Is it easy to learn German if you know English?
German is also frequently taught as a foreign language, particularly in Europe, where it ranks third behind English and French, and in the United States. German, one of the world’s main languages, is spoken by over 130 million people and is the native language of almost 100 million people globally. It is the most widely spoken native language in the European Union. The German-speaking nations are rated fifth in terms of yearly book publishing, with one-tenth of all books (including e-books) produced in Germany. German, or Deutsch, is a West Germanic language that is mostly spoken in Central Europe. It is the most frequently spoken language in Germany, Austria, Switzerland, Liechtenstein, and the Italian province of South Tyrol, and it is an official or co-official language in the following countries: Germany, Austria, Switzerland, Liechtenstein, and the Italian province of South Tyrol. It is also a co-official language of Luxembourg, Belgium, and portions of southern Poland, as well as Namibia’s national language. After English, German is the most commonly spoken Germanic language.
Coming to the topic of our blog Is it easy to learn German if you know English?
To be honest, there is no simple answer. Learning a language is a complex process that varies from person to person depending on a variety of factors. Let’s take a look at some of the factors that influence your German learning:
Language Learning Experiences in the Past – Bilinguals find it easier to learn a third language because being accustomed to learning grammar, memorising vocabulary, listening to different sounds, and looking at different letters in a different language allows them to acquire fluency and skills in another language relatively quickly. Apart from that, when confronted with a new language, your mind knows exactly what to expect or be prepared for; as a result, there are fewer surprises and language learning becomes easier and faster.
The German Language – Learning a language that is similar to your native language can help you save time learning the alphabet, pronunciation, grammar, and vocabulary. Languages with similar roots are generally easier and take less time to learn. Now, those of you who speak English as your first language, consider yourself fortunate. Did you know that even before they begin studying German, English speakers already know some German words? There are many words that are extremely similar such as words for the days of the week, months of the year, some seasons, some relatives and many others. This is because of their shared roots, history, and evolution, almost all European languages share many words with English. These words, known as cognates, make it much easier for people who speak a language with similar roots, such as English, to learn German.
Your Learning Methods- If your language learning is limited to the classroom, it will likely take you a little longer to learn; however, if you are exposed to German outside of classes, it can significantly reduce the time required to learn it. There could be nothing better than having 40% of German vocabulary similar to English vocabulary to study besides easily recognisable patterns!
How Much Time You Devote to Learning – The length of time it takes you to learn German is also determined by how much time you plan to devote to it. This could be done on a daily, weekly, or monthly basis. Learners who are willing to devote an hour per day to language learning—whether through grammar study, memorising vocabulary, watching a movie, or reading a book—learn significantly faster than those who only attend a weekly class.
Your Attitude and Motivation – How quickly you learn German is also affected by your attitude and motivation. If you approach learning with a positive attitude and see it as a fun and fascinating opportunity to broaden your horizons, you will be more open to learning. Remind yourself why you want to learn German, how it will improve your life, and all the benefits that can result from doing so. This can help you stay motivated and, as a result, shorten the time it takes to learn it.
German is not a difficult language to learn,
English and German belong to the Germanic language, the similarities between the two languages make it easier to understand. FSI estimates 30 weeks (750 hours) of training needed to learn German B2 (high intermediate) level. It assumes that for every one hour of classroom time, learners will spend two hours of independent study time. In the end, this equates to a total of between 1,000 and 1,200 hours. Keep in mind, however, that the quality of your study is more important than the quantity. Immersion experiences and daily practice can significantly speed up your learning.
While learning German some words can be intimidating because they are written using many consonants, are long or compounded so, they look like a short sentence in English but they are just a single word in German!
Remember, learning a language takes time and commitment, you need to have enough motivation and working hard is all it takes. And if you feel confused about where to start, you could join Multibhashi classes!
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