Hörverstehen ?

As I previously mentioned, I do not have a TV-set at home in Germany. Nevertheless, I shall watch German TV for the sake of the B2 German exam that I am going to take.

Luckily, you can watch German TV online. The only thing that is missing is a remote control for switching channels faster. I have to say, I am a type of a person that is constantly looking for a more interesting TV-show to watch. 🙂

A classmate of mine in a language school mentioned to me today that she has troubles to understand one of the students when he talks. Another classmate of mine had a similar problem earlier. We all have a different background, different accents, and different ways of thinking. Surely, it might be difficult to understand each other sometimes.

At the same time, there is one more reason why it happens. Some of us do not try hard enough when it comes to practicing listening skills. I am one of them. I do have a list of English TV-shows, TV news programs, and YouTube channels I like to watch. When it comes to German TV-shows, I am not that excited. Finally, some time ago I started watching some funny German TV programs and it helped me to improve my listening skills. However, those programs are not enough for me now. The words and phrases that are used in those TV programs are too easy for my current language level. Which means a simple thing. I shall take another step.

Easier said than done. Today, I almost fell asleep while watching some political debates in German. Oh, well.

My advice: do not be lazy. If you see that you understand every word in a foreign TV program and you need to practice your listening skills for an exam, switch to another program. Challenge yourself.

Find a compromise. I could not listen to political debates in German, but I found a more exciting radio (!) program about household. Switch channels and if there is nothing good on TV, try to listen to the radio.

Today, we also got a new homework. By tomorrow we shall notice how many times does a news presenter uses Konjunktiv I in his speech. Create similar homework for yourself at home or simply try to learn new language expressions by listening to TV. For example, today I learned a useful expression die Nase voll haben  from that political show that made me feel sleepy. Every minute counts! Better listen to some audio 5 minutes per day, than no audio at all.

Last but not least, I want to share two main reasons why I hate watching voice-over movies in Germany:

  1. When I watch a movie that original language is Spanish or French, I cannot help but try to  hear the original speech, simply because I found Spanish or French much more pleasant to the ear than German. Plus, I can understand some words in those languages.
  2. When I watch a movie that is originally in English (or some other language I know) I cannot help, but try to hear the original words to evaluate the translation. If I find out that some words are omitted or substituted for some strange ones (imho), I feel irritated.

    Conclusion: I am personally 100% for watching either original version of a movie without any subtitles (if you understand the language, of course) or watching a dubbed movie. That’s another big topic that I would like to talk about some time later.

    All the best!

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