https://www.duolingo.com/katy.odell

What else are you using, in addition to DuoLingo, to learn Spanish?

I have heard about a lot of good ideas and sources for learning Spanish on here and elsewhere and I've adopted a few of them. Right now I am learning Spanish using a mix of the following methods:

  1. DuoLingo. I consider this the "backbone" of my study. It's fun, portable, and goal-driven. I do DuoLingo every day. Obviously, it has limitations and doesn't directly address my goal of becoming conversant as fast as possible. I'm not going to be talking about what my penguin drinks when I go to Barcelona in a month!

  2. Memrise. This is second to DuoLingo. It shares portability and the ability to do it in quick, bite-sized sessions. It seems to focus a bit more on learning phrases than DuoLingo. I find it a bit too slow, however. It's like you learn one or two things and then review, review, review for a very long time. I do this every day, as well.

  3. Quizlet - an app where you can make flashcards and then there are three ways of practicing them, including a timed matching game. I do this to build vocabulary. Good for learning things like different foods or numbers. Portability means that I can just run through a few words when I have a spare moment. However, it's not directed like DuoLingo or Memrise. It's easy to download or make too many decks and then get a bit scattered.

  4. Collins Easy Learning Spanish Grammar & Practice. It's an overview of the basic grammar and I am not working my way through the book - I use this as a reference, mostly. For example, yesterday I went through and made a list of what the different verb tenses are, using "I speak" or "I spoke" or "I have spoken" etc. to define the difference between them. I like to use books and I learn well from actually writing things down but this lacks portability and I find it hard to do it regularly. It's nice to have as a reference but I don't do it every day.

  5. Synergy Spanish. This was recommended by the Telenovela Method guy (he writes a great blog about learning Spanish from online sources.) Synergy Spanish is an audio course (with a workbook) available as download wherein you start speaking straight away in complete sentences. The developer of the method has this idea of "brick words" onto which you can build your knowledge. Right away you are saying things like "I want to to go Spain. I want to speak Spanish on my vacation." and "I need to see the doctor. I need to speak to the doctor." It builds bit-by-bit and is a lot of fun. I like it because it gets you talking - gets your tongue moving! I did something similar with the Paul Noble audio book on Spanish that I was able to use free with my Amazon subscription... it was very limited in scope but it got me talking and made me decide to go ahead and pay for Synergy Spanish. I do this every day.

  6. Destinos, the old 80's PBS program for learning Spanish. (http://learner.org/series/destinos/watch/index.html?ep8) I heard about that on here. Yes, it's dated and a little cheesy but I really enjoy it. The story is fairly interesting and there's a mix of regular dialog that you're not expected to understand, slower Spanish explanations that you are expected to try to understand, and a bit of English narration for the stuff you can't be expected to understand. It's a story of a Mexican family and the Mexican-American woman who travels all over the Spanish-speaking world to search for a family member. You will hear a lot of different accents. I like it because I can see my comprehension really improving - not so much words I'm learning from Destinos, but words I'm learning elsewhere popping up. I was doing this daily but it advances faster than my studies are going... I think it originally was meant to be watched weekly by students who also had textbooks to go along with it. I would say if you're studying daily then watching this weekly or a couple of times a week would be very useful.

  7. Yabla. I tried the free sample videos and was so impressed I have subscribed. This is a huge database of videos by native speakers. They range from teachers giving simple tutorials in that "I am speaking so you can understand me" way to pop songs to interviews with mumbling people in the street. They're rated by difficulty. You can pick which country, too - so if you want to focus on understanding Spaniards you can do that. The awesome thing about it is the interface: there's the option to view or hide both the Spanish and English subtitles. These can be clicked on for instant word definitions. You can slow it down to hear more clearly. You can also repeat any sentence, even putting it on a loop. Go check it out! I use this every day.

  8. italki. This is the language-exchange site in which you use Skype, Google Hangouts, Facebook, etc to video call people who want to learn a foreign language. You can pay a professional tutor or find another person who wants to learn what you already know and take turns. I would like to say that I do this every day. Unfortunately, I struggled at first with the tech (that is, I am new to using Skype) and then when I finally had that installed and understood my first experience talking to a Spaniard was... not great. If you are a woman on italki you will quickly discover that there are a lot of perverts on there. You will get a lot of requests from men wanting to be your "friend." I spoke to a man in Spain and then realised that he was moving in a funny way, if you know what I mean. I no longer accept friend requests from men, have hidden myself from the general "looking for a language partner" search, and am henceforth only going to speak to women or professional tutors. Anyway, I would like to get a little bit better at vocabulary and be able to use the basic past tenses before I really try to chat. I may look for a proper tutor on there as they're relatively affordable - about $10 an hour.

  9. Spanish radio. For passive listening. Someone posted a fantastic link on here earlier in the week. It's a site where you can find Spanish-language radio stations all over the world. http://www.emisora.org.es/ - passive listening is where you just have some of the foreign language on in the background. You can try to understand it but don't let it stress you. Words you know will pop out and that will become more frequent as you learn more. There's something to be said for developing an "ear" for the sounds of another language. There is a process by which your brain will start to build little neural pathways for these sounds. It will NOT teach you the language... but it will help things "stick" as you learn them via active learning.

Edited to add: http://www.spanishdict.com/translation is a handy tool to have close by.

So! Those are the things that I have used and am using regularly. I have looked at and tried other things (like Anki, for example) but they haven't really appealed to me.

I would love to hear what you are doing - please share!

2 years ago

126 Comments


https://www.duolingo.com/ChrisWM4

Hi Katy. I thought I'd reply, as my wife is a Katie and I've learned over 36 years to do what I'm 'asked' :)

My toolbox is similar to yours:

  1. Duolingo. Portable etc etc. Much better than when I forked out for Rosetta Stone (French) and DL is more effective.

  2. I just re-started using Memrise for the reasons you mention.

  3. Linguaphone: books and CDs. Old school, but I love it. Very well structured course and I got it at a 60% discount in last year's sale.

  4. The Collins Easy Learning books; conversation (phrasebook) and grammar. Very good reference books.

  5. Language Transfer (Youtube and downloadable): extremely effective immersion podcasts. Just sit and listen, with 90 podcasts.

  6. I dropped Yabla. I'm tight, so spend the money supporting the Spanish red wine sector.

  7. iTalki: good, but I've still yet been able to connect with an exchange partner that works for me.

I dip in and out of many other resources, but the above are my main ones.

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/JusticeArman

Do you feel Memrise is useful? I feel it is far to easy and repetitive for many of the phrases.

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Danielconcasco
Danielconcasco
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Memrise is great if you're trying to add vocabulary quickly. I find it too clunky and inflexible for phrases.

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/JusticeArman

Yeah. That's why I worry it's not a great resource, at least until the later levels.

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Danielconcasco
Danielconcasco
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I've been working on a 5000 word course all through my Spanish tree and don't regret one but. It's a different pace than a Duolingo review and breaks the monotony, allowing me to spend more time learning without getting burnt out.

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/JusticeArman

Yeah, I get you. You're doing a 3000 word course on memrise, or quizzlet?

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/ChrisWM4

I tend to agree. I re-started using it recently, and remembered why I stopped in the first place; very repetitive.

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/katy.odell

Yes, it advances too slowly. I wish we could mark a word or phrase "I know this well and don't want to see it for a while." But at least it has more useful content. Imagine having to review "my penguin drinks water" hundreds of times!

I probably sound obsessed with penguins. I just don't understand why we were taught that word. Instead of, say, "cow." I rarely talk about bulls, but I see cows all the time...

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/ChrisWM4

I get exactly that benefit from AnkiDroid (I use an Android phone, but there is also Anki for iPhone). I make my own flashcards, and it has the great facility of tapping: remind me in a month, a week, a day, less than 10 minutes. Cool.

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/katy.odell

I just can't get into anki. Couldn't tell you why, exactly. Quizlet has a nicer look and interface. I can select which cards in a deck to review.

I like how the Memrise courses will introduce new things for me, I just wish I could speed it up sometimes.

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Maria_321-

ChrisWM4 - You wrote “I get exactly that benefit from AnkiDroid (I use an Android phone, but there is also Anki for iPhone). I make my own flashcards….”

Do you have any tips for making flashcards with Anki?

Anki sounds wonderful, especially per the book “Fluent Forever” but I haven’t been successfully able to make flashcards. I’d like a flashcard deck that asks “Tu dices? (yo)” and then the answer is “yo digo” In orther words, the flashcard doesn’t give you the infinitive form of the verb. Instead, it is set up like a conversation, where you only hear the conjugated verb the other person has used, and then have to remember if it is a regular or irregular verb, figure out what tense it is, and translate to a new pronoun, all without ever seeing or hearing the infinitive form of the verb.

2 months ago

https://www.duolingo.com/saxicola
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Katy, Another really excellent app is 'Flashcard Delux' on both Android and iPhone. It allows you loads of control over how you build your decks and you can upload from various sources. I initially created my own decks in Memrise but like you I found it too limiting to manipulate. I cut and pasted my Memrise word list into an excel spreadsheet and then cut and pasted my duo word list in as well (this was once I had finished the tree so I had the full compliment). I got rid of any duplicates and with the duo list I could only get the Spanish word so I had (still have) a lot of blanks! I then put this word list of nearly 3000 words into Flashcard delux. I now keep adding new words and filling in the blanks when words come up that I don't know so the deck is slowly becoming my own personal dictionary, I can also add in notes. I use Word reference, Spanish dict and Reverso context as my translation reference points. FD allows me to add in flags and categories too, which allows me to exude or filter cards to change what I am testing myself on. It has spaced recognition plus other ways of viewing, with lots of control of how these are set up, including spelling. I use the text-to-speech function to allow me to hear the word first with a delay before it shows. I am also now creating desks for sentences, I cut and paste difficult Duo sentences, and other sources, on my PC into Evernote and then pick it up on my tablet and paste into the deck. You can also add images if you find that useful, and you can have up to 5 sides to each card. It takes a bit of effort to work out how to get all the function working but the developer is very helpful, see his website http://flashcardsdeluxe.com/flashcards/. I am sure there are lots of different ways to use the app for a range of purposes. PS on your phone/tablet it is important to add in Spanish to the keyboard language ( makes it easy to add accents) and text-to-speech settings. You also need to switch off text recognition and auto caps otherwise the answers are predicted for you! On my Samsung i can quickly do this from the keyboard so i can put it back on again when i need it.

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/katy.odell

Oh, this looks like a great idea. I'll check it out immediately!

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Maria_321-

I wished you lived in Oregon so I could meet with you and see an example of how you do this. It sounds like exactly what I have been looking for! I am not tech savvy (much) so I anticipate it would take me hours to do what you have described. Thank you for sharing the link.

2 months ago

https://www.duolingo.com/JusticeArman

So I figured out on the online memrise version you can actually modify the course to not show certain phrases/words to you ahead of time.

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/katy.odell

What do you mean? You mean to skip the intro definition card?

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/epicflash3

me too

1 year ago

https://www.duolingo.com/katy.odell

I listened to a language transfer lesson today and I liked it! I will listen regularly/daily but I will keep it largely on the back burner... I mean, not stress too much about retaining everything. I save that effort for Memrise, DuoLingo and Synergy Spanish.

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Z-Pen
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I'm using Memrise too. In Memrise I'm following the A1 Spanish course and Easy Spanish Conjugation course. albeit both are very much secondary to Duo.

I have Destinos bookmarked for later because right now I don't feel I know enough to get much out of it. Catching one word in ten isn't useful practice, but perhaps this time next month I feel it and other programmes like it will be nicely helpful.

Search youtube for 'Extra en Español Ep 01' & 'Me Vida Loca - Episodio UNO'.

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/katy.odell

I didn't realise there were other Spanish courses on Memrise! How did I miss those? I have added the conjugation one and another that is sort of "useful phrases." The official A1 Spanish course moves slowly, but I like the random repetition reviews, so I'm happy to find other courses. Thanks and have a lingot!

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/jcragun

I've been using one of the '5000 most common words in Spanish' courses. I also am using 'Harry Potter Spanish' because I am reading Harry Potter in Spanish (although I take issue with some of its translations). There are some good slang and food courses I have taken as well.

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/jeroenvandinther
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When searching for free spanish lessons via podcasts, I found http://www.notesinspanish.com/. Ben (from England) and Marina (from Spain) are a couple that create these podcast and I enjoyed listening to them and learned a lot. Later on I bought the transcripts etc. that they offer online. Good quality material. You might want to have a look.

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/katy.odell

I have listened to that podcast once. It seems pretty good. Podcasts are on my "to do in the future" list.

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Hank247

1) Duolingo: I think this is giving me a good base. I like the way it teaches you about the words instead of just throwing phrases at you. The computerized voice is terrible.

2) Memrise: I only recently started using this one. I like it for review and learning phrases. I think I learn better from Duolingo. The voices sound more realistic.

3) Lang-8: On this website, you write in the language you are learning and native speakers correct your work. You also correct the work of people learning your native language. It is free even though you can pay for "premium" access. I wanted to work on output in Spanish and this is a great resource. I want to work on speaking, but at this point writing is difficult. I can't imagine trying to carry a conversation.

4) Reading in Spanish: It's slow going for me right now, but I read books in Spanish with the help of Google Translate and SpanishDict. I have been learning a lot of vocabulary from reading. So far I have read Huevos verdes con jamón, and Clifford la colección (Clifford the Big Red Dog). I'm working on La telaraña de Carlota. I also like the readings on http://learnpracticalspanishonline.com/. The readings are short and have a parallel text. They are broken into absolute beginner, beginner, intermediate, and advanced categories. They also have recordings of the readings from a native speaker from Colombia, but I have a terrible time understanding her.

5) Spanish television and videos: I watch some almost every day. I have several Spanish language channels on satellite. Some Netflix shows and movies have overdubs in Spanish. There are a lot of videos on YouTube. At first it all sounded like gibberish, but I'm able to follow the stories more often now.

6) Spanish music: I like Latin American Banda music. I think it helps some with understanding the language, but they use a lot of slang which is difficult to understand. Probably not the best way to learn, but it's fun.

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/CharmingTiger
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Ugh - I'm really sorry that you've had such horrible experiences with video chatting, Katy. Unfortunately, you're not the first woman on here to complain about such things (and rightly so!). It seems like many men out there are misusing these types of services. I'm sure there are plenty of dating websites and such where that kind of interaction would be appropriate, but talking to someone randomly on a generic video calling program is not one of them.

In fact, as a man it kind of upsets me that other men aren't using better judgment in those situations. I think it's a shame that you've decided to limit your interactions to only women after being exposed to such inappropriate behavior, but I don't blame you for doing so. As someone who hasn't yet used video chatting services for language learning (I've stuck with text and audio chat only so far), it makes me hesitant to the idea of 'random' video chats.

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/katy.odell

I felt really stupid, and sort of "well, what do you expect chatting to strange men?" I guess some guys assume that nice girls wouldn't do something like that, so if I'm willing to video chat with some random man, I'm not nice and deserve abuse.

The message to women everywhere is, "Stay inside/keep quiet, stick to other women or else you're looking for trouble."

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/CharmingTiger
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To be honest, those men aren't even thinking that deep. It wouldn't matter to them whether you're 'nice' or not, because they are simply trying to fill their own need for gratification. They know they are safe from prosecution due to anonymity, just as you are safe from them for the same reason.

Like most things in life, it is important not to take things too personally. You don't want to develop a 'victim' mentality, any more than you want to develop an 'abuser' mentality.

Remember, you always have options.

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/katy.odell

Don't worry - that's not my mentality. That is just an expression of the message that is given to women, all the time, constantly. Someone else on this thread remarked that an interactive resource didn't work for her because of the behaviour of the men on the site. It's just... the way it is. I used to think that I was unusual in that I would be sexually assaulted (groped) when I rode a crowded subway train. Years later, I read on the Internet that this goes on every day. Women are harrased all the time, regardless of their "mentality." It's just that by my mid-40's I'd sort of forgotten how common it is. You go out there on the Internet and talk to strangers and this stuff happens. That it happened the very FIRST time I spoke to someone (coupled with the constant friend requests from non-Spanish-speaking men, and the fact that the ONLY people who approached me were men) made me realise that the free mingle aspect of italki is probably not good for women.

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/CharmingTiger
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"...not good for women"

Perhaps you are right. Nobody should be abused, physically, mentally or otherwise. The interaction you had with that man in Spain was completely unacceptable, as is being physically groped without consent.

It is a fundamental aspect of the male/female dichotomy that men are the ones (usually) that initiate courtship. We generally have to do most of the 'work' to pursue and maintain a relationship. If we did not, many men would never be in a relationship with a woman. I think we can agree that the majority of women would rather be wooed than do the wooing.

The problem is that for the most part men are not as socially adept as women, and so they sometimes act out their impulses in counter-productive ways. This is why a man that beds many women is called a 'stud' whereas a woman who beds many men is called another name that begins with an 's'. Any woman could be the latter, whereas not many men are skilled enough to achieve the former.

Specific instances of abuse by men (or women!) should be dealt with accordingly. However, this is not a sounding board for issues between the sexes. To be honest, I probably shouldn't have even typed this up in response. As a man I get frustrated when women say that men are fundamentally flawed and need to change their very nature, because after studying female psychology for quite some time I would never say the same about women. However, re-reading your texts I see that you are simply relaying your experiences to others, and considering some of your experiences have been quite negative, I'm not going to take what I initially perceived as a slight against men to heart.

Edit: I'm going to give you an up-vote and a lingot as well, because it is good to hear from different points of view, even if we do not completely agree in some respects.

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/katy.odell

Of course it's not a generalisation. A few are ruining it for others, is all.

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/onelonemadrone

Good answer, Katy! Don't listen to this dude. Thank you for sharing your story, and for all the great resources!

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Maria_321-

Hi Katy,odell, I have also had numerous sexual harassment experiences. When online, I do not use my 'real' name. Anymore, I feel no compunction to do so because so many (but blessed definitely not all) men do sexually harass. It seems ridiculous to need to change our behavior, but if I used italic, I would chose a 'male' name, and have a picture of a plant or something, instead of myself, just to avoid the problem. Luckily, the short version (nick name) of my actual name is a typically 'male' name. Once I started using that 'nickname' for my telephone number, I immediately stopped getting all the heavy breathing hang up and worse harassment calls. Just saying, it's an option. I know some women would be offended at making the modification, but for me, it's just a reality that lets me get on with things, while working for more in depth change, one person at a time. I love the way the Duolingo forums are moderated, because here, I do feel safe using a female name and have not had any trouble. Thank you Duolingo!!

2 months ago

https://www.duolingo.com/james548276

Katy,

I had a similar with italki. Im trying to learn Latin American Spanish and find that the time difference is too great between Argentina and Dubai (where i work). However, i just wanted to point although italki didn't work for me, there are some genuine cases of men just wanting to learn Spanish on there too.. Although I understand how frustrating it must be!

Im using Rosetta Stone and an old copy of the Pimsular method as well as Duo but find that Duo is the most fun. Also, check out a Spanish show called 'Extras'. Its made for people learning English and they discuss at a slow enough pace to keep up. Highly recommended for a little emersion!

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/katy.odell

Could you supply a link or tell me where to find "extras?" I think just Googling "extras spanish" might not be specific enough.

Wait! I found it! It's "Extra en Espagnol" on Youtube. And I believe there is a nearly identical show for learning French - same plot (they both resemble "Friends.). I will definitely watch that! Thanks and have a lingot!

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/james548276

Sorry, Ive only just seen this. Glad you managed to find it and hope you find it useful.. Haha!! Thank you for the lingot! Your'e too kind :)

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Hxkxm
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Mostly I use books, they are more comfortable because they're solid and have more detailed explanations. Germany has satisfying collections of them. :)

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/MichaelHallbck

I read spanish poetry on my beloved Kindle, a dual language "Introduction to Spanish Poetry". It's great, even if you don't understand it completely it's still beautiful, and you can return to the same poems many times and get more out of them with time.

I also use spanishdict.com a lot, I haven't got around to using much flashcards which I probably should, and I'm quite addicted to the immersion translations here at Duolingo, translating both to English and Spanish.

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Danielconcasco
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I'm working on a 5000 word Memrise course. I'm past 3000 words and it has greatly helped me understand TV and radio.

http://www.memrise.com/course/248520/5000-top-spanish-words-with-audio/

I listened to any audio course I could get through my library: Mango Passport on the Go and Pimsleur were my favorite. I listened to those whenever I was driving or walking. They greatly filled the pronunciation gap that Duolingo left :).

I now listen to Noti-America on iHeartRadio.

http://www.iheart.com/live/noti-america-6562/

A lot of the announcers are pretty clear.

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/wazzie
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(Unfortunately, this post in mostly geared towards those living in the US or using a US VPN).

This may be a bit advanced for many here (and I include myself in that group), but Gran Hermano just started there first US Spanish edition. The premise of the show is a bit different from the regular US/Canada Big Brother. In this version (similar to other international version), each House Guest (HG) "nominates" three other HG, assigning them 1, 2, or 3 points. The top 3 point earners are then nominated for eviction by the public. The HG who receives the most public votes is then kicked out the house. The winner gets 250,000 USD.
There are two primetime episodes (Sunday and Wednesday) and a nightly episode every late night.
BUT the best part is LIVE FEEDS. You can go to Telemundo.com and watch the houseguest anytime you want. This is a great resource for just listening to casual, Spanish conversation. Here is a link to the live feeds (please note, these are live and uncensored. Use appropriate digression.)

There is another Gran Hermano in Spain, but this is the first international version really available to those living in the US.

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/devinish
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This is my setup since a couple of weeks now:

  1. I Use News in Slow Spanish in conjunction with LingQ as my primary tools. I import the transcripts and audio from NISS into LingQ, the two combined is a much better way of making sure you learn and reinforce new vocabulary, listening and reading comprehension.
  2. I've been told that watching TV is the silver bullet, for me that comes in the form of Yabla for it's great source of videos with transcripts.
  3. Quizlet and Anki for SRS. I am working through the 1001 Most Useful Spanish Words list. I like that Quizlet makes me type in the words, this helps me learn the correct spelling along with diacritic marks. Anki is for times when I want to do faster reviewing, and it's better at spaced repetition of large lists than Quizlet. 4 For dictionaries: I'm in love with Reverso Context (it's so great to have the huge library of translated words and phrases at finger tip), SpanishDict. and Google Translate are also indispensible
  4. Tunein Radio to stream spanish language radio stations for passive listening
  5. Lyrics Training to find and gamify listening comprehension through music.
  6. Apple music to easily find and add discovered spanish songs to my play lists.
  7. Music apps that can have song lyrics (Music Lyrics and Lyrically *usually one or the other has the song lyrics I'm looking for.
  8. I have a bunch of Practice Makes Perfect spanish books and several dual language readers.

This may be a lot but everything except for the physical books is on my iPhone so it's always with me that plus using one of the tiny non dorky in ear bluetooth ear pieces and I can easily fill a lot of dead time. Anyways I will take stock of my progress in 6 months.

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/katy.odell

I understand that News In Slow Spanish is a paid subscription service. Perhaps, someday, I will try it but my Yabla subscription is enough for now. Also, I expect to pay for Synergy Spanish Bola Nieve at some point and that ain't cheap.

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/cadethacker

If you just get the podcast via iPhone (or whatever device) is is free, but if you use the app/website which combines the listening and the reading (and lots of other great features) then that cost money. I listen to the podcasts in the car for good practice via the podcast app on my iPhone. They are relevant (weekly) and topical. I highly recommend this.

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Frank251123

I use some of these - and the others you mention I'll try out. There's just one nobody else seems to have mentioned that I like a lot (so far)."Mi Vida loca" is an interactive Spanish learning tool from the BBC. The combines an interactive language learning tool with a mystery adventure set in Madrid. http://www.bbc.co.uk/languages/spanish/mividaloca/

I like it because 1. It's Spanish Spanish - not Latin American Spanish 2. There's a good mix of natural native speaking at speed with slower speaking to be understood (taxi drivers for example) which you will encounter. 3. The mystery keeps it interesting

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/katy.odell

I had a look at that a couple of weeks ago and watched the first episode. It does look good and I think I'll check it out again.

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/dbrader63

Hi Katy. I use the Blue Letter bible app on my phone and read parallel verses in NKJV and RVR1960. portable, repetitive yet varied vocabulary, so many cognates that one can deduce the meaning of the unknown words, easy to do if one reads the bible regularly, ...

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/TinyKitties
TinyKitties
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Can you recommend a good passage to start with? I have "And Bible" with KJV and Spanish.

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/katy.odell

Another thing I use, by having a tab always open on my browser when I'm using my laptop for study, is http://www.spanishdict.com/translation. I don't know how it compares to Google Translate but I like how it has the words at the bottom. I know that it's not good to rely on a translator but it definitely helpful and I expect I will use it more in the future as I start to try to read newspapers.

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/ciyezealand

languages online is good for activities it helps loads and is for free :)

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Kalleca
Kalleca
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Busuu. And I use italki for my tutor and I have a coupon for new members as well. I highly recommend to get a tutor (or a teacher). I tried the partner this but I think that at the beginning you might do better with a tutor.

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/katy.odell

That is a fantastic site... I have run across it before but there are so many sites that I lost track of it. Revisiting it now, I see that it's really comprehensive and useful. I'd say it makes a pretty good substitution for my grammar textbook.

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/gbm1724

LingQ.com I love this site. You can use their library for all levels or upload your books or articles. It reads them aloud to you as you read along. it counts the words you know and drills you on the ones you don't (lingqs). Try it for free but it is the cheapest thing out there with the best tools!

Verbling.com -- Speak with a native! $14 -16 an hour you pick you tutor from the long list of smart, pleasant people. Read their reviews and see how many classes they've taught and what other students have said.

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/TinyKitties
TinyKitties
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Did anyone mention LightSpeed Spanish? I found them last week on YouTube. Gordon (from the UK) and his wife, Cynthia (from Spain) are fun to listen to. They have a website too http://www.lightspeedspanish.co.uk

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/ChrisWM4

I second that. They explain things well.

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/goldenphoenix26

Hi Katy! I think you have an excellent strategy, and those are definitely great resources you have. Here's what's in my Spanish learning toolkit:

Spanish Textbooks - I am currently a student and have access to great textbooks, exercises, and online practice. While this is not accessible to everyone, there are equally as useful series out there.

Duolingo & Memrise - Just as you said, although I don't use Memrise much anymore due to its over-repetitiveness and the way it only accepts one correct answer

Quizlet - Flashcards for vocabulary, as well as conjugations of types of verbs (-ar, -er, -ir, preterite, reflexive, etc.)

SpanishDict - Nice for word or phrasal translation and learning new words, but the best feature is its conjugation chart for every verb. Life-saver.

Exposure to Media - Listen to the news in Spanish, with subtitles in Spanish if possible (or read the news of Spanish-speaking countries). Check out Spanish children's books from the library, or find readings online. Listen to music in Spanish. Watch videos or movies in Spanish.

Live Practice - Find a pen pal, preferably a native Spanish speaker learning English. You can help each other and practice reading/writing in Spanish, or speaking/listening if you are open to face-to-face chatting or the such.

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/jeroenvandinther
jeroenvandinther
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Another great website that helps you to practice conjugations and provides a lot of other exercises as well, is Conjuguemos at https://conjuguemos.com/

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/RPGTabbycat

Besides DuoLingo: Memrise, Visual Link Spanish (the software is not free although there are free lessons on their website), Extra series in Spanish, Destinos, a few books including a Visual Spanish Dictionary and the website Forvo for help with pronunciation of new words in books.

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/JoshuaOrta2

The way I learn Spanish is coming to school to learn Spanish I sometimes watch novelas. I like to listen to Spanish music at home and in the car. I also do a lot of duolingo when I'm at home and I have down time. I learn sometimes by listening to the news in Spanish.

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/SamohtSMA
SamohtSMA
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I've had a number of good experiences. Local classes and private tutors to start, Memrise, Duolingo, and coffee break Spanish followed. l still use Duo and work with Language Transfer's Complete Spanish and Synergy Spanish's Bola Nieve program. Both of these other online offerings are great. I'm starting a month long course in intermediate conversation through UNAM next Monday, in San Miguel de Allende. I watch TV and read newspapers and online news in Spanish all the time. We have dinners in our neighborhood in Spanish, the native born and us expats. The dinners are the most authentic experience, but also the most difficult. As the party progresses the pace of conversation increases fueled by wine.

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/katy.odell

How do you like Bola Nieve? I'm enjoying Synergy Spanish and I am considering graduating to that, next.

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/SamohtSMA
SamohtSMA
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It is going fine! I like it. I'm in my first month, but it seems well put together. I'm sure you'll enjoy it.

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/katy.odell

Does it work the same way, gradually adding to what you know to make new combinations of phrases?

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/SamohtSMA
SamohtSMA
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Yes, you construct short phrases before the answer is given. Then you combine the phrases into a long sentence or two. The gramatical construct or key phrase keeps reappearing in different forms. The coverage of reflexive verbs in the first unit supplement materials is very well done. I'm sure it will continue in more monthly units.

Most of the first month was present tense and using present tense to express other times. (Voy a, vas a). Some of the expressions are slightly different from the local dialect here in central Mexico (ex usamos ahorita y ellos usan ahora mismo). To me they are the same. But in short I'm anxious to continue the series. I'll do their level three after that.

The other free series, language transfer's Complete Spanish, I mentioned above in the first post is similar, but with more explanation and memory cues to help you form phrases quickly. By lesson 70 you're through all the regular tenses and hitting subjunctive head on. The units on haber are great. For a challenge I redo the 90 lessons a few times a year. Enjoy

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/katy.odell

I am confused about Bola Nieve... Is it a "go-at-your-own-speed" thing like the initial Synergy, or is it literally conducted in real time? I ask because you refer to "the first month" and the website makes mention of spaces available.

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/SamohtSMA
SamohtSMA
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Bola nieve is delivered one unit per month for 13 months. The pack is quite large and a month is a reasonable time to go through it a few times. There is a space available real time option that I didn't try to sign up for.

I saw your comment on Extra en Español, it is the same basic program in each language. To me it reminds me of "Friends", but for teens.

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/cadethacker

Definitely give a thumbs up to Destinos. It very well done if a bit dated. It was the first Spanish course I was introduced to, so I'm biased. It combines academics with story telling.

For those that don't know. It is a telenovela. An old rich guy is about to die and he has a secret. He hires a young Mexican American lawyer to travel to Spain, Argentina, Puerto Rico and back to Mexico to unravel his secret. Fun and Enjoyable. Turn on the subtitles for extra help.

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/katy.odell

I didn't know there were subtitles!

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/katy.odell

I have looked for subtitles, and gotten no joy. Are you using DVDs or something? I did read the entire plot synopsis on Wikipedia, however. And I gather that it gets much more complicated, eventually dropping all English narration. Therefore, I think my progress through the episodes will be very slow, indeed.

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/cadethacker

I took a screen shot of the first episode. For me (Mac + Chrome) I had to click the "CC" button on the tool bar. It is a bit misleading because it says "English" but really it is all spoken language.

https://learner.org/series/destinos/watch/index.html?ep1

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/katy.odell

Thanks for that!

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/saxicola
saxicola
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Hi Katy, I can see the captions. Go to http://www.learner.org/series/destinos/watch/index.html?ep1 and in the video screen you should see the CC icon for Closed captions. When you click on it, it will offer English, but in fact this also gives Spanish. Put this to on and you should then get them. I am making slow progress, I have managed to source secondhand copies of the text book and workbook and audio for both these. I am trying to not use the captions to start with but go back for dialogue I want to check. I will need to avoid reading the plot on Wiki so that the plot keeps me interested. ED. Ah , Cadethaker has beaten me to it ;)

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/gjh67
gjh67
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agree, also thought Destinos was educational and found it interesting

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/SkillsInPills

Right now I'm using mostly Babbel, Duolingo and recently telling my boyfriend that we're only going to talk to each other (texting and in real life) in Spanish. I told him not to let me speak English to him and even if I need an explanation to give it to me in Spanish. He's Mexican-American and a native speaker so I'm glad to have him on board with helping me learn.

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/katy.odell

A Spanish-speaking friend would be awesome! Unsolicited opinion: depending on your level of fluency, you may want to have set, limited times para hablar español. That's because he may become frustrated if he can only communicate with you in Spanish. So if he does, then ask him to do it for an hour at a time.

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/SkillsInPills

You know, that's a good idea Katy. I didn't think about how me might get tired of trying to explain when I don't understand what he's saying.

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Mark-Fisher

I take community education classes. We are working through Madrigal and Richmand Verb Tenses. I start intermediate 2 in February. We also do Destinos in class.

I.am on Pimsleur course 5. Considering Synergy Spanish later.

I have made several sets on Quizlet and studied others.

I attend a couple regular Meetups. Good to practice speaking.

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/AuntieJenny

Great post! This is my core study program - at the moment. It's always in flux as I evaluate what's not really working for me so I can replace it with a more effective tool.

  1. Duolingo - this is where I started and where I begin my day. I spend a lot of time in each lesson by saying aloud each phrase and really thinking about its meaning; visiting the discussion where I find good nuggets of information about grammar, verb conjugation, and other resources; and doing at least 1 review every day. About every 3 weeks, I do a week-long Strengthen Skills review, keeping the browser tab open until the next day so the review continues rather than starting over.

  2. Memrise - It has its virtues and yes, the progress is slower, but I feel the phrases are more meaningful and the repetition drills really help things sink in. It repeats a phrase or word over and over until I get it right, and presents/reviews a word or phrase several different ways (read, write, and listen). I work with the sound turned off.

  3. Language Transfer - I listen to 1-3 videos on most days, each from 7 - 15 minutes long. The word that comes to mind is "mind-blowing". The method is very similar to that presented in Madrigal's Magic Key to Spanish. Highly recommended.

  4. Anki flash cards. Just recently I started adding a sentence or phrase to each vocabulary card -- so, on the English side, just below the word, I include a sentence in English that uses the word.

  5. The study book Easy Spanish Step-by-Step (by Barbara Bregstein), recommended to me by the teacher of my Meetup group for Spanish students (our teacher is a native speaker from Mexico). The book takes a linear approach to learning Spanish with each following using material from the earlier chapters. To supplement the lessons in the book, I use the lessons and articles at SpanishDict.com and StudySpanish.com.

  6. An occasional episode of Extr@ in Español (the story about Sam) - very much like Friends. I turn on English subtitles and learn the words I don't understand, then watch it again without stopping.

  7. Just today I started Coffee Break Spanish for beginners, beginning at video #5 (I think) that teaches basic family relationships and introductions. I thought it was too simple at first -- until the part where it teaches how to introduce someone by saying "Este es mi padre" and "Esta es mi madre" --- which was the first time I've heard that since I began studying Spanish in January!

  8. And today I received 2 new books: Madrigal's Magic Key to Spanish and Barron's 501 Spanish Verbs. The latter is more than just a dictionary of verbs; it includes instructions about formations of tenses and participles, drills and tests, and 2 audio CDs (with more exercises and puzzles and help with conjugation and pronunciation).

I need to listen more and speak more. I joined italki and WeSpeke and had a couple of Skype chats but decided to take a break from that until I am a bit more conversational.

I often wonder if there's anything I should drop or add, and if I should stay with Memrise. I need variety and enjoy using different resources. Initially, I seek a linear approach to learning but in practice I tend to jump around and do what I feel like on that day.

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Griffen__

One of my favorites is a website that offers various articles with news from around the world, but includes audio and exercises. Great for improving listening comprehension and just improving skills overall. https://www.practicaespanol.com/

PS. I love Destinos. I picked up a used destinos textbook for 5 dollars (There's loads on the market) so that i could do the exercises after watching the videos at home. It was my first introduction to Spanish. Then on my first trip to Sevilla, I found myself roaming through the Barrio de Santa Cruz retracing Rachel's steps as she tried to run after Jaime and his dog ¡Osito!

2 months ago

https://www.duolingo.com/AyshaShaikh

Hi Katy,

Well I learned all my basics on Fluencia. Its a great website that teaches you all the basics you would use in everyday conversation. You do have to pay however they offer you a free trial of lessons to learn and understand basic conversations. Its my favorite out if all the spanish learning websites. Hoped i helped!

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/BradyHamil1

try Rosetta stone it helps me

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/katy.odell

I haven't heard anything good about Rosetta Stone, but it sure is expensive.

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/ChrisWM4

It's horses for courses, but I got Rosetta Stone as mentioned above at a discounted price, but it was still pricey. It has lots of games and ways of approaching vocabulary and immersion grammar, but they also charge an annual fee for ongoing access to the tutor and games component. For me, I got far more out of DL in months than I did in years of RS. Others may experience the opposite I suppose, but for me, RS isn't worth the money.

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/katy.odell

Never having used RS, I don't know if it's actually bad or if it's just very, very overpriced. Perhaps if it were a free app people would say nice things about it. But since it's the most expensive thing out there I don't think I've heard anyone say anything good about it.

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/gjh67
gjh67
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we got RS at a very reduced price, so it was pretty good and learned a lot, but there is a fee to continue the on-line conversation and games. and it seems like everyone says actually "talking" is a key factor in learning.

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/jaimexplorer
jaimexplorer
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Thanks for the memrise link. I will try it. Before (and occasionally during) Duolingo I studied Spanish grammar. I'm impressed that people without any Spanish background manage to not get totally confused with Duolingo.

I am starting to look into Skype so I can hire a tutor. I have heard about tutors who charge $10 - $15 per hour. I really need more opportunities to practice listening and responding to Spanish speakers.

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/ChrisWM4

This is good for Skype: https://www.italki.com/ They have a satisfaction assurance, in that an unsuitable lesson doesn't have to be paid for.

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/jaimexplorer
jaimexplorer
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Thanks!

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/GabeMonson

I use Duolingo, with it's emphasis on penguins and scissors as a 'baby talk' warm up to a solid workout with Pimsleur MP3s, which I find leads me into understanding and speaking whole sentences; though they are 'by rote' they are language that is relevant to travelling. I do appreciate that as Duolingo requires writing I've had to pay more attention to where accents are. I've had personal/immersionlessons (in Guatemala) that was of course the fastest progression, and have a spanish text book to progress through grammatical constructs, a lot of flashcards and lists I make myself from online translators, so I talk to myself in Spanish through the day. I have finished Synergy Spanish and it's OK but never got past present tense. I'm half way through Coffee Break Spanish which has some interesting phrases but a lot of padding.

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/jfGor
jfGor
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Could you tell us about the Guatemala course. Which city and school did you go to and did you do a home-stay? I really, really want to go but my situation isn't good right now for traveling. I am thinking about the Lake area. I think it would help others if we could get an insight as to the learning in that environment. When I go I want to stay 2 months. Thank you.

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/GabeMonson

I went to a small school in San Pedro (by Lake Atitlan) called Solmaya (there are larger schools). But I think it's changed its name. (possibly now Orbita ?). I didn't home stay as I met up with my daughter there, (she was working in Mexico) and we wanted a bit of a holiday/nice place to stay together. That was OK with me- speaking/studying 4 hours a day plus 2 hrs homework, speaking to shopkeepers etc was enough Spanish per day for me. I only stayed for 2 weeks, and that gave me a grounding. Of course I wasn't fluent or anywhere near it, but I travelled alone in Mexico for a couple of months after and knew enough of the structure of the language to be able to read, build vocab, It's those damn verb conjugations that fry the brain!). You would learn TONS in 2 months. San Pedro was a beautiful place, quite a few different schools there and a very easy place to be (good food, locals used to tourists, not dangerous to be in town- though I did hear of muggings happening to people who went off on their own out of town)

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/ArvindPradhan

We also went to San Pedro de lago (that is Atitlán) and learned Spanish for two weeks. In addition we stayed in Antigua for two weeks, at Xela for a week. Learned Spanish from many different teachers. At Xela, we had our own apartment so we ate well. In Antigua we did homestay where we had to supplement food by eating out. Other than that Guatemala is a fabulous country and cheaper that most others.

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/jeroenvandinther
jeroenvandinther
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Last week I started using Mosalingua. They also share tips for online resources on this page http://www.mosalingua.com/en/resources-learn-spanish/

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Inspired1982

I use Pimspluer, and I really like it. It helps me a lot in listening and speaking (of course and new vocabularies), while Duo focuses on writing and reading. (including much more of course). I find Pimspluer entertaining as well as there is a proper sense of humor in each lesson, which makes it fun to practice. (of course this fun fades while I am listening to the same lesson for the 5th time :) but, as good as it gets. Best of luck.

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/katy.odell

I'm hearing Pimsleur mentioned a lot. Is this a book series, an online program, or what?

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Inspired1982

It's an audio materials (goes from level 1 to level 5 I think) that includes conversations between people in Spanish, and it gets translated to English. You get space to repeat and respond later on. You might find it in public library, and there are information about it on amazon. By the end of each lesson, you learn something new, and it teachers proper pronunciation as it's done by native Latin Americans.

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/GabeMonson

Pimsleur is a series of audio lesson series (with written supplementation), about 30 mins each, a combination of 'translate this into Spanish' and 'answer this question' that keeps you paying attention. You have just enough time to think then answer, before and after the correct Spanish. It is well worked out, building up longer sentences from phrases, with minimal English explanations and enough revision without becoming 'bogged down'. So far (I've done about 40 lessons) it's focused on vocab that is useful for travelling. It's purchasable though I confess, I pirated it. As it comes as MP3s I appreciated being able to use it offline, loading MP3s onto my phone to listen to on long Mexican bus journeys. Using it this way, I did not get familiar with spelling/writing, particularly where the accents are.

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/iconicop

I've been listening to podcasts for the Casa Rojas: "These podcasts are for the Intermediate and Advanced Spanish Speaker who would like to sharpen their Spanish skills. The fine points of the language will be presented and explored through a variety of topics to include; music, history, culture, literature and food. Learn Spanish from within its context. El Podcast de La Casa Rojas se complementa con la Revista en www.lacasarojas.com." Luis Rojas is an excellent teacher and I find those podcasts really usefull to improve vocabulary and comprehension. All podcasts can be downloaded here: http://www.rojasspanish.com/podcast/RojasSpanishPodcast.xml

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Rojoboy11

What I do to learn a little more Spanish is talk with my grandparents because they speak Spanish. Something else I do is change the language in my phone to Spanish for I can learn more words

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/atlanteanrune

So far I've been using this site for about a week, but I learned the language in school (everyone had to take three years; I took six), and I also actively translate at the thrift shop where I work. One thing I plan on doing soon once I get some extra dough is to find books I know well in English and see if I can decipher the stories in Spanish as well-- a copy of each to take notes of differences in syntax.

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/trecile

I use an app called HelloTalk to find language exchange partners. It allows you to choose who you partner with by age and sex. It allows you to send text and voice messages, or to make live calls. It's a free app, but you can upgrade for more features for a dollar a month.

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/sarahmason23

To learn Spanish I use duolingo, and google translate. These help me to find out what words mean and get more fluent in the language. I also use memrise which is a super fast and easy way to learn more Spanish words. I also use one that you mentioned Collins easy learning Spanish grammar practice, which I just started after I we read this discussion in our Spanish class and I have learned a couple new words. Using the apps help me understand the vocabulary in Spanish along with new words and phrases especially it helps with getting to know the verbs and different endings that go along with Spanish. Duolingo is great with all of the skills to make you become more fluent in languages. Google translate helps me find out what words mean so I can memorize them to us later on in the future. Memrise helps with getting to know the vocab and the endings of verbs. Collins easy learning Spanish grammar practice really helps with the grammar and putting them in to full sentences.Those are really the only apps I used but they all help me with my Spanish class and my Spanish outside of class!

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Ari._.02

To learn spanish i use duolingo, of course. But I also use my family members to talk to me in spanish for a while so i can get the feeling of it, like in the real world. Only for some english words i don't know in spanish i would just use my translator. I also look for apps that will help me with different languages that i would use everyday. Plus instead of watching some of my favorite shows I would put them in spanish then have english subtitles so i would know what they are talking about. I would have my whole family talk in spanish for the whole day so we all can practice at the same time. I would ask my dad side of the family to help me understand what they are saying since they all speak only spanish. Only sometimes i would be able to understand them when they talk clearly and slower. I would get books on spanish from some of my family because they want my to learn it so I can talk to them. But for other things I would use duolingo most of the time.

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/robsaidthat

I listen to news in slow panish (http://www.newsinslowspanish.com/) and watch movies in Spanish on HBO and Netflix, using the closed captioning to visually display the words that are being spoken. Very helpful for aural comprehension.

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Isaacbarbe1

I only do 2 things :a/1=Duolingo followed by b/2=google translate.At least it works,right?:/

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/AlberAlex11

Hi Katy!, If you're a Smartphone user, i could recommend you the app "TuneIn Radio". As you said in the last number of you list, you need to make your brain used to hear the language that you're learning, and spansh is breathtakingly different depending on the place that you're hearing it. In that app you can choose radio stations around all the world, and of course in native spanish places. You could notice that differences if you play Mexican, Spaniard, Argentinean and Caribbean stations. Maybe hearing about different accents out from the Spaniard ones of Barcelona could help you to accelerate your learning. I hope that makes you some help. Have a nice day! :D

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Tom873317
Tom873317
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I use Duolingo and Memrise as a core, too, and spanishdict.com as my primary reference.

One extra resource that took me way too long to discover is any DVDs or blurays you own, most likely have Spanish audio and subtitles available in the menu. Sometimes it's nice to just watch something familiar.

Also, the Spanish dictionary: http://lema.rae.es/drae/ it can be trickier to work out exact meanings, but it's a fun exercise, and it is authoritative. When you're just not sure if a word can be used in a certain way, this can be especially helpful.

And one last also: http://www.linguee.com/english-spanish is good for seeing lots of examples of a word or phrase used in a sentence.

Also, wikipedia. Whenever you're reading something on wikipedia, there is usually a Spanish version - read that one instead!

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/spanglishlol

Hi Katy, so sorry to hear about your Skype experience. It has taken me a while to find the right people through Skype to converse with. I like to have a fixed time and day and many spaniards like to make contact.... as and when,,,,mañana mañana!! I have finally settled with 3 intercambios from different parts of Spain, one female and two male and have been talking with them for more than a year. I study at home so my learning is not necessarily structured, I'm probably at an intermediate level and recently started to use Duolingo, I find it useful in order to reinforce what I have learned. I read as much as possible. I started with spanish childrens books El Barco de Vapor series, I found these very useful. I now read these at teenager level and also read adult spanish books. Reading aloud to myself also helps. I download spanish radio podcasts and listen to them when out walking. I watch spanish tv. Radio RTVE.es. There is a telenovela... Cuéntma cómo pasó... I watch and listen to this series and you can enable a window in order to see the written dialogue. I don't always understand what they are saying but I can certainly follow the story and my understanding improves over time. Here in England, I meet up with a group of spanish/ english speakers, we try to meet once a week and it is fun. The key elements for me at the moment are listening, talking and reading, they all help improve my conversational skills . Yes, grammer is important and I use the Sueñas spanish study books but in order for me to speak spanish well, I have to THINK spanish. To be able to read and converse without the need to translate.I think I'm getting there, slowly!

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/mikey111sd

One thing I’m doing, sort of related to #9, is to try and find movies or tv shows I’m very familiar with that I can watch dubbed in Spanish. Although I have nothing but my opinion to back it up, I feel somehow watching and listening to a story I already know is more beneficial than just listening to arbitrary sources of people speaking Spanish.

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/katbell12

Personally I am trying to relearn Spanish to take the CLEP test for it. I'm using a lot of the same sites, but I wanted to include one I just came across. I frequent a site called 9gag for my own personal amusement. This site contains a ton of memes. There is actually a Spanish version called esgag.com. Although right now I can only comprehend about half of the memes, once I learn more I am sure this will be a very entertaining way to use my spanish!

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/chiieddy

We're actually using Duolingo as a prep prior to going to a Spanish immersion course for 2 weeks in Guatemala in March

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/jfGor
jfGor
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Where are you going? which school.

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/chiieddy

Vamos Maximo Nivel en Antigua

We're going to Maximo Nivel in Antigua.

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/jfGor
jfGor
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Thanks. I have investigated so many schools and just can't decide , but it will be at least a year because I can't travel now. You have a good bit of time to study before leaving so you can concentrate more on what you want to. Good Luck!

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/MabusTheGreat

I'm not learning Spanish (raised bilingual due to my parents being bilingual), but I use DuoLingo and Memrise to add to my vocabulary. I do read Spanish-language books, watch Spanish-language shows, et cetera, but I don't do it with learning in mind.

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/ArvindPradhan

Tengo una profesora Cubana quien me da las lecciones en la gramatica una vez por semana.

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/katy.odell

I'm happy to say that I can read your post, after having studied Spanish for only three weeks.

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/ArvindPradhan

No comprendo pq la mayoría de los comentadores no comunican en español.

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/baffledbetty1

Live Mocha is something that I have used that has worked well for me. You can write and speak and have others or teachers comment on your skills. Additionally, if you really want to learn a language quickly, I would check out Benny Lewis's website, www.fluentin3months.com. Benny is a polyglot (knows & uses multiple languages) and is fluent in 7 languages and can hold conversations in many other languages. His style is completely different than any other language course I have tried. He doesn't waste your time on learning words (penguin) that you'll probably never use. Instead, he immerses you into speaking the language immediately. You can sign up for a free version (short) and/or pay for his premium version for $97.00 (it's on sale). He has been featured on several high-profile mediums (NY Times, Forbes, etc.). It's just a thought and might be something you'd be interested in checking out. Just be sure you are ready to step outside your comfort zone. I hope this helps. : )

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/katy.odell

I've read many of his blog posts and yesterday I even flipped through his book briefly at a bookstore.

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/ojsenga

Hi everyone. I am using Canopy, the medical Spanish learning app (or website). Also, try finding some subtitled telenovelas or any Spanish shows!

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/flordelaluna

I use Fluenz, which I love.

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Nerdgrl_bklvr

Katy thank you SO much for posting this. I've been trying to figure out good things to help me learn faster, easier. I also thought about itaiki but now I'm settled to dismiss it. I just can't deal with that smut. Thank you!

1 year ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Polygl-not
Polygl-not
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I'm a high school student, so I'm taking real life classes to supplement my Duolingo. My school only requires two years, but I'm in my third now and I'll be moving on to a fourth in a few months.

5 months ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Maria_321-

ChrisWM4 - You wrote “I get exactly that benefit from AnkiDroid (I use an Android phone, but there is also Anki for iPhone). I make my own flashcards….”

Do you have any tips for making flashcards with Anki?

Anki sounds wonderful, especially per the book “Fluent Forever” but I haven’t been successfully able to make flashcards. I’d like a flashcard deck that asks “Tu dices? (yo)” and then the answer is “yo digo” In orther words, the flashcard doesn’t give you the infinitive form of the verb. Instead, it is set up like a conversation, where you only hear the conjugated verb the other person has used, and then have to remember if it is a regular or irregular verb, figure out what tense it is, and translate to a new pronoun, all without ever seeing or hearing the infinitive form of the verb.

2 months ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Maria_321-

I also use ¨Mastering Spanish: Level 1: Hear it, Speak it, Write it, Read it" developed by the Foreign Service Institute. My Public Library has the 12 CD set for Volume 1 and Volume 2. You can listen to minimal pairs (two words that sound very similar but are not), get information about where and how to correctly emphasis where the stress is placed in each word, how that differs from English, and how to keep from sounding like a gringo when you pronounce Spanish vowels (one sound, not two per vowel). It includes proper intonation and how to hear what you are doing versus what you should be doing, etc.

2 months ago

https://www.duolingo.com/saxicola
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To Maria_321-, sorry I can't add this in sequence as there is no reply option under your comment last week. I have had a break from Spanish for a while and only come back to Duo recently (missing the ability to send messages direct like we used to!), and as well as catching up with the new Duo skills which are great, I am now spending most of my time using Clozemaster (https://www.clozemaster.com) which is much easier to use than FlashcardsDelux. I have paid for a Pro account as this gives access to sound. What it does, is give a repetition learning experience where you listen to a sentence and then see the Spanish (or whatever language you are learning) text and add in the missing word. It is great for listening to words as part of a sentence, which single word flashcards don't do. There is a massive range of sentences too ranging for easy to more complex. Hope this is of interest.

1 month ago
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