How to learn German?
You can learn German through listening. Listen (zuhören) carefully to German around you, the way people speak, the intonation, the tone of voice, body language.
Listening and observing is a powerful tool. There must be a good reason (der Grund) why people only have a pair of eyes and pair of ears and only one mouth. That's why I believe you can learn a lot through listening and observing carefully how other people speak German.
Most of us have problems with listening. We also seem to struggle to observe (beobachten) carefully what is going on around us. As a teacher of German I try to see the details as well as see the wider context of my students' situation. I am trying to be aware of what can trigger the best in my students or what can deter (abschrecken) them from speaking German.
The key challenge is to encourage my students to speak German without any fears and hesitations. I know some people who can encourage me without saying a word. For example my cleaner. When I hear her cheerful and happy humming (summen) I feel kind of encouraged by her happy attitude. There is no need to talk . We can achieve much more with sweet honey (der Honig) than with sour vinegar (der Essig).
In my German lessons with my students I always try to encourage my students to do a lot of listening activities. It is also important for me to create a relaxed atmosphere during my lessons.
Topics for discussion for our German lesson:
1. What motivates you to learn German?
2. What discourages you from speaking German?
I am a teacher of German. I teach conversational German via Skype.