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chronyx

Learning Spanish

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I need to learn Spanish fairly quickly. I have time in the day at the moment to dedicate to it and just wondered if there were any programs/methods that stood out above others.

Cheers!

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I need to learn Spanish fairly quickly. I have time in the day at the moment to dedicate to it and just wondered if there were any programs/methods that stood out above others.

Cheers!

If you want to be quick, immersion in a Spanish-speaking culture and a Spanish-speaking lover.

Unless you're really good with languages you will be slow doing it from home.

Spain is very cheap at the moment, if you're not working as your post suggests, do home study up until Christmas to get the basics in, then spend the worst part of the winter from Jan to March in Spain.

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If you want to be quick, immersion in a Spanish-speaking culture and a Spanish-speaking lover.

Unless you're really good with languages you will be slow doing it from home.

Spain is very cheap at the moment, if you're not working as your post suggests, do home study up until Christmas to get the basics in, then spend the worst part of the winter from Jan to March in Spain.

I'm heading out to Gran Canaria on the 9th of November with family for a week, but decided to buy a one way ticket and try workaway/helpx after that, so I'll defintely be immersed :lol:

Over-wintering is definitely on my mind :D

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When you're there then watching quiz programmes on the telly is good especially if they write out the questions & the answers - sit with a dictionary. Take lessons to get the grammar basics & start speaking as soon as possible. There is no easy way to learn - just hard work & as much exposure to the language as possible. Oh & look for a website called Casapresiocrash.

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I find Michel Thomas good for the beginner levels (if you can overlook his odd nasal voice!). But once you've nailed the basics nothing beats conversation with other people who are native speakers.

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I'm heading out to Gran Canaria on the 9th of November with family for a week, but decided to buy a one way ticket and try workaway/helpx after that, so I'll defintely be immersed :lol:

Over-wintering is definitely on my mind :D

Sounds brilliant but try and find a non-Canarian teacher who will teach you "real" Spanish otherwise when you go anywhere else no-one will understand you!

Plenty of Spanish mainlanders seeing out their 2-year unemployment rights in the Canaries, you should be able to make an arrangement with someone. Work will be hard to come by and badly paid but you don't need so much to live on.

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I found Open University very good.....studied to degree level, unfortunately the fees are much higher now. Get maximum exposure to spanish speakers. I would say don't worry about accents. The more accents you become familiar with the more speakers you will understand. Cuban spanish speakers typically pronounce words such as entonces without the final s......if you can follow them you will find the clearest speakers such as most colombians and mexicans very easy to understand.

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I found Open University very good.....studied to degree level, unfortunately the fees are much higher now. Get maximum exposure to spanish speakers. I would say don't worry about accents. The more accents you become familiar with the more speakers you will understand. Cuban spanish speakers typically pronounce words such as entonces without the final s......if you can follow them you will find the clearest speakers such as most colombians and mexicans very easy to understand.

My wife is Colombian and I love listening to her speak Spanish. The Spanish, in contrast, speak a much quicker and rougher version. It's much like the difference between West Country English and Scouse.

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I recommend Anki as an excellent memory aid tool

http://ankisrs.net/

Try finding Spanish tv online, spanish films etc. Vary your input, don't just trudge through a textbook.

You should track down that Spanish equivalent of HPC, some posters from there came on here a while back. Plenty of Spanish in a topic of your interest

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Adding to the benefits of immersion I knew somebody who post college went to South America, Peru or Chile, with not a word of Spanish. Stayed there for IIRC a year living the life and spoke it fluently afterwards.

I spoke to him after he came back and he had deliberately made no effort to learn any beforehand as he wanted the experience and real life challange after all the academic uni stuff.

I was impressed as I am a great preparor, need to research and have fall-back plans, and he just took off and went there.

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Guest eight

If you have a smartphone, download the DuoLingo app. Very good for the basics and quite fun.

I'm doing Portuguese on DuoLingo; got far, far further with it than I ever did by other means, including a personal tutor (too expensive and too damned gorgeous for me to be able to concentrate - she looked like Nelly Furtado's little sister, but I digress....)

Loads of stuff on Youtube and the wider internet. Probably never been easier to learn another tongue.

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I'm doing Portuguese on DuoLingo; got far, far further with it than I ever did by other means, including a personal tutor (too expensive and too damned gorgeous for me to be able to concentrate - she looked like Nelly Furtado's little sister, but I digress....)

Loads of stuff on Youtube and the wider internet. Probably never been easier to learn another tongue.

But it sounds like that was interfering with your learning of Portuguese :P

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Michael Thomas audiobooks. Nothing else comes close.

Listen to Spanish radio on line and try and memorize 50 - 60 words per day.

You don't need a huge vocabulary, I am sure I read that the average person only uses 1000 words per day or something.

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Sounds brilliant but try and find a non-Canarian teacher who will teach you "real" Spanish otherwise when you go anywhere else no-one will understand you!

Plenty of Spanish mainlanders seeing out their 2-year unemployment rights in the Canaries, you should be able to make an arrangement with someone. Work will be hard to come by and badly paid but you don't need so much to live on.

Yes that's right! One of my colleagues was from the Canaries! A Spanish lady I know described his accent as speaking Spanish like a Russian.

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Learn basics via any good grammar-based course. Michel Thomas is okay as a supplement tool but his 'magic bullet' seems to be heavy use of cognates, some of which are not the most obvious word and there are loads of 'falsos amigos' where the meaning is different or the translation doesn't exist. If you can afford a private tutor for a while, that works well. Try and get to a low intermediate level.

THEN go to Spain and book a couple of weeks in a private language school at intermediate level (they're quite cheap). Super intensive stuff. The first day you'll feel like your head is mashed but you soon pick up the pace. Makes you wonder why kids learn French or German in school for five years and can barely use the language.

Spain is good as there are plenty of people that don't speak english or their English is about as good as your Spanish. So they won't just talk English at you when you're trying to learn.

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Guest eight

But it sounds like that was interfering with your learning of Portuguese :P

Heh, I'm a happily married man and everything, and I honestly don't really "see" women any more, it's like that part of me has been switched off. Yet I swear I was head over heels in lust with this girl about six nanoseconds after she opened the door. I had to make my excuses and leave.

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Just a thought, there are many English people out in Spain now working from home teaching English as a foreign language to local Spaniards in their community TELF trained.....maybe when you are out there find someone and see if they could help you with your Spanish. ;)

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Michael Thomas audiobooks. Nothing else comes close.

Listen to Spanish radio on line and try and memorize 50 - 60 words per day.

You don't need a huge vocabulary, I am sure I read that the average person only uses 1000 words per day or something.

You could follow my son's twitter account Spanish GCSE tweets

It tweets every 30 minutes from 8am to 10.30pm giving you 30 words per day. There is a link in each tweet giving you the last 30 tweets for revision.

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