Right now the world is sharing a unique experience. With holidays on hold, some countries in quarantine and others practising social distancing, we are all spending more time at home. Out of motivation (OK maybe boredom), plenty of us are renewing our language learning efforts. At Lingoda, we are excited about the trend to find a productive use of the extra time we have these days.
As language learning experts, we want to offer tips to help people make progress on their goal of learning Spanish. If your goal is to move to a Spanish-speaking country, use Spanish in a professional environment, or learn Spanish in a short amount of time, we are ready to kick-start the learning process.
Let’s begin by taking a look at the best way to learn Spanish
1. Choose which Spanish to learn
Choosing which Spanish to learn is the best way to start learning Spanish. We’ve talked before at Lingoda about how Spanish varies from country to country. Vocabulary, inflection, pronunciation, culture, and slang are unique to each region of the Spanish-speaking world.
The first way to get serious about learning Spanish is to narrow your scope. Focus your efforts by choosing one country and sticking with it. Go with Spain Spanish or a specific Latin American Spanish like Spanish from Mexico. Every time you look up vocabulary or resources, choose content from that country. This will eliminate the headache of scrolling through multiple translations. It will forever cut down on time and the frustration of not knowing which word to memorize.
2. Immerse yourself
The best way to learn Spanish is to act like a baby. Excuse me? Well, babies learn languages the natural way. Before they ever speak, they are immersed in language and spend all their time listening to it. Eventually when they talk, that language naturally comes out.
Just like a baby, surround yourself with the language you want to learn. Give yourself the total immersive experience without leaving home. Read Spanish books for beginners. Learn some jokes or quotes in your target language. Get the popcorn ready and watch movies in Spanish. Subscribe to a Spanish-language podcast. Listen to music in Spanish and follow along with the letras or lyrics online.
If you’ve ever met a non-Korean fan of K-Pop or K-Dramas, you already know people practising this principle. The power of immersion allows super-fans to speak Korean even when they didn’t grow up around it. You can create the same environment for yourself in Spanish by consistently choosing Spanish-language entertainment. If you aren’t ready to be a super-fan, try it out one day a week. On Wednesdays we wear pink and watch Spanish movies!
Online Spanish lessons to supplement self-study
After choosing a country and building your own Spanish entertainment immersion, the best way to learn Spanish is to get talking. Just like a baby starting to speak, the more consistently you get feedback about your speaking ability, the faster you will learn to speak correctly.
In the time of social distancing, the best way to learn Spanish is to take things online. Internet tools give you access to tons of Spanish-language resources. Online you have the unique ability to connect with native Spanish-speakers through video chat.
There are two things you can do to supplement your self-study online. First, use chat apps or language apps to meet a native Spanish speaker for language exchange. Help them with English and you can get Spanish help for free. Next, find yourself an online Spanish tutor who gives you structured lessons each week. An online tutor will make sure that you learn correct Spanish grammar and improve your Spanish accent.
Self-study can take you a long way on your Spanish learning journey. From choosing a country to immersing yourself in Spanish entertainment, these are two huge steps that you can do on your own. Getting an online tutor gives you that extra chance to level up.