The Blog For Language Learners

Speaking and Striving in German, English, Japanese, and Romansh

An Interview with Luca Denser (my Brother) Some time ago, I wrote a blog post about what it is like to grow up in three different countries (“On Anxiety and Assimilation”). Luckily, I did not have to go through this experience on my own, as my brother was also exposed to the same language environment […]

Grammar Shaming

I was talking to a colleague from university (a brilliant postdoc in literature) about a student of mine who did not know—or did not recognize among a few examples—what an article, such as the or a, was: “Oh, I have never heard of prepositions or verbs or those other things you mentioned, but I think […]

Overcoming the Language Barrier: A Rewarding Journey via Countless Blunders

As a 19-year-old who had just finished school I went to South Africa as a volunteer youth instructor for four month. It was the first time that I left Europe and the first time I used English as the every- day language of communication. Even though I was a good student and thus was able […]

Meet the founders of VOX-Sprachschule

(Non) Native Speaker Teachers

I saw a commercial bragging that “by *** we will only have native speaker teachers”. In my teaching career, many schools have turned down my application with a simple: “We don’t hire non-native speakers”. Now, I must say my relation to my mother tongue is different than the one that I have with my “learned […]

Back on Track!

Hoorah the lock down is over! We have removed the markings and added chairs in our classrooms! Distance yourself from laziness, sanitise your vocabulary, and unmask your power to learn! Zurich’s favorite language school is open again!

Please, (Feel Free To) Be Quiet – Part 2

Wrong, this is not the end. I mean, we will eventually need to speak in order to… speak a (foreign) language: should I really point out the obvious (obvious-but-not-that-easy)? Yes, we will need to make aneffort. But. It doesn’t need to be NOW, in front of all these people you don’t actually know. It doesn’t […]

Please, (Feel Free To) Be Quiet

Or: “Stop the madness of constant group work” (Susan Cain) In order to learn how to speak a language, you need to speak. Don’t be afraid, don’t be afraid to make mistakes. Talk to and with people as much as you can. Try. Talk about yourself and what you like. Share. Try again. Do like […]

On Assimilation and Anxiety: Growing Up in Three Different Countries

At the beginning of each course, I usually ask my students where they’re from and what brought them to Switzerland. Believe me, I’ve heard a range of interesting stories but at the end of the day it all boils down to either better opportunities or living closer to their loved ones. Since I think that […]

Do You Love Riddles as Much as I Do?

Solving brain teasers and riddles can be an additional instrument to learn in a fun way. Who doesn’t like this feeling of satisfaction when solving a problem? Share my passion for language and riddles, and try to figure out the answer. Write it in the comments! And no worries: You cannot take it the wrong […]

German is a Treasure – My Favourite Words in the German Language

Many of you may be familiar with the videos in which the sound of single words in different languages are compared to each other, for example the gracious butterfly. Usually, the elegancy of languages such as French (papillon) or Italian (farfalla) is contrasted with the seeming harshness of German SCHMETTERLING. While any word in any […]

The Perils of Learning a Foreign Language or How to Remember Words Better

Never will I forget the Russian words for hot water bottle (грелка), to burn yourself (обжечься) and, for that matter, blister (волдырь). You may have guessed the narrative by now – freezing cold winter nights, icy wind creeping in through dorm windows (the space in between them served me as a pretty decent fridge) and […]

The Child-Bouquet to Learn a Language

«Learning German is a piece of cake» is something you probably do not hear often. You might remember taking a deep breath before having to speak and your imagination makes you think of all the things that could go wrong and that you should worry about. For kids, though – and that does not only […]

The Pros and Cons of Online Lessons

In these dire times, when suddenly a substantial part of our lives is happening online, there might be quite some people asking themselves if it’s worth continuing their language courses online. Let’s have a look at some popular myths and questions about online teaching! Freedom from fixed locality This is certainly a first pro because […]


Something went wrong. Please refresh the page and/or try again.