German Grammar

By taking the time to understand how the German language works, you'll be able to speak German naturally, and read and write in German. We know this can be one of the more challenging parts of your course, and we’re here to help! You can browse the topics, do a search in the top right corner of this page, or start a new conversation. Don’t be shy!

Sentence structure?

I am still a little confused by the German sentence structure. Sometimes it's similar to English: subject, verb, predicate. But most of the time it isn't. What is the most common way a sentence is structured? Danke!!

3 replies - Last post by Byron-K21 - December 15, 2013


Warum diese Satz ist Nebensatz: Wissen Sie wo ich Postkarten kaufen kann? Normalerweise schreibe ich sie: Wissen Sie wo kann ich Postkarten kaufen? Ich möchte wissen, wenn ich Nebensätze ohne Grund benutzen kann. Und übrigens in meinem Satz gibt es ein...

3 replies - Last post by go-chinese - November 13, 2013


what is trennbare verb

5 replies - Last post by Paul-Weber - September 14, 2013

ask aboout

is there like simple present?

2 replies - Last post by Paul-Weber - September 12, 2013

firendly chats

when is your birth day

5 replies - Last post by Byron-K21 - September 3, 2013

Lesson 4.4

I noticed in your answer key for the grammar lesson 4.4 what I think are a couple of mistakes. Question #1 - It's raining. I put "Es regnet" which is how I have seen it in other German resources. But your answer key has it has "Es rege...

4 replies - Last post by Paul-Weber - September 2, 2013

Confused by sentence word order

I'm confused by the word order in this sentence: "Musst du bloß ausrollen, füllen, fertig". It has the verb in front even though the sentence doesn't have a question mark. The translation is "You just have to roll, fill, and done." I don't have a prob...

7 replies - Last post by doug506 - August 24, 2013

Using may and can (durfen and können

Is it common in German, as it is in English, to use can and may almost interchangeably? For example, "Kann ich auch die Speisekarte haben?" Lesson 19.3. An English language purist would say it should be "May I also have the menu." However, the distinc...

2 replies - Last post by Byron-K21 - August 8, 2013

Lesson 19.4 Syntax and Translation Question

I'm confused by the syntax of the following German phrase and the translation. Ja, und als Belohnung für die harte Arbeit haben wir beschlossen heute nett zum Abendessen zu gehen. Yes, and as a reward for the hard work we have decided to go out for a nic...

1 reply - Last post by Paul-Weber - July 19, 2013

Superlative forms

In lesson 3.6 , there are two superlative forms,am ____+sten and der/die/das _____+ste . Which form should be used in general ? What time should each form be used ? Coolcader :)

3 replies - Last post by Paul-Weber - July 14, 2013

Making a complaint

Ist es Ihnen gestern Abend noch nicht aufgefallen? Did you not notice it yesterday evening? The perfect tense of aufallen is aufgefallen using sein but I don't understand why it is Ist es Ihnen aufgefallen if we are using the polite you or is it the j...

3 replies - Last post by Paul-Weber - July 13, 2013

Word order for seperable prefix verbs

In lesson 18.4 is the following phrase: Das sieht aus wie ein altes Comic. I don't understand why instead it shouldn't be "Das sieht wie ein altes Comic aus". Other examples I have seen put the prefix at the end, e.g. "Du siehst ja nicht so fröhlich aus....

3 replies - Last post by Byron-K21 - July 1, 2013

lesson 20.4

I am a bit confused I guess. Sabine says to Andreas "Ich helfe dir." But shouldn't "dich" be there instead of "dir", since "you" is a direct object in that sentence. Help!

3 replies - Last post by coolcader - June 10, 2013

Use of personal pronouns to reference inanimate objects

Hi Paul, I need help on a grammar question. In lesson 10.4, Koffer is referenced in one sentence by "er". This seemed logical to me since Koffer is masculine. However, two phrases later the reference is "es". This seemed wrong, but when I brought it ...

3 replies - Last post by Bob-D - June 10, 2013

New Games are not working

Is it me or is anyone else that purchased the games for learning German having problems with it. The word phrase in specific. It gives me one box less than I need and when I fill the last box, the guy falls.

1 reply - Last post by coolcader - June 7, 2013

question in 1.2 doing coffee

in the pratice, "Ich möchte eine Bratwurst und Kartoffelsalat",can I say "Ich möchte eine Bratwurst und einen Kartoffelsalat?" Are there any difference?

3 replies - Last post by coolcader - June 7, 2013

Saying things in other than present tense

Everything in Rocket German Premium seems to be in present tense. Are past and future tenses dealt with in Plus and/or Advanced?

4 replies - Last post by Richard-G78 - May 13, 2013

Two words that mean the same ??? But....

What is the difference between " Sprichst " and " Sprechen " ??? I get a little bit confused because both of them as far I know mean " Speak" Any help will be well appreciated Vielen Dank ! Ingrid

4 replies - Last post by Byron-K21 - April 27, 2013

Verb Order in sentence

Hi Paul, Just when I think i'm understanding the rules for order, I see something that seems like it doesn't follow the rules. I'm refering to the following phrase in lesson 12.1 which seems like it is asking a question instead of making a statement. C...

11 replies - Last post by Gerri-C - April 26, 2013


Is bisschen pronounced chen or as a K (bisken or bis-chen?

2 replies - Last post by Paul-Weber - April 14, 2013

ich brauche hilf

ich brauche hilfe

3 replies - Last post by Byron-K21 - March 5, 2013

13.2 Use of wollen and mögen

Hi Paul, The use of these verbs in the past tense in this lesson appears to be inconsistent. I realize the actual meaning is almost identical except that to say "I would like" instead of "I want" is a little softer and less demanding. In the first exam...

2 replies - Last post by Byron-K21 - February 22, 2013

13.2 Ich bin mal gespannt

In lesson 13.2 both Ich bin mal gespannt and Ich bin gespannt are translated as I'm curious. What then does "mal" add to the sentence? I see "mal" here and there in various Geman phrases and the literal translation of "time" doesn't seem to fit. Can yo...

2 replies - Last post by Byron-K21 - February 21, 2013

Lesson 1,1

In this lesson, I find the phrase "Du sprichst gut Deutsch." In the Practice section under Extra Vocabulary, I see "Du sprichst gutes Deutsch." Why is this different?

4 replies - Last post by Paul-Weber - February 1, 2013

How well I am saying this

hey I am writing Christmas letters and I was wondering if anybody can help me to see if I did this right before I send this out and I make fool of myself :D Mai schönen Momente und glücklich Erinnerungen umgeben dir mit Freude dieses Weihnachten. How di...

1 reply - Last post by Paul-Weber - February 1, 2013

Subordinate clause rules

"Weil" and "denn" both mean "because", right? Yet it seems "weil" makes a clause follow the subordinate clause rules and "denn" does not. I'm refering to "Nein, das ist zu teuer, denn sie kommen mit ihren drei Kindern." in lesson 11. Yet, I think if i...

5 replies - Last post by Shannon-S - January 30, 2013

When nouns don't require articles

Is there a general rule for when nouns don't require articles? For example, JFK famously said, "Ich bin ein Berliner", but that was incorrect. Another example, Lesson 10.6 "Sind Sie bereits Kunde unserer Bank?" I'm speculating that if one is talking ab...

2 replies - Last post by Byron-K21 - January 20, 2013

Adjective endings

ok so I am at lesson 11.8 of the RG Premium Plus and it might sound silly but... when the article changes when is accusative, dative or genitive then adjective also changes? Also, when in RG premium lessons, where first they introduced us to the changes ...

5 replies - Last post by Paul-Weber - January 20, 2013


Hi, I'm confused when to use "an" and when to use "zu" in referencing directions. Lesson 10.3 shows examples of both but I don't understand the distinction. In both sentences below, I think Friedrichplatz is in the accusative. Wie komme ich zum Friedr...

2 replies - Last post by Byron-K21 - January 16, 2013

Possessive adjectives

Hello there Sorry if the question is stupid, but I found myself querying as to why the sentence 'Er machct sein Auto sauber' uses the article sein and not seinen when I would have thought it was in the accusative as it is talking specific about his car? ...

1 reply - Last post by Byron-K21 - January 14, 2013

use of "der" in place of "er"

HI! Could you please help me out with a bit of a puzzle? In lesson 3.1 of the first Rocket German course Nik says "Ja, iche sehe ihn. Der ist schnell" Also in lesson 7.1 of More Rocket German Sandra says, "Der hat ein paar so schoene Lie...

7 replies - Last post by Byron-K21 - January 3, 2013

mega verb games

:cry: The mega verb games still have errors so I have given up playing in frustration. I ordered the program a few weeks ago and I am going to Germany/ Switzerland in June. has anyone else played the games?

3 replies - Last post by Byron-K21 - December 5, 2012

Big, tall, short, and small

When referring to people's physical characteristics gross generally seems to be translated as tall versus big. Of course a person could be both, but in English when we say "big" it usually refers to weight and the person may or may not be tall. When we ...

3 replies - Last post by Byron-K21 - November 27, 2012

Nom/Acc. Pronouns

‘Leider?’ Warum? Hast du __________ (them) nicht gern? Torsten: Nein, ich mag __________ (them) nicht besonders. So I filled in "Euch" for both of the blanks above and apparently they were wrong. The correct answers are "sie" and "sie". Can somebody expl...

7 replies - Last post by Vivianne-J - October 24, 2012

Interchangeable use of an esszett?

In lesson 1.6 of German Rocket Premium, esszett is explained as representing two "s"s. Additionally, the word "tschüss" is introduced. Why does one use "ss" as opposed to an esszett? Are there certain rules discussed further along in the course or can ...

4 replies - Last post by Paul-Weber - September 24, 2012

SIngular and pleural pronouns

The following was written to me recently by a friend in Germany: "SInd das Kängurus im Hintergrund?" Should this not be Sind sie Kängurus as we are discussing a pleural noun?

4 replies - Last post by Paul-Weber - July 15, 2012

German word order?!??

ok can someone PLEASE explain to me German word order? its so confusing! Im really good at learning new words but I can't use them because I dont know how to build a sentence longer then 5 words in German because of the weird order they place their words!...

15 replies - Last post by mikeguy - July 8, 2012

please answere me

difference between alle und alles

4 replies - Last post by Paul-Weber - June 28, 2012

viel ,viele, +adjectives

really I lost in german adjectives endings and it worse with (viel,viele ,wenig und wenige),why we do say:Vieles Gute kommt vom Herzen ,Vieler scho"ner Schnee ,Viel Gutes,Viel Spass. thanks for help.

6 replies - Last post by Paul-Weber - June 28, 2012

difference between alle und alles

difference between alle und alles

2 replies - Last post by wasmy-- - June 15, 2012

How to say "I agree" in German

I understand that this can be said in several ways including: Ich bin damit einverstanden Ich stimme zu Ich bin Ihrer Meinung Which is best/more correct and in which circumstances are they used? Finally, why is Ihrer and not Ihre used before the feminine...

2 replies - Last post by John-M25 - June 11, 2012

zum, am, im etc

There could be something further along in the lessons but might there be a small chart showing when to use all these distinctions? Thought I got until I saw some differing forms. Like zum meaning something other than to the. Otherwise, I am enjoying t...

4 replies - Last post by Paul-Weber - May 14, 2012

Wie alt?

Hi Paul, In lesson 15.1 Mathias tells Sandra the ages of his niece and nephew.....Die Große is acht Jahre alt, und der Kleine ist fünf. Sarah explains that you can tell that the elder child is a girl because of the article used and the ending. So why ...

5 replies - Last post by Paul-Weber - May 5, 2012

compound words

Hi Paul, Is there a rule of thumb for forming compound words? Some seem to be just two words joined together (Sprachwissenshaft) while others have an "s" between the two words being joined up (Hochzeitskleid). Is it purely a matter of ease of pronunciat...

3 replies - Last post by Paul-Weber - April 21, 2012

würde vs möchte

Hi Paul What is the difference between würde and möchte to express future events?

3 replies - Last post by Paul-Weber - April 18, 2012

use of "lassen"

Hi Paul, Re Lesson 14.6 Auxiliary and Modal Verbs Another question: "Ich wolllte mir die Haare schneiden lassen". (I wanted to get my hair cut) Does it mean I wanted to be allowed to get my hair cut? or that I wanted to get it cut by someone else? Co...

3 replies - Last post by Paul-Weber - April 18, 2012

nouns and their articles

I just wanted to clarify which noun the article is attached to if there are two nouns. In English for example, 'a packet of flour', in Deutsch, 'eine Packung Mehl'. Is the article attached to the first noun or the second? Or does 'packung' become an ad...

2 replies - Last post by Paul-Weber - April 18, 2012


When I was listening to this, and then read the translation, I knew the word yesterday was not in the German.Woche is week --is this an error or just another way to interpret? I know I am lousy with grammar." Jonas hat letzte Woche seinen Führerschein gem...

1 reply - Last post by Paul-Weber - April 17, 2012


Sie sollen mir sagen. You should tell me. With this sentence, why is it that the dative "mir" is used? I see Sie (subject), sagen (verb) and mir as the direct object. But apparently I am wrong and mir is correct. Any help would be greatly appreciated. Kyle

5 replies - Last post by Paul-Weber - April 12, 2012

Lesson 12.2

Hi Paul In 12.2 ...."Der Strafzettel" the word Strafzettel is sometimes spelled Straftzettel (with a "t"). "Ich muss zweihundert Euro für einen Straftzettel bezahlen". "Heute geht es um das leidige Thema Straftzettel". But "Nur wegen einem lächerli...

1 reply - Last post by Paul-Weber - April 3, 2012

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