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Learn German Online - Interactive German Lessons for Adults and Children
Lesson 5: Talking about time & schedules

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How to use reflexive verbs in German

Now that you know some reflexive verbs in German, let's use them in complete sentences. Whenever you use reflexive verbs in German, you only have to think of one simple rule:

RULE: When using reflexive verbs, treat the reflexive pronoun exactly as you would treat the direct object in a sentence with a non-reflexive verb. Once again: the reflexive pronoun simply replaces the direct object.


Exercise
Fill in the correct reflexive pronouns into the empty spaces below.

Example:
Ich wasche
____
.
Ich wasche
mich
.


Du rasierst
____
.
Sandra und Patrick unterhalten
____
.
Wir amüsieren
___
.
Erwin und Heinz freuen
____
.
Ich dusche
____
.
Ihr umarmt
____
.
Sie verspäten
____
.
?


Now the question is, how do we use reflexive verbs with adverbs of time and frequency? To find out, let's translate the following sentence together before we do some exercises on this:
In the morning, I take a shower.

1) We translate "In the morning" with "Am Morgen" or "Morgens", right?

2) Then we translate "I take a shower" with "ich dusche mich", where "ich" = subject, "dusche" = verb, "mich" = direct object (reflexive pronoun).

3) BUT! Since we have the information of time at the beginning of the sentence, we have to switch the subject and the verb of the sentence.

4) Thus, the whole sentence would be: "Morgens dusche ich mich."


Exercise
For each information of time given below and each reflexive verb, can you make sentences, in which you start with the information of time?
In the exercise below, the information of time is highlighted in blue, the subject is green and the reflexive pronoun is red.

Example:
jetzt + ich + sich kratzen
Jetzt kratze ich mich.

move mouse over ?-fields
for correct answers
1) am Morgen + du + sich duschen
?
2) am Abend + wir + sich amüsieren
?
3) nachts + sie (she) + sich entspannen
?
4) heute + er + sich rasieren
?
5) am Montag + sie (they) + sich unterhalten
?
6) am Sonntag + ihr + sich erkälten
?



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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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