• Vocabulary

    Vocabulary Module 8: wohnen

    In this module, you will learn some vocabulary to talk about living (wohnen = to live) using Das Digitale Wörterbuch der Deutschen Sprache (DWDS), a large electronic collection of German texts known as a corpus.  Let’s explore what words German speakers use to talk about wohnen. Go to the DWDS main page and type wohnen in the search box. You will be taken to a page that gives you a lot of information about this word, but we will focus on the word cloud, which is available in the Typische Verbindungen section. This word cloud shows the words that commonly occur with the verb wohnen; such words are known as collocates. The larger…

  • Vocabulary

    Vocabulary Module 7: Schule and Universität

    In this module, you will learn some vocabulary to talk about school (die Schule) and university (die Universität) using Das Digitale Wörterbuch der Deutschen Sprache (DWDS), a large electronic collection of German texts known as a corpus.  Let’s explore what words German speakers use to talk about school. Go to the DWDS homepage and type Schule in the search box. You will be taken to a page that gives you a lot of information about this word, but we will focus on the word cloud, which is available in the Typische Verbindungen section. The word cloud above shows the words that commonly occur with the word Schule; such words are…

  • Vocabulary

    Vocabulary Module 6: Kleidung

    In this module, you will learn some vocabulary to talk about clothing (die Kleidung) using Das Digitale Wörterbuch der Deutschen Sprache (DWDS), a large electronic collection of German texts known as a corpus.  Let’s explore what words German speakers use to talk about clothing. Go to DWDS homepage and type Kleidung in the search box. You will be taken to a page that gives you a lot of information about this word, but we will focus on the so-called ‘word cloud’ which is available in the Typische Verbindungen section. The word cloud above shows words that commonly occur with the word Kleidung. They are called collocates of Kleidung. The larger the word is in…

  • Vocabulary

    Vocabulary Module 5: behaglich

    In this module, you will learn how to use the adjective behaglich (‘cosy’, ‘comfortable’, ‘snug’) using Das Digitale Wörterbuch der Deutschen Sprache (DWDS), a large electronic collection of German texts known as a corpus. Go to the DWDS homepage and type behaglich in the search box. You will be taken to a page that gives you a lot of information about this word, but we will focus on the word cloud, which is available in the Typische Verbindungen section. The word cloud above shows words that commonly occur with the word behaglich; such words are known as collocates. The larger the word in the image is, the more often it…

  • Vocabulary

    Vocabulary Module 4: fahren

    In this module, you will learn some vocabulary to talk about the verb ‘to drive’ (fahren) using Das Digitale Wörterbuch der Deutschen Sprache (DWDS), a large electronic collection of German texts known as a corpus.  Let’s explore what words German speakers use to talk about fahren. Go to the DWDS main page and type fahren in the search box. Do NOT capitalize the word fahren! (If you capitalize it, you will get results for the noun Fahren, ‘driving’). You will be taken to a page that gives you a lot of information about this word, but we will focus on the word cloud, which is available in the Typische Verbindungen section. This…

  • Vocabulary

    Vocabulary Module 3: Supermarkt

    In this module, you will learn some vocabulary to talk about a supermarket (der Supermarkt) using Das Digitale Wörterbuch der Deutschen Sprache (DWDS), a large electronic collection of German texts known as a corpus.  Let’s explore what words German speakers use to describe the supermarket. Go to the DWDS homepage and type Supermarkt in the search box. You will be taken to a page that gives you a lot of information about this word, but we will focus on the word cloud, which is available in the Typische Verbindungen section. The word cloud above shows the words that commonly occur with the word Supermarkt; such words are known as collocates.…

  • Vocabulary

    Vocabulary Module 2: Essen

    In this module, you will learn some vocabulary to talk about food (Essen) using Das Digitale Wörterbuch der Deutschen Sprache (DWDS), a large electronic collection of German texts known as a corpus.  Let’s explore what words German speakers use to talk about food. Go to the DWDS homepage and type Essen in the search box. Don’t forget to capitalize the word Essen! (If you don’t capitalize it, you will get results for the verb essen, ‘to eat’). You will be taken to a page that gives you a lot of information about this word, but we will focus on the word cloud, which is available in the Typische Verbindungen section.…

  • Vocabulary

    Vocabulary Module 1: Wetter

    In this module, you will learn some vocabulary to talk about weather (das Wetter) using Das Digitale Wörterbuch der Deutschen Sprache (DWDS), a large electronic collection of German texts known as a corpus.  Let’s explore what words German speakers use to describe the weather. Go to the DWDS homepage and type Wetter in the search box. You will be taken to a page that gives you a lot of information about this word, but we will focus on the word cloud, which is available in the Typische Verbindungen section. The word cloud above shows words that commonly occur with the word Wetter; such words are known as collocates. The larger…

  • Collocations with Prepositions

    Verb-Preposition Collocations 5

    Da – Compounds In Verb-Preposition Collocation modules 1-4, you learned about da-compounds (pronominal adverbs) that are very frequent in German. They are formed with da – dar plus a preposition to refer back to something previously mentioned or to refer forward to something mentioned in the next clause. These da– compounds can only refer to a thing or a situation, but not a person or an animal. Er sitzt auf einem Sessel [a thing]. Er sitzt darauf. Ich schreibe darüber, wie ich die Ferien verbracht habe [a situation]. As you learned in previous modules, specific verbs require specific prepositions and corresponding da-compounds. Let’s learn some more of those verb-da-compound collocations.…

  • Collocations with Prepositions

    Verb-Preposition Collocations 3

    In the previous modules, you practiced using VPCs with nouns. In this module, we focus on how VPCs are used with personal pronouns and the so-called da-compounds (pronominal adverbs). Note that da-compounds (davon, dabei…) are extremely frequent in German, unlike their English counterparts (‘thereof’, ‘thereby’…). For example, daran appears more than 120,000 times in the Die Zeit corpus, whereas its English counterpart ‘thereon’ appears only 88 times in the Contemporary Corpus of American English, which is approximately the same size as the Die Zeit corpus (ca. 560 million words).

  • Collocations with Prepositions

    Two-Way Prepositions

    In this module, you will review the usage of German two-way prepositions with the correct usage of the definite articles. Two-way prepositions are prepositions which take either the accusative or the dative case. Depending on the context, you will need to choose the accusative or dative case after the two-way prepositions. Let’s first start by reviewing the definite articles in the Accusative and Dative cases. Here are some examples of the cases in context. Look at these sentences with the preposition in. Accusative Masculine: Der Vater geht in den Keller. Feminine: Der Mutter fährt das Auto in die Garage. Neuter: Das Kind läuft in das Haus. Dative Masculine:  Der Vater ist…