Learning Spanish and all that it entails
Originally, Spanish was derived from a dialect of Spoken Latin introduced by the Romans during the second Punic war. Today, over 21 countries in the world speak Spanish including Argentina, Mexico, Puerto Rico and Uruguay.
Why Is Spanish Important?
Presently, Spanish is the third most widely spoken language in the world following Mandarin directly. Over 400million people worldwide speak Spanish, and with Spain being among the top desirable countries to live in based on good health and economy, it is no wonder a lot of people are looking for the best way to learn Spanish.
Without a doubt, the importance of the Spanish language is clear. There are predictions about Spanish having over 530 million speakers by the year 2050. With Spanish being the official second language used for international communication, and the official third for politics and culture, learning Spanish is definitely not a waste of time. You never know where passion, business and communication will take you in the future.
Why Do People Learn Spanish?
People choose to learn Spanish for a lot of reasons. Today, Spanish is among the top 3 best foreign languages to learn. Why do people actually learn Spanish?
It is linked with the core values in the world
Whether you find yourself passionate about arts, technology, culture or fashion, Spanish is a leading force in those sectors. In order to increase your accessibility and expand your horizon, you should consider being a fluent speaker of the language.
For travel purposes
If you are a traveller, either by passion or profession, or you hope to travel around the world someday, then Spanish is one language you should learn. You will likely meet a Spaniard in every city, town or village of a country you visit. It is better to travel equipped and with more advantages on your side.
Increase your employability
A lot of employers prefer their employees to have the added advantage of a foreign language. If the nature of your job is going to put you on the road a lot, then your employer is likely to prefer Spanish as your extra language. Even in cases where your job is mostly online, about 10% of everything done online is in Spanish, so you have absolutely no excuse.
To keep the mind sharp
Being bilingual is not a walk in the park. Basically, anyone with the intellect and patience required to learn a second language, especially a language as broad as Spanish, has a sharp mind. One of the best mind exercises you can do is to learn a new language.
For fun purposes
some people take language classes just for the fun of it.
Before Taking A Spanish Class
If you are interested in learning Spanish, then you may heard a lot of possible ways from different people. Whether you have had suggestions to take an online class, tutor yourself, register for a physical class, go to Spain, or spend a week watching Spanish movies without subtitles, these are all nice suggestions. However, I am pretty sure you want to know the best way to learn Spanish in terms of speed, understanding and fluency. Before you commence, here are a few things you should know about learning Spanish.
Do not try to course-crash
If you have a business meeting in Spain next week where more than half of the people in attendance are going to be Spanish? So they are probably going to be mixing up English and Spanish while communicating, then taking a Spanish class this week is probably not a good idea. Even if you put in 27 hours in a day, you would not get the desired result.
The same way you do not start lifting 120kg weights on your first day is the same way you do not learn Spanish in a week. Baby steps are better. 30-45 minutes a day does a better job. So, if you need Spanish urgently, consider hiring a Spanish translator, or you could learn the basic terms that will be more useful.
Consistency is key
If you are planning to learn Spanish back to back for the first week, and then rest the next week, your learning rate will be significantly affected. With inconsistency, there is a high chance of information loss. The moment you make up your mind to learn Spanish, know that it is a continuous step; there will never be break week or break months. Slowly and consistently, it will become a part of you.
All those notes you are writing down will not do the amount of good that Speaking Spanish will do to you. Babies do not learn to talk by taking a mental note of everything you are saying and suddenly getting up at age 3 to start speaking fluently. They make mistakes, they blab, they pronounce words wrongly, but eventually, they learn. Get into a Spanish gathering filled with fluent Spanish speakers and start saying something, they would laugh and misunderstand, but you would learn even faster. There is no such thing as the perfect time to start speaking.
Invest some money into it
One of the untrue things you would hear is that you can learn Spanish fluently with absolutely free classes. Yes, it is possible to learn a part of Spanish taking free courses, but only when you commit your money would you receive deeper, easier learning. This does not mean you should spend your last money on a course. If you genuinely are low on cash, then you can use free sites and with steady and consistent learning, you would learn enough Spanish.
Get a study plan
Never overlook the power of a good plan. Giving yourself limited time even though there is no pressure will help you learn faster. If you do not attach time to it, then it becomes difficult to push harder, since your mind already knows that you have until forever to learn it. Get a routine, and make it work. Choose a routine that does not interfere with your schedule, otherwise it will be difficult to stick with the routine. Create checklists, give yourself difficult tasks like writing your first Spanish short story a month after your first class; just do whatever you can to create that limit. You will notice that when you stick to your plan, you will even exceed your expectations.
Best Way To Learn Spanish
If you are in search of the best way to learn Spanish, then you are considering a lot of factors. What do people consider as a good Spanish lesson?
A good Spanish lesson should be completed quickly. Bulky and boring lessons are usually not the best, as they end up boring students into in-completion.
The Spanish lesson should be interactive, giving room for questions and answers, voice-overs and a lot of activities. The fastest method of learning is by proper interaction.
A good lesson starts from the root. There are some deep parts that are very sensitive, and that should receive in-depth attention to ensure ease of knowledge.
Nobody wants to spend so much time trying to learn Spanish only to discover that you were taught wrongly. A good Spanish class should be accurate.
The key to learning how to speak Spanish
is to do it right. You can spend 6 months to learn something that would take about a year if you do it correctly. By following a few, effective principles, you can learn Spanish properly. We have taken out time to list some tried tips that can help bring your Spanish speaking dreams to reality. They are;
Listen To Podcast
Podcasts are digital audios placed online, available for download. Why this method seems very effective is because it can be applied anywhere. You do not have to be seated in a classroom, or poised with a pen and paper. All you need to do is listen properly. You can listen to a podcast on your way to work, while doing chores, or while resting. What podcasts do is that they work on your listening and speaking abilities.
The benefits of listening to podcasts are numerous. First, they allow you to learn at your own pace; you can easily repeat until you get it right. Also, you have the opportunity to listen to native Spanish speakers, making the process even easier. Native Spanish speakers provide you with a real-life application to practice Spanish. Communicating with voice-overs can seem easy, but when you are faced with a real Spaniard, then you have to know what you are saying. This is what the Podcast gives you. There are different topics and levels you can choose from, to help you prioritize.
Some popular Podcasts that are really helpful include; SpanishPod101, Audiria and A Zero to A Hero.
Locate An Online Tutor
This is one of the best and most convenient way to learn Spanish from anywhere at any time. Stay at home, have a lesson from your office at your lunch break or from a cafe with your head phones. Online lessons are just as effective as a private lesson in person, with the only difference, that you and your tutor save travel time and money. With one-on-one online lessons you get the opportunity to go at your own pace, and the total focus is on you, so chances are high that you would get a better understanding. All you need to do is to find an excellent Spanish tutor that is patient, and easygoing.
There are many websites where you can find good Spanish tutors at affordable rates. You get to choose your tutor after targeting the exact country you want to concentrate on. You also get to choose a schedule so that you can work at the best time for you. Some of the sites that offer these services are; Italki.com, Wyzants, Preply and AmazingTalker.
These services are pretty affordable, and payments are mostly made hourly.
Take a Vacation to Spain
Remember that vacation you always talked about? Why not move it to Spain, it has great views, it is pretty adventurous and what better place to learn Spanish? Just ensure that you do not get lost in all the fun and forget your goals. While learning Spanish in Spain, you should know that the accent will be very much present. Also, note that accents vary regionally in Spanish, just like everywhere else. It will be a very difficult experience from when you try an online course, so be prepared for it.
Even if it might be more difficult and challenging, it will be much faster. While in Spain, do not just sit in your hotel room expecting to learn from your windows and attendants. Go out to the streets, visit the market, observe conversations, engage people in conversations; all you need to know is how to say ‘I am not very good with Spanish’ in Spanish. You might find a patient person willing to take the time with you. Face your fears and speak until you actually start speaking. Do not be harsh on yourself. Expect to make mistakes, and just have fun while you are at it.
Language Apps and Websites
Recent innovations have been added to a lot of Language Apps to improve language learning efficiency. Language Apps are also a good means of learning to speak Spanish. Also, their flexibility allows you to reach out and learn from anywhere. You can learn at your own pace and always repeat the course to gain more clarity. The good ones have voice recordings of native Spanish speakers repeating every word, so you do not just have to read the word and wonder how to pronounce. They also have exercises after each course to help ensure that you truly understand what you are learning.
There are free language apps like Duolingo, MemRise, Busuu and Babbel. They also have free trial classes where you get to learn the basics free and then you can decide to go further by paying the required fee. We recommend this method for people with a tight schedule because you do not have to stick to any particular time before using it.
Using Flashcard Apps
Flashcard Apps are effective study materials. Before the advent of technology, flashcards were analog and were still a great means of studying. When technology made them into Apps, it increased their effectiveness by adding ease and flexibility. Today, a lot of languages can be learnt by using Flashcard Apps.
Flashcard apps are very affordable and allow for free trials for a period. They have an excellent way of organization, making your Spanish learning quest even easier. It is faster to learn when things are done in a progressive and orderly manner, and this is what flashcards can do for you. All you need to do is find the right flashcard apps for yourself. When choosing a flashcard, choose one that allows space repetitions. Some examples of great flashcard Apps that can help achieve your Spanish goals include; FluentU and Anki app.
This is good for people who have a lot of time. Maybe you are on holidays and need to pick up a new hobby, try the general classroom learning. Although this method is not as focused on only you as you may want it to be, it is also pretty efficient. The benefits of this option is that the competition encourages you. You can see other people that share a common language learning goal with you, and that is really encouraging.
What’s more, you get to network. Learning while networking is better because then the chances that you will lose interest are pretty slim. Despite the fact that the difference in the level of assimilation can be annoying, as your teacher needs to make sure everyone understands, you can still find your ground. If you feel that the class is too fast for you or too slow for you, you can always include a Language app and do your homework to meet up with your own pace.
Classroom learning can be fun, especially when you meet people that are around your age grade. It is better to find a class with fewer persons, as the focus level will be good and understanding better.
Spanish is one of the most widely accepted foreign languages you can learn. It is very engaging and interesting. If you are doing it, make sure you are doing it right. With all the killer tips listed in this article, if you do not have the determination to learn Spanish, then you would still be unable to learn.
In general, the best way to learn Spanish is to be very determined about it. No matter how long it takes, decide never to quit, because you can be very sure that the feeling to quit will arise. You must give yourself a reason to continue, and go through with it. You would be very proud of yourself when you become a fluent Spanish speaker. Cheers to you on this journey to becoming a fluent Spanish speaker.