Learn The Basics Of Grammar
Many successful adult language learners didnt enjoy grammar in language lessons in high school. For a lot of us, those memories have just blurred into one prolonged conjugation exercise.
Its partly for this reason that language-learning influencers often tell us not to bother studying grammar. Its boring, mechanical work, and native speakers break grammatical rules all the time.
However, as a roadmap to the language, a little grammar knowledge can go a long way. Rather than avoiding grammar altogether, try studying the minimum level you need to begin expressing yourself.
To have simple conversations in Spanish, you should try to learn the present tense, then one past tense as a general rule of thumb, the preterite is most peoples first go-to.
You can then use the Spanish verb voy + a to hack the future tense. Simple! Once you are comfortable using these basic grammatical structures, you can add more tenses and rules in, as they come up in your reading and listening.
You can also look at our cheat sheet of the basic Spanish grammar rules to get started. After that, you can begin expressing yourself in Spanish, even if you are a little clumsy.
Find A Telenovela You Are Interested In
The plot of any telenovela should always include a hefty amount of drama, but you should look for something that will hold your interest and that you will look forward to watching.
Telenovelas cover many different topics that can range anywhere from romance to mystery. Watch some previews if you can and pick one you could watch over and over. Make sure the show has subtitles in your primary language so you can follow along.
Three Telenovelas to Set Yourself Up for Success
FluentU.com is a membership-based app that you can use to learn Spanish. They take various videos and convert them into personalized learning opportunities to help you become fluent. Here are three of the telenovelas they recommend using for learning:
- Maria la del Barrio, which translates to Maria of the Neighborhood
- Rebelde Way, or said differently, Rebels Way
- Catalina y Sabastian. This one may seem obvious its Catalina and Sabastian
Be Patient When You Start Watching
Native speakers talk very fast, and at first, it can be difficult to pick out the words they are saying. Try not to be too concerned with understanding every aspect of the dialog right away.
Write Down Notes
Find a Native Speaker to Practice With
Once you begin to feel confident that you are understanding what the actors are saying, you can try imitating them to practice your annunciation.
The Basics: How Does Language Learning Work
Before we choose which one is the best program to learn Spanish, it wont hurt to review how language learning works.
The video below provides a short, but tremendously insightful explanation of how learning happens at a neurological level. It uses basketball free throws as an example, but the principle stands for anything you would want to learn.
Learning Spanish is a lot like becoming a masterful basketball player.
Basketball requires learning the rules of the game, but to really play you will have to cultivate the muscle memory and reflexes for a bunch of different moves. With Spanish, the rules of the game will be grammar but your main skills will be speaking, listening, reading and writing.
Every time you hear or read a phrase in Spanish, or whenever you try to speak it, you are basically performing a free throw with your linguistic muscles.
This is why learning a language is a long-term goal. You are training your brain to recognize new sounds and interpret their meaning. The more you do it, the faster and more automatic will these linguistic muscles get.
Read Also: How To Connect My Hisense TV To My Phone
Telenovelas Tell A Story
Soap Operas are ongoing storylines that take a continuous view of the lives of the characters. This means you can pop in and out of most soap operas and still be able to understand the plot, because it hasnt really changed. But telenovelas are different in this regard.
Telenovelas tell a succinct story. The whole story is wrapped up within one season . They are sometimes compared to a novel in their story format, and each episode is one or two chapters of that novel.
Where To Watch Spanish Language Television
Now that you understand why you should be watching television and how you should be doing it, its time to get started. Fortunately, there are plenty of great places to watch Spanish television on the internet, and best of all, lots of them are free!
- Dramafever offers free television series with subtitles If the adverts get on your nerves, then you can pay to go ad free.
- RTVE is the Spanish public television corporation. The series are free, but they dont come with subtitles. Be sure to check out Spanish language favourites Isabel and Los Misterios de Laura.
- You can watch Destinos, a classic telenovela for Spanish students, over at the Annenberg Learner site. There are 52 episodes in total. At the beginning they use both English and Spanish. Over time, less and less English is used. If you find the series helpful, you can also buy the transcriptions and exercises online.
- Lastly, the BBC has Mi Vida Loca, which is another free Spanish television series for beginners. The series includes 22 episodes as well as accompanying exercises.
Watching Spanish language television is good fun, but it can only get you so far. To see some real improvement, why not take a class with Spanish Tutor DC?
Read Also: How To Restart Vizio TV
Understanding How Novelas Help You Learn Spanish
Now, you might be wondering how watching TV in a language you do not yet understand will help you learn. This is a legitimate concern, however, one that can quickly be ruled moot. The key to learning from novelas is to watch them from the beginning and follow them through to the end.
Much like reading a book, novelas lay a path the characters will follow on their adventures, or in many cases, misadventures. When you start watching novelas from the opening scene, you will gain an understanding of the way each character speaks and how their body language emphasizes the meaning of their words. This understanding gives you an advantage when trying to learn Spanish yourself.
These contextual meanings are just as important as the actual words themselves and will help you harness your new-found understanding of the Spanish language.
You will also be able to learn and begin to understand the differences in the dialects of Spanish speaking areas allowing you to grasp the significance of those words that are spoken primarily in Northern parts of Mexico, or those sayings that are specific to particular regions of Spain.
Once you have picked up on a few of the contextual meanings and learned to apply them to the words in Spanish, practice will allow you to learn even more words the next time you watch.
The Best Spanish TV Shows To Learn Spanish
A lot of people still believe that you can only learn a language in the country where it is spoken. It can certainly help, but you have to ask yourself: why is that?.
The main advantage of being in another country is the immersion. Listening to people speak Spanish all the time helps your ears get used to the sounds, words and expressions of the language. Since you may not have the chance to live in a Spanish speaking country, you need to create this immersion environment right where you are, and thats exactly how TV series can help.
Of course, you wont be fluent after one episode of Las chicas del cable. Learning any language takes time and effort, and it helps to combine watching Spanish TV shows with your Spanish studies.
But by watching Spanish TV shows, youll be constantly improving your listening skills. And if you use the subtitles in Spanish, youll also improve your reading and pick up vocabulary more easily. Itll even improve your speaking as youll get used to hearing common phrases over and over, and theyll come to you more easily when you need them in conversation.
Best of all, youll be learning and having fun at the same time, genial!
Read Also: What Is Apple TV Subscription
Spanish TV Show : Elite
This Spanish series tells the story of three working class friends who, after the collapse of their previous school, are given scholarships the most exclusive private school in Spain, where the elite send their kids to study.
But its not your typical high school drama in the opening scene, the first character is covered in blood, and no one knows why. Watch the whole series to find out what happened.
La Casa De Las Flores
Genre: Dark comedy/drama
Where to watch:Netflix
Synopsis:La casa de las florestells the story of the de la Mora family, an upper-class, somewhat dysfunctional Mexican family where dark secrets, betrayal and infidelity are just everyday routine.
As every prestigious family, the de la Mora dont want their secrets to see the light of day. But immediately, a surprise suicide opens Pandoras box .
Why its great for learning Spanish: This is an amazing series to learn vocabulary related to topics like homosexuality, gender identity, drug addiction, suicide, infidelity and other hot-button issues all with a fresa Mexican accent.
You May Like: What Is On Apple TV App
Ways To Learn Spanish By Watching TV
Is it possible to learn Spanish by watching TV?
Yes! And its much easier now thanks to Netflix and other streaming services. In terms of learning Spanish and other languages by watching TV, were living the dream right now.
Read this post to learn how and why to learn Spanish by watching TV, including links to plenty of high-quality resources.
Lets get on with the show!
Ayuda What If I Dont Understand The Spanish TV Show
1. Try the Language Learning with Netflix app
If you struggle to keep up either because:
There are too many words you dont know They speak too fast
theres an amazing Chrome extension that will help. Its called Language Learning with Netflix and has interactive subtitles that you can click on to get the definition in your native language. It also pauses automatically after every line to help you keep up. If you only do one thing after reading this blog post, give it a try it could transform your Spanish!
2. Use the Spanish TV show as as a study resource
If the series is too hard to follow when you watch it like a TV show, no hay problema!
As long as you have subtitles , there are plenty of study techniques you can use with the TV show to keep learning Spanish. Read this post for a list of ideas:
OK, so you may not get to kick back and relax with this one, but its still a lot more fun than sitting in a classroom memorising lists of words for stationary.
2. Start with a learner series
One of the reasons Spanish TV series can be tricky to follow is that theyre designed for native speakers thats people whove spent their whole lives listening to Spanish. No wonder theyre tricky for learners!
If Spanish TV shows aimed at native speakers go straight over your head, try a series aimed at learners.
Spanish Extra is a great place to start.
3. Watch the Spanish TV show with subtitles in English
Also Check: How To Connect Antenna To Smart TV
Watch Great TV And Learn Spanish At The Same Time
Netflix is the perfect Spanish teacher now you can get cozy on your couch and be a good student. An interesting Spanish series will elevate or reinforce your Spanish vocabulary, get you more comfortable following native-level conversations, and also provide a window into local Spanish-speaking cultures.
Netflix is perfect for Spanish immersion. Binging a show in Spanish exposes you to hours of native-level Spanish. Combined with subtitles, this is a great resource to learn new vocabulary and improve your listening comprehension!
Besides the benefits of improving your Spanish abilities, Netflix has a major advantage over your textbook its fun! With impactful scenes and memorable moments, itll be easier to remember new words with the stories behind them.
Now choose an interesting show in Spanish and get learning. Empezar!
English Content With Spanish Subtitles
LevelBeginner/IntermediateWhy Because you already understand English, so there is no need for subtitles. By adding them in Spanish you are getting exposed to the language while listening to a language you already know.
I find this incredibly helpful in the beginning. If you already know a few words, you can quickly pick them out and figure out more words through context.
Dont be afraid to pause every once in a while, study a sentence, look up words you are unsure about.
You can also write down sentences you think might be helpful. For example, if people use certain expressions and they are translated into Spanish.
The best part about this is that even when its hard to find content in Spanish, you can apply this strategy to constantly improve your skills or be exposed to Spanish.
You May Like: How Do I Get Paramount Plus On My TV
Learn Spanish By Watching TV Series And TV Shows Of All Kind
Who said that learningalanguage has to be boring? Actually, it can be really fun! Did you know that you can learn Spanish while watching some amazing TV series and TV shows? In this article well tell you how to do just that! Heres what you will learn:
- The top 10 TV series and TV shows to learn Spanish
- The advantages of learning Spanish through TV series and TV shows
- Where you can watch the TV in Spanish
- Other funny methods of learning Spanish
- How to easily learn Spanish online by using our General Español course.
Are you ready to find out what TV series and TV show you should watch to learnSpanish? Read on and find out!
Baseball Players Learned From Friends
She points to a New York Times story about professional baseball players from Latin America who learned English by watching Friends with Spanish subtitles.
But they didnt just watch Friends they watched it over and over again. Philadelphia Phillies shortstop Freddy Galvis told the Times that he had watched every episode of the 10-season show at least five times.
Stephen Snyder, dean of language schools at Middlebury College in Vermont, said this story sounds familiar to him.
Our Japanese classes are full of Chinese students and American students who grew up watching Japanese anime, and without having any formal training in Japanese, their comprehension is quite reasonable, he said. Its a transnational phenomenon, and it makes sense.
Baese-Berk says science supports what these young people have experienced. Studies show that its best to acquire a language through both active and passive learning, and watching shows in a foreign language involves both.
Trying to figure out a word that a character in a telenovela is saying would be an example of active learning, and admiring the characters outfit while hearing Spanish in the background would be an example of passive learning, she said.
Also Check: How To Sync iPhone To TV Wirelessly
Argentine Classics For Learning Spanish With Films
As I mentioned in tip number six, it would be very helpful to start with one particular country first so that you can train your ear to that accent, intonation and speed. In my classes, I have successfully used the following Argentine movies. You might enjoy them, too, if you are learning Argentinian Spanish, so check them out!
What Are Telenovelas TV Novels With High Drama
But what are Telenovelas and why are they useful to Spanish learners?
Telenovelas are produced in Latin America, and are the most popular genre of programmes there. Itâs estimated that over half of Latinos watch them, and theyâre popular in Spain too. Telenovelas are broadly Spanish soap operas, but the chief difference is that they normally end after six months to a year, rather than running indefinitely. Consequently, they have a very defined story arc and are characterised by high drama, such as star-crossed lovers, betrayal, a man on a quest for revenge or twins separated at birth.
You May Like: How Can I Watch Apple TV On My TV
But What If You Are Just Starting Out
Say your new years resolution is to learn a new language, but you have absolutely no idea where to start.
Besides applying strategies one and two, I would recommend trying to find a basic course, and before each Netflix session, study for at least 15 minutes.
Keep your notebook close at all times.
Go over the vocabulary, and see if you can recognize some of these words and phrases in the episodes or movies you are watching.
This is the easiest way of learning something and applying it immediately. Hearing something in context will make it a lot easier to remember in the future.
Dont be afraid of pausing the show to write something down, whether it is a word or a phrase they are using on the show. Write down a word for word translation in your native language, so you get a better idea of the structure of Spanish
Turn it into a game or challenge, write down phrases with the words youve just learned, get a cookie every time you understand something new.
Find a way to make it work for you, and to celebrate your progress.
Whats The Best Spanish TV Show For Learning Spanish
In this article, we have laid out the 2 best Spanish shows for learning Spanish at a more beginner and intermediate level. This will provide you with an educational experience.
However, if you want to push yourself and are at a higher intermediate to advanced level, than we recommend checking out one of the 5 regular Spanish TV series.
Personally, I loved the Escobar series and was hooked in a couple episodes. But that show is certainly not for everyone!
Thats why we created a simple comparison guide in an easy to read PDF to help you sort through the best Spanish TV shows easily by plot, type, and difficulty. This will help you narrow down the right series for you.
Just click the download button below for the free PDFs after entering in your name and email.
Without a doubt, watching Spanish shows is one of the best ways to learn actual spoken Spanish from native speakers. I find TV shows to be an excellent method as most people generally enjoy watching them. I know I certainly do.
If you are to ever get to advanced fluency you will need a serious WHY statement for your learning and at the same time at least partly enjoy the process.
I cannot think of any other better way to enjoy the process than to watch Spanish TV shows in the time that you would have already used to watch TV anyways. The only difference is now you are making your TV watching educational and fun.
Just make sure you dont forget why you are watching them, to learn!
Read Also: How To Connect iPhone To Smart TV Wireless