How to learn German alone and achieve 87% success in 6 months

how to learn German without classes

How to learn German by yourself is a question many students have.

So, let me ask you – have you been trying to learn German alone?

Where you summed up all will power, created learning schedules, downloaded apps and videos, but 3 months later you’re still at the introduction?

You are not alone.

Learning by yourself can be like sailing on a sinking boat because of 2 things:

  • Lack of a proper German self-study method
  • Lack of time / constant distraction

Here is therefore a method and an activity that addresses those 2 concerns.

The method is called TPRS and the activity is cooking.

Oh, you didn’t know you could use cooking to learn German?

Let me explain…

How to learn German language at home while cooking

how to learn German language at home while cooking

Think of how many minutes you spend every day in washing, chopping, grating, frying and waiting for food to cook.

What if you could simultaneously learn German during this time?

If you are wondering how to learn German fast on your own, here is how to do it while cooking:

    1. Listen to my TPRS German audio lessons and answer the questions in the pauses between the sentences.
    2. Practice language shadowing for German learning, where you speak simultaneously as the recording plays.

The effectiveness of utilizing cooking as an activity to answer the question – how to learn German on your own – is that you cannot avoid it.

You cannot forget it and you cannot skip it…

I’m saying this because there are other activities that you could also utilize other than cooking. They include:

    • Walking
    • When sitting in the bus
    • When working out

However, the reason why cooking is a far better alternative is that:

You can skip a workout.

You may not be able to practice when walking in a group.

And other passengers may make it difficult to learn when you are in a car.

But if you start practicing when cooking, you will win every time.

That’s it about the activity.

Now let me tell you about the method, and then I’ll show you how it’s even better than taking classes.

But before I do, here are some quick links that will help you out as a beginner:

12 uncommon ways to say Goodbye in German

The easiest way to say happy birthday in German

German for beginners – a quick way to say EXCUSE ME + 7 extra phrases 

How to learn German without classes yet succeed more than if you took them

This section not only answers the question – is it possible to learn German by yourself, but also:

  • why you can succeed more than if you took classes.
  • How to learn German in 6 months

Well, the short version that answers the question is this:

  1. The TPRS method will make you fluent 6X faster.
  2. With the TPRS method you won’t have to memorize structure but instead you will learn it naturally the easy and fast way.

Now let’s dive deeper:

To begin with, TPRS means Teaching Proficiency through Reading and Storytelling.

It’s a proven solution to another question – how to learn German in a year, and if you’ve been following me for some time then you already know that.

I mean it works so well I’m always talking about it.

But did you know that 87% of my students have been able to speak fluently in 6 – 8 months using this method?

This is 6 times faster than conventional learning!

Need proof? Or maybe you are wondering, how long does it take to learn German?

Well, according to the American Foreign Service Institute (FSI), it will take an English speaker approximately 30 weeks to reach ‘Professional Working Proficiency’ in German. 

For non-English speakers, this time is even longer.

And the German school in Berlin states that it takes 8 weeks at 20 lessons per week just to get from beginner to elementary level.

Not good, right?

Now think about this…

One of my students, Martin Mbae, had been learning German for 2 years before he came across the TPRS method.

After 5 months of using the TPRS method he made more progress in speaking than he had for the 2 years he was learning using other methods. 

He even shared with me a screenshot of an app he had used in the past before he started making real progress:

Martin Duolingo Learn-German-Easily

And this is how I can assure you that the TPRS method will help you if you are wondering how to learn German by yourself fast and take away the pain of frustration.

Before the next section, do you know these 21 ways to say thank you in German? Check them out so you’re not just stuck with danke like every other beginner.

Okay, Now here is another question that a lot of students ask me…

How can I learn German on my own in the quickest way possible?

We have already answered this question partly in the previous parts.

Now I want to add and say it is possible to learn German on your own even with other methods.

Many things are possible.

But you are not reading this post to be introduced to 20 methods, so you choose one and hope that it works.

You are here to find out the 1 method that will give you close to 90% success within 6 – 8 months.

So here is a sample of the TPRS lesson which you can use to learn German at home.

It also gives you a preview on how to learn German online with audio, free lessons that are easy, fun and effective.

How easy was that?

No introductions like My name is… in German, or How old are you? in German, no German alphabet lessons and no grammar lessons.

You start learning from the get-go just as you learned your first language.

But you could be wondering, how will you learn the German language structure if there are no grammar lessons?

You will learn grammar naturally just the way kids learn to speak.

How can I learn German on my own

And that is the advantage of using the TPRS method – you get to learn the natural way, not the forceful classroom way.

But why shouldn’t you learn German language structure yet that’s what most learners are doing?

Why you shouldn’t study structure if you want to learn fast

You may wonder why I’m saying this, yet many students are almost always looking for easier ways on how to learn German grammar.

This is not their fault.

The reason they’re always doing so is because many people are just not able to understand the structure.

Even Mark Twain, one of the most prolific writers of all time, had an unending problem with the German structure:

How to learn German - Mark Twain


And this is why this approach is just hopeless:

You will take really long to learn grammar on your own if you are using conventional methods because they work against your brain, while the TPRS works in-line with your brain.

Let me explain…

You will take really long because every time you learn German the conventional way, the language structure will be stored temporarily in the brain.

This temporary storage is called the working memory.

One of the key elements of the TPRS method is repetition, and the more you repeat, (using the provided audio files) then that structure moves from working memory to long-term memory, and then you will not forget again.

Think of computer RAM vs a hard disk.

They both store information, right?

But what do you find still stored in the RAM after a reboot?


learn German on your own using conventional methods

And that’s exactly where you store structure when you learn it using conventional methods.

In your RAM.

You think you’ve gotten it only to start all over again the next time.

Every single time…

And then you start losing patience. 

You start skipping lessons. 

You practice less. 

Eventually you wonder why you even got started.

And that’s what makes the TPRS method different, because it shows you how to learn German and never forget.

Now let’s look at one hurdle every beginner has to overcome.

The biggest hurdle beginners face when learning German

The problem with beginners is that they want to see very quick progress.

Think of someone trying to lose weight.

How long do they expect to work out before they see results?

And how long is it before they actually see the results?

Look at this excerpt from US News Health for example: 

In a perfect world, weight loss, or, more specifically, fat loss, would be instantaneous. But that’s not how the human body works. Instead, everything from your hormones to neurologic system and signals adapt to every little change in your diet and exercise routine.

By the way, the above statement also supports one of the 7 rules for mastering German. You can find them all here by signing up for my free email course.

Back to where we were – why I’m I talking about losing weight?

Because it’s the same as learning German on your own – when it takes too long, you start to get weary.

Learning everyday ceases to be fun.

It becomes a chore.

learning german on your own

And because the brain likes to conserve energy, it sends signals to the body to deprive energy needed for learning and diverts it to a less intense activity.

Like watching a quick video on Tiktok…

After all, the video is just 3 minutes, isn’t it?

Only to find yourself down to six videos half an hour later, and because time is up you put off the lesson until the next day.

And if you have a daily checklist it’s going to look like this by the end of the week:

how to learn German with a schedule

Do you relate?

That’s only 57% success, a whopping 30% deviation from your target.

And that’s how you won’t manage to learn German in a year if you don’t have an activity that you can depend on everyday, without fail.

Finally, these quick links will give you a shortcut to understanding German, especially as a beginner:

7 sentences explaining how to use the word LIKE in German

(German plurals) Learn how to use THEY and WE in German using these 8 examples

Indefinite articles in German (EIN/EINE) – which should you use?


Now we come full circle and back to where we started.

We saw that cooking is the activity to leverage if you want to learn German alone and that TPRS is the method to use.


You can skip a workout.

You may not be able to practice when walking in a group.

And other passengers may make it difficult for you to learn when you are in a car.

But if you want to learn German quickly then practice using TPRS while cooking and you will win every time.

If you want to try that, I have a free lesson set which you can download to use while cooking.

You just need to take my free email course and at the end you can then download your lesson set.

The email course is an adventure of collecting codes and sending them back to me, and when you have all the codes then you can download a complete lesson set on how to learn German (PDF and audio with questions and answers)

These carefully selected learning materials will help you in the following ways:

  • PDF – helps you learn writing and reading
  • Recorded audio – helps you to understand how German is spoken by natives
  • Questions and answers – helps you learn to shape your tongue and project your voice so you speak like a native

But you only get all this if you sign up for my free email course and learn German online for FREE

Use the button farther below and check it out

As a parting shot, I would like to encourage you to share this information. You never know who is struggling out there and you could be the one to help.

Here are some basic lessons to get started:

🔗 Dive Into German ABCs
🔗 der, die, das (Secret Decoded)
🔗 Unravel 'is' in German
🔗 Master 'sein' and 'haben'
🔗 Explore Umlauts Ä, Ö, Ü

For more depth, try these selected intermediate lessons:

🔗 Spice Up With Adjectives
🔗 Tense Mastery: Past to Future!
🔗 Crack Prefixes & Verbs
🔗 Clarify 'das' vs 'dass'

Blog Articles e.g.

🔗 German Work Permit: What You Need to Know and Do in Advance!

🔗 Palaces and Castles in Germany from Neuschwanstein (Cinderella’s) to Frankenstein’s Castle

Tip: Sign up for my email list.


If you really want to master German, you need to know and follow 7 important rules.


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Success rate after 6-8 months

German teacher with 14 years of experience
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