What can I do to learn Spanish?
Spanish is a Romance language that originated in the Iberian Peninsula of Europe. It is a part of the Ibero-Romance group of languages of the Indo-European language family, which evolved from several dialects of Vulgar Latin in Iberia after the collapse of the Western Roman Empire in the 5th century. Today, it is a global language with nearly 500 million native speakers, mainly in Spain and America. It is the world’s second-most spoken native language after Mandarin Chinese, and the world’s fourth-most spoken language overall after English, Mandarin Chinese, and Hindi. The oldest Latin texts with traces of Spanish come from mid-northern Iberia in the 9th century, and the first systematic written use of the language happened in Toledo, a prominent city of the Kingdom of Castile, in the 13th century. Spanish is one of the six official languages of the United Nations, and it is also used as an official language by the European Union, the Organization of American States, the Union of South American Nations, the Community of Latin American and the Caribbean States, the African Union and many other international organizations. Modern Spanish was then taken to the viceroyalties of the Spanish Empire beginning in 1492, most notably to America, as well as territories in Africa and the Philippines.
To learn Spanish you need to ensure that the following things are in their place without fail!
Have a fully developed age-appropriate Intellect:
In all honesty, students must have a base minimum level of intellect, to be able to learn a new language. This is paramount for the learning language process. Your intellect can also be defined as your cognitive ability that in turn, help catapults your understanding of a language and its linguistic system. That is, language is derived from cognitive development and greater intelligence aids individuals in learning a foreign language more quickly and easily. This study has practical implications for both teachers and students.
There are numerous factors that affect a student’s language learning. A few of them being:
Attitude is widely regarded as one of the most significant elements influencing language learning. Attitude is distinguished by a high amount of emotional engagement, such as feelings, self, and community interactions. Language teachers, researchers, and students, it is stated, should recognise that students’ high desire and good attitude improve second language learning. As a result, learners’ attitudes might be included in language acquisition since they may impact their success in learning the target language. Attitudes are classified into three types: cognitive, affective, and conative (Baker, 1992). Cognitive refers to concepts and beliefs, whereas emotional refers to what individuals like or hate about an attitude object. The last component is conative, which is described as a willingness to act in relation to language. The manner in which people express their positive or negative attitudes may have an impact on the outcome of language acquisition. To summarise, each component describes how learners see, act, and perceive language acquisition.
Have a strong Reason that can Motivate you when you hit roadblocks:
Motivation is an extremely important factor for language learning because it directly impacts the continuity of your language learning process. If you start your language learning without a strong reason or motivation you are likely to give up at some point where you meet adversities. To continue effectively you would need to have a strong reason or motivation to learn the Spanish language such as the dire need to enhance your professional level etc.
Command all Mental factors:
The strength of your mind, conviction and decision plays a key role in shaping up your ability to pursue language learning. Another important factor that affects your language learning with certainty would be your broad-mindedness, your awareness or your ability to approach language learning with an open mind, in order to receive and accept new cultures and experiences. Retrain your mind to start accepting new things and focus on the important aspects.
Manage Emotional and Social factors:
If you have responsibilities that keep glaring at you, from your workplace or your home, you wouldn’t be able to keep up with your learning pace or study diligently. Therefore, you would need to maintain a fine balance with support from your family members which would prove really worthy at this point.
Ignore all myths about the age
While studies have shown that as younger students we tend to acquire the correct accent and language skills in their best format. And older
students find that it’s more difficult to fully acquire a foreign language, but this isn’t true of everyone. So while this should not hold you back, I suggest you be prepared to put in double the effort to learn a language.
Develop your Personality to learn like a pro
More introverted students have been shown to take longer to acquire a language because they’re more hesitant to make mistakes. Extroverted students, on the other hand, are more likely to go all out and try out their newly learned vocabulary. To learn Spanish, you need to understand that mistakes are part of the learning process and it’s more important to speak than to be perfect.
Search for convenient and calm surroundings that offer you peace of mind and comfort to learn.
Whether it be your country of residence or your home do ensure that you have the convenience and peace of mind to be able to continue your studies. While as a child you are more likely to receive family support for studies, as an adult you would need significant support from your family members to be able to concentrate on your learning, for a few reasons. The first and the foremost of the reasons is that you have been out of touch with studies and so, you would need to invest significant time and concentration to be able to get back to the rhythm of studying.
Have a favourable Environmental factor by your side:
If you are located in a country, which supports the learning of your target language, you would have lot of resources available, lot of options with respect to classes to enrol in and a lot of online support to seek help from; however if you are in a country that does not support your target language you would have to face numerous challenges while learning the language, that would eventually delay your learning process.
Seek and study with Authentic Resources:
To accelerate your language learning you would also need to access reliable, authentic and error sources such as audiobooks, online videos, YouTube videos, movies, music, reading material such as literature and children’s books etcetera. You would need access to flashcard apps online such as Anki, Memrise, and many more. Also look for conversation partners for yourself from sites such as Tandem, Hello Talk, Italki etc
Bear in mind your Physical factors, and approach language learning to support you:
Physical factors range from anything with respect to you being well and available, to age and strength. They could also reflect your surroundings or point to your support system.
Be creative and involved when learning a language.
Spanish may be one of the easiest languages for English speakers to learn, but a little guidance definitely won’t hurt (if anything, it’ll speed up your learning time!). Here are my top tips to learn Spanish, so you can master this beautiful language in no time. Label items in your home with their respective articles. Such as la table written on a sticky note stuck on the table! It would ever better if you could use stickies of two different colours, to differentiate masculine and feminine words.
Activate Your Passive Memory
Using passive memory can help you sail past bothersome spelling, tripping over choosing the right gender and conjugating the numerous tenses. If you happen to be a visual learner reading a captivating article or a book in Spanish could help you remember the right orthography, use of tenses, nouns, gender and vocabulary. All you need to do is avoid focussing too much on understanding everything and pick a book for your level. By simply translating the most repeated words you will soon be able to integrate them into your vocabulary, with the context to back you up!
Focus more on intonation and accent
The same can be said about auditory learners for watching TV series, films or YouTube videos in Spanish. Not only will it help auditory learners to get the grammar right, but they will also pick up on the right intonation and accent. Once again, it’s advisable to watch suitable videos for your level, with English subtitles to begin with until you are comfortable with Spanish.
Master your grammar rules:
Keep practising your grammar, and the knowledge will take you places. As an example, most Masculine nouns are used with articles like el or un and have adjectives that end in -o, while female nouns use the articles la or una and have adjectives that end in -a. Travel to a Spanish-speaking country may not always be the available option; however, one can always practice the newly learnt food vocabulary in a local Spanish restaurant or bakery, order food and give your compliments to the chef in Spanish.
As a Romance language, Spanish is a descendant of Latin and has one of the smaller degrees of difference from it (about 20%) alongside Sardinian and Italian. Around 75% of modern Spanish vocabulary is derived from Latin, including Latin borrowings from Ancient Greek. Its vocabulary has also been influenced by Arabic, having developed during the Al-Andalus era in the Iberian Peninsula, with around 8% of its vocabulary having Arabic lexical roots. It has also been influenced by Basque, Iberian, Celtiberian, Visigothic, and other neighbouring Ibero-Romance languages. Additionally, it has absorbed vocabulary from other languages, particularly other Romance languages such as French, Italian, Mozarabic, Portuguese, Galician, Catalan, Occitan, and Sardinian, as well as from Quechua, Nahuatl, and other indigenous languages of America.
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