One way to understand the Spanish language, is to listen to it. There are some good channels you can listen to the spanish language and hear the words that you are familiar with. I like the Handy Mandy cartoon rather than Dora. I also encourage my students to listen to the Spanish soap operas at night. They are on the Univision cable channels. On these soap operas, some of the spanish words that one should already be familiar with are easily pronounced and can be clearly understood. Try it. Listen to the soap operas for the common phrases, like 'bueanas dias, como estas, claro, si, no comprendo, . . .etc. Listening to the spanish speaker like a child is how we came to learned and understand English.