How to Learn Spanish
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How to Learn Spanish
The best way to learn any language is not to rush it, and that’s certainly true of Spanish. It’s ideal to focus on gaining vocabulary and learning Spanish pronunciations over longer periods of time. And all language learners do best when lessons are sprinkled with plenty of immersive experiences with native speakers.
As a trusted language-learning software with over 25 years of helping people find their voice, Rosetta Stone knows a thing or two about how to get up to speed speaking Spanish. The Rosetta Stone method involves Dynamic Immersion™, which focuses on teaching the foundational concepts of a language in a specific order that builds success. Whether you’ve got a year, a month, or just a few days, Rosetta Stone has the inside track on tried and true methods that can help you learn to speak and understand Spanish.
Speak and Listen to Spanish Daily
Practice makes perfect. And while it’s not a glamorous shortcut, investing the time in practicing speaking and listening to Spanish every day is key to learning the language. It does not, however, have to be a chore. Going beyond repetition and finding new ways of learning vocabulary and pronunciations can make deeper connections that are engaging.
Daily language lessons and immersing yourself in Spanish can accelerate language learning. Even if it’s not possible to spend a few days with native speakers, you can still listen to Spanish music in the car or stream Spanish soap operas with the subtitles turned off. You’ll be surprised how even simple immersive experiences can get your ear more finely attuned to hearing and understanding Spanish.
Rosetta Stone makes immersive experiences part of the language-learning approach by using practical, real-world situations, images, and native speakers to create bite-sized lessons you can bring along in your back pocket. Spend ten minutes in the Rosetta Stone award-winning app learning helpful phrases like how to order café, por favor while you’re waiting in line with lessons that help you learn to speak Spanish anywhere.
Practice Pronouncing Words in Spanish
Learning some key phrases in Spanish is helpful, but to really learn to speak the language you’ll have to go beyond memorizing vocabulary. Focusing on pronunciations will not only help you learn to speak Spanish but also allow you to understand native speakers better. That’s why successful language-learning programs like Rosetta Stone focus on practicing speaking the language from the very first lesson.
During your first journey to a Spanish-speaking country, you’ll find it’s not the words but the speed of speech and inflection that can be overwhelming. Learning how to pronounce Spanish words correctly helps learners to slow down and really focus on understanding and being understood.The point of language learning is not to simply acquire vocabulary, but to be able to use the language to make human connections so practicing your pronunciation until you feel confident is an important part of any language-learning endeavor.
Rosetta Stone has patented TruAccent® speech recognition technology that can help you fine-tune your pronunciations by instantly comparing your voice to native speakers.
Tips that Can Help You learn Spanish Faster
While there aren’t many shortcuts to learning Spanish quickly, there are some tricks of the trade you should know. Linguists have several specific tips about how to boost your memory and help your efforts to learn a language really pay off.
1: Write it down.
Physically writing things while listening can help you solidify learning because it engages a different part of your brain that controls the fine motor function involved in writing.
2: Practice before you sleep.
There is some evidence that people who listened and practiced vocabulary right before sleeping had better recall than those who practiced at other times of day. In general, getting a full night’s sleep helps improve cognitive functions like memory.
3: Use mnemonics.
Mnemonics is consolidating a complex piece of information into a phrase or keyword, where key points are represented by corresponding letters or a word with a close association in your native language. For instance, a mnemonic to remember the names of the days of the week in Spanish might be “Lugging Mangos Makes John’s Volkswagen So Damp.” (lunes, martes, miércoles, jueves, viernes, sábado, domingo)
4: Create visual organizers.
In addition to writing words while you’re learning Spanish, draw or doodle related images next to the word. It gives your brain an extra sensory detail to hang onto and helps facilitate better recall.
Ways to Learn Spanish
There are several different ways to learn Spanish and not all methods are created equal. Certain trends and fads have come and gone in language learning, but the following methods have persisted as legitimate approaches to learning a language like Spanish quickly and retaining it.
Learning Spanish Online
You’ve seen the ads and wandered the internet. Can you really learn Spanish online for free? Sort of. Many of the free online sites are best for learning basic vocabulary. They may be able to help you learn a few fast phrases, but they lack the tools to build your confidence to speak with ease.
To learn Spanish effectively online, you’ll need access to language learning with a holistic approach. The Rosetta Stone method of simulating immersive experiences and focusing on accurate pronunciation is designed to fit your life, letting you practice anywhere you have internet access as well as offline with downloadable lessons.
Spanish Learning Software
You can use apps or online resources, but this approach may limit your ability to learn on the go or when it’s convenient for you. Ideally, you’ll want to invest in Spanish learning software that provides you the best of both worlds, with access both online and offline.
Rosetta Stone fits the bill when it comes to both convenience and flexibility. You can access lessons online or download them for offline learning. Program tracking allows you to pick up learning where you left off and syncs across the cloud on all your mobile devices to provide a personalized approach.
Learning Spanish In the Classroom
This traditional approach to learning Spanish usually involves a textbook, a teacher, and the commitment to be in class several times a week. And while it may be a preferred way to teach language in schools, it certainly has some drawbacks. Not only can it be a less dynamic learning experience, but you’ll be at the mercy of your professor, who may or may not be an expert in Spanish.
Rosetta Stone offers a homeschool edition with curriculum created by linguists but made for every student. Easy-to-use reporting tools make it ideal for parents and teachers who’d like to customize lessons and learning for students. It provides a dynamic, immersive language-learning experience that includes plenty of opportunities to speak, listen, and learn Spanish.
Benefits of Learning Spanish
Whether you learn it quickly or acquire it more slowly, learning to speak Spanish can provide benefits you might not have anticipated.
In addition to the practicality of being bilingual, there’s also the pleasure of being able to connect, understand, and help others through the power of language. Here are just a few of the ways speaking another language can enrich your life.
Learning Spanish Can Make You Smarter
There is some evidence that learning a language increases your cognitive abilities in other areas and may even increase the physical size of your brain.
Those Who Learn Spanish May be Better MultiTaskers
Some studies show bilingual speakers demonstrate an increased capacity for multitasking, juggling various physical and mental tasks with more agility and speed.
Learning Spanish Words Can Boost Your Memory
The act of acquiring vocabulary, whether through repetition or deeper learning, seems to develop better recall overall.
Listening to Spanish Can Make You More Observant
Picking out the nuances of speech and having to really focus to understand a native speaker can make you more attuned to body language and other nonverbal cues.