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Discussion in 'Bad Dog Cafe' started by DrPepper, Feb 25, 2020.
Conversational Spanish for extended stay in Mexico. What ways do you all recommend?
The best way to learn any language is through a combination of classroom learning and immersion. So you can download an app like Rosetta Stone or Duolingo, but you have to immerse yourself in the language. That means watching Spanish TV, listening to Spanish radio, being around spanish speakers etc. It helps to put what you're learning in the classroom into context. It's a lot like playing music, you can read tabs or notation but unless you're immersing yourself in the music it's not going to click like it should.
Just learn to say grassy ass and that should get your through most situations.
Just be aware that almost all of the Spanish-learning materials out there will teach you to speak excruciatingly proper Spanish that will make you sound like an ambassador in a royal court or something. People will tend to crack up.
Try to find some additional, supplementary stuff to learn how regular folks in Mexico would say things.
I have a few guys from mexico that work for me and they say stuff like "whats up doc?" when they get to work and "Thats all folks" when they go home. most of everything else I cant understand but I know they learned how to speak english from watching cartoons.
Pimsluer method is pretty good and supplements anything else. 30 minutes a day of listening and repeating.
A good text book with pictures and word goes a long way to learning what things are.
A like the dual readers too. This one has short funny stories; English on one side Espanol on the other!
First Spanish Reader: A Beginner's Dual-Language Book:Angel Flores.
Reading and listening MUCH easier than speaking! It's like improvising a solo on the spot over and over BUT if you can understand what's being said at you it helps a LOT!
Thank you, Gracias. Good ideas...
Get a housekeeper and ask her to teach you Spanish. That's gonna mean a lot more interviews so you can find one that speaks Spanish.
My son gave me a Spanish course since when I was working, I worked with a lot of Hispanic people at the time. I got all practiced up, and sprang a little of my recently acquired Spanish on him, and he looked at me quizzically and said in English, ese I don't have a clue of what you just said. So much for learning Spanish from a video. When I was a kid in school, a Mexican kid made a good catch when we were playing workups one day, I said just jokingly, lucky catch. He ran up and punched me I really didn't even get mad, but when I got him on the ground and had someone ask him in Spanish why in the hell he hit me? The kid doing the translating said the kid thought I called him LOCO! Apparently being called loco meant a lot more to him than your average Okie.
You'll pick it up fast! there's another book I think called Madrigal's Spanish... from like the 1950's. Andy Warhol did the silly little line drawings for it. I think that's the one that first of all lists all the words that are the same in espnaol and english! So you already know hundreds of spanish words! It then ads a little to each and you know 4x more!
The trick it conjugating and that's a bit harder. But you really only need to know a few verbs to work around and get the sense of how it works.
I used to be OK at espanol but have not been keeping up with it.... use it or lose it!
Fastest way: Fall in love with a latina that speaks no english and move to her country.
Otherwise, it is not something you can learn quickly as an adult. It is a long haul, but can be done. You have to learn basic grammar, verb conjugations, and a lot of vocabulary. Then immerse yourself. Daily study helps as the adult mind is forgetful. Watch movies or shows in spanish w spanish subtitles. Then learn the slang and colloquial expressions that vary by region.
Latinos by and large appreciate the effort and are very helpful. Good Luck!
As other have noted.- Most learned Spanish is very proper if you will. I worked with a lady from Mexico, and received a letter from a customer that I assumed was written in Spanish I asked her to translate and she read over the letter and laughed. She explained the letter was not Spanish ,but "Spanglish". She went on to explain it was an amalgamation of Spanish and English. As I recall she gave me an example of car and truck. The person used the word cara or trucka. She explained that these were not Spanish words, and more like slang.
I guess that is like in the US different areas use different slang.
How much time do you have? If you're leaving anytime soon, you may wish to start with:
¿Habla usted Inglés?
Lo siento, no hablo español.
You have time...marry a Spanish-speaking woman.
As has been mentioned, all those resources will teach you the grammar-correct technical language, but you will sound like an idiot using it. When I was reloacating to Norway, I spent 7 months trying to learn the language (although most actually speak English except for the older crowd and some regions) so I could blend in better. I really studied it hard and not just language, but cultural aspects as well with the goal of passing by unnoticed instead of tagging myself as a tourist.
I thought I was ready, but the very first time I tried was while at the check-out line buying a sandwich. The lady just about slapped me and said to never talk like that in her store again. I quit at that point having no idea what I said incorrectly.
I'm learning my Spanish from cumbia music. Of course it's all about love, sex, death, danger ,trucks and truck drivers. Not much help with finding your way to the airport. Wepa! though that may just be for the youth.
Spanish is a loving tongue.