next summer I am totally there.

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