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Old 16.07.2019, 21:15
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How the heck did you learn Präposition + Kasus

Hi everyone,

I thought Akkusativ and Dativ were the most difficult aspects of the German language. I am mostly over that now. I am at B2 level and except summoning my childhood discipline of learning by heart, for the life of me I can’t learn the combinations of verb+preposition+cases.

Calling all lovely experts out there, any tips of how to learn best these combinations? Tricks? Hints? Easy way to memorise?aaaannnnyyything will be helpful.

Thanks
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Old 16.07.2019, 21:29
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Re: How the heck did you learn Präposition + Kasus

Memorize. By heart and by usage.

From another thread https://www.englishforum.ch/newreply...eply&p=2714093

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Coming back to "fahren in die Berge" and "Skifahren in den Bergen"
Both use the preposition "in". In the first sentence "in" is a direction, in the second "in" is a location. But not all preposition of direction need the Akkusativ. "Zu" needs the Dativ, which becomes "fahren zu den Bergen". Also, neither need all preposition of positions the Dativ. Skifahren um die Berge (Akkusativ), Skifahren inmitten der Berge (Genitiv).

Why? Because!
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Old 16.07.2019, 21:56
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Re: How the heck did you learn Präposition + Kasus

I just get it wrong and don't worry about it. People understand what I'm trying to say. Some helpful ones will reflect the sentence back at me with the correct grammar.
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Old 17.07.2019, 00:09
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Re: How the heck did you learn Präposition + Kasus

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Calling all lovely experts out there, any tips of how to learn best these combinations? Tricks? Hints? Easy way to memorise?
Depends on your learning bias really. I have a strong visual bias so I colour code one set of notes and tables with highlighters. I find now that I can look at the originaL tables and remember the colour patterns, and it's like anything genitiv, I see in green.
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Old 17.07.2019, 08:12
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Re: How the heck did you learn Präposition + Kasus

One way of getting it less wrong is not just to memorise the words, but small generic sentences, which you can easily remember and whose grammatical structure you then can apply in similar situations.
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Old 17.07.2019, 09:44
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Re: How the heck did you learn Präposition + Kasus

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Depends on your learning bias really. I have a strong visual bias so I colour code one set of notes and tables with highlighters. I find now that I can look at the originaL tables and remember the colour patterns, and it's like anything genitiv, I see in green.
I'm always fascinated, even astonished, at this or similar ways of learning. Sadly they don't work for me, but some teachers would really push their preferred approaches, which used to annoy the hell out of me.

What I seldom came across was someone who was able, or prepared, to use logic to explain why a certain combination should be used. This is the only way I can learn, and I'm stubbornly opposed to some of the approaches used, particularly the idea that a given proposition always takes a given case, and you should just memorise which is which.

Not only is it incorrect (because some propositions can vary depending on usage) but it fails to address the fundamental question of 'why?' which is so important to some people (unless I'm the only one who needs to think like this).

So my advice to the OP, if s/he thinks like I do, is to learn the underlying meanings inferred by the cases and apply them, to all parts of speech but including the propositions, based on that, rather than just trying to remember the lists.
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Old 17.07.2019, 10:54
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Re: How the heck did you learn Präposition + Kasus

Just practice.

I still get one wrong here or there but mosty if I use the wrong case, it just sounds wrong so I correct it. I think the trick is to just speak and listen as much as you can and sooner or later the sound and rythm will stick in your brain and a wrong case will just sound wrong.
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Old 17.07.2019, 10:59
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Re: How the heck did you learn Präposition + Kasus

It may be a small consolation to you that there are cases that even many native German speakers get wrong. Classical examples are the ones that should take a genitive (wegen is the most common culprit, but there are others) but often end up with a dative, not just in Switzerland but in Germany too.
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Old 17.07.2019, 19:04
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Re: How the heck did you learn Präposition + Kasus

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It may be a small consolation to you that there are cases that even many native German speakers get wrong.
Big consolation is, thank god we're not learning Finnish. They have 15 cases.
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Old 17.07.2019, 19:36
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Re: How the heck did you learn Präposition + Kasus

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It may be a small consolation to you that there are cases that even many native German speakers get wrong. Classical examples are the ones that should take a genitive (wegen is the most common culprit, but there are others) but often end up with a dative, not just in Switzerland but in Germany too.
One reason the Swiss fall into the genitive "trap" is because there is no more genitive case in the Swiss German/Alemannic grammar. Exception is Walliser German/Highest Allemanic where it has survived in some remote valleys.

Another relief is that grammar rules to not prescribe how the grammar must be, but describe how the grammer of the language is. It is possible that the genitive will also die out in Standard German, as well all know: "der Dativ ist dem Genitiv sein Tod".

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Not only is it incorrect (because some propositions can vary depending on usage) but it fails to address the fundamental question of 'why?' which is so important to some people (unless I'm the only one who needs to think like this).

So my advice to the OP, if s/he thinks like I do, is to learn the underlying meanings inferred by the cases and apply them, to all parts of speech but including the propositions, based on that, rather than just trying to remember the lists.
There is no actual why. It is usage and how it is. Although there are groups of prepositions which behave the same, there can always be an odd one which does not follow the rule. Wegen, aufgrund, and ob mandate genitive (seldom dative), but durch mandates the accusative.

Durch das Wasser ist der Rasen aufgeweicht.
but
Wegen des Wassers ist der Rasen aufgeweicht.

Many positional preposition mandate the dative and if used as a directional/movement it is the accusative.
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Old 17.07.2019, 20:36
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Re: How the heck did you learn Präposition + Kasus

Thanks everyone for the tips. It gives me some comfort that I am not the only one who is struggling with that. Hope someday I can also say „I used to struggle“ rather than still am.

My go to approach was to translate the verb in English and say it. So I used to say, for example, ich warte für dich. Now I say ich warte auf dich. And this is now imprinted in my brain. But the road is still loooong ahead...
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Old 17.07.2019, 22:02
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Re: How the heck did you learn Präposition + Kasus

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Big consolation is, thank god we're not learning Finnish. They have 15 cases.
But they have far fewer prepositions as many of those cases imply the preposition. So at the end of the day it's probably not massively more difficult, just different.
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Old 17.07.2019, 23:25
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Re: How the heck did you learn Präposition + Kasus

Have a native proof-read your work and just hope for the best when speaking. Seems to work for most non-native speakers I work with.

On a more serious note: the Kasus indicates the relationship. You have the equivalent of the Genitiv in English, the relationship of one thing to the other and where you often use an apostrophe. Because of this simple and obvious rule, I want to take a cheese grater to those who misuse the poor apostrophe for things like indicating a plural. I was never formally taught English and I manage it. Other things are a bit shoddy sometimes but this one is pure logic.

So look up what the Latin origin of each Kasus name actually means; while the gender of the thing you are talking about can mess up the ending logic, it should help with the masculine words. That is not the best explanation, sorry, very tired.
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