German Language Classes

Parent Q&A

  • German Classes for Teens

    (2 replies)

    Hello, Fellow Parents,

    My 13-year-old daughter has been taking German classes at her school for the past 2 1/2 years, plus Saturday classes. Her school just stopped offering the classes and I'm looking for a class with other kids her age. I'd appreciate any recommendations.

    RE: German Classes for Teens ()

    Hi there,

    My 16yo daughter is currently an AFS exchange student in Germany. For the past 4 years she has been studying German as an extra curricular activity because her school(s) doesn't offer it. Here's what we did: 1) Got a tutor at Classroom Matters (her tutor has moved to Austria, sad for us); 2) attended a 6 weeks summer language immersion intensive program associated with Middlebury College/Monterey Language Institute; 3) attended German School of the East Bay (Saturday school) for a few weeks; 4)Rosetta Stone; 5)DuoLingo; and 6)this past summer she studied German 3 at Tilden Prep. My daughter is a pretty independent learner but she did miss having a peer group.

    I think she would say that Rosetta Stone and DuoLingo were not very helpful. Her first tutoring at Classroom Matters was a good introduction to the language, but it was really the immersion program that made her conversant in German. She also enjoyed her German 3 tutor at Tilden. They covered a lot of grammar, but they really focused on conversation and accent; she wanted to be comfortable enough with the language when she arrived in Germany.

    You might consider looking at German School of the East Bay: The semester starts soon, so now is a good time. You might also consider contacting the other families in her school's German class and seeing if anyone wants to get a group together for a class at Tilden Prep. Hope this helps! feel free to contact me for more info. 

    RE: German Classes for Teens ()

    +1  for German School of the East Bay: 

    Take a look at Mixxer - The Mixxer - a free educational website for language exchanges via Skype
    ​Or the list of sites at

    YouTube has some resources too. There are two women who have channels which are good. 
    ​Don't Trust the Rabbit  This is a German women learning English
    ​Wanted Adventure   An American learning German and German customs in Germany.
    ​Both of these YouTube channels would be completely acceptable for a 13 year old women.

    Two other YouTube channels to check out are Easy German and LangFocus.

    And you can always host a German student for a month over the summer, semester or school year.  The exchange programs can connect you with students in Germany wanting to learn English using Skype.

Archived Q&A and Reviews

German class, 13 year old

March 2014

My 13 year old daughter has been teaching herself German but really wants to go to a class. The German school in Oakland doesn't have classes that are appropriate for her age and level (beginner). Berkeley High doesn't offer German and my daughter is too young for community college classes. We'd love recommendations for classes or tutors. If there are other kids her age who are interested in starting a beginner class maybe we can make that happen too. We live in Berkeley. Thanks! Laurel

We have been very pleased with the German School of the East Bay ( There is a ''Beginning Level Teens'' class that might work for her or she might even want to try to beginning adult class. You can read the description of the teens and adult classes here:

My husband has taken classes at the Goethe Institute in San Francisco and liked them a lot. I think they also have classes for teenagers:

I know there are several other Saturday schools around the Bay Area -- Fremont, San Francisco, Marin, and a couple of others -- but I haven't attended any of them. Good luck!

I don't know about any classes, but my suggestion for the most rapid improvement in your daughter's language skills would be to ask a UC Berkeley grad student in the German department to tutor her. Largely underpaid, most grad students would be eager to provide private lessons, probably for a nominal hourly rate. And by going that route, you could decide to focus more on formal book study or spend more effort on conversation. Viel glueck! (good luck) Semi Fluent

German lessons for 17 y/o daughter

April 2013

My daughter has had german throughout elementary and middle school and has really enjoyed it. She is now going on 17 this summer and would like to brush up on her german and solidify grammar etc. There is no german program at her high school and has not had it since 8th grade. She would prefer a classroom setting not a tutor. Any suggestions would be very much appreciated. anon

Why not look into a summer language class at your local junior college or state school? She doesn't have to have graduated from high school to take a summer class. She has options.

Dear anon, I work for the German school of the east bay, located in Oakland Piedmont. We are offering a summer camp for teenagers in August. I think I cant attach the pdf-flyer here, but please sent me an email, then I will sent it too you. We are offering german lessons for teenagers throughout the year (August to May), too, on saturdays.

If the GSEB for whatever reason doesn't work out for you, there is another school offering German classes for teenagers east bay, and that is BAKS+. You will find further informations on their website. feel free to contact me, Greetings, Tina mailantina [at]

Hi - Two differenet suggestions...

Bay Area Kinder Stube + or Baks + has weekly german lessons by level --- They meet in Berkeley

German School of the East Bay has a Saturday School program They meet at the Altenheim in Oakland There's also a German Language full day school that they were establishing...not sure of the details but the contacts at Baks+ could help you out. It's affiliated with the German School in Menlo Park.

Both are excellent programs, normally have students who come from at least one parent speaking german at home. Good luck. My Kids Speak German TOO

German Language Classes for Kids

Dec 2010

We are a bilingual family and our child has been growing up speaking both German and English. We would like for her to continue both languages when she starts Kindergarten next year, and have heard that BAKS+ in Berkeley is offering German language classes for kids in the afternoon. Can anybody tell me how this program worked for their child? Is it sufficient to support their reading and writing in German? How do they deal with different language levels in a class, and how do the children balance the extra academic challenge on top of school? I would love to hear about the experience of K parents and older grades as well. German Parent

I do not know of BAKS+ However, my daughter has been attending an Oakland public school and on Saturdays she attends the German School of the East Bay. She has attended for the past six years and started when she was in kindergarten. Why?

1. It's affordable. About $600 per school year for 30 weeks of instruction 2.5 hours per week.

2. It's flexible. Morning and afternoon classes. Native German speakers follow a course of classes, non-native German speakers follow a different course of classes and they meet up in middle school.

3. It's a community. You have access to over 100 families who value German culture (focusing on Germany, Switzerland, Austria and Lichtenstein).

4. Students are nice and kind. When my daughter had a problem with ''mean girls'' in her elementary school, she came to German School on Saturday and was surrounded by students she had spent years with. They were kind, playful and genuinely nice to be around.

5. The teachers are top notch. The school hires exceptional teachers. While some teachers have one style or another, the teachers know both German and English and how to teach the German language using age-appropriate textbooks, workbooks, materials, songs, plays, and manipulatives.

6. There are cultural events like those in Germany. Okay, I am told they are not exactly the same, but the St. Martin's Parade through Piedmont, Adventsfeir with a Christmas Market, Karnival, Herbst Fest, etc.

7. You are welcome. Always, we welcome new families to our community.

8. We are in the Glenview Neighborhood in Oakland. Easily accessible by freeway 580 tucked into a relatively quiet neighborhood. Our website is

Please come and check out the school. I think you will like what you see. Happy German School Family

I would like to second the recommendation for German School of the East Bay. The former poster said everything I would have said but better.

This is my kids' second year at the school in the non- native track. It has been really wonderful for them. It gives them a really sweet, caring community of friends. There are lots of additional activities like the St. Martin's Parade, German book sales, a library at the school, a 3-week summer camp. My oldest attended the camp last year and really liked it. The teachers and assistants are great. Anon

2007 - 2009 Recommendations

Want to brush up on my German

Sept 2008

Hi, I am a stay-at-home mom who would love to brush up on her German. I studied translation and am fluent in German, well, used to be, but haven't spoken German for a couple of years. Are there any meet ups I could join? I would also love to read books in German but am not sure where to get them. Is there any library for German books and films?

You can find a German Stammtisch at Yahoo Groups ( They meet in San Francisco once a month and there are also a lot of postings (maybe you also find some books this way). Meike

2004 - 2006 Recommendations

Dec 2006

I was searching for German teaching in Berkeley, Oakland and San Leandro and came accross one of your postings. I see there are severall folks wanting their children to learn German. I would like to suggest the Gerlind Institute for German Cultural Studies, in Oakland. Their web site is The founder is a wonderful teacher and also sponsors a monthly German- speaking group that meets in Berkeley.

2003 & Earlier

October 2002

Seeking German language ''class'' for kids

I'm looking into a German speaking activity for my children age 3.5 and 5.5. I've checked Berlitz which charges $200+ for a 2.25 hr class I was told no matter how many kids - too much time for small kids, too much money. I have the BBC Muzzy program and German video tapes and books. Does anyone know of any German language program? Thank you maya


  • Bay Area Kinderstube
  • East Bay Waldorf School
    Dec 2002

    My 4 and 6 year old homeschooled daughters want to learn German (Dad speaks some German, German-speaking grandma lives 3 hours away). Does anyone have information regarding classes or individuals who teach German to children? The Kinderstube pre- school in Albany didn't offer language classes but mentioned Saturday German classes in Oakland (this is the only information they had). Mary

    There is a school that teaches German on Saturdays in Berkeley called German School of the East Bay. Their number is (510) 525-4305. It offers beginning through intermediate classes for children of all ages as well as adults. I took a couple of classes there myself. It seems like a very fun atmosphere for kids. A lot of the parents are from Germany so the cultural opportunities are also quite good. The teachers are not professionally trained typically (as you would find at an accredited organization like the Goethe Institut in SF) so quality does vary a bit but for a beginning student, I think it's really fine. Alles gute und Frohes neues Jahr!

    Correction: The School is located in Oakland not Berkeley. Their website address (For German School of the EastBay) is East Bay German Student

    Oct 2002

    I'm looking into a German speaking activity for my children age 3.5 and 5.5. I've checked Berlitz which charges $200+ for a 2.25 hr class I was told no matter how many kids - too much time for small kids, too much money. I have the BBC Muzzy program and German video tapes and books. Does anyone know of any German language program? Thank you maya

    Hi, You may want to call the Bay Area Kinder Stube in Albany. There number is (510) 525-3105. It is a wonderful preschool as taught in the German Language. They also have afternoon programs for older kids, music, reading/writing, movement, etc. all taught in German. It might be nice to reinforce the language with other children. Dori
    The East Bay Waldorf School teaches German in 1st thru 8th grades. I don't know if they include it in the kindergarten. Jennifer