You’ve just arrived in Spain, the best Spanish language school in the world, and the only things you can say are «Dos cervezas, por favor»; «hola»; «paella» or «¿cómo está usted?»
That is definitely not enough to enjoy your trip to the maximum. You’ve spent months preparing your holidays in Spain: you already have your sunscreen, you’ve read all the tourist guides, you know the best beaches and the most lively leisure areas, you have planned visits to museums and monuments, you’re dying for tapas, and you even booked your rental car, but you forgot to learn the language before your trip. No problem, you have an excellent opportunity to practice during your holidays. You will see.
How to learn Spanish
You will have made good use of your time in Spain if you are able to use fluently the following expressions: «Ser pan comido» (it literally means to be eaten bread), «no tener pelos en la lengua» (not having hairs on your tongue), «se me hace la boca agua» (it makes my mouth water), «de perdidos al río» (from lost to the river) or «tirar la casa por la ventana» (to throw the house through the window). At first, it does sound kind of strange, right? Don’t worry, with these apps you will be able to learn Spanish and know the meaning of the previous expressions al dedillo (to know by the little finger).
Undoubtedly one of the most complete apps is called Aprender español para extranjeros: vocabulario y frases en español con ejercicios (Spanish for foreigners: Spanish vocabulary and sentences with exercises) and it has… well, it has everything that is indicated in its name! And it is also a language tourist guide. Its method is based on repetition and it contains more than 30 lessons with dialogues and conversations, organized in different categories such as holidays, travel and everyday sentences. But this app is not only about listening and repeating, since it also includes interactive games and activities that help you remember the vocabulary you learn.
As you begin to use the app, you will realize that, even though Spanish verbs are not difficult, to conjugate them correctly can be a problem. This other app will help you work on them: Learn Spanish Verbs – Pronunciation by a Native Speaker! Vocabulary learning is also a major difficulty for people who want to speak Spanish. The dictionary of the Royal Academy of Spanish Language includes over 88,000 words and every year they add some more. Memorizing all of them is kind of impossible, even for native speakers. However, Memrise App can help you retain as many words as possible with its foolproof method. Choose the level and set a target , you can already start with the 250 most common words.
Apps for children
There are also many fun apps for children, such as Animals in Spanish, or Number Fiesta, which helps them learn to count in Spanish by playing. Learn Spanish with Little Pim explores the most basic vocabulary organized by themes and the chapter on colors is especially recommended. Do you want more resources to say your first words in Spanish? Check out these apps: Spanish 101, AccelaStudy Spanish, Spanish Anywhere, Spanish Class, iSpeak Spanish…
After learning the theory, grammar and vocabulary included, it is time to start to practice. As an advertising campaign for a popular brand of beverages said: the largest social network is called bar, and in summer, «chiringuito». So if you’re in Spain, congratulations, here’s one for every 132 inhabitants. Look carefully around you because you will find more than enough places to practice your new language skills, beyond “dos cervezas, por favor”. You’ll always find somebody willing to talk, and if you cannot think of anything to say, just use one of the following Spanish wildcards: talk about the weather, football, or watch TV for a moment and repeat the last sentence you hear (it works best if it’s a gossip show). Only in the unlikely event of not being able to locate a bar -that’s kind of impossible, but anyways- try any of these social networks. Yes, there are social networks to practice languages and, even better, they are free.
In Busuu you’ll find lessons, tips, training, and lots of conversation exercises. Same as in Palabea, Babbel and Livemocha, which is the world’s largest Spanish learning platform with more than 15 million users. There are no more excuses not to learn a little more Spanish during your next holidays in Spain.