Spanish Lessons Beginner
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Our game-like Spanish lessons are scientifically proven to be very effective to teaching Spanish for beginners. Both beginning and advanced students will benefit from fun quizzes and games developed to practice your listening, speaking, reading, and writing. Our Spanish lessons are designed to provide many cognitive benefits. Extensive research proves that multilingual people have elevated memory, planning, and multi-tasking skills. When learning Spanish as a second language, the brain is trained to attend to salient information and to disregard non-pertinent information. This results in the ability to focus more intensely, remember more clearly, plan more carefully and multitask more effectively. Research shows that multilingual people use their brains more efficiently than monolinguals and outperform monolinguals on a variety of tests. Anyone who has completed a few of our free Spanish lessons online in our Spanish for Beginners section knows how much easier it is to learn while playing our huge variety of online Spanish games.
Free Spanish lessons Beginners
In order to write good compositions, you will need a good Spanish-English/English-Spanish dictionary, and you must learn how to use it well. Here are some tips.
Before you choose one lexical item (word) or an expression, make sure you read the whole entry in your dictionary. Sometimes, you will find that the dictionary may give you an example that may be very close to what you want to express, which will save you a lot of time. Make sure you use both halves of the dictionary. When you look up a word in the English-Spanish half and there are several possibilities, look them up in the Spanish-English half to find the best one.
Make sure you know what part of speech the word you are looking up belongs to, keeping in mind that in Spanish (as in English), a given word may correspond to different parts of speech. For example, can may be a noun or a verb (I want a can of coke vs. I can buy it at the store). Your Spanish sentence may not make any sense if you choose the wrong part of speech (the first can is “lata” in Spanish, whereas the second one is the first person singular of the present indicative of the verb “poder,” “puedo.” Usually, the part of speech a word belongs to will be indicated by an abbreviation. Here are some of the most common abbreviations (however, these are not the only abbreviations possible, so you will need to familiarize yourself with the abbreviations used in your dictionary – usually there is a section at the beginning of the dictionary where abbreviations are explained):
* adj for adjectives (easy, “fácil”; marvelous, “maravilloso”).
* adv for adverbs (quickly, “rápidamente”; never, “nunca”).
* conj for conjunctions (but, “pero”; when, “cuando”).
* interj for interjections (aha, “ajá”; shush, “chitón”).
* n for nouns (window, “ventana”; dictionary, “diccionario”).
* prep for prepositions (with, “con”; behind, “detrás de”).
* pron for pronouns (she, “ella”; I, “yo”).
* v for verbs (speak, “hablar”; live, “vivir”).
Spanish for Beginners
Make sure you understand the different meanings of a given word. Significantly different meanings may be indicated with numbers (1, 2, 3, ...) or letters (a, b, c, ...). Within a certain category punctuation is also important; words that are very close in meaning may be separated by a comma, whereas a semicolon may indicate the start of a new, somewhat different set of meanings. Good dictionaries usually offer additional information to help you identify the proper word, giving the situation in which it might be applied. Sometimes words will be grouped by field, such as automotive, general, medical, military, politics, sports, technical, etc.; other times these labels and other helps will given immediately before or after individual expressions in other types of listings. This is the best website I have found to help me improve my writing in English: linguistic search engine
Watch out for verbs! Verbs can be very problematic. To begin with, you will never find a dictionary that includes all the verb forms for each Spanish verb. If you need to know the meaning of a conjugated form of a Spanish verb (for example, “devuelva”), you must know the infinitive (“devolver”). If you need to produce a conjugated form, you must know how to conjugate it. The bigger and better dictionaries will include information about how to create all normal forms of verbs using a coded system that is explained in a separate section either in the front or in the back of your dictionary.
It is important to pay attention to whether a given verb is transitive, intransitive or reflexive:
a. A transitive verb (frequently abbreviated vt or t) may take a direct object. “Estudiar” is a transitive verb because it is possible to say something like: “No estudio química,” where “química” is the direct object.
b. An intransitive verb (frequently abbreviated vi or i) doesn’t take a direct object. So, for example if you want to translate She walked the dog you won’t be able to use the verb “andar,” which means to walk but is intransitive (you cannot walk something in Spanish). If you look up walk, you will find the verb “pasear,” which is the one you need.
c. A reflexive verb (frequently abbreviated vr or r) is actually a transitive verb in which the subject and the direct or indirect object are the same. For example, “divertir” is a transitive verb that means to entertain or to amuse: “El payaso divierte a los niños” (The clown amuses the children). But when the subject and the object are the same, it is acting as a reflexive verb, and the translation may even change slightly: “El payaso se divierte” (The clown amuses himself or The clown has fun).
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Nouns also need special attention.
Gender. In the Spanish-to-English section you will find whether a given noun in Spanish is masculine (m), feminine (f), or both masculine and feminine (m/f). The last group of nouns has only one form for both genders, for example: “estudiante,” “taxista,” or “astronauta,” whose specific genders in a given context must be determined by the article or adjective that accompany them, as in “La astronauta fue siempre una buena estudiante.”
Number. A few Spanish nouns may have unexpected plural forms, which usually involve a change in accent marks, such as “carácter” -> “caracteres”; “régimen” -> “regímenes.”
Other abbreviations and symbols. Your dictionary will use other abbreviations and symbols to convey relevant information in very little space. They are usually explained in a separate section at the beginning or the end of the dictionary. Here are some frequent ones:
— or ~ is used to indicate the repetition of the entry. For example: Nadie pron nobody, no one; ~ lo tiene nobody has it.
† and †† may indicate that an expression is old-fashioned or obsolete.
fam and fam! may indicate that a word or expression is informal (fam) or vulgar (fam!). Another way of indicating this is by the use of asterisks (*, ** or ***).
algn, sb and sth mean “alguien” (somebody, someone), “somebody” and “something,” respectively: for example, “dar algo a algn” = to give sb sth.