21 Ways to Practice Spanish Today and Meet Your Goals
If you’re reading this, it’s because learning Spanish is one of your goals right now. However, many ways to practice Spanish exist, and you can achieve different levels of learning depending on the time and effort you put in.
The best way to embark on this journey of learning a new language is by having clear goals and understanding that there’s no one way of learning. In this post, you’ll learn about the importance of setting and achieving goals and explore 21 different ways to practice Spanish.
The Importance of Defining Your Goals
Setting goals in any project you engage in is a guiding light that accompanies you during the whole process that helps you stay on course. When it comes to learning a new language, defining your goals is crucial.
What do you want to achieve with your Spanish? Do you want to be fluent or just conversational? If you’re not sure what these terms mean, it might be a good idea for you to get familiar with them. It will help you understand the possible outcomes of this “learning Spanish”project.
Once you have defined your goals, the next step is to work towards them and actually achieve the goals you set for yourself. For this, it’s important to make a plan and follow it, because it’s so easy to get distracted or (worse) bored. Check out this list of interesting ways you can practice Spanish and meet your goals.
21 Ways to Practice Spanish
In order to introduce these useful tips for our readers, I have divided them into the three levels of language learning: beginner, intermediate, and advanced. Feel free to skip to your own level of Spanish or simply use the ones you resonate with.
7 Ways to Practice Spanish for Beginners
1. Watch TV Shows and Movies in Spanish
As simple as it seems, watching TV and films in Spanish is an excellent way to train your ear to the Spanish accent and learn new phrases and idioms. To make it even more effective, don’t forget to turn on the Spanish subtitles; that way you can match what you hear with the actual words spoken.
2. Learn Spanish Tongue Twisters
I love this tip because it’s fun, easy, and useful. Tongue twisters help you with pronunciation issues (that dreaded rr sound). Because they’re short and easy to remember, you can practice Spanish by repeating them anytime, anywhere.
3. Label Everything
This tip works well with kids. Label every household object you can see in Spanish. Table, carpet, door, book, everything. Yes, it’s about increasing vocabulary, but also about creating a whole atmosphere in Spanish around you and starting to think in Spanish.
4. Use Language Apps
Language apps are a great way to practice Spanish because they’re accessible, easy to use, and have quick exercises that you can do while on the bus or waiting for an appointment. Apps for every level, for kids and grown ups, cover topics from grammar-centered exercises to listening and pronunciation.
5. Listen to Music in Spanish
This is a great way to learn using something that you already do. For instance, instead of running while listening to your favorite Beyonce or Lady Gaga songs, add Shakira and Enrique Iglesias to your playlists and keep training your ear to new Spanish words.
6. Get a Tutor
Hiring a tutor is one of the best ways to practice Spanish, as the effort is guided by a professional who knows your needs and helps you set your goals. If you decide to choose this path, Homeschool Spanish Academy is a great option, as you can choose to have one-to-one lessons with certified native Spanish-speaking teachers.
7. Play Games
You can learn a lot by playing video games, online games, or board games in Spanish. Learning through gaming is one of the most progressive approaches to education, and nowadays the possibilities in this area are endless. Can you think of a better way to practice Spanish than playing Scrabble in Spanish?
7 Ways to Practice Spanish for Intermediate Spanish Students
1. Get a Spanish Language Partner
A Spanish Language Partner is one of the best ways you can find to practice Spanish. The idea is to find a native Spanish speaker with whom you can have conversations in Spanish, either online or in real life. In return, your partner will expect to have conversations with you in English. This way, both of you practice the language you want to learn.
2. Read in Spanish
My dad used to say that I should read everything I could get my hands on. From the newspaper to the cereal box. The same principle applies here. Read everything you can find in Spanish, from online stories to popular novels or even some classics. Reading in Spanish helps you to understand the structure of the written language better, and this will show up when you have to write in Spanish.
3. Keep a Language Journal
Find a nice little notebook that you can carry anywhere you go and use it to write down every new word in Spanish you learn. This way, if you’re reading and find a word you don’t understand, you can simply write it down in your journal and look up its meaning later.
4. Listen Podcasts in Spanish
Podcasts in Spanish are great tools to expand your vocabulary and get used to the speed and flow of the language. They have the added benefit that you can listen to them (and practice Spanish) while doing something else like commuting or cooking.
5. Test Your Verbs
Conjugating verbs is one of the hardest-to-master grammar concepts in Spanish. So, constantly testing your mastery of verbs is not a bad idea. You can find many tools for this exercise online, this one is super easy to use.
6. Set Your Devices to Spanish
Simple and useful. It works a bit like labeling objects in Spanish. The idea is to set your world to Spanish. If you watch TV in Spanish, listen to music in Spanish, everything around you is labeled in Spanish, and your phone communicates with you in Spanish, you’re bound to start thinking in Spanish.
7. Hang Out With Native Spanish Speakers
Making native Spanish-speaking friends is probably the second best way to practice Spanish (the first one would be to get into a romantic relationship with a native Spanish speaker, but you can’t force that, right?). Hanging out with your friends, listening to them speak Spanish, and actually having conversations with them in Spanish, are excellent ways to use all your newly acquired Spanish knowledge in the real world.
7 Ways to Practice Spanish for Advanced Spanish Students
1. Travel Abroad
Choose a Spanish-speaking country, buy a ticket, get on a plane, and go have the adventure of your life in a place where everybody speaks Spanish. Put to good use all those hours of study, and practice Spanish while making friends, asking for directions, or simply ordering some food.
2. Write in Spanish
At the advanced level, you should be able to express yourself in Spanish through writing. Try to write short stories, your life story, or letters to friends. Proficient writing in Spanish is the best sign that you’re an advanced learner.
3. Serve as a Tutor
What better way to practice Spanish than teaching it? As an advanced learner, you’re now qualified to serve as a tutor to kids or beginners, and help them go through the same process you just went through. You can find good options online to become a Spanish tutor.
4. Enroll in an Online Course from a Spanish University
Use your Spanish knowledge to keep learning useful stuff. With the advent of Massive Open Online Courses (MOOCs) on sites like edX or Coursera, now you can find hundreds of free college courses online. Choose a course that aligns well with your interests and take your Spanish to the next level.
5. Have a Culture Week
Choose one Spanish-speaking country and try to learn everything about its culture during one week. You’ll learn lots of things you didn’t know about this country and will discover that every culture is a world in itself. This idea has many benefits. Can you imagine eating delicious Mexican food? Or perhaps you love watching telenevolas or Argentinian films. Just one week to learn and try everything related to that culture. And you can always choose a different country the next week.
6. Chat in Spanish
This is different from getting a language partner. Here, I’m talking about getting into public chats in Spanish and engaging in conversations with complete strangers. Even just listening to the conversations between these complete strangers can be useful. Let’s face it, learning Spanish can be a long process and sometimes we need to think outside the box to keep things interesting.
7. Join a Spanish Club
It could be a conversational club or a Spanish book club, but the idea is to find other people with the same passion you have for the Spanish language and culture—and hang out with them. This is part of the transition from simply learning the language to normalizing it in your daily life.
Practice Spanish Today!
If you’re serious about your goals, just choose the best way for you to practice Spanish and introduce it into your everyday routine. Learning Spanish is a process that includes many parts, but practicing what you have learned is one of the most important ones.
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