Reading Comprehension


Practice Texts for German Reading Comprehension:

Beginner Level


Intermediate Level page

Quick paragraphs to test your students’ German reading comprehension. This page features links to free downloadable worksheets with short German reading texts for various language levels. The texts are usually accompanied by multiple-choice questions to test German reading comprehension. The texts can also be used for other classroom purposes, such as freestyle questions, classroom discussions, role play, dictations etc.  Some of the texts on this page are based on longer, bilingual articles on our deutschdrang blog page. If that is the case, additional related activities such as vocabulary or grammar exercises may be available on the blog page.

The text files and activities created by are for private or classroom use only and may not be used in any publication or for-profit purpose without the author’s prior written consent. By downloading or copying these files, you agree to these terms of use.

Creating the materials on this website has taken hundreds of hours of unpaid work, and while is a labor of love, a small Paypal donation would be greatly appreciated if you have found the materials on this website to be of use to you.


Templates for grammatical scavenger hunts that can be performed with almost any reading text of about one page in length can be found here: Grammatical Scavenger Hunts.


deutschbueffler2B = Beginner / I = Intermediate / A = Advanced

Der Deutschbüffler: monthly Pdf newsletter with a reading text and vocabulary/grammar activities. Level A1/A2 (beginner/advanced beginner).  Mostly German, some include bilingual German/English. 

Digital downloads of 2015 and 2016 issues at a nominal cost.  

Issues that are currently still free:  Jan. 2017; Feb. 2017; Mär. 2017; Apr. 2017; Mai 2017; Jun. 2017; Jul. 2017; Aug. 2017; Sep. 2017; Okt. 2017; Nov. 2017;


99 Luftballons    B / I    (background story about the famous song; blog with links to video and lyrics)

Autofahren in Deutschland   B  (comprehension questions about a website, rather than a reading text). Available in German and English.

Dankeschön für saubere Felder   B  (online multiple-choice exercise about a short poster)

Das alte Haus   B  (online comprehension exercise; more than one answer may be correct)

Das fremde Kind    B / I   (nach einer Geschichte von Johann Peter Hebel)

Der Arztbesuch    B (easy reading text with comprehension and vocabulary exercises)

Der Drache von Krakau     B / I    (reading text with comprehension and vocabulary exercises)

Der durstige Radfahrer   B (online reading comprehension and grammar exercise)

Der Feueralarm    B  (reading text with questions, separable prefix exercise, and vocabulary)

Der geheilte Patient     B  (reading text with comprehension exercise)

Der kleine Philip  B   (reading text with comprehension and vocabulary exercises, main topic: house/household)

Der Heilige Abend     B (reading text with questions and imperative exercise)

Der kluge Torwächter      B / I   (reading text with true/false questions, vocabulary exercise, and simple past exercise)

Der Rattenfänger von Hameln    B  (The Pied Piper of Hamelin, with comprehension and vocabulary exercises)

Der Schäfer und die Nixe    B / I   (complete a short text with words from a word bank)

Der Urwalddoktor Albert Schweitzer    B  (reading text with questions and vocabulary exercise)

Die Geschichte vom Suppen-Kaspar   (a children’s poem by Heinrich Hoffmann)   B

Die Geschwister Scholl    B  (reading text and vocabulary/comprehension exercises)

Die junge Schwalbe   B  (easy pdf reading text, true/false questions and vocabulary)

Die Lorelei    B / I  (famous poem by Heinrich Heine, with comprehension questions and vocabulary match-up)

Die Schildbürger und der Maulwurf     B / I  (reading text with comprehension and vocabulary exercises)

Die Seifenblase (poem by Joachim Ringelnatz): online exercise; audio version of the poem.

Die Trümmerfrauen: Worksheet with verb questions. Also available as an online reading comprehension exercise.   B / I

Die Wahrsagerin     B  (reading text with match-up vocabulary exercise and short future tense exercise)

german reading comprehensionEin Hund für Leonie   B (easy reading text with vocabulary exercises)

Ein kluger Schmuggler  B (reading text with comprehension, vocabulary and accusative exercises; pdf format)

Ein Ostermärchen   B (fun story by Joachim Ringelnatz; with vocabulary and comprehension exercises); video about the story.

Eine Reise mit dem Flugzeug   (very easy reading text with bilingual illustrations for airport vocabulary)   B

Ein Riesenkürbis (reading text with comprehension, vocabulary, and past participle exercises)   B

Falsch verbunden  (eine Bildergeschichte mit Richtig/Falsch Fragen). Nur Deutsch.  B

Hänsel und Gretel (Kinderlied)   B / I  (video) (answer sheet)

Hans im Glück  (based on Grimm fairy tale)   B

Hasso und der Hasser (not reading passage, but an easy video story with a comprehension worksheet)

Hundehaltung in der Stadt Köln   B   (online comprehension exercise about a website on keeping dogs in the city of Cologne)

Im Notfall   B / I  (reading text about the emergency number 112, with true/false questions)

Julias Familie    B   (reading text and comprehension questions about a family)

Kluge Menschen denken rund   B/I (reading text about a fictitious caveman family; with vocabulary exercises and simple past exercise)

Melitta Bentz    (reading text with questions and exercises)

Mostly Martha   B  (reading text with questions and dative exercise; summary of the movie “Mostly Martha”)

aelterwerden-2Robert Koch    B  (reading text with exercises on vocabulary and adjective endings)

Sind wir zu schnell? (pdf reading text with exercises on vocabulary and two-way prepositions)    B

Über das Älterwerden  (poem with questions and online exercise; could also be used as a starting point in a conversation class)   B / I

Unbelohnte Höflichkeit (online exercise to check reading comprehension)   B

Verlaufen      B  (reading text with questions and three exercises)

Wer findet den Dieb/die Diebin? Somebody has stolen Oma Oppenheimer’s apple pie. Help her find the thief by eliminating suspects. Beginner-level online exercise.  B

Wie bitte? Kein Eis?   B / I    (blog)

Wie man sich bettet, so liegt man   B / I (focus on reflexive pronouns and verbs); an online version of the story that focuses on the reflexive pronouns (could be used as a follow-up to the reading passage)


Many excellent short German texts for reading comprehension, usually with vocab and/or grammar exercises.

Many short German texts with audio, reading comprehension, and vocab exercises

Many free short illustrated German books, mostly for early learners, but often with specific vocabulary like weather, clothing etc.

A fantastic resource about fables with lots of worksheets, online exercises, and general information.

Easy and free online reading books; intended for early readers, but can be used very well by beginner-level German students as well. The books are available in 7 languages so that different languages could be compared. Audio files for the books and games are also available.

Many short reading texts, with lots of illustrations, to practice reading. No activities, but a good length to use for reading comprehension.

A couple of short reading texts with vocab from Der Deutschraum.

Large pdf file with various reading texts and exercises created by the Landesschulrat Tirol. Very usable for German as a foreign language.


16 Replies to “Reading Comprehension

  1. I LOVE Deutschbuffler – I notice that the ones going back to January 2015 are no longer available. And did it end in November 2017? I find there is always something relevant to the unit I’m doing as a supplemental reading? Thanks for this resource!

    1. I am happy that you find “Der Deutschbüffler” a useful resource. Unfortunately, I had to discontinue producing it as I am technically retired now and simply do not have as much time to create content. You are correct that the November 2017 issue was the last issue. I am in the process of moving the older issues to a digital download format. I feel that I have produced a lot of free content over the years that has generated virtually no income. In fact, it barely covers the expenses of hosting the website. As a result, I have decided to make some of the more labor-intensive resources available as digital downloads. You can find the missing issues of “Der Deutschbüffler” at a nominal cost here: You may also want to download the remaining free issues that I have not removed yet while you still can. 🙂 Thanks for your support and your kind words.

      1. Thank you so much! I just made a (too small) donation, and thank you for this material! There’s a site, Teachers pay Teachers that you might check out. Thanks again for the generosity of sharing your hard work. It’s awesome!

      2. Thanks. I am aware that there are several sites like Teachers Pay Teachers, but there are a lot of materials on my website that don’t easily fit into that kind of format (e.g. Weekly Brick units, visuals), so I’m trying to keep the deutschdrang website going. I’m not doing to make money per se, but I’d like to be able to at least cover the expenses associated with the website/domain. Thank you very much for your support and for voicing your appreciation. It makes many hours of effort and work worthwhile.

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