To be honest it is not very easy to find good German books for language learners. Even when you are in Germany it is kind of difficult. It took me quite a while and a lot of patience to find the following books.
Books for language learners are often one thing: EXPENSIVE. I don’t know why but for some reason a lot of publishing companies think £20-30 per book are justifiable….
High prices demand of the German Teacher a lot of creativity which actually is a good thing.
So here is my ‘inexpensive’ German-young-reader-book-list 🙂
1. Philip Winterberg’s ‘Am I small? Bin ich klein?’
A nice bilingual book.
Where can you buy it? Amazon
It is especially designed for young German learners. They can read exact English translations right after the German sentences. Good idea!
This little, inexpensive book is very cute and my younger students thoroughly enjoyed the read. There are a lot of repetitions (which is a good and a bad thing) and lovely/ bizzare illustrations. It’s perfect for a quick read at the beginning of a lesson.
It lacks text (in my opinion) but the actual idea behind the story is quite nice.
2. First Thousand Words in German
You can buy the new edition of this book on Amazon.
There is also a sticker version where the kids can actually combine images with the word. This book is especially good for learning vocabulary. I also have a lot of adult learners who love it!
It combines the visual and the written aspects of the language learning process. The illustrations are very cute.
Often I use this book for word search games. For example I ask my students: ‘Wo ist das Wort Haus?’ (Where is the word house). Then they have to tell me the section in German. You could also open a section (for example Garten) and ask: ‘Wo ist die Katze?’ (Where is the cat?) or ‘Was ist eine Blume?’ (What is a flower?). Then you combine listening, reading and seeing which helps to memorize the words.
3. Mein buntes Wimmel-Abenteuer written by Elanora Barsotti
I love, love, love the Wimmelbooks! They are inexpensive and fun. Barsotti’s is only one example but you can but it here.
I like ‘Mein buntes Wimmel-Abenteuer’ as the illustrations are fun. Your student has to actively search for the animals and objects which are listed.
You could invent a little German story, go on a animal or object search and by doing so, you are teaching your student new vocabulary.
There are countless Wimmelbooks for German learners on amazon. Simply type in ‘Wimmelbuch’ and a long list will appear. I especially like the season Wimmelbooks ‘ Jahreszeiten: Sommer, Herbst, Winter, Frühling’. Great for practicing season related vocabulary!
4. I bought ‘Mein superstarker Übungsblock zum Schulanfang’ in Germany but it is also available here.
This book is designed for the age group 5-7/school beginners. In my opinion most of the ‘Schulanfang’ books are suitable for language learners. The excercises are quiet short but are great for practicing numbers and words.
This one is another example, although I haven’t purchased it yet.
There is going to be a second list with additional materials and reviews.