Our Deutschkurs

It is the 20th of January and the second week of our Deutschkurs at DeutschAkademie begins. Ten people meeting together every day from Monday to Thursday with the same goal: getting to Level A 1.2. Our coach is the lovely teacher Marie, who is a very kind and creative girl. She tries to guide us through the mysteries of German. For instance, the characteristic of the German language to put words together: an Italian sentence can just be summarized into a German word. This word has the great responsibility to express at once a complicated meaning. For this reason the poor word cannot be simple. It is not possible, so it will be just very long and scary for us, the poor people who are still at the A1.2 Level. However, with our lovely teacher we are able to learn German and have fun at the same time. The method is quite practical and beyond exercises, conversations and team games, includes also songs that we sing to better memorize prepositions or concepts without any logic or rule and also funny activities!

For instance, yesterday we had the excursion´s task! The second chapter of our book is about touristic attractions, the well known “Sehenwurdigkeiten”! In the middle of our class, which is usually “die Pause” time, our teacher Marie surprised us with an interesting activity: becoming tourists and going to see any monument that we like, in order to write some information about it. Additionally, every team had the hard task to question very busy and active Berliners on how to get to that monument. My team got a very fast reply, but other teams were luckier. Finally, we needed a proof that we have been there, so what is better than a selfie? That is what our teacher Marie decided for us! Even though we were a bit annoyed by the strong cold, our “Project” ended with laughter, jokes and of course lots of fun!

Our selfie at Check Point Charlie was not the best picture of us, but instead of trying to have the perfect selfie after several shooting, we have Check Point Charliedecided to keep the flowed one which catches perfectly that amusing instant.

Sunday: time to try some new food!

Sunny Sunday today! What a great combination! For those who still think that winter in Berlin is dark and depressing, today is the proof that the Berlin winter can offer a lot of surprises. And since the sun here is considered to be something special, of course it is time to break the Sunday laziness and visit the city! There are so many places to see, parks where to walk and activities to do. I know the feeling of going around the whole day enjoying the sun until it is up. But afterwards the laziness comes back and most likely the thought of going home and cooking is not so appealing after such a nice day, or maybe the fridge is empty. Well Berlin is the best city ever to solve all your issues. I think it is one of cities with the greatest variety of international food in Europe. When you would like to try something new, you are in the right place. In Berlin it is possible to go to South-Asia and taste the flavor of Nepalese food, or going to the Caribbean Sea and taste some jerk chicken, or going to the Australian restaurant to try some strange animals, or still going to Africa to try some soul food!

Once I was in the mood for “brand new kind of food” and it happened to find an Ethiopian restaurant in Schöneberg, where I went with my boyfriend. I strongly suggest this place when you are inEthiopian restaurant this “curiosity-for-new-food mood”. First of all, the look of the food will be different from what you have seen before (if you have never been in Africa or in an African restaurant). Plus, it is worthy to try since you will have the experience of eating with your hands. It is kind of weird at the beginning and you can challenge your partner or your friends on how long they will go on without asking for some cutlery! But in the end it is very funny. The most popular dish is a big “kind of pancake” with different kind of soups on it. But you need to share it at least with another person. By eating with your hands together with you partner, you can experience the flavor of African culture. Here, the food has a strong social meaning and the meals are considered to be special opportunities for interaction and sharing.

If you are a coffee lover, you cannot miss the coffee ceremony which starts every evening at 8pm. A group of ladies will prepare the coffee starting from roasting the beans and finally boiling the coffee in a coffee pot called “jebena”. By the way, the restaurant is called “Bejte Ethiopia” and I wish you to enjoy this hand experiment!

That grey square

Hello you! Are you currently looking for a Deutschkurs, but you cannot decide among the many options offered by the city? You might be brand new in Berlin. You are thinking about the next move and you decided that it is going to be obviously a German course. Or you might be already in Berlin for 2-3 years never caring about learning German since you don´t need it at work and you don’t hang out with Germans. You might be a student who enrolled in an international study program and you are used to interact just in English. But you might be also an artist who has been attracted by all the cultural and artistic movement rising in Berlin in the last few years, trying to be part of the German culture.

Nevertheless, whoever you are, while analyzing all your options in depth, or just seeing a flayer in the underground which advertize the best German school, or just accepting your friend´s advice, you must know something.

Studying German will be not like taking a walk in the park. You could also do it for fun, but with the awareness that this requires lots of dedication, discipline and resistance.

Therefore, you should include also secondary/qualitative factors in the choice of the school which fits you the best. In my humble opinion, one of those factors is the location of the school. When I went to the DeutschAkademie for the first time, I have been asked to choose a location between Alexander Platz and Wittenberg Platz. Always following my damn instinct I chose Alexanderplatz. I did not even think about all the quantitative factors, as the distance from my house. Despite the fact that Wittenberg Platz is cool as well (you can go shopping and lose yourself into Kadewe if you are rich), I believe that Alexanderplatz is “The Location”. Why? Now I want to go back for a moment to the first time I came to Berlin as a tourist. It was 2 or 3 years ago and I was so anxious to see the city and especially Alexanderplatz. I was curious to understand why this square was considered to be so special to get mentioned in songs, movies, books. What were those artists feeling in order to celebrate this square which such fascination? Therefore I was there. First impression, first thought: “so, is Alexanderplatz that grey square”? I went back home a bit confused and disappointed. Indeed, you cannot really understand Berlin until you don´t live in the city. Even though I read a lot of books about it and I had a romanticized view of the city, only now I can fully understand the magic of Alexanderplatz. Alexanderplatz is more a feeling than a physical space. That feeling of walking through a place where everything can happen (It happens a lot there). A place that keeps the ruins of the East world and it mix them with an ongoing metamorphosis caused by the rapid-changing of our time. That is a place where you can breathe the metropolitan chaos, where lots of busy people run around the whole day concerned about their business and while walking, you can experience a kind of connection with them. Different stories who have in common just the great chance to share the same life space.

So you get out in the morning, take the underground and you are in Alexanderplatz. A quick look to the Fernsehturm, the second highest building in Europe, just to remind that one day you will go up there to watch the whole city. Then a quick check to the World Time Clock, maybe to remember what would be the time in your own country. Then a nice coffee at Tschibo and you are already in the class getting ready for a new chapter!

Now, imagine that your school is located in a not well-known street of any area where there is not so much going on. Then, remember how hard is to study German and finally think about how much having a positive reinforcement matters.

Do you still think that any location would be the same for you?

Erster Stammtisch im Januar 2015

Liebe Teilnehmer,

vielen Dank für den schönen Abend gestern im Restaurant Graf. Wir hoffen ihr hattet genauso viel Spaß wie wir! Nochmals herzlichen Glückwunsch an die Gewinner des Quiz’: Stephan, Carmen und Lorena!

Wir freuen uns, euch bald wieder beim Stammtisch zu sehen oder bei uns im Büro!


Viel Spaß mit den Bildern

Liebe Grüße
Euer DeutschAkademie Team


Why did I move to Berlin?

Me and a piece of die Berliner Mauer

This is a question that I have been asking myself for the last 2 months. I moved to Berlin that special 9th of May a year ago. What was in mind before leaving Italy is not clear yet. I came here without having any plans, any accommodation, any job and most important, without any knowledge of German. There must have been something very chaotic in my mind pushing me towards this instinctive decision. Yes, it was nothing logical, let´s say something anti-german! In that naive perception of discovering something new, adventurous and beautiful, I had so many expectations and a big desire to discover a new culture. Lately, I got to know that there is a german word for that: “das Fernweh”, a concept that cannot be translated in other languages. I was so amused that Germans have a word for describing this feeling. That is brilliant!
However, life in Berlin turned into a great mix of adventures and misadventures. Soon, I had to face the first big wall (bigger that the east-side gallery) that the city put in front of me: the language! Most of the people would say now: “Didn´t you know it before?” The point is that in that chaotic, naive, full-of-expectations intuition which brought me here there was also the firm belief that every obstacle could have been overcome. The exciting view of the international Berlin where everybody could speak English was soon broken by the reality. The reality is that if you want to go through the complicated bureaucracy (and you have to), the never-ending research of a WG (shared flat), along with any job opportunities, you better know at least a bit of German. For sure, your life will be easier according to the amount of German or Germans that you already know. Then you will also need a big amount of hard and non-soft skills: strong attitude, patience, coping strategies and in the end “sense of humor”, especially when people will laugh about your pronunciation or they will not understand you at all (in this case just smile!)
After living for few months here, I have done so many experiences! At the beginning, I started a german course at the Volkshochschule to get the first level A1.1; I have worked as a waitress during the summer period; then in September I got a job as a recruiter for a startup for 3 months! So what happens now?

I am Aurelia, 26 y.old, I came here from Italy after graduating and after one long year of internship in Rome. The reason is not important anymore. The best is yet to come. And mostly because I finally decided to fully integrate myself in this surprising city, that is sometimes hard to handle, but at the same time it gives you so many opportunities that you could not have elsewhere! So now it is time to learn German and see what this will bring in the future!
I am looking forward to starting this new adventure at DeutschAkademie with the same exciting feeling that I had that special 9th of May and that I will have every time I will approach a new life experience!

Unser Stammtisch am 14.01.2015

Liebe Teilnehmer,

wir wünschen euch ein frohes neues Jahr. Auch in 2015 findet wieder unser Stammtisch statt. Dieses Mal in einem anderen Lokal.

Natürlich sind alle Schüler herzlich eingeladen einen tollen Abend mit uns zu verbringen!

Kommt gerne ins Büro oder schaut auf dem Flyer nach, um weitere Informationen zu erhalten.

Wir freuen uns auf euch!

Euer DeutschAkademie Team



Unser Kulturprogramm im Januar

Liebe Teilnehmer,

im Januar nehmen wir euch mit zu einem kulinarischen Ausflug. Wir besuchen ein Museum, dass sich dem beliebtesten Imbiss in Berlin widmet. Der Currywurst! Wir werden viel Interessantes über dieses Berliner Original erfahren. Oder ist es vielleicht gar nicht aus Berlin?

Wenn ihr das und noch mehr erfahren wollt, dann begleitet uns! Die Anmeldung könnt ihr im Büro bis spätestens zum 15.01.2015 machen! Also schaut schnell vorbei.


Liebe Grüße

Euer DeutschAkademie Team