How can I learn Spanish?

Professional Development While Working at Home
Studying flickr photo shared by mer chau under a Creative Commons ( BY ) license

Spanish is not only melodic and beautiful to hear, but also an important language nowadays, as it is one of the top 5 language spoken worldwide, 21 countries list Spanish as an official language, and it is one of the most studied languages in the world. As it is quite influential through international politics of Spain and Latin America but also media, it is accessible to learn and there are many ways disposable to anyone interested in it. Some of the learning methods that are charged for as personal lessons, instructional CDs or language courses are cognitive learning of the language structure, vocabulary and grammar. Those followed by indirect learning through books, movies, radio etc makes a perfect blend of educational and fun language acquisition.

Personal Spanish lessons

Even though it might seem that personal Spanish lessons are the most expensive way to learn a language, it is the best and the most beneficial investment.

Spanish language is a living artifact with numerous dialects that have evolved differently in different places due to history, geography and culture. That is the reason why face-to face interaction with your Spanish teacher, a native speaker of the country whose Spanish you’re interested in, is the best way to learn it. Not only you learn by listening to them, but they can also provide you with an immediate feedback by correcting your pronunciation and grammar mistakes and relating cultural contexts.

Audio CDs

Buying a language instructional CD is less expensive, but has also proven to be less effective. It is a good way to start learning, but if not accompanied by another method, it can be rather inefficient. You can’t just learn a new language by passively listening a CD and doing grammar exercises whenever you feel like. The option not to it regularly leaves the freedom to be inconsistent. Still, there are good audio CDs that focus on not only listening, but also speaking, reading and writing.

Free online courses

This is probably the most accessible way to learn Spanish. The benefits are that they are interactive and user-friendly as they contain a simple and thoughtful software devices. Not only do you learn the grammatical aspects of a language, but you also get the opportunity to be evaluated by a native speaker. Duolingo is a friendly social learning platform where learners are motivated by getting badges and awards for completing milestones. Another online course is Livemocha, where you learn a language by teaching somebody else a language. Thus, you connect to many teachers worldwide and share methods and experiences. Other famous ones are Mindsnacks and Nulu.

And of course, the unconscious way of learning a language is by such activities as listening to Spanish music, Spanish local radio and TV programs, reading Spanish books and watching movies or series in Spanish. The best thing about all these is that you learn the common, everyday colloquial language, the phrases, connotations and contexts that will most likely get you by. But those are best when accompanied by some of the previously mentioned ways, as just receiving without language production tends to be not as efficient. A combination of all these would be the best, with the possibility to interact with a native speaker.


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