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Lesson 5: Talking about time & schedules

Page 10 of 12 previous       next

Repeating everything from this lesson

We will now, as always on this 10th page, repeat all the new grammar and rules from this lesson:

- First we learned about the time and how to ask for it. The most important keywords here were "vor" (before/to) and "nach" (past/after), as well as "halb" (half) and "viertel" (viertel). Remember that "halb zwei" in German means 1:30 and not 2:30!

- Second, we studied some adverbs of time (morgens, jetzt) and frequency (oft, nie).

- Third, we said that if an information of time (morgens, drei Uhr, immer, etc...) is placed at the beginning of a sentence, we have to switch the subject and the verb of that sentence.
  time - verb - subject - direct object (Heute koche ich das Essen.)

The information of time can also be placed behind the verb or behind the direct object (emphesis). But it always has to precede the information of location (if present in sentence).
  subject - verb - direct object - time (Ich koche das Essen heute.)
OR:
  subject - verb - time - direct object (Ich koche heute das Essen.)

- Fourth: We got to know reflexive pronouns and reflexive verbs that use these pronouns. Reflexive verbs are verbs, where the subject and the direct object are the same person or thing. Thus, reflexive pronouns can be seen and treated as direct objects.

- Fifth: We said that in a sentence with reflexive verbs, the information of time either goes to the beginning of the sentence or right behind the reflexive pronoun. Due to the strong connection between verb and reflexive pronoun, it is not possible to squeeze an information of time between the verb and the reflexive pronoun.
  time - verb - subject - direct object (reflexive pronoun) (Morgens dusche ich mich.)
OR:
  subject - verb - direct object (reflexive pronoun) - time (Ich dusche mich morgens.)
BUT NOT:
  Ich dusche morgens mich. (wrong!)

- Finally, the months of the year.


In conclusion, we know that the rules that regulate the order in a sentence in German can drive you crazy. But since we are studying a language and it should be fun to do so, you really should not worry too much about where to place what all the time. We rather want you to develop a feeling for using the right sentence order, because that's what you will be using, when you go abroad and speak to a native speaker, feeling, not rules.

So simply see this lesson as something that you can get back to in case you have a question or in case you stumble over something in a later lesson that has something to do with the sentence order.

We really don't want you to become a rule-memorizing machine. Use your intuition and your feeling and do the exercises that come with each lesson. They will help you a lot with developing these speaking-German-insticts.


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pages 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12        vocabularies       Exercises [A] [B] [C] [D] [E]

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      Epilogue I
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