Soft Landing Language School

Lättichstrasse 8c

6340 Baar


About us and our philosophy

We don’t limit learning to the classroom!

In addition to our language courses and events, we have a variety of easy-to-use, interactive learning tools specifically designed to help you practise what you have learned in the lessons and give you a head start in German or Swiss German.

We don’t want you just to cope we want you to thrive in your new language and feel at home in your new environment. We ease your way into the local community so that you can take full advantage of all Switzerland has to offer while gaining an understanding of the culture, people and just how things are done here.

Soft Landing caters to families, offering language instruction for spouses and children. All our courses are designed to be relevant, fun and hands-on. Our course content is strongly based on everyday home or business life in Switzerland, so that you can quickly become familiar with common practical and cultural situations.

We teach smart! By taking account of the language(s) a student already knows, we show students how to boost their language learning by taking advantage of the connections between languages.

How difficult is it really to learn the German Grammar?

We believe that grammar should not get in the way of anyone trying to learn a new language! For the past 35 years we have been using a creative and effective approach to learning grammar. We have summarized German grammar into 18 charts, which make up a grammar book received by each student. On receiving this book, students will find that the charts are empty. This is because during classes, the students are guided to discover the rules of grammar for themselves, which they then fill in on the relevant chart in their book. This ensures that they fully understand the rules and need only to practise – with reference to the relevant grammar charts when necessary – to assimilate what they have learned. The grammar charts are organized in a clear and logical way that is also simple and easy to use for future reference.

Shall I learn German or Swiss German?

We highly recommend that you learn German, since it is the official written language of Central Switzerland. Knowing German allows you to read books, follow the news on the internet and watch movies in German. And when you leave Switzerland that‘s the language you want to take away. Learning Swiss German is harder, since it requires you to rely only on your hearing. Most students want to be able to speak German and understand Swiss German. If they learn some phrases like „Grüezi“ or „en Guete“ (enjoy your meal) that is a good start and an extra bonus.

How important is it to prepare for exams?

Learning for a goal is always a good thing. Even if students don‘t take the exam in the end, goal oriented learning maintains a level of motivation. Most students want to prepare themselves in order to become Swiss or for some nationalities to obtain an early C permit after five years. So far we are happy to say that all our students have successfully passed their exams from A2 to C1!

I had some German at school but that was many years ago and I forgot everything! Shall I start with a beginner’s course?

Most students who took German at school think they need to start again at a beginner level, but in general they have a very good foundation in the language and good pronunciation despite having been taught using old fashioned methods and not having applied their speaking skills. It is also often the case that they also are uncomfortable with accusative and dative which is on one hand a very basic issue but remains on the other hand very often the grammar which will haunt quite a lot of students for the rest of their German career. With such students a quick review is normally enough to revive their German and continue with them on an intermediate level.

What is the influence of the language heritage in learning German?

If students have a language that is related to German, they can boost their learning. Dutch and Afrikaans are very similar to German. If Dutch or Afrikaan students see a German written text for the first time they can already understand quite a lot of words and if they know some of the changes between the languages they can guess on another good percentage. When they start learning German in terms of vocabulary they are already on an A2 or B1 level. These students don‘t need to start from scratch. The differences in grammar can be explained in a few sessions and they can join an intermediate class without any problems.

What about the lexical heritage?

Not only Dutch and Scandinavian languages but also English belongs to the group of languages related to German. Seminars like „The World of Languages“ and „Decoding Swiss German“ expose the way in which learners can use clues from their mother tongue to help with learning German.

What is learning a language about? How can I practice outside of the classroom?

The classes provide all the language tools needed to get by in everyday situations in German, but to make the language come alive you need to use it daily! In Cantons like Zug or Zurich where almost everybody can speak English, finding the opportunity to practice in an authentic setting can be difficult. To help you in this goal, we have partnered with local shops and organizations, which have agreed to provide a friendly and supportive environment for our students to practice their German. And as an added benefit you will get to know some of the hidden gems in the Canton.

Home learning

There is a reason why we send our children to school. More than anything else, school creates an environment which is conducive to learning and has a set curriculum which trained teaching staff can follow. They in turn have a team of fellow teachers to support them. None of the above is the case at home when children struggle through their homework. Or not. How do you keep your children to their tasks? How do you keep them at their desks and laptops but away from Minecraft, Fortnite and Netflix? How can you or should you keep tabs on what they are doing when they are supposed to be working independently? How can you help them when they need it? And how can you create a balance between their educational needs as well as their emotional and physical needs? And what about yourself? Where are you in that balance? These can be tough questions and if you are struggling to answer them, please know that we would love to help. We can do so in a number of ways: • Providing subject specific help in areas where further explanation or motivation is needed • Spending a set time in regular intervals together with your children looking at what they have to do, devising a learning plan based on the demands of the school but adapted to their needs and abilities. This includes finding out what type of learner they are, and what motivates them to suggest an appropriate plan of action which will be monitored and followed up on. • Providing tools and guidelines for you to help your children organise themselves. Learning is an individual process. It should be a fun and inspiring experience. Our attentive and caring teachers are looking forward to motivate and guide your children through this process in a stimulating and engaging manner.