I follow Ali Gamal on Facebook and have done for around 8 years now he has a great YouTube channel that I really advocate for anyone trying to learn 'street Egyotian' and sound like a local. He has subtitles and breakdowns and good energy in front of the camera.
I think a lot of younger students have their hands forced, they learn a language with little more intent than to attend the class they have to go to, or maybe their parents are pushing them it isn't from their own drive or ambition (for the majority) whereas as an adult learner you make the choice so you decide how important it is to you. Perhaps that is why they succeed? That said, there are so many older people here in Spain that speak little more than 'please and thank you' and are of the opinion they are too old to learn. So this is a really eye-opening graph!
I think listening (real-world listening) I the hardest part but the most important part for learning to have a flowing conversation that sounds natural you can learn languages without any studying beforehand through listening (Although I think a healthy mix is best) therefore it is key to being able to speak the language.
I think everyone goes through that and that a big percentage of taking some basic language learning to the next level is to get over the fear and embarrassment and just allow yourself to make mistakes you will either be encouraged and feel free to try it out more comfortably or corrected and either way you grow as a learner and improve over time
I believe you can go far if you stick at it, my language learning has never been a serious pursuit but I did land a job because eI can speak a little (not mastered) of many languages, it was not high salary but I worked in a hotel in Egypt and I loved it
I haven't quit but I have been less interested in learning French since I went to stay in France last, without offense I found it to be the only place I have ever been and bothered to try to speak the language where the people were not very encouraging of it. I think there are some real sticklers when it comes to pronunciation, I find the pronunciation difficult in French especially when t varies regionally, I tried to perfect different pronunciations but couldn't please anyone and heard a lot of vulgar opinions about English people trying to murder their language and it left me a little disheartened to even try. Of course, this is just generalizing my personal experience and not to tar the French as a whole, I'd love to meet someone friendly and French here to maybe help and get me motivated with it again sometime :)
https://www.spanish.cl/Vocabulary/Notes/Pesadillas.htm Las Pesadillas - Lectura
Spanish Reading about Nightmares
Benjamín se encuentra en la mitad de un sueño placentero cuando en él aparece algo desagradable, Benjamín se retuerce en la cama, tratando de salir de ese sueño. Al gritar entran a su habitación para ver que ocurre, le dicen que no pasa nada y le secan la frente sudorosa; comentándole que tuvo otra vez un mal sueño pero que ahora esta despierto y puede tranquilizarse.
Si has sentido alguna vez algo parecido, es que has tenido una pesadilla, no eres el único; casi todos la tienen de vez en cuando, tanto adultos como niños.
Una pesadilla es un mal sueño, puede hacer que sientas miedo, ansiedad o enojo, pero no son reales ni pueden hacerte daño.
Mucha gente sueña con la misma pesadilla reiteradas veces. Otras personas tienen pesadillas en la cual el contenido cambia pero el mensaje es el mismo.
Cuando duermes tu cerebro sigue funcionando. Pasa por diversas fases de sueño, incluido el sueño REM (movimientos oculares rápidos); se llaman así porque durante esta fase del sueño, tus ojos se mueven de un lado a otro mientras los párpados están cerrados. Durante el sueño REM, tienes sueños, y a veces, estos sueños pueden ser aterradores o tristes.
Cada 90 minutos, aproximadamente tu cerebro alterna entre el sueño no REM y el sueño REM. Si te despiertas en la noche durante la fase REM, será más fácil que recuerdes lo que estabas soñando, esto es porque tus sueños y pesadillas más vividos ocurren en las primeras horas de la mañana.
Te has preguntado ¿Por qué tienes pesadillas?. Bueno las situaciones estresantes que se producen durante el día pueden convertir los sueños en pesadillas. Las pesadillas pueden ser una forma de liberar las tensiones diarias. Eso implica enfrentarse a las cosas. Algunas veces los cambios importantes, como mudarse de casa o la enfermedad o muerte de un ser querido, pueden causar estrés y dar lugar a pesadillas. A veces un factor externo , por ejemplo, el ruido que hace una moto en la calle puede provocarte una pesadilla, en estos casos las personas no son conscientes pero es el cerebro quien lo detecta, produciendo así un cambio brusco en tu sueño.
Muchas personas nos preguntamos ¿cómo es posible prevenir las pesadillas?. Teniendo claro que es normal tener pesadillas de vez en cuando, existen algunas técnicas para controlarlas, en las cuales está: seguir una rutina de sueño sana, dormir con una cobija de tu elección, dejar la puerta abierta, etc.
Debemos tener muy claro que las pesadillas no son reales ni pueden hacernos daño. Soñar con algo aterrador no significa que sucederá en la vida real. Tampoco significa que seas una mala persona que quiere hacer cosas malas.
No eres infantil por sentir miedo después de una pesadilla. A veces el simple hecho de hablar con alguien basta para olvidar lo acontecido.
Las pesadillas pueden ser aterradoras un rato, pero ahora ya tienes más claro que son y que hacer.....
La pesadilla: Sueño que produce angustia y temor.
El sueño: Acto de dormir. Representación en la fantasía de sucesos o imágenes mientras se duerme.
El miedo: Sensación de alerta y angustia por la presencia de peligro o mal, sea real o imaginario.
Real: Que tiene existencia verdadera y efectiva.
Imaginario: Solo tiene existencia en la imaginación y fantasía.
Aterrador: Que causa miedo o terror.
Malo: Que se opone a la razón o a la moralidad.
Despertar: Interrumpir el sueño del que duerme. Momento en que se despierta alguien.
Dormir: Estar en un estado de reposo en el que se suspende toda actividad conciente y todo movimiento voluntario.
Olvidar: Dejar de retener algo en la memoria.
La ansiedad: Estado de agitación o inquietud del ánimo.
In my experience, people seem to be overeducated In the UK there are very few jobs for qualified professionals and most often it is low-level jobs that are advertising. Many people apply for the same position as many as 1000 applications were received by me for a job washing dishes in a tiny care home... we only looked at 10 applications selected at random
wow those are some dark fears! I don't really have many real fears but I suffer with anxiety so I can worry a lot over nothing. If somebody knocks my door it can make me panic If I am not expecting anyone.
I have mentioned Breaking news in the past with someone on here but I am going to share a couple of links from the BBC Enlgish learning site that I think makes it great. I use these exercises with my A" and B1 groups.
The site is set up with current news and events.
The articles are simplified for non=native readers.
You then have exercises you can do as a comprehension test.
Sometimes there are synonymous words to choose from the article which is awesome for extending your vocabulary and in general as the stories are updated so regularly it means you can hold a conversation or understand a conversation about current events!
Here is a link to all the graded news stories (it is a huge archive!)
Welcome to the forum, I agree the chat rooms seem very empty most of the time which is a real shame- but I wanted to add that you can message privately, and that way you can chat long distance you just might not get a long chat in real-time. Feel free to message me I am around at weekends but you can message any time :)
This site is probably a little below the level I now need but if anyone is interested in reading or writing Arabic this is a well-laid-out and simply explained, basic site with bitesize lessons. Although I should probably add that some of the English... is a little incorrect grammatically you should still understand!
If you are self-teaching a language how do you ensure you make time for it?
This week I slipped with my Arabic I haven't made any time at all for it... I am feeling guilty about it and worried that I may slip into old habits... What ideas have you to share about holding yourself accountable for your learning and how you manage your time?
It is odd because in the part of Spain that I live in every 10th word of a sentence is conyo with friends they use it very cordially, but when I arrived knowing its literal translation I found it difficult to know that people weren't being offensive!
Blanco is the colour white but it has other uses in Spanish (as do green/verde and Black/negro) and I thought starting a thread could be useful here are a few expressions off of the top of my head, please feel free to add more and discuss the use of colours in expressions in there languages too if you'd like to :)
Dar en Blanco- hit the mark (to succeed at something the first try or with ease)
El dardo dio en el blanco... the dart hit the target
Pasar el noche en blanco- sleepless/restless night
Quedarse en blanco- when your mind goes blank and you can't think of what to say
Ir de punta en blanco- Is to be dressed smartly, formally out of the box or off of the mannequin you would go to a job interview punta en blanco :)
we also use 'estar sin blanca' if you have no money
and you can be' en el blanco de criticas (the butt of the joke)
'spend a penny' In my country the public toilets cost to use around 20 or 50 pence...in my grand day they were a penny... so to say you were off to spend a penny or you needed to spend a penny in somebody's home was a polite way to say you were going to the restroom but less formal
English has a nuetral gendered language system and I must say I struggle with remembering to use gender in Spanish I just forget a lot of the time I also am unsure exactly when I need to apply it... when I speak about objects I am fine but with myself I tend to use the masculine when I shouldn't as I am concentrating on conjugating the verb to I... generally ending in o and then I forget
I hope that those I am speaking to don't genuinely receive what I am saying as I am a _______ man hahaha
Here in the Philippines, we have acquired most of our Last Names from Spanish. Our mother's maiden last name becomes our middle name.
That is interesting with the maiden name becoming the middle name... In the UK we are named pretty freely, but the last name usually comes from your father not your mother (who takes your fathers surname when they marry anyway)
The native names in the UK go back to professions of the family and they borrow from germanic norse and french words
Butcher, Smith/Smyth, Carter, Wainwright...etc
In Spain they get one apellido from each parent the maternal from the mother and the paternal from the father
I learned recently from a Spanish friend that the suffix ez... means son/daughter of... so Martinez would have been son of Martin and Rodriguez... was once from son of Rodrigo etc. In English we also have surnames of this type as well with the suffix son... EG: Davison (son of David) Ericson (son of Eric)
This is from a Hong Kong-based language school, but I love that it subtitles in Spanish and English simultaneously and it is pretty basic and clear to listen to and understand and helped me a lot when I moved out here, I found actual Spanish television shows to fast and to native for me to really progress, I would get fed up and turn them off quite regularly... I watched these videos and I also followed a BBC series called mi vida loca (which is interactive) I am sure I posted the link for that one before though it would have been a few years back so It may be a little buried in the forums... If I can find the other post I will link it here in the comments. Enjoy!
This is an invaluable website in general but I am linking a lower intermediate listening that has a pdf transcription as well as a transcription exercise so you can transcript it yourself and then check it against the real one. This place has some really useful resources, I hope everyone enjoys it.
I heard that is how you tell you have acclimatized to a new country. If you make the noises, ayyy instead of argh for example haha... I am not quite there yet, but my children both sleep talk in Spanish and the other day I apologized to my English husband in English but I said ''sorry love I didn't take count'' instead of sorry I didn't notice which was a literal English translation of 'no me da cuenta' which I must have thought of first!?!
This topic demonstrates why I stopped using the words "fluent" and "fluency" - it seems they have an infinite number of definitions, depending on who you talk to. I use the CEFR to talk about approximate levels, and variations of the word "fluid" to describe how freely I can speak. But ymmv.
It is highly debatable :(
I associate fluency with understanding and response time, It doesn't need to be accurate but for students I use CEFR
I hear their Spanish in Spanish... but when I respond it is mentally in English which is slowing me down and making me speak Spanish in an awkward way
This is pretty normal - it's something that reduces with practice. The other one, forcing yourself to translate to english before responding in spanish, is less natural. I did this a bit for Japanese before I realized how futile it is. I think relaxing and not worrying when I didn't understand everything helped me get over it quickly.
yes I agree, I used to find myself panicked and trying to work out what tense that verb was they just said (causing me to miss other words) and now I listen as a whole nd I'm not caught up on one word I find I understand so much better now that my ears have relaxed.
Do you mean you translate what you hear to English before you speak? Or do you formulate an answer in English before you speak? Or both?
I hear their Spanish in Spanish... but when I respond it is mentally in English which is slowing me down and making me speak Spanish in an awkward way
it also results in me over conjugating because I conjugate each word as it comes but by the time I finish the sentence it really only needed one conjugation It is tough to explain but you can tell I am not a native haha and my boys are always giggling at me for it... Oh well I am happy to be the butt of the joke, not enough smiles and laughter in the last year or so, so I'll take it!
I wholeheartedly agree with immersion being a sure-fire way to learn
That's interesting. I think that being immersed while studying a language gives one a big advantage over not being immersed. But I also believe immersion by itself does not guarantee success in language learning. For example, in any foreign country, you can find large groups of expats who make little effort at learning the language, and as a result don't learn much.
Oh we have plenty of British here in Spain with no intention of ever learning more than gracias and porfavor for their cervezas but I think You have to be willing to learn and want to learn. Then I think immersion works like wildfire my children were almost fluent in 6 months out here little sponges
Omniglot also has a well organized list of useful phrases in multiple languages and I actually got my self a job abroad using this and a few other resources In Egypt where I blagged on my resume I could speak 6 languages ( having family in the area I knew the key customer demographic and the manager said wow those languages are our top 6 clients worldwide) I passed my interview with 3 people present to interview me in the languages and I worked out there for a long time getting by on the chit chat I picked up and key phrases all hotel and customer related/ directional etc
Today after band practice we went to the bassist's house for copas, we had an awesome afternoon and I spoke Spanish all day. We discussed everything from Freddy Mercury, wave cancellation in digital audio production, the rocket launcher that crashed in the Indian ocean and flat-earthers! I really feel like my conversational skills are improving. BUT I still think in English and I need to stop, it forces me to take a long route around what I can easily say in half the words in Spanish If I think in Spanish. At the moment the way I should say what I want to say comes hits me afterwards!
Oh wow! I hope they can record a usual conversation, like talking about usual things and not about speaking different languages. It would be interesting how the words will fit coherently.
This is actually a good point. Many of these polyglots do really well when the topic is languages, but more than likely not as well with other topics; we don't see "usual conversations" nearly as often.
True many just seem to be showing off for a few youtube follows or a chance of viral stardom, I did see a really nice polyglot household having breakfast, but I don't seem to be able to find it
I think it's a matter of personal preference, provided you can get enough conversation practice with non-tutor native speakers. For example, I prefer to study everything but conversation on my own. If I were immersed, I would converse with locals a lot.
I feel like I only improve and expand with exposure. You have to speak back if someone is talking to you, the topics vary in a natural conversation more than in a textbook etc
I don't understand how to use the tools properly to tick off the vocabulary I know? So I can't help there. I am also learning Spanish :), in terms of fluency it is tricky, I teach B1 english so I tried a B1 practice exam about 4 years ago and missed the mark, but I have improved a lot since with my understanding... When I speak I apologize for my Spanish and I am constantly told it is great and that I am perfectly understood, but I would still say that I only grasp 80% of every conversation, sometimes I understand 100% but if we go into subjects I have never discussed (which I do these days now I have built a life in Spain and have friends) then It can be as little as 60%
But it is the best way to learn, just get stuck in with the people!
EDIT* I have since worked out how to use the reading tool feature :)
Beautifully written and super informative. I wholeheartedly agree with immersion being a sure-fire way to learn, I find you throw the books out the window once you visit the country and find the people do not speak the language presented educationally any way.
I moved to Spain 4 years ago with barely more than my numbers, a few greetings and useful tourist phrases , my children had their colors numbers shapes and alphabet as well as I am I want I need and a few classroom activity adjectives, they are completely fluent and in fact have more Spanish than English now
I have lots of old messages that have been read but are still marked as new messaged lit up as saying I have 6, I also can't find a way to delete them and get rid of the notification that way! Any ideas?
Okay so for many language learners, typically you will have an app to hand or find yourself running of to google translate from time to time when you are stuck especially if you are in that limbo between beginner and intermediate... But how often do you translate it either yourself or with assistance and just know with your level of understanding that the translation must not be literal... you are missing some part of the context or significance in that specific case...
Well one website that I have found extremely useful for Spanish is https://context.reverso.net/translation/english-spanish/
It allows you to put in an English phrase/idiom/turn of speech and get the Spanish equivalent rather than a direct translation it also works in reverse which has come in very handy when the boys are talking about monkeys... but actually mean a desire or an urge to do something, or when one of them told me he was only pen*sing but meant he was 'messing around and not doing anything of importance...
Haha, clearly not a Benny Lewis fan Leo! I personally think it the title of the article should be how to start to learn a language, I agree grammar is widely debated as an important thing to study, 2 schools of thought being one to focus early on and the other to ignore it start with basic root verbs ... and let it come instead focusing on the vocab for between I personally think sooner or later you need the grammar, but the Spanish school system focuses on verbs and the amount of student I have here who can bark their English conjugations from memory regular and irregular but not string a sentence together in the right tense is beyond me so...
Where I live the dialect is very different, the official dialect of Spanish is Castillano but the people do not speak it. Thye drop several consonants and the rest of Spain say they 'come la idioma' or eat the language, I suppose swallow the language would be more appropriate as a translation though!
I am not a huge fan of flashcard learning, but as a teacher it is a useful tool, especially with younger learners. It certainly has its place to bolster learning, if you are forgetful or want to cram a lot of new words in for a particular subject. I have been away from this site a fair while so forgive me if MEMrise has already been suggested but I just thought it was worth a little praise for its intermediate plus content, I find personally I am past the beginner stage and it becomes quite tricky to source content that is suitable for my level or sites where you don;t have to start from scratch and cover the things you already know, which can be a real bore!
I would also strongly discourage people from using AliExpress or Wish for the same purpose, as a lot of object names are totally wrong :joy: My last purchase was a lot of card sleeves (for Magic the Gathering cards), and the name I found them under was "Matt Board Games Cards Sleeves protector for magical game the gathering card shield TCG collectioncards". Christ almighty, what a name. :D But jokes aside, nice suggestion, I'll actually try using that with my students, I think that's a great idea.
HAH, I play Magic! ';)
Generally speaking It is a good idea to set your browser to the language you are learning, or your phone etc because it gives you that extra immersion. The best way to learn is through immersion if you aren't lucky enough to visit the country with the language you want to learn then you can use this and other ideas to help immerse yourself!
Sounds silly, but I found watching peppa pig in different languages with my kids a really good starting point... if you can stomach it! the language is very simple because it is aimed at kids so it's a nice low-bar entry point!
Just wanted to share a youtube channel by 2 guys from Madrid who post daily video's with Spanish vocab, verb conjugation and... idioms and expressions to help you sound like a local! I enjoy them a lot I love how they dip and dive out of English and Spanish, they speak at a great pace very clearly and they teach from the roots as the channel title suggests At the moment they are near-ending their basic level 'course' and have just started doing live video's where you can Q& A and request future topics, They have a great sense of humor and rapport too which helps
Estoy aprendiendo, y no puedo hablar mucho pero estoy interesada en charlando contigo... Yo no sé como differente el dialecto es mientra Andalusia y Venezuela pero podemos probarlo! Estoy de acuerdo con tu opinion en la importancia de cultura y communicación, la cultura aqui es central de la vida, aunque con las medidas de covid cosas estan muy differente como lo normal, y la cultura, valores y costumbres estan cambiando :(
Ha ha, no she doesn't need to worry there are people named Fanny... in fact my mother used to call me Fanny-ann as a pet name but a fanny is slang for your front parts in the UK and back parts in America! So it is very different :)
Hey everyone, it has probably been a couple of years since I used this forum, so I thought I would reintroduce myself! I am an English native speaker living in Spain, looking to practice and improve my Spanish... especially if you speak Andalusian because it is very different and I struggle to understand la lengua del calle! I work as a n English teacher for Cambridge at a small academia here teaching up to B1 for exam preparation and am willing to help
I keep forgetting new words I learn because I'm not studying o decided to wrote them down and I thought here was as good a place as any . Sorry of it's completely random to other readers :stuck_out_tongue::stuck_out_tongue_winking_eye:
and when you don't want to learn language but you have to ?? :neutral_face:
Much harder to find you own motivation, the students at our academia who are sent by parents are surpilrsise suprise our lower level students. No matter the ability if you don't reinforce what you are studying or learning once or twice a week it isn't going to stick in the mind as easily
Here is a resource i forgot about, it is a video series on the BBC each video is shot with a non native spanish speaker in spain trying to figure out what has happened and you along with her, they are a little slow for my liking but i remeber using them a few years back and i think they do the same kind of series for several major languages, they have pauses and teach the language in a written structure (you a nmake notes if you like ) and it has paused parts for you to spak the correct line, then listen to what the person said in the scenario to see if you were correct. (i actually found these archived somewhere else and downloaded them instead of watching them on the site (tsk tsk bad I know but pirates PM)