How I'm Learning Spanish

July 29, 2016

¡Hola, y bienvenido a mi blog!

I started learning Spanish in Year 7. I didn't take it seriously then; I just learnt enough to be able to say hello, my age, and where I lived. Fast forward to GCSE, and I began to take it a little bit more seriously. After all, it was an "Easy A" subject that would be effortless to do well in if I just paid a little bit more attention.

Then came actually revising for my GCSEs and I have to admit I enjoyed it to an extent. Learning a new language gave a little bit more excitement to an otherwise mundane curriculum, and I looked forward to getting my grade. I even wanted to take Spanish at A-level (although I quickly realised that I didn't have the concentration nor will power to take on Spanish for another 2 years).

Which brings me to now. I learn Spanish because I want to. I love having something different to do that is both enjoyable and beneficial. Being bilingual already, it was easy to pick up a third language because I knew the conventions of verbs, imperatives, nouns, where to place words etc. Spanish isn't a difficult language to learn if you understand these basics.

I have two main methods I use, so vamonos!

The first thing I use is Duolingo. I used this app for my GCSEs after my teacher recommended it, and I started using it whenI was done with exams as well. If you don't want to learn Spanish, there are 20 other languages, plus 8 being developed (even Klingon!).

Duolingo works like this: you pick a language, make an account, and you're logged in. When you first enter, you have to learn the basics. You enter words either in English or your chosen language, you join words to pictures, and you can also listen to a native speaker and translate what they say. The app gives you everything you need to know if you were to go on holiday; food, animals, simple phrases, clothing, numbers, tenses - literally everything is there. You can even learn more than one language; I also used Duolingo for Dutch but I stopped this because it wasn't as enjoyable.

The more you learn, the more you earn lingots which are red gems that you can use in the store. Duolingo is quick and enjoyable and it's easy to get used to using it everyday, so give it a go.

Another method I use is Pinterest. Yep, Pinterest! I have a board which you can see here (it's looking a little bare right now!). I just search for Pins in Spanish and pin them to my board. Easy as that. This is a little bit more flexible than Duolingo in that you can search up whatever you want and get a quick answer. There are also bright and colourful pictures which can help the information stick in your head easier, so this is definitely an option too.

Youtube is my third method. I use channels like The Spanish Blog and SpanishDict because the videos are easy and simple to understand. I just write down important information down in a notebook to review later. In the notebook, I make sure I use bright colours so that the information is firmly cemented in my head!

Another (cheat) option is to use Google translate. I know,  know. Teachers tell you not to use translate under ANY CIRCUMSTANCES, but nothing is wrong with wanting to find out the meaning of one word here and there. Sometimes, it can change the meaning of whole sentences or paragraphs, but generally one or two words do still make sense.

So, those are the ways  learn Spanish! If you have any other suggestions, be sure to tell me below! Hopefully I'll be fluent one day, eh?

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