Saturday, November 26, 2011

Free Rice

A part of learning a new language is memorization, sadly there's really no way around it.  No matter your learning style, flash cards are always a good way to learn a large amount of vocabulary quickly.  Who wants to spend all that time making flash cards though, and couldn't we find some way to help our fellow man out in that time instead?

Well, lucky for you, there is a way to practice vocabulary and feed all of your philanthropic needs at one time: .  Simple concept, you go to the website, select the subject that you wish to practice, and then practice.  For every correct answer you "donate" 10 grains of rice to the World Food Program.  Best of all? This is all free.  The rice is paid for by the advertisers that are shown at the bottom of the screen when you make a correct answer.

A person can quickly begin to add up the amount of rice that they are helping to donate, and at the same time become a more educated member of society. (Not to mention one small step closer to becoming fluent in Spanish.)

Friday, November 18, 2011

We Must Agree

Do you remember those blue shoes you own?  How about those small kittens, or speckled stones?  You might remember one of these items, however I am sure that you do not remember thes shoes blues, thes kittens smalls, or thes stones speckleds.

A peculiar little grammar structure of the romance languages says that the parts of the sentence must agree numerically.  This includes words like: a, an, the, blue, red, striped, kittens, girls, houses, jeans, etc.

It seems strange at first but it is a fairly easy concept to grasp once a student is in the habit of doing it. Just remember that nouns decide if the describing words need to be plural or singular, and that Spanish is a very descriptive language so even "un," "una," "el," and "la," becoming descriptive.

Most adjectives are turned plural the same way as in English, by adding a "s" or "es" to the end of the word, and the same holds true with making your definite (the) and indefinite (a, an) articles plural, but to make "el" plural you turn it to "los."

It's a sloth.  We'll talk about this guy later.

Saturday, November 12, 2011

A Simple Concept

For every reason that a person wants to learn a new language, there is a different learning style.  On top of that, most people naturally have multiple learning styles that need to be nurtured to grasp a lifelong form of learning.

This may sound like a nightmare for any teacher, but I believe that it makes a language teacher's job easier, so long as they consistently engage each of the five senses in their teaching curriculum.

I'm not here to teach Spanish though.  I'm here to reinforce it, to help you remember it from high school, and to struggle through the learning process with you.

This is a full disclaimer: I'm not fluent, but I can speak it it.  I cannot right a thesis paper on Don Quixote en espanol, but I can read a daily newspaper.  I may not be able to communicate with your bisabuela de Argentina, but I can communicate with Mexican oil workers.

Learning a language from a non-native speaker does have benefits though.  A native speaker normally cannot explain why you need to use the conditional and the not the imperative tense.  They simply know what sounds right.  Just the same as cultural taboos, may seem common sense to a native Spanish speaker,

Ten minutes a day is all I am asking you to gamble.  Ten minutes of a cultural lesson, an explanation of those pesky grammar rules, stories told from my bag of personal experience, and food.  Yes there will be food.

So come a long with me on this magical journey of learning!
Borrowed from: