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Language Treasure

In this German treasure we are primarily addressing families who speak no or little German at home. Elementary School students from these families often participate in our intensive German language courses to boost their “German as a Second or Other Language” skills.

Reading Program Amira

http://www.amira-lesen.de.

In this reading program you can read or listen to 32 different books free of charge. These books are especially suitable for students for whom German is a second language, because they use simpler language and grammar and there are numerous charming illustrations. The texts are separated in three reading levels. The vocabulary used is Elementary School vocabulary. The contents of the books are of a large variety so that you will find stories with topics such as: sports, everyday life, and fairy tails. In addition, you can read or hear the books in 8 languages other than German: Turkish, Russian, Italian, Arabic, Polish, Farsi, Spanish, and English). This way when a story is not completely understood it can oftentimes be listened to again in the child’s native language. On this website you will also find games and audios with longer stories.

You can also access the website with your smart phone and read or listen to stories that way. It is also possible to download stories and to read them off-line.

The program is financially supported by the German Minister for Culture and by the German Ministry for Families.

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Antolin

https://www.antolin.de/

Elementary School has used this website for years and recommends it highly: https://www.antolin.de/

Especially students who are learning German as a foreign language will benefit immensely from the reading enrichment in this program. On the website you can collect points by taking quizzes about a large variety of German children‘s books. The students train and expand their reading comprehension. At the beginning of the school year, the homeroom teacher gave each student a login. Whether your child is interested in soccer, dragons, or the romans, you can find a large selection of books for every topic area.

You can also take the reading quizzes on mobile devices. Simply visit Antolin.de and log in.

We also recommend the recently added Antolin-Lese-App. The app is not expensive and offers many different reading games that children enjoy and that are available at several different proficiency levels!

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Children’s Search Engine „ Blinde Kuh“

https://www.blinde-kuh.de/index.html

The search engine for kids called „ Blinde Kuh“ (https://www.blinde-kuh.de/index.html). The search engine is supported by the German Ministry for Education and is recommended for use by children in third grade and up. „Blinde Kuh“ is well suited for research in topics that are discussed in different school subjects and to prepare presentations and posters for class. It can also be used to discover kids’ news, video, games or other children’s websites.

When you enter a keyword into the search text box, you land on a page with a list of your search results. Next to each search result the recommended age is listed. Once you click on the article’s title, it will open and you can read it. Have fun exploring!

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Children’s Book Author Cornelia Funke

https://corneliafunke.com/en

Cornelia Funke is a world famous German author of children and youth books. She now lives in the US and is being compared to J.K. Rowling, the author of Harry Potter. Her website is designed for children and can be viewed in German or English. (https://corneliafunke.com/en ).

Our students can find her books in our Elementary School library, for example: “Drachenreiter”, “Zottelkralle”,”Das Piratenschwein”, “Ein Fest für Marie” and a series about ghost hunting. Students can also gain valuable Antolin points with these books.

Many of her books have been made into movies. In our library we carry the videos: ‚Gespensterjäger‘ and ,Hände weg von Mississippi‘. Enjoy reading and viewing her stories.

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The Hallo App

This app helps train and expand German vocabulary. It is called “Hallo App” and was developed by Mildenberger Verlag and Hueber Verlag to help refugees integrate in German-speaking countries by learning the German language. It is also very useful for our children to solidify their German vocabulary. The app is free and can be located in the app store by typing in „phase6hallo Deutsch Kinder“. The app icon is an orange speech bubble with a smiley face. A fun way to study vocabulary!

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Der kleine Drache Kokosnuss (Little Dragon Coconut)

https://www.drache-kokosnuss.de/ .                  

Elementary School students in Germany love this dragon and his stories. Our first graders are also familiar with this character, because it is used in the classroom when learning letters. Even our SEL students have heard about him through audio-tapes that they listen to in their groups.

When reading the Dragon Coconut books that can be found in our Elementary School library students can earn Antolin points.

On Youtube you can find videos of the author reading his books: (https://www.youtube.coom/watch?v=G34AYAYszPc).  Some of the books have also been made into movies.

There is also an outstanding learning app that is geared specifically to SEL students and first-graders. In the app they practice writing letters and numbers, train their memory, solve simple math problems and practice counting and playing with shapes. Look for the „Drache Kokosnuss“ app. The one we are recommending is the one that costs $2.99.

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Geolino-Website

https://www.geo.de/geolino

On the Geolino website our students can read articles about a variety of topics to learn about the world. Originally Geolino is a print magazine for kids, that covers topics related to nature, the environment, Humans, Research and Technology. Elementary School children really enjoy this magazine and also the website that is designed in a way that motivates students to read. It is also a part of our collection in the Elementary School library. Some students also like to buy it when they are in Germany or ask someone who is travelling from the Germany to the U.S. to bring them the latest edition. Apart from reading it, students enjoy trying out the crafts ideas and recipes that are always included.

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Hörspiele – Audiobooks for Children

You will find a collection of high-quality audio books for children age 5 through 12 that is free of charge. The famous German actress Antje Engelke and other German voice talents such as David Nathan (German voice talent for Johnny Depp) or Nick Sablik (German voice talent for Harry Potter) read adventure stories and other children’s books.

At ohrka.de you can also download audio books – simply click the download symbol in the upper right-hand corner. With a smartphone or tablet you are able to access the website on the go. This is a great resource for all children, not only those who don’t speak much German at home.

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Children’s radio channel Kiraka

http://www1.wdr.de/kinder/radio/kiraka/index.html

The children’s radio station is created by WDR (Westdeutscher Rundfunk) and is designed for children in the Elementary School age (SEL through grade 4). Kiraka plays a lot of German children’s songs. You simply click the start button at the bottom of your screen in order to listen to live radio. It is especially beneficial for children growing up with two or more languages to listen to these songs since it helps them grow their German vocabulary as well as develop and extend their sense for the language.

In addition, you can hear several children’s stories  on  Kiraka, by simply clicking Menüand then„Hören“, and then click „Hörspiele“ and you can choose any story such as  „Die streng geheime Geisterschule“ http://www1.wdr.de/kinder/radio/kiraka/hoeren/hoerspiele/geisterschule-106.html. You can download these children’s stories.

For children age 3 and up there is another link to the Bärenbude, the radio station for the little ones: http://www1.wdr.de/kinder/radio/kiraka/sendungen/baerenbude/index.html.

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The magazine Lingonetz

http://www.lingonetz.de/

In this German treasure section we are primarily addressing families who speak no or little German at home. Elementary School students from these families often participate in our intensive German language courses, to boost their “German as a Second or Other Language” skills.

This month, our recommendation is the Lingonetz website: http://www.lingonetz.de/

On Lingonetz you can download free e-magazines. They are well-designed and geared specifically to children for whom German is a foreign language. The magazine can be used starting in the first year of learning how to read.

On Lingonetz you can also find several games and riddles.

The section on “Listening and Reading“ deserves special mention:  Your child can read a text while listening to the audio file. This trains not only your child’s reading skills, but also the pronunciation of German words.

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Website „Lernspaß für Kinder“

https://www.lernspass-fuer-kinder.de

This website is not only a fun learning tool for children who are German language learners, but it is fun for everyone!

You can find different kinds of activities for your child to practice math as well as German. If you want your child to increase their German language skills, you can concentrate on German grammar. Different skills can be practiced.

Students can create an account and collect points that are called Gruschis that will inspire them to come back and practice more!

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News for Children Logo

http://www.tivi.de/fernsehen/logo/start/

On this website you can watch the current news in a format designed for kids. This show exists since over 25 years and it is highly informative. It is a ten-minute show and is broadcasted daily except Sundays. Complicated relationships are explained using instructional illustrations. Some of the topics, for example, are the war in Syria or famine in Africa. The show is recommended starting grade 3.

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Ohrka

www.ohrka.de

You will find a collection of high-quality audio books for children age 5 through 12 that is free of charge. The famous German actress Antje Engelke and other German voice talents such as David Nathan (German voice talent for Johnny Depp) or Nick Sablik (German voice talent for Harry Potter) read adventure stories and other children’s books.

At ohrka.de you can also download audio books – simply click the download symbol in the upper right-hand corner. With a smartphone or tablet you are able to access the website on the go. This is a great resource for all children, not only those who don’t speak much German at home.

We wish your children lots of fun while listening!

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Sendung mit der Maus

http://www.wdrmaus.de/filme/sachgeschichten/index.php5?filter=alle

This Show with the Mouse (Sendung mit der Maus) is a successful and well-conceived show for children  the German tv station (WDR) that has been awarded several prizes. The so-called „Sachgeschichten“ are short film clips about a large variety of topics. Complex correlations are explained ad discussed in a way suitable for children. You will find the short clips sorted alphabetically and grouped by topic area. Most film clips are about six minutes long. These short clips are interesting for grades 1 through 4 and even adults can learn something watching them.

We also recommend the ”Maus” app. In the app children can view many different film clips on scientific topics. Simply search for “die Maus” in the app store.

The same tv station also created the elephant page which is more suitable for younger children such as preschoolers and students of the School Entry Level: http://www.wdrmaus.de/elefantenseite.

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Sesame Street

https://www.sesamstrasse.de

Many children love watching Sesame Street and we would like to make sure you are aware that you can also watch it on the internet in German. Many well-known characters such as Elmo, the Cookie Monster, Ernie and Bert appear here and children learn a lot about numbers, letters, and about the life children live in Germany. As the children view the program they expand and practice their German vocabulary. The Sesame Street is recommended starting age three and is still interesting for children of the SEL and first grade, especially when they do not speak German at home.

Unfortunately, the German-language Sesame Street App is not available in the U.S. app store, but when you visit the German Sesame Street website, you can watch the last six episodes for free at: https://www.sesamstrasse.de

Each episode is about 20 minutes long with a many little different short clips.

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Singing German Songs

Kids do not only enjoy singing and listening to music, it also improves their language development. Therefore, our language learning recommendation this month is music that is great for our very young.

The songs by Rolf Zuckowski have been popular in German-speaking countries since the 80s. His songs are happy and the lyrics are easy to remember. Many of them are referencing different seasons of the year. (Rolfs Kinderfrühling; Rolfs Liederkalender; Rolfs Top 100)

Rolf Zuckowskis offical website is: https://www.musik-fuer-dich.de/

Some of his song-collections are available as mp3 downloads on the German Amazon-website – Amazon.de.

On Spotify (spotify.com or in the App Store) many German children’s songs can be found, such as: Janina und die schönsten deutschen Kinderlieder  and Janina und die schönsten deutschen Kinderlieder 2. Unfortunately, Rolf Zuckowski’s music is not available there. Also recommended is the series:  „Die 30 besten....“,  such as Die 30 besten Spiel- und Bewegungslieder or Die 30 besten Oster- und Frühlingslieder. You can also find these at Amazon.de.  

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tiptoi materials

A tiptoi-starterset includes a tiptoi-pen and a book (https://www.amazon.com/Ravensburger-tiptoi-Starter-Set-Buch-Bauernhof/dp/B00V8K81AM/ref=sr_1_12?ie=UTF8&qid=1543434149&sr=8-12&keywords=tiptoi, https://www.amazon.com/s/ref=nb_sb_noss?url=search-alias%3Daps&field-keywords=tiptoi+starter+jahreszeiten&rh=i%3Aaps%2Ck%3Atiptoi+starter+jahreszeiten ) .

Children explore different items within a book in order to learn about different topics such as life on a farm, the four seasons, Star Wars, airports, etc. It's an excellent resource for learning the German language and for expanding the vocabulary.

You can rent these books in our preschool library, however the tiptoi pens are not included. Therefore, we recommend to order the starterset that includes the pen. This system can be used by children as young as 3 years old, but some of the books geared to older kids from age 7 to 10.

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„Willi will‘s wissen“

The children’s show “Willi will‘s wissen“ is an entertaining show for Elementary School children with Willi Weitzel. The topics range from “How do I become an astronaut?” to “ Where does our trash go?”.

The show „Willi will‘s wissen“ runs on German television stations and we have several of the videos in our Elementary School library. You can also purchase these videos on Amazon.de.

Unfortunately, it seems like there is no website where the videos are viewable for free, but you can find excerpts on YouTube. Some of them are on visiting other countries. Here is a link to the film about India https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tI8MzGM6lhE.

These shows are perfect for students with German as a second or other language. The moderator speaks slowly and clearly and the topics evoke an interest in scientific topics.

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Wissen macht Ah!

http://www.wdr.de/tv/wissenmachtah/index.php5

Wissen macht Ah! is a knowledge show for children age eight and up. In these shows experiments are conducted and a variety of questions about daily life are answered in an entertaining way. On this website you can watch an entire Wissen macht Ah! show and you can sign up for a podcast. Many DVDs and books in this series are available at our Elementary School library and can be purchased at Amazon.

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The Children’s Book App „Die große Wörterfabrik“

This month we would like to recommend a wonderful and magical picture book that is also available as a unique children’s book app: “The Big Word Factory”. The app costs $1.99 and can be installed on IOS as well as Android devices. You can find it in the app store under “The big word factory”.

After downloading the app, please switch the language to German. The program will invite your child to experience a very special poetic story. While they are reading and listening to the story he or she will be entertained by little language games.

The story plays in a country where words cost money and therefore people don’t talk much. However, little Paul urgently needs words to tell the beautiful Marie how much he loves her. 

The app is recommended starting grade 2 and is recommended by the Stifung Lesen and the Leipziger Buchmesse.

If you prefer printed books, please follow this link to the book on Amazon:

https://www.amazon.de/gro%C3%9Fe-W%C3%B6rterfabrik-Geschenkausgabe-Agn%C3%A8s-Lestrade/dp/3939435562/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1510754578&sr=8-1&keywords=die+grosse+w%C3%B6rterfabrik

Younger children will also enjoy having this book read to them and perhaps this is a good idea for the Christkind or Santa Clause?

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