Have you ever been in a situation where you did not understand what was happening around you? Well, that is what it is like for many people who have just moved to this country and have not yet learned the language. The experience of being in a completely
new environment is a very scary ordeal. When I was in Mexico for the first time, I really had no idea what was going on. Luckily, I was surrounded by people who were willing to help and teach me everything I needed to know in order to flourish in my new setting.
I would like to encourage everyone who reads this to be that person to someone else. Next time you have the opportunity, help someone who might be struggling with our language!
Hello, my name is Miss Walker and I have been teaching and/or tutoring Spanish in one form or another since 1999. I have taught homeschooled, private schooled, and public schooled students grades K-12 as well as adults.
Are you serious about learning Spanish or any other foreign language? If so, the absolute best way to learn any additional language, after you have learned some basic grammar and vocabulary, is to be immersed in the language. By that I mean, surround yourself
with nothing but speakers of the language you are trying to learn. Below are several suggestions to help you accomplish this.
1. TRAVEL TO A FOREIGN COUNTRY
The absolute best way to immerse yourself in a foreign language is to travel to a country where they speak the language as their native language. If you can actually live in the country, that is the ideal situation to aid you in gaining language fluency. While
there, force yourself to...
Si necesita aprender Ingles, you puedo aydarle. Tengo mi certificaciòn del segundo nivel para enseñar Ingles a personas que no hablen Ingles. Mis lecciones son en Ingles, pero ofrezco algunas explicaciones en Español. No hablo español fluidez, pero la
familia de mi novio es de Mexico y en mi iglesia, se hable Español. Yo puedo comunicarse, pero mi Español tiene errores. Si mis lecciones le interesan, puede mirar a mi profile or puede escribirme por mas informaccion en Español.
Cuando digo que voy a preparar tamalitos de maíz
pienso en granitos de maíz
blancos, amarillos, azules,
morados, rojos y negros...
como una arcoíris
cuando medio llueve.
Cuando digo tamalitos de maíz
pienso en una milpa.
Así se le llama al terreno
donde brota la planta de maíz
al sembrarse el granito
en la Madre Tierra.
Jorge Argueta. From "Tamalitos"
Last week I went to see "Cantinflas," the new movie that is in theaters right now about the life of the famous Mexican comedian Mario Moreno, "Cantinflas", who lived from 1911 until 1993. It will give the Spanish students the opportunity to learn about
this important character in the Hispanic culture and also to practice their listening skills. It is important to listen to native speakers from different countries, and with different accents. Even if you are in a beginning level of proficiency I recommend
this movie because it has subtitles in English and some parts in English have subtitles in Spanish.
Hello everyone! Hola a todos!
Learning a second language like Spanish or ESOL can be boring and frustrating sometimes. You just get sick of reading your textbook or completing worksheets that your teacher gives you. But believe it or not...there are several ways to make learning a
second language fun no matter what age you are! You're probably thinking right now..."how?" I'll tell you how. First, think of something that you like to do in your free time like listening to music, watching a movie or reading. Say if you really enjoy listening
to music...look up one of your favorite genres and see what pops up for Spanish or English music in that genre. For example, Spanish pop/rock - the Colombian artist Juanes will pop up. Check out some of his songs on youtube. Once you find a song that you like,
look up the Spanish lyrics online, print them out and then try your best at translating them into English. See if you can figure out what the song means...
I recently have been fortunate in being able to tutor two young students. Both of them are giving me the opportunity to reflect on best practices in teaching to help me help them with a specific issue. The first, an eight year old whose ability to recall
needs improvement. In using different modalities, such as visual color coding, sound, recording the information for her to review later, I am now using cut-out letters out of sand paper to use touch to help retain the information. It is a work in progress,
which I hope helps improve memory.
The second student is four years old. So reading and writing are not available to an extent that is useful at this time. I am using music to help reinforce the topics that are introduced. I am also careful to stop after 15 minutes and give her a few
minutes to regroup since the lesson is an hour long.
Young students are a joy and an opportunity to improve as a tutor...
I'm sure everyone has seen a commercial or heard a discussion on raising kids from a very young age to be bilingual. While many of these DVD and CD sets are marketing and capitalizing on our desire for our kids to be the shining star of their school, they
really do have validity. Our brains are wired to best absorb language before the age of 5 and still ready to take on language up until the age of 8. Yet of course we don't start learning a second language until our brains have closed the doors on language
absorption! So it's not your fault that you have to hire tutors like me to help with your Spanish classes...it's really the school's fault for not introducing language sooner! More and more families and school systems are finally coming on board though and
creating bilingual schools, or at least exposing youngsters to a second language, and I couldn't be happier! Until I end up jobless because all our children have become linguistic geniuses...uh oh.
Reminders to improve your communication in the target language:
- Pay attention to the facial expressions of the native speakers in order to understand the meaning of their talk.
- Identify the key words in the sentences you hear. These are usually content words: verbs and nouns.
- Determine by the intonation of the sentences if the speaker is asking or answering questions, describing, or telling a story.
- Practice one or two new words, or small phrases regularly with native speakers.
- Build the knowledge of the target language with small bricks: memorize nouns and verbs and use them in simple sentences (Noun + Verb + Complement). As you master the use of simple sentences in present tense you can continue progressing by learning more complex
sentences and different verb tenses in order to communicate more accurately.
- Practice each of the four skills of communication 10-15 minutes every day. These skills are: speaking,...
When you learn Spanish there are a couple of recommendations:
1.- Know your English grammar.- Most students have no idea of grammatical functions. When they start studing Spanish and the teacher talks to them about pronouns, direct objects, adverbs and so on; they feel lost and confused. Its hard to understand
how a pronoun works in Spanish if you don't in English. If you know the diferences between adverbs, verbs, nouns, etc. learning Spanish will be easier.
2. Be Analitycal.- Spanish methods are always advertising to have you speaking in less time. Learning in less time has no meaning if you don't understand what you are doing. Memorizing or associating words will get you by but will not give you a full
command of language. Understand, analyze the language structures
; this will make it easier to find patterns and understand the rules.
Hasta la próxima y buena suerte!!!! Lou...
This is really exciting for me.
I fell in love with Spanish in 9th grade, even went on to study Spanish at La Universidad Internacional de Guadalajara, studied business and literature in Spanish at the University of North Carolina at Charlotte and continued my Spanish studies at Columbia
I pastored at a hispanic church in Columbia, SC. In fact, my first sermons were in Spanish.
And now, I am SO excited to begin the journey of teaching and tutoring students in this incredible language!
My teaching style is unique, I am high energy with an emphasis on what I call connections, effective ways of remembering and connecting the dots.
At the end of the day Spanish is a big puzzle. It's fun to figure it out and put the pieces together!
Looking forward to hopefully tutoring you soon!
So the warm months are here and I'm ready to meet students interested in bettering their Spanish. Are you going to be studying abroad for the coming school year? Do you want a head start on next year's Spanish courses? Are you interested in giving the
gift of bilingualism to your son or daughter? Send me a message and let's talk! No tienen nada que perder, y todo el mundo latino les espera!
I've always heard of people who are "naturally adept" at learning another language. You hear about someone who picked up German, Japanese or Spanish in a few months without really studying a language, individuals who just listened and learned without every
struggling or working on their language skills. While this sounds good, I've never actually
met anyone who learned a second language without working for it.
The best way to learn another language is of course to study abroad. However, many people do not have the time, money or resources to travel somewhere where the predominant language is not English. So, the next best thing to do is not wait around for some
epiphany moment where the language suddenly sinks in. The next best thing is to work on the fundamentals of the language and develop your reading comprehension skills.
Spanish in many ways is like a form of math. You plug in a particular word, put it in a sentence and conjugate...
Do you want to improve your Spanish skills? I've been teaching students just like you for 10 years! I have lots of tips & tricks to help you do your very best in speaking, reading, writing & listening in Spanish! How can I help you do your very best?
By finding out about YOU!!
Did you know that people learn in different ways? We are all different and our differences make us who we are! ¡Qué chévere! How cool! Here are some questions to ask yourself:
What do you feel you're pretty good at?
What are your hobbies?
What other subjects do you enjoy? How do you learn best? For example, do you learn better by watching someone do something new or by listening to someone explain what to do?
Or do you learn best by doing something hands on?
By getting to know how you learn best, you'll have the tools to help you succeed in anything you do! I can offer you the most effective strategies to...
Today one of my Spanish students was learning vocabulary related to personal appearance (hair and eye color, height, etc) and had previously learned professions, so to practice all of this vocabulary, we played a couple rounds of 20 questions. We alternated
who was thinking of the person and who was guessing so that she could practice both speaking and listening as well as practice her question words! She really enjoyed this, and I have used this method in the past with students which was very successful. It's
a fun way to practice a variety of vocabulary and use imagination.
One of my favorite tools to use when starting lessons with students is Facebook. It's great because most students have smart phones and can open the app right there. And, you get your students to talk about people they know, or people they would like to
know more about (celebrities and such). For my Spanish students, we open up a friend's page and just like that we create sentences and ask questions about:
-where people are from
-where they live
-what they like to do, read, listen to, watch etc.
-what they did in the past
-relationships (family, marriages, friends etc.)
-how they are characteristic wise or condition wise
For Spanish specifically, it is a great opportunity to use the verbs:
Since English speaking students sometimes struggle with the different uses between ser and estar, and the use of tener with regard to age, it's...
As I have mentioned in previous blog posts, I work with students of a variety of levels to improve their Spanish speaking ability. Meeting with a student twice a week can make it quite difficult to keep sessions fresh and exciting and to come up with conversational
topics that haven't previously been covered.
Today one of my more advanced students wanted to practice using the correct imperfect and preterit conjugations and so he described to me, in great detail, his favorite movie. Since most people can talk for a long time about their favorite movie, and it
is easy to prod more shy students into engaging on this topic, I thought it a great topic choice on his part and will steal this idea to use with other students.
Pretend you are Christopher Columbus, writing to the King and Queen of Spain to beg them to finance your trip to the Americas. Explain to them what you need, why it is necessary, what you hope to gain. In Spanish this requires the use of the subjunctive!
I have often struggled with finding a fun activity to get students to practice writing the subjunctive in context, and came across this idea the other day. I used it this past weekend with a student who found it a fun yet challenging task.
One piece of advice I would say is to have a mini word bank of phrases that might be useful for them, as this was the only real obstacle to my student's success!
I have used this website for years. It is a free source of tutoring for any student wishing to understand Spanish grammar. You can read or print out the explanations. There are several quizzes to help your comprehension. It is also very USER FRIENDLY.
Spanish is becoming more and more important with regards to business. Learning Spanish will enable you to better communicate with Spanish speaking employees or co-workers. Wouldn't it be nice to be able to offer your product or
service to the 350 million people whose mother tongue is Spanish? In North America, Hispanic consumers are the fastest-growing market segment. As for job opportunities, it certainly wouldn't hurt to have Spanish on your resume.
In the United States, knowing Spanish can be particularly helpful if you work in healthcare or education. Increasingly, the building trades are employing more and more Spanish speaking workers. One thing is certain. If you are bilingual,
you will be more marketable and have more career choices than your monolingual counterpart. Globalization, with it's accompanying free trade agreements is shrinking the business world, and those who know more than one language will definitely have the edge.