Podcasts for German language learners?
September 29, 2013 6:35 PM   Subscribe

I'm taking an introductory German course and am looking for some good podcasts that will supplement what I am learning and help me get to fluency quicker. What should I be listening to?

I've been in a basic, introductory German course for the last two months, meeting a few times a week. What I've learned so far - very basic sentence structure and starting to get into accusative nouns. Vocabulary has been easy for me, but I struggle with remembering the gender of nouns and the appropriate conjugations and pronouns.

I have 40 minutes of commute time that I'd love to make more productive - help me find some podcasts to boost my learning. Any suggestions are appreciated!
posted by _DB_ to Education (6 answers total) 33 users marked this as a favorite
Deutsche Welle offers courses sorted by level.

I learned with Pimsleur German, which is not stricly a podcast but a recorded audio learning thing.
posted by caek at 7:05 PM on September 29, 2013 [2 favorites]

Deutsche Welle also has a slowly spoken newscast that is basically the perfect medium for learners--it goes beyond the contrived and narrow scripts of typical listening exercises but isn't like being thrown in the deep end with rapid everyday speech and no context, either (assuming you follow at least some news normally).
posted by zizania at 7:20 PM on September 29, 2013 [2 favorites]

The context and interesting content in the slowly spoken news are indeed great! But I think it's going to be much too hard for someone in a basic, introductory German course. If you really are just starting out, then I'm very skeptical you'd get anything other than frustrated listening to it.

It's pitched at level B2/C1. If you're not familiar with The Common European Framework levels, B1 is the level you need to reach to become a German citizen. Not fluent, but pretty good! B2 is the next level up.
posted by caek at 8:22 PM on September 29, 2013

I think "A flavor of German" still exists. Little 7 or 8 minute bits about typical daily interactions. http://feeds.feedburner.com/fogerman
posted by Gungho at 7:22 AM on September 30, 2013

I took German in college and studied abroad, so my German was pretty good back in 2006 but I haven't really spoken it since...just to give you an idea because I'm not sure what my level would be now.

I like Mensch, Otto! and find it easier to understand than a lot of others for some reason. It's an interview type show and usually pretty interesting.

If that one is too advanced for right now I would keep it in the queue and revisit down the road. It might be a good one to just try listening to and seeing what you can pick up though, they seem to talk about a lot of hot issues so some of the vocabulary is easy to pick up on and then you can sort of piece together and figure out the gist of it.
posted by fromageball at 8:41 AM on September 30, 2013

I strongly second caek's recommendation of Deutsche Welle and encourage you to start with the easiest level and work your way up from there. Also, consider listening more than once - when you get to some of the harder material, listen once, then look up the words you don't know (lots of the DW stuff has transcripts), listen again the next day, and maybe listen again the following week.

Warum Nicht is for beginners - 104 episodes, 15 minutes each.

Radio D is a 26-episode radio drama, 10-15 minutes each. I'm not familiar with Mission Berlin but it would give you some additional listening practice.

Audiotrainer will help reinforce your vocabulary, but they're only 3-5 minutes each.

And that's just the A1 level stuff - there's a lot more when you're ready for it.

Also, see if your library has audio courses, like the Pimsleur that caek recommended. The Michel Thomas stuff is terrific for beginners; I like to start with Michel Thomas and then work my way through Pimsleur if my library has both courses.
posted by kristi at 9:18 AM on October 2, 2013

« Older Visiting Vermont (Burlington)   |   Pushing spouse to next stage in seperation. Please... Newer »
This thread is closed to new comments.