Speak Spanish Online
Below you’ll see the options for each video you come across. If you click “watch, ” you’ll get to watch the video casually—but with a twist! There are interactive subtitles in Spanish and English to guide you along. If you miss a word or two, hover over those words in the subtitles to instantly view their definitions, pronunciations, usage examples and more.
Perhaps the most interesting part of FluentU is its learn mode, which offers outstanding tools for actively practicing Spanish vocabulary and grammar. Enter learn mode by choosing an individual video and clicking on “learn.”
You’ll go straight to the personalized flashcard content using key vocabulary from the video, giving you a chance to practice before or after watching the clip. Learn mode actually integrates pictures, video clips and example sentences into the flashcards, making for truly memorable in-context learning experiences.
So, now that you’re warmed up, how can you go about meeting that special, Spanish-speaking someone? Believe it or not, there are tons of fantastic conversation partners out there waiting to connect with someone just like you. Since you’re reading this article, chances are that you’ve got some sick English skills. Your knowledge of the English language is a very valuable commodity in the modern world.
The concept of language exchange is wonderfully simple: you help them with English, they help you with Spanish. You’ll finally get a chance to try out those greetings and idioms you already learned. It’s free, it’s fun, it’s highly effective, and everybody wins!
However, there are some important things to know about the whole process. Together, we’re going to explore the best ways to get started and to make sure you get the most out of your language exchange experience.
1. Connect with real-life friends.
The internet is cool and all, but sometimes it’s helpful to have friends in the outside world.
Think about who you know. Ask friends and family members if they know anyone who might be interested in language exchange. Do you have a friend who is a native speaker? Distant Spanish-speaking relatives living abroad? A cultural exchange family from that time you visited Chile in high school? Set up a bimonthly Skype date and kill two birds with one stone: maintain your relationships and practice Spanish.
You can also explore your network and reach outside your first degree connections. Make social media profiles do the heavy lifting for you by updating your Facebook status or sending a Tweet. Let people know that you are learning Spanish and are looking for a conversation partner! It can be much nicer to speak to someone with whom you have a personal connection.
2. Stalk your Facebook friends to find other Spanish learners.
If you’re a dedicated Facebooker like I am, and everyone you’ve ever met since middle school (and their mother) is currently your friend, well, today is your day to shine. Sign up for Duolingo.
This free language learning website uses fun games to integrate language learning into your daily routine. The best feature is that it syncs up with your Facebook network. This means that you can see who else in your network is on Duolingo and learning Spanish. While conversing with a non-native speaker is admittedly not ideal, it can helpful for beginning language learners by removing the anxiety. Your conversation partner will bungle things up just as much as you do, so everyone can remain at ease.
3. Talk to strangers.
I know your mom told you not to do this, but that was way back in kindergarten. You’re a grown-up now, and there’s a whole world-wide web out there full of potential conversation partners. More importantly, language exchange websites are designed with your safety in mind. Here are some language exchange websites that come highly recommended:
A real up-and-comer, this rapidly growing language exchange website has what is arguably the friendliest, most fun-loving network of language learners. Aside from conversational language exchange, this site lets you play educational games in teams with other language learners. How cool is that?
Sign up for the adorable cartoon bird on the homepage, stay for the high quality language learning experience. This site offers you learning materials such as vocabulary lists and talking topics, as well as a fantastic network of eager exchange partners.
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