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Everything posted by SpeakSpanish

  1. Wow, the trend of this post has taken me waayyy back . I remember when I was in high school, and a few members of my Spanish class, along with myself, got the opportunity to take a trip to a Spanish-speaking country as part of an immersion program that was centralized around us "really getting to know the language" by literally being part of the culture ; so, we were "forced" to get up and interact in Spanish with the locals and other persons that we met with in the country. However, on our flight there, a friend of mine decided that she did not feel too comfortable, and wanted to take a nap, but we didn't get a pillow , although we spotted others around us who were given pillows. So, being the "smarty pants" that I thought I was, I decided to "summon" the assistance of one of the flight attendants, who happened to be walking down the aisle at the time. I repeatedly asked her for an "almidón", to which she responded with the most bewildered facial expression I have ever seen on a human being . But, she had a point...instead of asking for an "almidón", I really should have asked her for an "almohada"... This whole time, I was asking the poor woman for some STARCH! , instead of an actual pillow! When I realized my error, I blushed bright red.
  2. Wow, this is certainly a great teaching AND learning method, and I will definitely put it into practice both on the teaching, and on the learning side! Yes, I have written stories and reviews in Spanish in the past, but I've never practiced it on any consistent basis, and I don't think I've really ventured down the road of writing creative/fictional stories in this beautiful second language of mine! I think that this method can and should be applied for all age groups , but specifically for children, because I think that getting a child to work and develop his or her creative genius and overall writing skills, is such a THRILL as a teacher, and great for his or her ability to socialize and develop his or her academic skills! Thanks greatly for the suggestion! Good job! Bendiciones
  3. I strongly agree with you, for the most part. I have always thought about this possibility being fact, and I've seen it in action, because in most of my encounters with language teachers, those who were not native speakers of the language I was being taught, really did seem to have a tighter handle on the grammar tools and rules, vocabulary distinctions, and handy "language hacks" that'll make learning this new language easier . I also agree with you, that perhaps the reason why it was easier to learn from a non-native speaker of the language, was that a native speaker probably never had to formally study the language, say, at the tertiary level, so they would "know everything" by nature and exposure, but not necessarily be able to explain why they or their language subscribe to the different unique principles that define that language, but a person who has been formally studied that language at a high level, I think, has a greater understanding of the technical breakdown of it. That being said, I think some of my best teaching has come from native speakers of the language , because they have actually done the formal training themselves, and have the added benefit of speaking the language as natives , so it's like they have the perfect balance between experience and schooling , allowing us to get "the full immersion experience", while understanding the principles and good learning techniques, both at the same time!
  4. Lol, no problem re: the celebrity news. It's actually perfectly relevant! I have always marveled at the fact that certain degrees are "belittled" and viewed as "less-than-necessary", or less likely to result in a profitable career if relied on alone. I love the art of English Literature, as I find it to the be one of the most complex and worthwhile courses to partake in and to be influenced by. English Literature ought to viewed with more dignity and respect , as it really does challenge the mind's ability to analyze and truly "take apart" characters, themes, setting, and other thought-provoking elements that are infused within English Literature.
  5. I see what you're saying, and I'd definitely have to agree with you! Novels are the absolute best , and I greatly admire the beautiful use of language, and the interesting play on words, characters and plot. I would have to suggest to you my favorite English novel , which is "Great Expectations" by Charles Dickens. It really is a classic , and Dickens is quite a Classic author. You will surely gain insight on life from this novel, and you'll get a good touch of mystery, from start to finish! Get into it! Bendiciones
  6. I think that when it comes to the Spanish language, I do believe that my main weakness has been my level of consistency in practicing with others of my friends who are naturally from Spanish-speaking countries, and also with my English-speaking friends who are seeking to practice Spanish as well. I think that because I haven't practiced as much as I should have in the past, it has caused me to lose memory of some of the vocabulary that had become indelible in my mind before. However, I have learned to correct this fault, by constantly and consistently practicing new vocabulary words, listening to BBCMundo podcasts, and reading articles and books that are written in the Spanish language.
  7. Bien hecho Denis! You are doing a great job! Continue to practice, and let your professor know that you are making good progress, and should continue in your studies on the English language. It is very encouraging that you have made such good recordings. The joke was quite funny and philosophical at the same time. Continue watching videos and shows that have English dialogue , find persons who speak the English language as their native language . Practice! Practice! Practice! Bendiciones
  8. In delving into Spanish culture and customs, and getting a fuller and deeper understanding of the Spanish language, people, and manner of speaking, I have gotten "lost" in several Spanish literature books . I am caught up with the poetic beauty of the way that these books are written, the sheer drama that unfolds , as well as trying to decipher the mystery in which certain characters are shrouded in. My favorite Spanish book of all time is "Crónica de Una Muerte Anunciada", which I love although the plot and the unfolding of it actually haunts me! What are your favorite Spanish books of all time?
  9. I definitely subscribe to this mantra; it helps me to remember that I have to be disciplined about retaining language skills. It's terrible when, after a few months-to-years without any practice at all, you try either reading/writing the language, or conversing, and then find yourself "at a road-block". You can't read, you can't write, you can't speak! It's like you're a newborn baby all over again, refreshing yourself on "the basics", and it's almost as though you've never even studied the language! . Maybe I sound like I'm exaggerating, but that's exactly how I've felt in the past! I believe that the best way to refresh yourself on the language is not to judge yourself so harshly. Even if you feel that the reason you haven't been practicing your language skills as much as you should have been, is that you've been a "bum", then forget that kind of thinking. You need to approach yourself in the exact same manner as you would a new student, who has told you that they remember absolutely NOTHING from what you had taught them even a few days ago. You might feel frustrated at first, but at the end of the day, just remind yourself that the end-goal is to "get back what you had lost over time", and "get back on the language-learning horse!" Refresh EVERY SINGLE PRINCIPLE that you had learnt before, and then ADD TO THAT! There are several helpful programs online that you can look to, and try to remember the same techniques that had helped you remember things like Vocabulary, Grammar, and Sentence Structures . Also, focus on improving your "weak areas" . I see that you said you are not quite as comfortable with Conversational. Well, with the world being as "connected" as it is right now with technology, I'd encourage you to find a Spanish/Latin chat room, a friend who speaks Spanish and/or Latin fluently, and practice speaking with that person at least ONCE every other day. Let that person know that you'd like to exchange what you know about your native tongue, with what they know about theirs, and then build from there! All the best in your journey to refreshing and fluency! Bendiciones
  10. Wow, this definitely sounds exciting and intriguing! I definitely subscribe to the fact that Spanish, and all languages, need to be FELT personally, by all seeking to learn, rather than just learning either on one's own, or in front of a book! I visited Panama about four years ago for a two-week immersion, and it was like every single thing that I had learnt in a typical classroom before that period, suddenly came to LIFE! I would love to get from you some more information in terms of the cost of this immersion program, because I'm a SPANISH FANATIC and diligent student who has become fluent, but am always seeking to add to my knowledge! Thank you for providing this link! I am looking forward to hearing much more from you! Bendiciones
  11. Hi there Ricardo! Nice to meet you! Your story is quite interesting, with you being fluent in THREE languages! That's awesome man. I'm a native English speaker myself, but am also fluent in Spanish. I've always had an interest in Portuguese as well as French, so I'd love to exchange with you what I know about Spanish, and see what you can do in Portuguese, French AND English! I'd love to know also what aspects of the Portuguese and French culture that you love and appreciate the most! Thanks so much for getting involved in this forum, I love the exchange that is facilitated here. I love language, culture and people on a whole, and I believe in the cross-exchange of information and traditions, so this is completely awesome what we have going on here! The world is really getting BIGGER, as opposed to smaller, as we speak! With technology, we realize that a much BIGGER world exists out there than the four corners of our own room and community. That's when we truly come to understand that we are all members of a much larger community than we had envisioned from birth, and thankfully, now we are able to reach out and get in touch with the other members of this beautiful community! Thanks again! Bendiciones
  12. Hello to you! Welcome! I'm a "newbie" too! I'd like to encourage you to even "force" yourself a little, to keep on the "language-learning train"! I've been down that road before, where I've felt a little disillusioned with learning a new language, but after a while, when you've been stuck in this "dry spell", you realize how much your interest in learning that new language has grown! . When you go at something that is particularly difficult and actually master it , then I think the end result is probably far greater than if you had no "hiccups" along the way. Because you would have pushed through to the end, and accomplished mastery , then you would have developed the power of perseverance , which restores in you the confidence that you can accomplish absolutely ANYTHING if you put your mind to it! My piece of advice for you today, is to CONTINUE on your journey to learning the language of your desire! Bendiciones
  13. Great Traveler! I'm also a native English speaker who has a definite interest in Spanish. Over the years, I've become fluent, so I'm excited to share my knowledge with you! I wouldn't mind also learning a few things in Mandarin at the same time! I appreciate both the written and conversational form of all languages, and I am seeking to become fluent in as many as possible. I enjoy the vast and thrilling cultural exchange that comes along with learning new languages, and that helps to spark my continued need to find out more! I love that the world is so diverse, yet perfectly different. I have found also that the most accurate and efficient Spanish to English and English to Spanish translations can be found on a site called spanishdict.com You should check it out! Bendiciones
  14. Hola a todos! Mi nombre es "SpeakSpanish", parituclarmente porque me encanta hablar español, y quiero compartir mis conocimientos con todo el mundo Hi everyone! My name is "SpeakSpanish", mainly because I love speaking Spanish, and I want to share my knowledge with everyone! My theme is "leading from the front", simply because I've always envisioned that if we truly want to be the leaders, movers and shapers of what goes on in our world, then we ought to "dive in, head-first", into the more difficult challenges that are presented in the world, that we know will not only make us better and more productive, but will allow us to carve new and unprecedented paths for others to come! Please feel free to interact with me on this and any other forum discussions in linguaholic, and I'm at your service to provide both English to Spanish and Spanish to English translations! I'm also from the beautiful island of Jamaica , so if you have ANY inquiries as to how to say something in Jamaican Patois , then I'm the one to call or notify! I'm honored to be part of this wonderful site, as I do believe in the power of language-sharing to unite the world, as not only one's language is shared, but one's distinctive behaviors, cultural beauty, and dynamic relations amongst one's own native family! Let's get to interacting! Bendiciones
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