When I accepted my internship here in Berlin I actually didn’t really think about that I didn’t know any German at all. But I actually didn’t really care since I know that it has been quite easy for me to learn languages before. I already know Swedish, Spanish, and English. I also studied French in school for five years, but kind of forgot the language when I started with my Spanish. The Swedish language is also very similar to other Scandinavian languages and since I lived in Denmark together with a Norwegian girl for three years I also got these languages “for free”. So I thought – German wouldn’t be a problem to learn.
When I had been in Berlin for three weeks I started to search for language schools and soon realized that there are so many in this city. For me it was also important that the course was in the evening and not every day. I didn’t go to Berlin only for working and studying. So I started to look for a language school that could offer this kind of course, and that also was located near where I live, in Prenzlauer Berg. When going by the metro I saw ads for this school called Logo! and that was located at Schönhauser Allee, which is only one station from where I currently live. Before applying for the school however, I also investigated one at Frankfurter Allee called Sprachenatelier Berlin that I had read about online.
After visiting the two school I decided that Logo! Sprachenschule was more what I was looking for. It seemed to be more structured, and weren’t full of so many language students. They could also offer me a beginners course at 5.45 p.m. which would suit me perfect since my work normally finishes at 5. The groups are small (we are 5 people) and the teacher really good. She is from Austria but really good at teaching and I like the book we use a lot: Tangram 1. We used the most basic book since I never studied German before. So it is a German course for beginners. For a Swedish person German is quite easy to learn I would say, at least in the beginning. The words are so similar and the prononciation as well. However, two weeks ago we started with German grammar, which I would say is really hard for Swedes as well. I also realized that I really should start to study more if I ever want to follow what we’re doing in class.
But I like languages; they are often very logical and often you just have to learn the system, even though the “German system” seems kind of hopeless at the moment. There are just too many rules, and it feels like the people that “created” the rules really thought too much. I don’t think I will become fluent in German ever, but still it is nice to just be able to order a coffee, to ask for the right size in the shop or to have a normal conversation with people (ask how they are, what their name is etc.) And then it is also cool to be able to say that I know 7 languages ;-)