There's one tense in English that is a complete nightmare for native German speakers. I understand why, I can speak German, too. So in order to help those who are struggling through the murky waters of the past tenses, here's a little video (Yes! It's in German!) that may help to clear things up. At least I hope so. Here's the link: http://www.sofatutor.com/englisch/videos/simple-past-and-present-perfect?sofatutor_campaign=YouTube+Englisch&sofatutor_content=English%3A+Simple+Past+and+Present+Perfect&sofatutor_medium=VideoSeed&sofatutor_partner=youtube.com
For teacher's there are a ton of resources out there to help students practice the difference, because no matter how many times you explain it, the best way for them to learn is by doing. I've collected tons of different explanations, worksheets and games and as soon as I figure out how to upload files to Blogger I'll put them up.