If you want to say “help me” in Spanish, you would generally say, “¡Ayúdeme!” Speaking to more than one person? Then you would use “¡Ayúdenme!” Other variants include “¡Socorro!” and “¡Auxilio!” Like many seemingly simple verbs in English, when it comes to the foreign language version, the best choice is highly dependent on the exact context. For instance, the general “¡Ayúdeme!” is for day-to-day requests and not necessarily what you’d want to use in an urgent situation.
For all the complexities of Spanish verbs, learning Spanish is within reach if you’re willing to put in the work—especially when you already speak another foreign language or have had significant exposure to the basics of Spanish itself. When any two languages come from the same root or language family, they usually have many words in common (words known as cognates) or have a significant degree of similarity because they are directly linked to a single earlier language. Spanish has deep roots in Latin, as do French and Italian—even English. That is why you’ll find English words like “number” that look almost identical and sound remarkably similar in French (nombre), Italian (numero), and Spanish (número). Beyond the spelling and vocab similarities, Spanish has a relatively clear system of pronunciation. And unlike English, there are only a few notable irregularities. The standard Spanish alphabet is also extremely close to that of English. Notably, there are only three extra letters you’ll have to add to your repertoire, beyond the usual twenty-six: ch (chay), ll (elle), and ñ (eñe).
Rosetta Stone will teach you the language, not just the words. What makes the approach effective is that we prepare you to use your new language in your everyday life. So it’s not just about the features, but what you’re able to do because of them. That way, you’ll be ready to handle any situation with ease and confidence.
People have differing reasons for deciding to learn Spanish. Some choose to learn Spanish because they encounter the language in their daily life. After all, Spanish is spoken in many communities across the U.S., and is prominent in restaurant fare, TV, movies, and music. Other people choose to learn Spanish based on personal plans to vacation, volunteer, or conduct business in any of the 20 countries around the world in which Spanish is the official language. So whether you have decided to learn Spanish for reasons of employment, travel, or everyday conversation at home, you can get off to a strong start by following this tried and true approach: first learn to understand and pronounce the common Spanish words and phrases used in everyday conversation.
Acquiring the ability to understand and speak the most frequently-used Spanish words and phrases is key to being able to comfortably and confidently converse in Spanish. Learning grammar and memorizing lots of vocabulary words takes time, and it alone won’t help you be able to participate in everyday, real-world conversations with any of the estimated 437 million Spanish speakers worldwide.
By focusing first on learning basic words and their proper pronunciation, you will be able to participate in everyday Spanish conversations more quickly. Many times, when learners go down the path of memorizing long lists, they end up frustrated because they don’t understand or are not understood in everyday conversations. That’s why it’s best to first learn to commonly-used Spanish words and phrases. Following this approach, you will soon be able to comfortably engage in Spanish language conversation.
Spanish does have some unique characteristics that can make proper pronunciation challenging. As one example, the letter r is pronounced differently and takes some practice for most new learners. This distinct sound is formed by tapping the tip of the tongue on the roof of the mouth, about a third of the way back in the mouth. Some Spanish language experts counsel new Spanish learners to practice making the “tt” sound, as it sounds in the English word butter.
Learning to properly pronounce Spanish words and phrases requires immediate feedback on your efforts. Timely feedback will allow you to make any pronunciation corrections needed. Then you can practice until you are able to shape the sounds and pronunciations of the Spanish language with ease. Rosetta Stone embeds a powerful speech-recognition engine, called TruAccent, into every Spanish language lesson. TruAccent provides instantaneous feedback on your pronunciation, so you can fine-tune yours with that of fluent Spanish speakers. It was developed by scanning and analyzing the speech of native and non-native Spanish speakers. You will find that TruAccent can be very helpful in your efforts to learn to understand and speak in Spanish with confidence.
Once you have learned the basics that come into play in much of everyday conversation, you will find it to be a natural transition to move onto learning longer phrases that occur in real-world situations. Rosetta Stone’s short and focused 10-minute Spanish lessons are built to lead you towards confidently understanding and comfortably speaking Spanish.
Surround yourself with Spanish whenever, wherever with the Rosetta Stone app .
Download a unit and knock it out on the train or a flight. Select a 5-10 minute lesson and sneak it in while you wait in line or for your ride to show up. And explore dynamic features, like Seek and Speak, where you can point at an object in the real world and get a translation .
The best part? You don’t have to choose between app or desktop. Both come with your subscription and sync, so you can switch between devices seamlessly.