Choosing the language of Cervantes as a second language in high school is a popular choice. Spanish classes at school can help you to hold a conversation when you visit one of the twenty Spanish speaking countries worldwide, but they sometimes don't equip you sufficiently to become bilingual. There are certain things that you need to know to improve your Spanish. But once you do, you will be well on the road to communicate both verbally and on paper, as well as being able to converse with around 440 million people who speak Spanish as a native language.
If you are reading this and thinking we are getting well ahead of ourselves by talking about bilingualism, we recommend drawing on different tools to perfect your written and oral understanding of Spanish.
To become bilingual, improve your fluency, and learn Spanish fast, you must deepen your knowledge – tenses, adjectives, grammar, conjugation, Spanish vocabulary, etc. – and immerse yourself in the Hispanic culture.
Whether you are taking Spanish classes for your own personal use, for work or future holiday plans, patience, a positive attitude and efficient resources will facilitate your linguistic training! From television, radio and books to conversations: don’t hesitate to vary the learning materials you use! Superprof, a global resource for learning, is happy to provide you with a range of options available to you for becoming bilingual in Spanish… Whether you are taking free lessons, speak basic Spanish, have an intermediate level, or know just a few Spanish words, this article can help you learn Spanish with gusto.
You’ll Need a Positive Attitude to Learn Fluent Spanish
It doesn't matter if you’ve want to become bilingual in Spanish for personal or professional reasons, learning a different language should be, above all, a pleasurable activity. Learning Spanish must remain a fun and positive endeavor, so you don’t get the impression that you are working too much as you study Spanish.
To improve your Spanish skills whilst keeping it a fun exercise, we recommend that you adopt some new habits:
Make Your Own Spanish Guide
Don’t hesitate to create a notebook dedicated to Spanish. Fill it with personal commentaries, write about your language learning experience, life or travels, or summarise your day, noting words you’re having trouble with in your Spanish class or new phrases you’ve learned… this notebook will be a sort of guide or personal journal that helps you work on your written Spanish and improve your vocabulary each day.
Think in Spanish
By now you’ve realised that the ideal way to progress quickly in Spanish is to speak Cervantes’ language every day, ideally with native Spanish speakers. But if no one is around with whom you can speak or you’re not at home to train yourself in front of the computer, nothing should stop you from thinking in Spanish! Are you humming a song? Are you thinking out loud? So do it in Spanish! By practicing these exercises daily, you will adopt reflexes and habituate your brain to think and reason in Spanish. It’s a great way to improve your spoken skills and learn conversational Spanish.
Find the Right Tools to Learn Spanish Quickly
There are many tools available to learn to speak Spanish well, from flashcards to videos. Whether they are available online (via YouTube) or at your local library, videos will be very useful for progressing in Spanish and becoming bilingual, along with your determination, motivation and patience.
Find Spanish Resources at the Library
Once people graduate and leave education behind them, they tend to forget all about libraries!
But remember, you can get information from your library to see if there is a discussion club or learning program in place to improve your Spanish. Once there, you’re also in a good place to discover other educative resources, such as books and even podcasts to help you learn Spanish. Remember to always keep a “learner” attitude! This way you’ll be perfectly positioned to learn a new language.
Take Private Lessons to Become Bilingual
Taking private Spanish lessons will allow you to progress quickly while going at your own personal rhythm. At home or in another quiet place, you can take Spanish lessons adapted to your level and budget. Whatever your expectations and objectives, you can decide to work on your pronunciation, study texts by Spanish authors or improve your conversation skills. Your Spanish teacher will personalize the lesson plan to suit your needs. What’s more, if you wish, you can choose to work with a professor who is native to a Spanish speaking country such as Argentina, Spain, Peru or Colombia… Guaranteed progress at less cost! Why not learn Spanish online with a Spanish course from Superprof? They are an international reference for language learning, in addition to a range of other subjects!
Take Spanish Classes
Your Spanish level, even if it is very good, might not be good enough to consider yourself bilingual. Taking classes is always a great method to improve, whether that means learning new Spanish verbs, or improving your Spanish conversation skills! To perfect your Spanish, classes can be efficient and even obligatory. With night classes at a specialised school, or with an association, or on the net, you can choose from a large range of Spanish courses (the large majority have a cost, but there are some free Spanish classes). But note that while free Spanish lessons sound like the perfect option, some things are too good to be true. You might want to spend a little bit to ensure that you can learn how to speak Spanish effectively.
Download Spanish Apps on your Phone
Remember that your Smartphone can be your friend when it comes to your Spanish training. Available for free or in paying versions, there are numerous apps for perfecting your Spanish language skills, such as Busuu, Duolingo, Babbel, Memrise or even Rosetta Stone. They include many fun tools for reaching your objectives and progressing naturally – voice recognition for improving your accent, rewards as you attain the next level… Quizzes no longer have to be a drag. And they are always at your fingertips and can be used wherever you want, while riding the bus to work, or taking a bath…
Listen to the Spanish Radio
Do you like to keep informed of international news, listen to music, or follow debates to widen your general culture knowledge? Why not kill two birds with one stone and do it in Spanish (or any other new language)! Spanish radio stations available online include Cadena100, Cope, and Radio nacional de Espana, and they all provide news, interviews and free podcasts.
Listening to the radio in Spanish is a fun and educational habit you can take up for your linguistic training.
Perfect your Spanish with podcasts
Learning Spanish with YouTube is a well established way of using your smartphone to learn the language, but have you considered using your smartphone to download a podcast to help you learn? News in Slow Spanish, Notes in Spanish, Coffee Break Spanish or even Ivoox are some great examples. Organized by themes (arts, games, health…), they are available for free online and will help you improve your Spanish every day. Learn Spanish online with podcasts. You have so many resources to choose from!
Become Fluent in Spanish by Immersing Yourself in Spanish Culture
Watch Spanish Films and Series
When you want to perfect your mastery of a foreign language, watching films in that language is an excellent means of linking learning with pleasure! Spanish learning does not have to be boring. In fact, watching Spanish films to learn Spanish is probably something that you hadn't really considered doing. If your linguistic level allows it, avoid subtitles in English to improve your speaking and listening skills in Spanish. This way, your ear will get used to hearing Spanish, and new expressions will come more naturally to you. The Spanish language sounds better in your favourite film!
Discover various Spanish classes on Superprof.
And if you don’t know many Spanish TV series, just do a Google search.
Find a Spanish Pen-pal to Write to
If there’s no one around you to chat with from time to time in Spanish, you can opt for exchanges with a pen-pal. By mail or email, fun exchanges allow you to create links with a new person, discuss subjects of your choice in Spanish, learn new Spanish phrases and improve your writing and spelling. Websites including NekoPlaza will help you to meet pen-pals from all over the world.
Learn Spanish via Skype
With Skype, there are now no more excuses! From now on you’ll have access to conversations, messages and videos in Spanish from all over the world that are completely free! Also, the video is an excellent format to improve your Spanish, as it familiarises you with the body language, facial expressions and Spanish accent of your discussion partner. To get started and find opportunities, post messages on language exchange forums or ads in universities or libraries in your town noting your wish to have a discussion in Spanish via Skype…
Travel to a Hispanic Country
There are a number of tips to learn Spanish quickly, but perhaps the best is to travel to a Spanish speaking country. Travel is the best way to immerse yourself completely in a culture in order to learn a foreign language. Numerous Spanish-speaking destinations are waiting for you throughout the world where you can learn to speak Spanish rapidly!
Practising Spanish in Spain or South America will help you improve your level considerably. Converse with Spanish speakers, take part in local events, become a couchsurfer, share a drink or meal with locals, get lost in a city… whether you are travelling alone with your backpack, with an international educational program, or on a working visa, you will be sure to create links with inhabitants, which is the best way to improve! To sum up, numerous methods are available to help you become bilingual in Spanish but you may not like all of them… So it’s up to you to experiment throughout your training, to know which ones are right for you, and which ones you can say “adios” to! As we’ve expressed in this article, becoming bilingual is not an easy task. But by taking part in regular training using several resources, adopting daily habits and conversing with native Spanish speaking people, you will start to feel much more confident with both your written and speaking language skills. Remember that learning a foreign language must before all else be fun! If it's not then you will not learn as quickly and you will be more likely to give up, so follow our advice here to keep yourself engaged and entertained whilst you learn Spanish!
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