Notes from Spain and Spanish Forum Learn REAL Spanish now!  

Go Back   Notes from Spain and Spanish Forum > Spanish Forum > Learning Spanish

Notices

Reply
 
Thread Tools Display Modes
Old 22nd November 2007, 04:58 PM   #21
shrty411
Shrty411
 
shrty411's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2007
Location: Ypsilanti Michigan
Posts: 6
Default

Quote:
But she has a point! :-) Many people speak a language beautifully without having any clue about grammar. I'm finding that the more Spanish I read and listen to, the more I'm actually able to come up with proper grammar just because it sounds right. I suspect this is a much faster way to learn than learning grammar! :-)
I have suspected that, also. Should I learn the tenses or just learn the words?

This is a very interesting thread. I was thinking that maybe I was jumping around too much.

Most "beginner" sites, books etc are too basic, yet I'm not up to an intermediate level. That's why I love IB pod casts they are just right.

I don't have a lot of time to practice on the computer( interactive sites), so I do the flashcard thing. I found a few workbooks at a used book store that are just a bit beyond me, but I hope I will progress to them soon.
I like to see the words I'm using, so just audio seems a bit lacking.

I also try to print out some Spanish "fluff" articles to read. I can understand at least the point of the article (I think Ben suggested that that was a good way to go!) I also put on a "muy pequeño" Spanish AM station here ( only on at night). I can understand the music better than the DJs! Heck I can understand the Mexican music better than some American music!!

I was interested if anyone had a "method " to learning vocab. Do you do groups or words ( animals, colors etc) or just words that seem like you would use?

Maria

Last edited by shrty411; 22nd November 2007 at 06:35 PM. Reason: added thought
shrty411 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 22nd November 2007, 06:34 PM   #22
greytop
Hero Forero
 
greytop's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2006
Location: Pego, Spain
Posts: 3,365
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by shrty411 View Post
.....
I was interested if anyone had a "method " to learning vocab. Do you do groups or words ( animals, colors etc) or just words that seem like you would use?

Maria
It's a very personal thing and you need to experiment. Initially I concentrated on basic lists of words such as colours, food, parts of the body, weather terms, numbers (draw or use pictures where possible). Better to make these up yourself if you have time, as just looking for them and writing them down starts the learning process.
Other people like learning songs or watching films - but the visuals can get in the way of vocabulary.
As you get more confident then there are plenty of audio sources listed in the forum. Start with the BBC learning Spanish or radio plus of course the NIS podcasts. These podcasts from spanishpodcast.org are also very clear & easy to understand.
And don't go at it too fast. Better a little and often than long sessions.
good luck - brian
greytop is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 22nd November 2007, 08:11 PM   #23
richardksa
Jedi Forero
 
richardksa's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2006
Location: Madrid
Posts: 1,848
Default

I find my vocab has increased dramatically since writing regularly. Of course it helps if you have someone to write to and they don´t mind the odd mistake and making the several corrections. If you have no one to write to, , then try writing an essay about your life, your hobby, or whatever. You will find after the umpteenth time of looking up a word, you will actually remember it at the umpteenth + 1 time.
richardksa is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 22nd November 2007, 08:21 PM   #24
tad
virtual idiot
 
tad's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2006
Location: palmers green
Posts: 2,402
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by richardksa View Post
I find my vocab has increased dramatically since writing regularly.
This was the theory behind my ¡VUELVE! thread. People writing short pieces on a subject that interests everyone. I still don't get why it didn't take off
tad is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 23rd November 2007, 03:18 PM   #25
shrty411
Shrty411
 
shrty411's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2007
Location: Ypsilanti Michigan
Posts: 6
Default

Thanks Greytop and Richardksa for the advice. I find writing thing down is my best ( but not only) method. I made flash cards. When I see a word used often in Spanish print, I add it. I've only been at it about 6 weeks,so maybe i'm impatient! I do seee some progress!

I'm finding this forum very helpful!!


Maria
shrty411 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 23rd November 2007, 07:26 PM   #26
jaybeezy50
Knowledge is POWER!
 
Join Date: Nov 2007
Location: Utah, USA
Posts: 1
Default Here's what I do

I have subscribed to many Spanish Course's newsletters. They are very very informative and fun to read. If I don't know a word I look it up and try to use it in conversation that day and hopefully all the days after.
jaybeezy50 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 25th November 2007, 05:53 PM   #27
karena
Super Forero
 
karena's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2007
Location: SE USA
Posts: 210
Default

I've been a bit lax about my Spanish lately... perhaps it's because I have the attention span of a fly... anyway, I try to read exclusively in Spanish, listen to podcasts. There's a series I've been listening to that's quite good, La historia de quién soy (http://www.vozlatinaradio.org/radio-historia.php). I also try to watch movies in Spanish, but I've seen all the ones available at my library. What I really need help with is conversational Spanish. I might be able to set up something here in town with a very nice lady who wants to help me. The poor thing doesn't know what she's getting into. She's a native of Mexico. I really should take advantage of Skype more...
karena is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 25th November 2007, 06:10 PM   #28
Edith
Pangolin Forero
 
Edith's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2006
Location: Países Bajos
Posts: 3,802
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by karena View Post
I've been a bit lax about my Spanish lately... perhaps it's because I have the attention span of a fly... anyway, I try to read exclusively in Spanish, listen to podcasts. There's a series I've been listening to that's quite good, La historia de quién soy (http://www.vozlatinaradio.org/radio-historia.php). I also try to watch movies in Spanish, but I've seen all the ones available at my library. What I really need help with is conversational Spanish. I might be able to set up something here in town with a very nice lady who wants to help me. The poor thing doesn't know what she's getting into. She's a native of Mexico. I really should take advantage of Skype more...
Hey Karen, long time no see!

True, there is so much to do on the Internet these days that you could spend every minute of your spare time listening to podcasts or watching videos. Apart from that, I have to choose between learning more Spanish or brushing up on my English (I lost track of all the ESL resources on the Internet!).

I have to agree with you though - nothing beats the real thing, i.e. talking to a native speaker on a regular basis. Listening and reading will help you to hone your comprehension and vocab skills, but you need to speak the language as well.
Edith is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 25th November 2007, 06:26 PM   #29
Edith
Pangolin Forero
 
Edith's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2006
Location: Países Bajos
Posts: 3,802
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by shrty411 View Post
I was interested if anyone had a "method " to learning vocab.
Not really, but my daily exposure to the Spanish language (reading, listening, watching and writing) has been a great help over the past six years. I always keep a notebook ready when I'm listening to the podcasts or when I'm watching Spanish TV. There used to be a time when I looked up almost every new word, but this will keep you from learning in a more 'fun' sort of way.

IMO, any Spanish-related activity (going to a concert, watching a Spanish-language movie, etc.) will help you to learn more.

Compiling special groups of words is something which I'm definitely interested in, but I find it rather time-consuming as well. Yet it may pay off to keep separate lists, for instance when you are interested in certain topics. I just learned the Spanish word for rhubarb, ruibarbo (Gary mentioned rhubarb on another thread and I decided to look up its Spanish equivalent). Now I will file it under FRUITS AND VEGETABLES.

Last edited by Edith; 25th November 2007 at 06:35 PM. Reason: More on vocab
Edith is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 27th November 2007, 02:08 AM   #30
karena
Super Forero
 
karena's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2007
Location: SE USA
Posts: 210
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by Edith View Post
Hey Karen, long time no see!

True, there is so much to do on the Internet these days that you could spend every minute of your spare time listening to podcasts or watching videos. Apart from that, I have to choose between learning more Spanish or brushing up on my English (I lost track of all the ESL resources on the Internet!).

I have to agree with you though - nothing beats the real thing, i.e. talking to a native speaker on a regular basis. Listening and reading will help you to hone your comprehension and vocab skills, but you need to speak the language as well.
It's overwhelming the number of sites and such online, isn't it. You're right though... nothing beats chatting face to face.
karena is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 27th November 2007, 01:28 PM   #31
Blackle
Blackle
 
Join Date: Nov 2007
Location: Malaga, Spain
Posts: 1
Default My program in Malaga

I've been studying in Malaga, Spain, for about six months and i love it! I'm at the University of Malaga, at their campus for Spanish programs, which is great - near the center of the city. I also attend "intercambio" events almost weekly, which are get-togethers arranged by young people mostly that help spanish people practice their english (or whatever language you speak) and you practice your Spanish with them. It's a great way to make friends also! I would recommend it highly to anyone, and I imagine they have this kind of thing available in any major city in Spain.

A good resource I can recommend is the agency I used to set up my courses and accommodation here in Malaga, and who also provide all kinds of services once you're here. They were especially helpful to me at the beginning when i was pretty dazed and confused to be in a completely new place.

Also, the best thing I can recommend to aprender más is to get a Spanish girlfriend/boyfriend! It does wonders... or at least a really good Spanish friend

Last edited by eldeano; 5th January 2008 at 10:13 PM. Reason: Advertising link removed
Blackle is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 27th November 2007, 02:23 PM   #32
eldeano
He's the most tip top
 
eldeano's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2006
Location: UK
Posts: 3,890
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by Blackle View Post
A good resource I can recommend is the agency I used to set up my courses and accommodation here in Malaga, and who also provide all kinds of services once you're here. They were especially helpful to me at the beginning when i was pretty dazed and confused to be in a completely new place.

Blackle. Bienvenido al foro.

How did you find out about that agency? Was it recommended to you... or are you linked to it in some way?

Last edited by eldeano; 5th January 2008 at 10:14 PM.
eldeano is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10th December 2007, 03:48 PM   #33
quickcrimson
Novato
 
Join Date: Aug 2007
Posts: 3
Default

I'm still needing to keep up with my Czech and German since I moved to the Czech Republic, but I try to do something daily with regards to Spanish.

Exercise books and textbooks - went nuts on ebay getting the best deals for these as I can't afford to get the really good stuff first hand. Sometimes sitting down with a good grammar works for me--maybe not with actually speaking it, but reinforcing a lot of the vocabulary and learning new phrases and usages of words. I was primarily a textbook learner before I discovered the wonderful world of language learning on the 'net, so.

Podcasts - from Notes in Spanish, spanishpod.com (which have some really cool insights from Latin America in their new revamped version), and various other language learning sites--some strategies work better than others, but if I mix it up sometimes I find podcasts that have something a little bit different. I really prefer podcast sites that have natural conversations, but sometimes bitesized reinforcement-style aural learning is good for me when I am short on time.

Reading online newspapers in Spanish--either from Spain or Latin America. I'm a fairly wide reader and am interested in politics/culture/scientific development/everything and actual Spanish books are hard to find here, so online newspapers really help. Also, working on the Project Gutenburg Distributed Proofreaders project is surprisingly good for the way that I learn--because I have to look so carefully at the words when I am proofreading I find I a) learn a lot about Spanish history/culture/literature by osmosis and b) improve my confidence by realising that I actually understand a lot of it!

Listening to Spanish radio. Radio helped me a lot with comprehension in French and Czech when I was learning both, and same goes with Spanish.

I follow a couple of Spanish language blogs and although I'm a bit shy about commenting, I ought really muster up the courage and start a dialogue with them as their insights are really interesting.

On Facebook there is a language interchange application where you can language exchange with other students and I've found a lot of really good friends that way (teaching English/French/Czech/German in exchange for Spanish/Portuguese/whatever they have to offer).

Singing Spanish songs and taking cultural classes help as I often don't have the schedule to go to formal group classes where I live.

I also really love Spanish poetry and literature, although up until this point I've mostly read it in English translation--here is my reason to branch out. Same goes for Spanish language film, too.


Creative writing and poetry. I'm not very good at it in Spanish, but I know it certainly helped broaden my sense of wordplay in English and French so I'm all for creative writing and getting feedback from writing communities.

I'm also beginning to find Skype partners to converse with in Spanish (hint hint--always welcome to find more).

Oh, and I randomly speak to myself in Spanish sometimes, or to the dog. The dog is pretty used to it by now as I used to only speak to it in Czech, so I reckon it's a smart pup.

When I am not completely swamped with study and I am a bit confuzzled after having to speak in a language other than my native all day, I might try and spend a day speaking or thinking as much as possible in Spanish, though this is rare and I often need to check a dictionary. Interesting tactic and kind of works for me, though.
quickcrimson is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 19th December 2007, 12:06 PM   #34
P.A.F.C
Novato
 
Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 1
Default

First off, this might seem suss as it's my first post but I assure you, i'm not here to advertise.

I personally learn mainly from http://www.123teachme.com/learn_spanish/ . I like the way it is set out, with no real lesson 'plans' just a bunch of topics. The lessons are usually pretty simply, easy to understand and have audio examples. I usually save these and put them under categories to create winamp playlists. I also make my own vocab quiz's out of a quiz making program I found online. These have been particular helpful with things like learning the days and months of the year.
P.A.F.C is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 19th December 2007, 01:17 PM   #35
eldeano
He's the most tip top
 
eldeano's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2006
Location: UK
Posts: 3,890
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by P.A.F.C View Post
First off, this might seem suss as it's my first post but I assure you, i'm not here to advertise.
Welcome to the forum. You may find us easier to convince if you tell us a few things about yourself - you can do that through User CP. I guess you're from Plymouth?
eldeano is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 3rd January 2008, 10:13 PM   #36
jgweber
Forero
 
jgweber's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2006
Location: Duisburg
Posts: 21
Default

I would like to start with reading spanish books, novelas. I started with a short story of Isabelle Allende which is called: El pequeno Heidelberg. At my level it is difficult but readable. The content is so wonderful that I like to work hard on it. Can one recommand other real writers of interesing books in spanish which are not soooo difficult to read. I also can recommand the short and easy novels of Lola Lago and her team in Madrid. Quite easy but very interesting and with audio files. But of cource, to start with a famoust and well-known writer is something else.
Would like to get to know other writers to read.
Greetings
Jürgen
jgweber is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 5th January 2008, 12:33 AM   #37
virgeved
Forero
 
Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 33
Smile

I found that when I was learning Spanish it really helped to force myself to think in Spanish during the day...I would start small, about 5 minutes a day, looking at objects and forcing myself to say the spanish word in my head in relation to the object...for example a tree...I would look at the tree and think "árbol, árbol, árbol" ...well after a long while I noticed that I would look at a tree and instead of thinking tree...the word would come to me first in Spanish, this method helped me to be able to converse fluently within the first 3 or 4 months of learning the language..also I believe it helped me progress faster later on when I had aquired more vocabulary and was able to put to use my ability to think in the language.

However it is now (years later) a pain in the ass when I am trying to write something in English.

Also I would highly recommend marrying a Spanish person who doesn´t speak English as falling in love creates a desperate need to understand every single thing he/she says
virgeved is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 5th January 2008, 08:41 AM   #38
Beckett
Mega Forero
 
Join Date: Jun 2007
Posts: 898
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by jgweber View Post
I would like to start with reading spanish books, novelas. I started with a short story of Isabelle Allende which is called: El pequeno Heidelberg. At my level it is difficult but readable. The content is so wonderful that I like to work hard on it. Can one recommand other real writers of interesing books in spanish which are not soooo difficult to read. I also can recommand the short and easy novels of Lola Lago and her team in Madrid. Quite easy but very interesting and with audio files. But of cource, to start with a famoust and well-known writer is something else.
Would like to get to know other writers to read.
Greetings
Jürgen
Jürgen,
Check out the short stories of Elena Poniatowski, Julio Cortázar , Jorge Luis Borges, Horacio Quiroga and Gabriel Garcia Marquez. The stories will be of varying difficulty. (Cortázar and Quiroga are my favorites.) Many of their most popular short stories are widely available for free online. One site to check: http://www.ciudadseva.com/

Good luck!
Beckett is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 5th January 2008, 10:21 PM   #39
eldeano
He's the most tip top
 
eldeano's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2006
Location: UK
Posts: 3,890
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by virgeved View Post
Also I would highly recommend marrying a Spanish person who doesn´t speak English as falling in love creates a desperate need to understand every single thing he/she says
I'll give it a go - but I don't think my wife's going to like it.
eldeano is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 9th January 2008, 06:20 PM   #40
la vieja de la manga
Forero Senior
 
Join Date: Mar 2007
Location: la manga, murcia
Posts: 58
Default

I find www.elemadrid.com/en/tutorial0207.html very helpful - vocab lists and excercises, one per month dating back to 2005, keeps me busy! Also http://cvc.cervantes.es/aula/lecturas good for reading skills.
la vieja de la manga is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply

Bookmarks
Learn REAL Spanish now!

Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off

Forum Jump


All times are GMT +1. The time now is 09:22 PM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.7
Copyright ©2000 - 2019, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.