Spanish Learning resources that I use and Like

Before our current trip to Mexico the last time I was in Mexico was in January of 2007. I wasn't posting pictures to my blog back then but if you would like to read about the trip the posts start here. On that trip I spoke zero Spanish. I relied on Duke. He is a fluent Spanish speaker. The trip was so much fun that I resolved to start learning Spanish. I started to work on learning in fits and starts. I've made quite a bit of progress in my Spanish learning and I am excited about the opportunity this trip provides for me to actually use and improve my Spanish.

I plan to use my blog posts to chronicle my progress and my experience trying to use the Spanish I have learned. Duke and I crossed the border yesterday and today was the first day I have been out of the car and able to try speaking Spanish. I've spoken to a few waiters and made small take with people in elevators. I'm understanding quite a bit and surprisingly people understand me when I say things like hace calor (it's hot) 🙂 In any case I am having fun

If you are interested here are some of the resources I have used to learn some Spanish on my own, (or I should say with help from Duke.)

Coffee Break Spanish and Showtime Spanish from the radio Lingua Network. I have found these podcasts to be fantastically useful. Coffee Break Spanish consists of 80 lessons of 15-20 minutes each starting at the very beginning.

Showtime Spanish is for improving  listening skills. I can definitely tell that I am improving when I compare how much I understood a few years ago and how much I understand now. I've even managed  to learn two jokes that I can tell in Spanish.

There is premium content available for these podcasts but so far I have not purchased it.

Fluid in Three Months is a blog written by Benny Lewis which I find really inspiring and interesting. Benny made me realize that I have to actually speak Spanish in order to learn to speak Spanish. I purchased his language hacking guide and like it. He also made realize there is no point in worrying about sounding foolish. So I am just diving in.

Lang-8 is a web site where you can write in your target language and have native speakers of the language correct your writing. I think you have to be a member to see my Spanish journal but if you sign up my user name is MarionV.

Flashcards Deluxe is a great flashcard program that I use on my iPod Touch but of course you can use it on a smart phone too. I set it to repeat the words that I am having problems with. I created some of my own decks and I also downloaded some public decks that are available.

When I have grammar questions I usually find the answers in The Ultimate Spanish Review and Practice .

When I first started learning I worked my way through the exercises in Madrigal's magic Key to Spanish. I liked it a lot. The only down side was that it doesn't teach the familiar forms of the verbs but it does make learning easy.

Duke and I joined the Reno Newcomers Club Spanish group which has been very helpful.

We are  in Vera Cruz tonight and will be here tomorrow night too. I'll write a post more about our travels and what we are seeing tomorrow. This is the view from our hotel room overlooking the main square.

Road trip 2011 017

 

 

 

 

 

Author: marionvermazen

I am a traveler, hiker, avid reader, Sun alumnus, computer geek, Spanish and French language student, knitter and genealogist. I am retired after working for almost 30 years in the Computer Industry. I live in Reno, Nevada with my husband Duke.

3 thoughts on “Spanish Learning resources that I use and Like”

  1. Hey Marion, Sounds like you’re having a good time. I’ve always wanted to go to Carlsbad Caverns (mentioned it to friends just yesterday, in fact!) Can’t wait to hear more about it and see pictures, if you were allowed to take any.
    Keep having fun!
    Bonn

    Like

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