To support you in improving your German pronunciation, we have gathered here:
- lots of useful hints and tricks
- effective learning strategies and methods
- links to other helpful language learning sites on the internet
- Record yourself and find out where you need to improve your pronunciation.
- All of our units have audio, so you will constantly hear the language and be able to improve your pronunciation automatically!
Before you start actively training your pronunciation, it is useful to listen to the German language as much as possible. Podcasts, movies, or audio books are good and entertaining resources that can help you develop a feeling for the sound, rhythm, and intonation of spoken language.
The Usual Suspects
Pay special attention to sounds that are difficult for you to pronounce. These are usually the ones that do not exist in your own language. A classic example is the English "th" sound that can cause a lot of trouble for English learners. It's useful to practice these sounds on their own as much as you can until you get comfortable pronouncing them.
Vocabulary & Pronunciation
When memorizing new words and phrases, try to always learn how they are pronounced at the same time. This will not only improve your overall pronunciation, but it will also help you remember the vocabulary later. If you are not sure how to pronounce something, simply look it up in an online dictionary or download a dictionary app for your smartphone or tablet.
Listening to and trying to copy native speakers will really improve your pronunciation. Find a video or sound recording of a native speaker and try to copy their accent as accurately as possible. Don't forget to record yourself so you can compare your pronunciation with the original video or sound recording!
If you want to improve your pronunciation, it is helpful to listen to yourself talking. The easiest way to do this is by recording yourself with your smartphone while you practice. Afterwards, you should listen to these recordings and take note of sounds that you mispronounce frequently.
Poems and Songs
Memorizing and reading poetry out loud is an excellent way of getting used to the sounds, intonation, and rhythm of the German language. The same goes for songs, although you should be careful to choose ones with lots of lyrics.
No, we are not talking about the popular type of craft beer but the "International Phonetic Alphabet"! It is used to write words in a phonetic alphabet. This alphabet makes it possible to record a word's correct pronunciation in writing. As most school books and dictionaries include phonetic transcriptions of vocabulary, it can be very helpful to be able to read these letters.
Tongue twisters are often designed by connecting sounds that are either hard to pronounce or are very similar. That is why tongue twisters are great for improving your pronunciation. They're also just a lot of fun! It is most enjoyable and motivating if you can find other language learners that can join you in saying tongue twisters aloud.
Tandem Partner & Stay Abroad
Undoubtedly, talking to native speakers is by far the best and fastest way to perfect your pronunciation. The more often you have real-world conversations with someone from an German-speaking country the better! Use apps or university websites to find tandem partners around where you live, take part in a student exchange program, or go and live abroad for some time.