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Regular verb conjugation in German

regular verb conjugation

Today you’ll learn how to conjugate regular German verbs in the present tense – a must for successful conversations and simple reading of German texts.

Conjugation of regular verbs in German

The conjugation of regular verbs in German is fairly easy – you only need to remember the six ways in which German verbs end.

When conjugating regular German verbs, the verb stem never changes. Instead, you add different endings to the stem.

Here is an example of the verb “lernen” (to learn, to study):

ich lern-e i’m learning
du lern-st you’re learning
er, sie, es lern-t he, she, it is learning
wir lern-en we’re learning
ihr lern-t you’re learning
sie lern-en they’re learning

You see that the endings of the verb change, while the verb stem remains untouched – this pattern is displayed across all regular German verbs.

Did you know? Regular verbs are also called weak verbs.

Try to conjugate the following German verbs according to the pattern displayed in the table:

  • leben – to live
  • lieben – to live
  • loben – to praise

You notice that all those verbs end in “-en” in their infinitive form. The verb stem is emphasized in bold.

Adding an ‘e’ as a placeholder

German verbs with a verb stem ending in ‘t‘ or ‘d usually add an ‘e‘ in the second and third person singular as well as in the second person plural:

ich arbeite i’m working
du arbeitest you’re working
er, sie, es arbeitet he, she, it is working
wir arbeiten we’re working
ihr arbeitet you’re working
sie arbeiten they’re working

Some examples for German verbs with verb stems ending in ‘d‘ or ‘t‘ are:

  • verbinden – to connect
  • melden – to report, to signal
  • warten – to wait

Can you try to conjugate those correctly?

Example sentences with conjugated verbs

To familiarise yourself further with the conjugation of regular German verbs, have a look at the following example sentences:

Arnold geht heute einkaufen.

Arnold is going shopping today.

Die Nachbarn gucken abends immer fern.

The neighbours always watch TV in the evenings.

Du arbeitest viel zu viel!

You’re working way too much!

Ich lobe meine Tochter für ihre Hausaufgaben.

I’m praising my daughter for her homework.

Wir lieben uns.

We love one another.

Ihr wartet auf den Bus.

You’re waiting for the bus.

How to sustain your motivation…

Congratulations! This is your first “A1” German lesson – you moved from “Total beginner” (A0) to “Beginner” (A1). This is usually the time where many learners start loosing their motivation: The initial excitement about learning a new language is fading, and grammar concepts become more and more complex.

That’s why now it’s important to remind yourself of the reasons why you started learning German in the first place, and use other strategies to stay motivated!

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