I know you want to learn Spanish. It’s like a dream. Being fluent in Spanish. Conversing with the Spanish like a real native (shouting or not).
I was in that same position one day.
I had a dream: winning the lottery.
I travelled all over the world in my dreams, not worrying of how to get the next coin to buy food, pay hotels, flights or any other activities.
I had a dream, but I never used to buy lottery tickets.
Wake up, David. Back to reality… or keep dreaming.
Now, here’s my question: Is your dream of learning Spanish similar to the lottery one I had?
What are you really doing to learn Spanish?
This article is your “snap” and the beginning of the new learning Spanish habit
IT’S USELESS WITHOUT CONSISTENCY
If you already know the four pillars to learn Spanish, and have read my 6 tips to improve your Spanish, today I’m bringing you 3 more good ones to add to the lot.
But remember, learning a language is always a matter of consistency.
It’s not 100m sprint, but a lifetime marathon.
(I think I must apply this to my own blogging consistency!)
Have you ever played an instrument? It’s a similar idea. You practice, you get better. You don’t practice, you don’t move forward; and become rusty.
Applying with consistency the 3 tips I’m about to give you will transform you.
Speaking Spanish is around the corner!
3 MORE TIPS TO LEARN SPANISH
The 2-hour formula
First though you have to promise me something : that you will use this one in an educational way. Promised?
Good. Let’s keep reading.
The 2-hour formula consists of watching TV everyday for 2 hours in Spanish.
Yes, in Spanish. Preferably, in the Spanish version of the country where you live, but other accents from other Spanish-speaking countries will work as well (it was great watching the BBC every now and then when I lived in the US).
(Don’t put a 4 after the 2 to switch to channels in English)
Spending two hours in front of the TV listening to Spanish will improve your understanding very much.
The challenge here is not to give up. You might feel frustrated, but give it time.
It took me some good 8-10 months before I began picking up more and more things in English.
I know you will be tempted to switch channels. The TV seems to be sweeter when it sounds in English, doesn’t?
Reading childrens books will improve your Spanish if you are a beginner.
Do you remember tales such as “Sleeping Beauty”, “Little Red Riding Hood”, “Cinderella”, “The Frog Prince”, “Snow White”, “Hansel and Gretel”?
I would say these tales are some of the most popular all around the world. And they are translated into many languages; Spanish amongst them, of course.
Don’t worry, you won’t be “immature” for reading children books. If it makes you feel immature ( just don’t tell anybody ! )
I encourage you to read this type of literature, which you will know in your own language, forgetting about whether it’s for children.
Your Spanish will improve progressively along the TV method.
(Or… are you ready for some Spanish comics?)
All right, let’s do something. Let’s make a list of 3 situations where you can put into practice your Spanish.
If you don’t live in Spain (or any other Spanish-speaking country):
• Register in a public or private course in Spanish (college, high school, associations, etc).
• Look for English-speaking people in your town and ask them if they are willing to teach you Spanish (if they don’t teach just make it conversational Spanish, it’ll work as well).
• Find groups on the Internet (there are people out there willing to do linguistic interchange via Skype).
(You knew about the opening question and exclamation marks in Spanish, right)
If you live in Spain:
• Enrol in a course to learn Spanish for foreigners (there are hundreds of them).
• Join a club where you previously make sure there’s no English-speaking people (that will force you to survive!).
• Speak Spanish in bars, restaurants, supermarkets, and similar environments (they will probably answer in English, and you’ll keep on in Spanish. They’ll keep trying, you’ll insist, and so forth until nobody ever says a word in English to you).
In Spanish we have a saying that may sound weird in English: “experience is the mother of science”. Not really sure if there’s any similar one in English.
What I truly mean is that you need to be “action-oriented” to develop you Spanish language skills.
It’s not rocket science, but “experience science”.
When did you say you are going to start implementing these 3 tips to learn Spanish? 😉
Credit Image: Artotem, Fernando, Tom Magliery, Enokson
P. S.: One more thing… visit please my new Website Official Translators!
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And don’t forget to “share the knowledge”
As usual a very good article, interesting and I agree with you over learning Spanish, but as I have problems remembering what I have previously learnt on my computer, no chance.
My husband went through many courses with Jane Cronin and loved speaking both Spanish, French and a little German, of course he translated for me and I thought “why Bother” and then of course what happened? Colin Died, not only did I lose a husband but also my translator, so yes David I agree we should learn Spanish, but I think I am a lost cause.
David Ruiz says
Learning languages is quite complex, not an easy job. Some people seem to have a natural ability for it, but takes a lot of effort and dedication. Also, personal issues, whether things are going well or not, make a difference when learning a foreign language.
All the best Jess
I’ll practice that
David Ruiz says
Glad to hear that Sam
You’re right about watching TV in Spanish, David. When I’m in Spain I watch gameshows, because in programmes like Ahora Caigo the question appears on the screen as well as being asked by the quizmaster. I sometimes record it to my PC and slow it down, as some of the conversation is a bit quick! Thanks for a very inteesting blog.
David Ruiz says
I didn’t think about that type of gameshows with questions. You’re right, that can help a lot, as they usually put it on the screen. I might include this tip in a future article 😉
Thanks for letting me know Paul,