Monthly Archives: July 2015

Free online studying!

DA offers FREE online german lessons!! I do most of my work from my ipad so I just downloaded the app from itunes “Learn German DeutschAkademie”. Very cool thing, you basically have a new course book at your finger tips. Best part of all (I think) is that you can do the lessons without internet. I downloaded the app, then turned my ipad into ‘airplane mode’ to see if the app still works…. and wouldn’t you know it, IT DOES! So now on long train rides or flights I can study german without having the burden of carrying heavy books! 😄😄😄 image
I just downloaded the app a few days ago so I’m not entirely familiar with it. I don’t have any serious criticism just to say that it looks fairly easy to work. You can choose which level to study and what subjects. For example, practicing dativ and akkusitive cases. I’ll let you know how my experience goes when I dive a little deeper into the app. I have a flight to Russia next week, so I’ll really have time to see how far you can go into the app without internet. One feature that looks interesting is the “interactive” portion. Once you do have a strong wifi connection maybe I can chat with other DA students from different countries??image image

How it works

When you take a class at DA you need to buy two books. One is a workbook and one is the course book. So far in my class, we work equally from both. The books also come with a CD in the back. I haven’t tried the CD out yet, but I’m sure it’s also helpful. My class is designed to finish one chapter a day, so that we actually finish the entire book within four weeks. The books is titled “Menschen, Deutsch als Fremdsprache” by Hueber Verlag. I think our course is cleverly laid out. Inside our books are 4 modules (one for each week) containing three chapters each. Monday, Tues, and Wednesday are for intensive grammar and vocabulary…. then Thursday is for review. I’ve found it nice to learn at a kind of slower pace, than maybe compared to actual university courses, because there is less pressure to study outside of designated course times. I think when ever anyone becomes a student “home work” is generally expected of them. That’s not the case here with DA. At least for me. I am able to finish all of my assignments within the three hour course time. It’s enough learning for one day and once I leave the building I’m free to do other things… like visit the Donauinsel!!!imageimageimage

Insider info about getting around the city

image imageOK, so now I’m going jto focus on transportation in Vienna. It’s so easy to get around the city using public transportation. There are five (seriously FIVE) very convenient ways to get around. You can use the bus, street tram, underground train, OBB fast train or taxi. There is one main public transportation company in Vienna called the “Wiener Linien”. It’s super easy to find your way, so long as you know where you’re going 😉. You buy a ticket and you’re on your way to literally anywhere you need to be. I have a friend who has been living in Vienna for years and she has never felt the need go buy a car. Seriously, the public transportation is that good. Here’s how it works… you can buy a ticket for any amount of time….. for example 1 week, 2 months or a year and the price is based on the length of time you will be traveling. Since I moved to vienna permanently, I bought a ticket good for one year. It’s reasonably priced. Since I’m younger, and a student I am able to buy the ticket for only €60. Now once you’ve purchased the ticket you are free to use any means of transportation, you can catch the bus, tram underground train… doesn’t matter. Very cool system that gives you the ability to get around with ease!

Progress so far….

One week down, 3 to go. I can’t believe how fast this week went by. In total, I’ve spoken only german “nur Deutsch” for a total of 14 hours! 👍👍👍I notice that I’m speaking more quickly and I have a broader vocabulary. It’s amazing how much you can learn from just 3 hours a day.

I’m also excited that I’ve learned more practical language skills to help day to day life. Not just all grammar and technical learning. Zum Bispiel (for example) : “Darf ich”? is “May I”? In the elevators in Austria the first floor is labeled “E”. Why? I had no clue. Well itimage stands for Erdgeschloss, which means “earth key”, meaning you are on the ground. I learned that Austria has a little different vocabulary than in Germany. Zum Bispiel (for example), in germany you can say “die Stuhl” for a chair but in Austria it’s also OK to say “die Sessel”. Since I’m learning german in Austria, I prefer to use the words more common in Vienna.

Some topics we have covered so far include:

Polite way to meet people and ask them general questions about themselves.
How to explain where you live, what you like about the area.
Directions. How to find a place by using help from others.

Doing well so far, my boyfriend is from Vienna and reassures me that my german is getting better!

Caffeine please!

For all my fellow coffee lovers out there, this post is for you. Here’s some inside information about where to go and what prices you can expect.

Starbucks near the school is a big mistake. Don’t go to the tourist trap looking for a nice coffee before school. Yes, you can be sure their drinks taste good, but to what expense? That particular location is always super busy so you’ll have to wait 6-8 minutes in line PLUS the time to make the drink (an extra 4-5 minutes). I gave myself 15 minutes before class to buy a €4 tall iced coffee & barely made class on time. So really, save yourself the hassle & avoid Starbucks.

There is a nice cafe in the same building as DA called Celsior. You can find a place to sit and pay a more reasonable price for a drink. €3.20 for a cappuccino including water on the side. I feel like it’s a better atmosphere and saves you time.

But the winning place for coffee is …… drum roll please……. Deutsch Akademie!!! Seriously, if you need a little caffeine, just use the automatic machines. You can find one on the 3rd and 7th floor and only pay €1 !!!! Very good deal, and the coffee actually tastes good too. I assure you, DA wins for providing the most economical and time saving cup of joe.

What you can expect your first day of school

 

First day of school. You know the drill… you’ll need a binder for note taking, sharpened pencils, & maybe clean fresh clothes to make a good impression (at least that helps). The first day of school at a completely new place is always a little hectic but exciting. “I’m not exactly sure what to expect, but I’m hopeful for the best”, was one of my thoughts Monday morning. So here’s what happens your first day of school @DA…

1. Arrive 5-10min before class starts to give yourself time to find which room you are in/ orientate yourself with what’s happening

2. Find your name among the list of names to know which class number you’re in

3. Classes for the “Intensivkurse” are 3 hours long, 4x per week… so be prepared maybe with water/tea

4. Cost for books runs about $20. Don’t procrastinate to buy the books for your course. There was a huge line of people waiting to buy their books the first day of school. I can only recommend that you buy the books at the same time which you register. This will save you serious time.

The classes are fairly small and simple. All consist of one big conference type table and a white board for the teacher.

So- that’s a basic run down of what your first day would generally consist of , hope it helps ✏️📓

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First thing’s first… sign up!

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Have you ever wondered what it would be like to live abroad? Just pick a city on the map somewhere far away from home and say, “alright, let’s go”! I encourage everyone to try that at least once in their lives ✈️🚃

Hello, my name is Nicole and I am new member of the Viennese community. I moved from Boulder, Colorado to Austria only 3 weeks ago. I choose Vienna because of a good job opportunity that was offered to me. Luckily, most people here in Austria speak perfect English. So actually, it’s quite easy to get around without knowing German. I can order a “caffe latte” or “croissant” without too much difficulty, but obviously thats not enough to make new friends. I think when you travel to a new place, it’s important to learn the native language. It helps you to understand the culture more deeply.

Today, I took my first BIG step toward becoming a fluent German speaker! I enrolled into a german language school called “Deutsch Akademie”. It’s located right next to one of the most beautiful buildings in all of Austria, The Vienna State Opera. Right in the middle of downtown, so easy to get to with public transportation. I’m more than excited to start class NEXT week! I’ll let you know how it goes!