This section is an overview of the basic principles that will help you get started speaking Spanish. If you’re a beginner, it would be a good idea to start with the Pronunciation section first. After that, you may want to learn the spanish alphabet and numbers. Once you’ve familiarized yourself with the Basics, it doesn’t really matter which section you explore, there is so much to learn. Your general curiosity will help you in the learning process.
When learning to speak Spanish, building a strong vocabulary is essential in order to be able to express yourself in most common everyday situations. Starting with vocabulary that interests you, will help to keep you focused and enjoying the learning process. If there is a specific topic that interests you, go to that section and learn those words first. Vocabulary lists are organized according to subject.
Like most languages, Spanish has many expressions that don’t have an English equivalent with the exact same meaning. A common mistake is trying to translate word-for-word or only memorizing generic phrases. Understanding how to conjugate verbs is extremely important when expressing yourself. A verb can express a physical action, a mental action, or a state of being. Spanish verbs are used in hundreds of idiomatic expressions. This section is categorized by the most-used, common verbs and how they are used in every day situations.
A difficult part of any language is the study of verbs and what happens to them when you’re trying to communicate. This is called conjugation. In English, there are three basic verb conjugations: Past tense, Present tense and Present particle. Spanish has 5 basic tenses for verbs; Present, Past (Imperfect & Preterite), Future, and Conditional. Also, more divisions occur through mood; Indicative or Subjunctive. Subjunctive mood is used to communicate possibility/subjectivity, whereas Indicative mood is used when the action is certain/objective. These moods will become clearer through usage.
Making mistakes is a natural part of learning any language. Many Spanish words look and sound very similar to English words that we use everyday. However, they have totally different definitions. Embarazado does not mean embarrassed and éxito does not mean exit. This section covers many common errors that native English-speakers tend to make when learning Spanish.
Lunfardo is Argentine slang. It’s composed of about 5,000 words and is frequently found in the lyrics of Tango music with overtones of sex, drugs, and illegal activities. Lunfardo is, for all practical purposes unintelligible to an average Spanish-speaking person from any country other than Argentina.
You’ll be surprised how popular The Simpsons (Los Simpson) are in South America. Watching episodes in Spanish can be really fun. Most likely, you’ll be able to understand what’s going on without being able to understand all the dialog. In this section you’ll find translations of many of your favorite Homer Simpson Quotes. Enjoy!