If you want to say “How can I help you?” in Spanish, you would say, “¿Cómo puedo ayudarte?” (informal singular) or “¿Cómo puedo ayudarle?” (formal singular). There are some other variations that add levels of nuance to the question, but the preceding will work well in most instances.
If Spanish grammar and verbs seem a little tricky at first, don’t feel intimidated––especially if you already speak another Latin-based language (like Italian or French) or if you’ve already had some exposure to the basics of Spanish itself. Because these languages originated from a shared root language, they not only have thousands of words in common but significant grammatical similarities, as well. That’s why it’s easy to find English words like “poem” that look similar in French (poème), Italian (poesia), and Spanish (poema).
Aside from the obvious overlap in vocabulary, you’ll be pleased to know that the Spanish language has a particularly clear and consistent system of pronunciation. While languages like English often have spelling and pronunciation rules that seem arbitrary, Spanish has only a few irregularities. The Spanish alphabet is also nearly the same as the one we use in English, with only three extra letters: ch (chay), ll (elle), and ñ (eñe).
Rosetta Stone’s immersive approach teaches you the language, not just the words. What makes the program so 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.
Many people decide to learn Spanish because they encounter it so often in their everyday life. After all, Spanish is featured prominently in popular TV shows, movies, and music. Other people choose to learn Spanish because they have plans to vacation, volunteer or work in any one of the 20 countries worldwide for which Spanish is the official language. So whatever your reason, you can get off to a great start by familiarizing yourself with how to pronounce the basic Spanish words and phrases. This is important because it allows you to understand and speak the language—used by an estimated 437 million Spanish speakers worldwide.
All too often, new Spanish learners get caught up in trying to memorize long lists of Spanish words and phrases. As a result of this sole focus, they find themselves unable to understand or be understood in actual everyday Spanish conversations. That’s why focusing on learning to pronounce and understand commonly used Spanish words and phrases will go a long way towards helping you feel comfortable and confident conversing with locals.
It’s important to note that Spanish does have some unique pronunciation distinctions that can make it challenging for language learners. 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.
Refining your Spanish pronunciation requires that you get immediate and accurate feedback on your pronunciation efforts. Feedback allows you to make any needed corrections to your pronunciation. Then you can practice until your mouth gets a feel for comfortably shaping the sounds that make up the spoken Spanish language.
Rosetta Stone helps you get the pronunciation just right in a snap with TruAccent. Our patented speech engine instantly compares your voice to native and non-native speakers, so you get real-time feedback for the most accurate pronunciation. It’s also adjustable, which allows you to fine-tune your accent. TruAccent is among the most powerful tools for helping you learn and speak the Spanish language.
Once beginners have learned the basic building blocks of speaking the Spanish, language, they’ll be able to naturally transition to learning the longer Spanish phrases that are the backbone of real-world, everyday conversations. Rosetta Stone’s brief, 10-minute lessons are built to help you do just that—first learning the basics and then scaling towards speaking Spanish with confidence.
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.