The most difficult part about learning German (for me, personally)

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Denken Sie, dass es deutsche Grammatik oder deutsche Dialekte sind? Nein!

German grammar is not as awful and difficult as it might seem. Many students in our group complain that they do not understand some grammar rules, but from what I see, I can tell they positively do not study enough. I am very satisfied with my current teacher (even though she is Dutch), but I do not expect that somehow all her knowledge will flow to my brain. šŸ™‚

At the moment, I am debating whether I shall change the language school. Half of the students in our language group are not motivated to study German. They show up in the classroom, but they do not do their homework and do not pay attention in the class (=disturb others). Personally, I am worried about my results and progress in learning German. I feel that others are less stimulated. I am not the only one who noticed that. Half of the students (or so) do not pay for the classes in VHS. The Jobzentrum pays for them until they reach B1 level. There is a saying that when you are given things easily, you do not always appreciate them. That’s the case in VHS. There is no exam to control your study progress. Many students automatically will go to the next level, even though they do not understand much! I would not care about others’ personal business, but, unfortunately, their laziness affects everyone in the class. Right now, there are too many students in our group. It is really hard to concentrate when you listen to the teacher explaining a new topic, while your neighbor asks you a question you cannot help him/her to understand, because he/she did not learn the basic rules. If a person does not understand what is the Nominativ Kasus, I cannot explain (during the lecture that I am supposed to listen to) what is the difference between Dativ and Akkusativ. I have to pay for my classes, I get no support from the local government. I wish the classes to be as productive as they could be. I am scared that students who do not study will affect everyone’s progress. Some students are extremely bored at the class. Obviously, when you are bored you do not pay that much of attention. You start talking. You slow everybody when you are a part of a team. How can I do a teamwork together with a person who understands nothing in the class?!

At first, I thought that maybe the grammar was too difficult to understand for some people. I thought that maybe they worked too much and they had no free time for extra studying. Maybe they had too many problems in their lives. After chatting with them, I clearly see theĀ  situation is the opposite. In fact, people who do work every day after the lectures study more! People who have less comfortable living conditions in our group study more. The lazy students have keine Ausrede.

As a friend of mine said: ‘Schade, dass es nicht zwei Klassen gibt. Eine fĆ¼r die ‘Selbstzahler’ und eine fĆ¼r die ‘Nicht-Selbstzahler‘. Paying for the classes yourself helps you to be more motivated. You have no time to fool around. Today, I met a woman who attends B1 class. I asked her what she studies there. The answer shocked me. She said : ‘Nichts. Ich verstehe B1 nicht!‘. How come??? She is doing B1 course for the second time and she is blaming the teacher. Well, I do not know any subject that does not require a bit of self-study. A teacher is not a magician and at present there are no high-tech pills to take to help you to memorize German language rules (as far as I am concerned).

To summarize, so far, dealing with disturbances during the German class is the most challenging thing for me. However, this is not the only one.

The second problem is finding someone to practice my speaking skills with. I have no one to speak to (German) at home. I do not haveĀ  a job at the moment. I am quite isolated from the society, except for the people I met at the VHS. Luckily, one of the students in my group agreed to help me to study. I still wish I could be more engaged in conversation with the German native speakers. In my view, for native English speakers it is a bit easier to find a Tandempartner/in. I believe many young German students do not mind to improve their English speaking skills. In my case, things are a bit more complicated. For me, personally, speaking is the toughestĀ  part of learning German language. Many students in our group are married Germans and, fortunately, do not have to worry about that aspect of studying the language.

I hope that with some time my speaking skills will improve and I will be looking back at my struggles with a smile.


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