Progress Report Week 2 – Wie geht’s?

Wow. Has it only been a week? It feels like so much longer. And, guys, I honestly didn’t think I could possibly learn what I have in the last seven days. It gives me hope for the rest of this outrageous endeavour. This week, I’ve watched TV shows, played games, and listened to music in German (unfortunately I don’t have quite enough vocabulary to read much of anything). I learned about gendered words, about plural nouns, and even how to conjugate. And if I can be made to conjugate verbs…well, I must be doing something right. I also learned a ton of words/phrases. I’m almost at 100! A lot of them are the basic phrases, i.e., hello, how are you, my name is, etc. But hopefully going into next week I’ll have the basic foundations to start putting together useful sentences on my own. Anyway, here they are, this week’s words:

  1. violett = purple (violet)
  2. lila = purple (lilac)
  3. der Rucksack = the backpack
  4. und = and
  5. das = that
  6. die Köchin = the female cook
  7. die Kartofell = the potato
  8. das Haar = the hair
  9. lang/lange = long
  10. der Fisch = the fish
  11. die Liebe = the love
  12. nein = no
  13. ja = yes
  14. tschüss = bye
  15. hallo = hello
  16. danke = thank you
  17. bitte = please/you’re welcome/pardon?
  18. gern geschehen = you’re welcome
  19. Guten Morgen = good morning
  20. Guten Tag = good day/afternoon
  21. Guten Abend = good evening
  22. Gute Nacht = goodnight
  23. Wie geht’s? (or, Wie geht es Ihnen) = How are you?
  24. Mir = me
  25. Mir geht’s gut = I’m doing well
  26. gehen = to walk, to go
  27. wilkommen = welcome
  28. auf wiedersehen = goodbye
  29. bis bald = see you soon
  30. bis später = see you later
  31. bis morgen = see you in the morning
  32. wir heißen sie? = what is your name?
  33. ich heißen…= my name is…
  34. kommen = to come
  35. woher kommen zie? = where do you come from?
  36. Ich komme aus… = I come from…
  37. entschuldigung = excuse me / sorry
  38. leider = unfortunately
  39. Es tut mir leid = I’m sorry
  40. schuld sein = to be at fault
  41. genau = exactly
  42. die Zeitung = the newspaper
  43. das Früstück = the breakfast
  44. die Milch = the milk
  45. das Brötchen = the bun
  46. das Ei = the egg
  47. der Mittwoch = the Wednesday
  48. die Welt = the world
  49. verstehen = to understand
  50. lernen = to learn
  51. machen = to make
  52. hören = to hear
  53. wo = where
  54. einfach = easy
  55. dein/deine = your
  56. mein/meine = my
  57. seinen/seine = his
  58. ihr/ihre = her/their
  59. unser/unsere = our
  60. das Geld = the money
  61. die Freundin = the girlfriend
  62. die Rechnung = the bill

Add these to last week’s and we get a grand total of 87 words. Woot! A few of the nouns even made it onto the German word wall. Next week, I think my schedule has the pace stepped up even more…



Progress Report Week One – Brot und Wasser


Wow! First post! That’s exciting. And, I admit it, I’m cheating a little bit. It hasn’t really been a week. In fact, it’s been just under 48 hours since I first picked up my notebook, pencil, and flashcards and started learning German. But, it’s also a Sunday, so it’s time for the weekly update. This week: German movie fail and my first 25 words.

The German movie fail you can read about in a later post, but, without further ado, I give you: Saskia’s first 25 words in German!

  1. der = the (masculine)
  2. die = the (feminine)
  3. das = the (neuter)
  4. ein = a/an (masculine/neuter)
  5. eine = a/an (feminine)
  6. ich = I
  7. du = you
  8. er = he
  9. sie = she
  10. es = it
  11. wir = we
  12. ihr = y’all (aka. you, plural informal)
  13. sie = you (formal)
  14. sie = they
  15. sein = to be
  16. mann = man (masculine)
  17. junge = boy
  18. frau = woman (feminine)
  19. mädchen = girl
  20. kind = child
  21. mutter = mother
  22. trinkt = to drink
  23. wasser = water
  24. brot = bread
  25. hungrig = hungry

So, yeah. I’m pretty limited for what I can say right now – Ich bir eine frau? Now how is that helpful? – but, hey, it’s a start! I’m a little daunted by the whole triple-gender thing. The gendered nouns in French are my kryptonite, and that was when I only had to contend with masculine-feminine. The anthropology student in me is curious about the implications of a tri-gendered language for gender roles in German society. Are people who identify as neither male nor female, or as both, or as something else entirely, a little bit less stigmatized than in Canada? Meanwhile, the part of me that remembers I have to learn this all in 10 months is terrified. At least I won’t go hungry – I can always find a way to ask for some of that good ol’ brot and wasser.

…Okay honestly I’m a little excited. It took me nearly all summer to get my first 25 words when I was learning Turkish. I must be motivated by my impending sense of German University courses of doom.

Yes. That’s definitely it – motivation. Not that fact that “sie” repeats three times. Or that “the” also appears in three different variations…