Finding the right Anki deck to study German can be a hard thing to do, especially if you lack the knowledge to judge the quality of the content, so in this article I will give you an overview of the decks that passed the native speaker test.
The right deck should have accurate translations and contain the right words for achieving your purpose. Translations should also be kept to a minimum per card and the flashcards should not mention lesser used meanings. On top of that you should make sure that the deck actually contains what is written in its description
There can be a lot of problems with decks made by people who are not native speakers and decks made by native speakers are rare, so you have be careful when selecting a deck for studying.
Choosing the wrong deck can make you waste a lot of time and lead to mistakes that will cost you even more time because you need to correct them later on.
Less Is More
A problem which i encountered with a lot of decks my girlfriend showed to me, was an overload of information which would just make things unnecessary complicated.
It is important to pay attention to this. It will save you a lot of time especially when it comes to learning verbs. Of course verbs have multiple meanings, but are all of them used frequently? Probably not if there are 8 translations of the same verb.
You should make sure that your deck does not mention to much of these less often used translations.
There is no sense in learning these unless you are already at an advanced level, since you will usually not encounter them.
Less frequently used also means they are even more unlikely to cross your way. Just ignore these. There are much better ways to to pick up those meanings later.
In the beginning you need a core vocabulary to boost your ability to speak and understand and building this faster will give you more motivation and possibilities for studying.
What Should The Deck Contain
Make sure that your deck actually contains what the creator thinks it contains. I saw a lot of these most frequently used words that made me want to eat my keyboard.
Those weren‘t frequent words at all. There is a big difference when it comes to spoken and written German. Those most frequent words are almost exclusively taken from written sources where a program can easily count the words.
Most of the times you will sound like someone from the last century if you use these words. Of course it will be hard for you to notice this but I still want to mention this, so that you will be aware of it.
Avoid decks that contain a lot of variants of the same verb. You don‘t need to know what the verb machen means if you add all the possible prefixes (which are more than 7). Knowing two or three of these will do the job since all the others are rarely used.
Nouns should include articles and plural form. Anything else is not worth your time as you will have to learn genders and plural separately later on.
Anki Decks for Learning German Verbs
This deck contains roughly 179 of the most frequently used irregular verbs.
Most of these are useful verbs and the cards contain audio, pictures and all the forms of the verb that you need (Präsens,Perfekt) There are multiple example sentences for each verb and hints help you remember the words
You can use this deck to learn both, the meaning of the word and the forms, at the same time but it is meant for learning the forms.
This deck contains a lot of useful verbs even though i found a couple of mistakes with the translations.
Sometimes, the order of the translations was inverted and started with the less common translations, but it is still a good deck since these mistakes are minor ones.
Anki Decks for Learning German Nouns
This deck contains frequently used nouns including their articles and the plural of the nouns.
The plural form is added behind the word in parentheses behind the noun and whenever the plural A,O,U changes to Ä,Ö,Ü it is noted with (~“e).
This is a nice deck with nouns and adjectives. Most of the cards have pictures added, but it lacks audio. It can still be useful if you already have some experience with German pronunciation.
The following decks are all very good decks, containing all the nouns that you need to pass the tests done by the Goethe Institute. If you consider passing one of these tests you should absolutely learn with one of these decks.
This deck contains a lot of words that are very useful for you. It has audio and sample sentences added and i really liked the sentences that they choose. In my opinion you should also learn the sentences while you learn the words.
Anki Decks for Beginners
Even though I gave you some recommendations about Anki decks that are useful, you still need to keep in mind that the most useful ones are the ones that you build yourself.
If you are following some course, put in the vocabulary into a deck. If you do listening comprehension and you hear the same word over and over, put it into your deck.
If you read short stories, put the new words into a separate deck. Building your deck up like this will make it much easier for you to control what is inside of it.
At the same time it will be tailored especially for your needs so it will help you in the best possible way with your studying.