Learn German with Songs

Learn German with Songs

learn german songs musicLearn German with songs

Yesterday I have come across a nice article and video about a hip hop band for kids. To learn German with songs can be pretty efficient. Check it out here.

Below you will find the lyrics. The (c) is of course by Deine Freunde resp. their label.

The vocab you can practice on memrise here. So, try out and learn German with songs…

 

How to learn German with songs – Workflow

  1. Listen to it once to see if you like the groove.
  2. Study the vocab on memrise until you get a good grip of the vocab
    (btw: You’ll find my translation at the end of this article.)
  3. Read the lyrics below and mark still unknown words
  4. Look those up if you consider them important
  5. Listen to the song while reading the lyrics as often as you like
  6. Listen only and try to understand the song.
  7. Have fun and learn German with songs.

 

I will guide you through the grammar of this song, so that it can actually help you to improve your German.

Take a look in our shop to learn German with songs / music:
German phrases
German sentence structure songs
German grammar songs

 

Deine Freunde – Schokolade

 Yeah — Das ist ein Lied über etwas,

  • das irritates many German learners as it looks like the neuter article das. But it more than often means this.
  • über shouldn’t cause you much trouble as it smoothly translates into about. There are not many other translations for über -just above– but you should be careful with translating other prepositions as they often do not make that much sense.

was ich ganz oft haben möchte,

  • was is not what as you might think but that. It is a relative pronoun that is used to refer to alles, etwas, vieles or other indefinite amounts. And if you take a look at the song line before you will find etwas. As it is a relative pronoun which always initiates a side clause it pushes the conjugated verb möchte to the end of the sentence.
  • ganz translates literally into totally which just doesn’t make much sense here. It is also used to intensify the meaning of the following word -here: oft- what you could translate as very often.

aber immer nur von einer Person bekomme.

  • bekomme is at the end of this sentence as it is the same kind of side clause as the last one. In German as in English we tend to omit repetitions. So instead of singing was twice the second was is left out as it is redundant.  
  • von is used because bekommen requires it when you want to say from whom you get something. Search for verbs with prepositions to find out more.

Ich esse jeden Tag Obst, mal weniger, mal mehr.

  • jeden Tag is Accusative. A rule of thumb when talking about time is: information about time without a preposition always uses the Accusative, like above and information about time with a (two-way) preposition almost always uses the Dative. Take a look at these examples:
    I    Nächstes Jahr fliege ich nach Berlin.       <— no prepositions —> Accusative
    II   Im nächsten Jahr fliege ich nach Berlin. <— preposition —> Dative
    III  BUT: Ich fliege für ein Jahr nach Berlin.  <— für is an Accusative preposition and leaves you no choice regarding the case.
  • Obst (n, always singular) best translates into fruits and is as in English mostly used without its article: Eat more fruits. >> Iss mehr Obst.
    The phenomenon of the invisible article is called null-article. To an extent of ~95% the German articles behave like the English ones. So intuitively you will make correct use of it right away.
  • mal mehr, mal weniger is a nice way to say at times more, at other times less and as in English with mal… mal you have to use the Komparativ, which -as its name gives away- is used when you compare things with each other.

Bei uns zu Hause ist der Obstteller niemals leer.

  • zu Hause, also: zuhause, is a nasty little exception. I recommend that you learn it as a fixed expression in the following combinations:
    Ich bin/bleibe zu Hause.               —> I am/stay at home.
    Ich gehe/komme nach Hause.     —> I go/come home.
    Ich komme von zu Hause.            —> I come from home.
  •  Note that bei uns zu Hause can not be separated [Ich zu bin Hause, ich von komme zu Hause] and therefore takes position I [one] in the sentence which is followed by the verb ist on position II which is the standard position for German verbs.
  • niemals is a stronger form of nie. Both mean never. It seems to be used here for vocal or rhythmic reasons.

Und Mama sagt: Iss die Äpfel und Bananen,

  • und always takes position 0. It does that with these four other little words: aber denn sondern oder. Together they build the initialism: ADUSO which can be used as a powerful mnemonic for these conjunctions: ADUSO is a l0ser.
  • iss is the imperative of essen for a person you are familiar with. The imperative is build with help of the du-form of the verb —> du isst which is then stripped off the „person“: du + st ending resulting in iss! Here the -st is not totally stripped off as the stem of essen contains two s and therefore keeps it.
  • There is no article die with Bananen as it is the same as for Äpfel and can therefore be omitted.

Birnen, Mandarinen und den ganzen anderen Kram.

  • ganzen & anderen are two adjectives. No matter how many adjectives you put in a row they will all have the same ending, -en in this example.

Und dann erzählt sie mir, wie wichtig Vitamine sind und sagt:

  • dann takes position I
  • erzählen is a verb that can take up to two objects. Even when it doesn’t make use of all two objects, the thing being told is always in the Accusative while the person it is being told to will always be in the DativeWhenever you come across a verb with two objects, you will always only find one Accusative object and one Dative object. There are three exceptions: lehren, nennen, kosten which are insignificant if you are a beginner.
  • wie is intiating a so called Objektsatz, which is another form of a side clause, hence the verb goes to the end of that sentence. You could replace the wie with a dass but be aware that some elements of the sentence might change their position: , dass Vitamine wichtig sind.

Komm, iss deinen Teller auf, sei ein liebes Kind.

  • sei is the imperative of sein <— to be. It is an irregular form.

Und ich bin lieb und der Liebste, den es gibt.

  • der Liebste is the superlative of lieb <— lovely which also could be built with am: “Pizza esse ich am liebsten.”
  • Persons can only be described with der/das or die Liebste.
  • den is initiating a relative side clause relating/referring to der Liebste pushing the verb to the end.

Aber wenn ich aufgegessen hab, dann sing ich dieses Lied:

  • wenn is initiating a side clause pushing the auxiliary verb hab to the end. The denn is initiating
  • hab is the abbreviation of habe. The apostrophe often signals that an e has been left out. Words are usually written fully in official correspondence.

REFRAIN:

Obst und lecker Gemüse, ja, das macht mich groß und stark.

  • lecker is a „unflektiert attributiv used adjective“. That simply means that it doesn’t take an ending although it usually does. Lecker is pretty alone with this behavior, so I recommend that you simply keep it in mind as an exception.
  • das is a Demonstrativpronomen here. Those are almost identical with the Relativpronomen and either refer to something that you have just mentioned or that you are about to mention immediately afterwards:

1)     see above. Referring to Obst und Gemüse

2)     Nun reden wir über das, was ich möchte. <— followed by a relative clause

Denn heute möcht’ ich zu Oma fahren,

  • denn is part of the ADUSO-gang and therefore on position 0.
  • möcht’ fahren – the apostrophe should be clear now. Modal verbs always require an infinitive at the end of the same sentence.

die gibt mir, was ich mag.

  • die – Demonstrativpronomen
  • was – Relativpronomen

Oma gibt mir Schokolade. Yeah

Lecker Schokolade

  • lecker: see a few lines above

Oma holt mir Naschi aus dem Schrank

  • woher requires aus or von which are Dative prepositions: Woher holt Oma mir Naschi? Aus dem Schrank.
  • holen is a verb that can take up to two objects: think of the two most important elements of that sentence. Is it:

1) Oma holt Naschi or      [Oma gets the sweets]

2) Oma holt mir?                [Oma gets me]

I guess you figured that 1) is the combination we are looking for. Oma is the person doing the action, hence it’s the subject. which is always NominativeNaschi is the thing she’s getting, so that is the so called direct object which is always Accusative. Then what’s left is the mir. The mir is the receiver of the direct object and is usually a person. Grammatically that person stands in the Dative and is called the indirect object.

  • Please note that aus dem Schrank is neither a direct object nor an indirect object. Some call it prepositional object as it begins with a preposition [aus].
  •  The standard order in a sentence with two objects (excl. prepositional ones) is DADA —> Dative Accusative (I added the DA a second time to make it more memorable).

Sie hat da so ‘ne Schublade, voller Schokolade,

  • da so `ne = da so eine; the apostrophe can also shorten the beginning of a word. The so functions as a demonstrative pronoun [=such] and is used rather in colloquial language.
  •  voller? is a preposition followed by the Genitive, which is not visible here. You could see it if I added an adjective to the above:
  • voller süßer Schokolade <— as Schokolade is (f), the adjective süß gets the (f) Genitive ending –er.

voll, so wie im Schlaraffenland     

  • so wie is a comparison of two features that are „identical“. One example: Er ist (genau)so groß wie ich. <— He is as big as me.

Ich will Schokolade.

Ich will so gerne Schokolade.

Ich will Schokolade.

Aber wisst Ihr, was ich jeden Tag ess`?

  • was signals an indirect question in which the verb is placed at the end. The question in direct form would be: „ Was ess’ ich jeden Tag?“ with the verb on position II. 

Ich esse jeden Tag Gemüse, mal weniger, mal mehr.

Bei uns zu Hause ist Gemüse wirklich niemals leer.

 

Papa sagt:  Iss die Gurken und Tomaten,

von mir aus ausm Supermarkt,

  • An alternative to von mir aus (for all I care) is meinetwegen.
  • ausm —> this is a pretty common colloquial contraction that you shouldn’t write in official letters/mails/exams.

am liebsten ausm Garten.

Und dann erzählt er mir, wie wichtig Vitamine sind.

  • wie begins an Ojektsatz (see above)

Iss dein Gemüse auf, komm, sei ein liebes Kind.

Und ich bin lieb und der Liebste, den es gibt.

Und wenn ich aufgegessen hab, dann sing ich dieses Lied:

REFRAIN

 

Schoko-Schoko-lade-lade  Schal-la la-la la-la la, la.

 

 

Full transcription & Translation – Learn German with songs

 

Yeah — Das ist ein Lied über etwas,
Yeah — This is a song about something,

was ich ganz oft haben möchte,
that I would like to have very often,

aber immer nur von einer Person bekomme.
but always only get from one person.

Ich esse jeden Tag Obst, mal weniger, mal mehr.
I eat fruits every day, sometimes less, sometimes more.

Bei uns zu Hause ist der Obstteller niemals leer.
At our place the fruit plate is never empty.

Und Mama sagt: “Iss die Äpfel und Bananen,
And mum says: “Eat the apples and bananas,

Birnen, Mandarinen und den ganzen anderen Kram.”
pears, mandarins and all the other stuff.”

Und dann erzählt sie mir wie wichtig Vitamine sind und sagt:
And then she tells me how important vitamins are and says:

„Komm, iss deinen Teller auf, sei ein liebes Kind.”
“Come, empty your plate, be a nice child.”

Und ich bin lieb und der Liebste, den es gibt.
And I am nice and the nicest one, that there is.

Aber wenn ich aufgegessen hab’, dann sing ich dieses Lied:
But when I have eaten up, then I sing this song:

 

REFRAIN:
Obst und lecker Gemüse, ja, das macht mich groß und stark.
Fruits and tasty vegetables, yes, that makes me tall and strong.

Denn heute möcht’ ich zu Oma fahren,
because today I would like to go to granny,

die gibt mir was ich mag.
who gives me, what I like.

Oma gibt mir Schokolade. Yeah
Granny gives me chocolate. Yeah.

Lecker Schokolade
Tasty chocolate

Oma holt mir Naschi aus dem Schrank
Granny gets me sweets from the cabinet

Sie hat da so ‘ne Schublade, voller Schokolade,
She’s got there such a drawer, full with chocolate,

voll, so wie im Schlaraffenland
full, like in the land of milk and honey

 

Ich will Schokolade.
I want chocolate.

Ich will so gerne Schokolade.
I so dearly want chocolate.

Ich will Schokolade.
I want chocolate.

 

Aber wisst ihr, was ich eden Tag ess’?
But do you know, what I eat every day?

Ich esse jeden Tag Gemüse, mal weniger, mal mehr.
I eat vegetables every day, sometimes less, sometimes more.

Bei uns zu Hause ist das Gemüse wirklich niemals leer.
At our place the vegetables are never really empty.

Papa sagt: “Iss die Gurken und Tomaten, von mir aus aus’m Supermarkt,
Daddy says: “Eat the cucumbers and tomatoes, I don’t care if from the supermarket,

 am liebsten aus’m Garten.”
most preferably from the garden.”

Und dann erzählt er mir, wie wichtig Vitamine sind.
And then he tells me how important his appointments are.

“Iss dein Gemüse auf, komm, sei ein liebes Kind.”
“Eat up your vegetables, come, be a nice child.”

Und ich bin lieb und der Liebste, den es gibt.
And I am nice and the nicest one, that there is.

Und wenn ich aufgegessen hab’, dann sing ich dieses Lied:
And when I have eaten up, then I sing this song:

REFRAIN

 

 

8 thoughts on “Learn German with Songs

  1. I am working on the song, I noticed that in the second part of the song you wrote:

    “Und dann erzählt er mir, wie wichtig seine Termine sind.” but I think is it is:
    “Und dann erzählt er mir, wie wichtig Vitamine sind.”

    I love the song and the exercise
    thanks

    Paolo

      1. Auch glaube ich, dass das richtige Wort im ERSTEN teil “Termine” sei, statt “Vitamine”.

        Viele Grüße
        Bret

        1. Das dachte ich auch zuerst, weil ich mit “Vater” eher Termine als Vitamine assoziiere.Aber Vitamine macht mehr Sinn im Kontext des Liedes.

      2. Danke Bret für den Hinweis, aber ich finde den Fehler den du meinst nicht. Vielleicht kannst du den Satz zitieren?

          1. Danke Enzo für das neue Video. But as I wrote, while Termine makes more sense when we think of the father, Vitamine make more sense in regard of the overall topic of the song: eating fruits instead of chocolate. 😉 Unless you have access to the songwriter, I stay with this interpretation. In the end it’s a nice song either way 😉 Have a good evening.

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