Felicitación, you decided to take a Spanish class to learn a new language! Even if you are not a native speaker you can become bilingual in English and Spanish. Now comes the research that goes with finding the right class.
Private lessons in a foreign language are always a great method for rapid progression, improving one’s oral comprehension or preparing for an exam.
But many rush into it without taking the time to find the right Spanish course that is suited to their expectations, level and personality.
That’s why we at Superprof, a global and trusted platform for lessons in all subjects, are offering our expertise on choosing the right teacher, preparing for your first class, and finding a Spanish class within your budget!
Among the whole foreign language spectrum, Spanish is relatively easy to learn for Americans as it shares similar roots with English. And it’s very practical to know too, being the second most widely spoken language in the United States!
Who to choose between a certified instructor, a native or a self-taught Spanish speaker?
Written comprehension and expression in Spanish are simple to get right away. The same goes for oral comprehension. Grammar, vocabulary and conjugation lessons pose slightly more difficulty. But all in all, it is completely possible to learn Spanish fast and even attain fluency!
But to get good results from the start, you have to choose the right Spanish instructor. To do so, we recommend figuring out your expectations and communicate this clearly to your teacher candidates. Questions to discuss are your aims, his or her methodology, where you will be working, etc.
Each learner should have the opportunity to choose from a range of teacher profiles: certified instructors and tenured professors, bilingual speakers, students in training programs, a native Spanish speaker (from Spain or Latin America), self-taught instructors…
Why not learn Spanish online with a Spanish course from Superprof? They are an international reference for language learning, in addition to a range of other subjects!
The other important criterion is the teacher’s experience. Is he or she used to giving private Spanish lessons? What level is he or she qualified to teach: primary school, high school, college, or graduate school? What is the price? What are his or her availabilities, and personality traits?
Yes, there are many criteria to consider when deciding on your language learning, whether your aim is to master Spanish grammar, enroll in an intensive program, study for your college entrance exams or a diploma, prepare for a trip abroad, or simply learn how to speak Spanish for pleasure!
Are you taking Spanish classes in Spain? Learning a language in a foreign country, in total immersion, is always an ideal option. However, it can be expensive. You have two other solutions: learn Spanish online or with a home Spanish teacher.
Let’s take a look at the second option.
How should a student prepare for a Spanish lesson with a private instructor? Before your class, you can prepare a Spanish vocabulary list: words, expressions, verbs, phrases… a foundation in Spanish is learning how to introduce yourself, to add numbers, ask a question, get directions, etc.
Don’t hesitate to create a notebook dedicated to Spanish, and enrich it with personal commentaries, write about your experience, life or travels, or summarize your day… this notebook will be a sort of guide or personal journal that helps you work on your written Spanish and improve your vocabulary each day.
Apps are very useful for learning Spanish.
The logical next step would be to purchase one or several textbooks adapted to your Spanish training! Idiots guide to Spanish or Beginner Spanish, for example, are perfect texts to familiarize yourself to pronunciation, phonetics, the Spanish accent, grammar and conjugation.
Your local library is a good place to discover other scholastic resources: books and even podcasts to help you learn Spanish. Remember to always keep a “learner” attitude! This way you’ll be perfectly positioned to learn a new language. You can even get information from your library to see if there is a discussion club or learning programs in place to improve your Spanish.
In parallel, don’t hesitate to prepare for your Spanish class by downloading some apps on your cell phone or tablet, such as Duolingo and El Conjugador, both perfectly adapted for beginner and intermediate level Spanish.
They include many fun tools for reaching your objectives and progressing naturally – voice recognition for improving your accent, rewards as you attain the next level… Quizzes no longer have to be a drag. And they are always at your fingertips and can be used wherever you want, while riding the bus to work, or taking a bath…
Lastly, videos, films and the radio in Spanish will be a major help in improving your oral comprehension!
YouTube videos are great because you can hear the words pronounced by a native speaker in many cases. This gives you a true picture of Spanish vocabulary that you won’t get in your Spanish class textbook. Instead of learning conjugation on paper, listen to how correct verb usage sounds with your own ears!
Because they are unlimited, videos allow you to learn Spanish online at your personal rhythm: when you wake up, in the car, while you eat lunch or exercise, or at night before sleeping… On YouTube, you can benefit from Spanish tutorials (made by Spanish language teachers, native Spanish speakers and Spanish enthusiasts) and find free Spanish lessons and exercises.
The choice of Spanish online videos seems almost infinite: with over one billion internet users that access YouTube every day – and who also post videos – it is impossible to quantify the number. Some examples include PolyglotPablo, 123TeachMe, Why Not Spanish, Maria Espanol, Spanish101pod.com, Learn Spanish with Paulino, Professor Jason, ProSpanish, and a personal favorite, Tu escuela de español!
While we are on the subject, Sleep learning is a very unique channel that proposes to teach Spanish while you sleep! You listen as you are falling asleep and leave it on while you sleep. The video below lasts for three hours and plays multiple dialogues of typical everyday Spanish conversation, so that you identify Spanish words used in conversation. It uses three binaural beats to 1. Enhance learning ability, 2. Initiate sleep learning 3. Improve memory.
We imagine that you are also curious about the cost of a Spanish lesson with a private instructor?
Studying with a tutor in a private lesson means having a certain budget, which is not always easy for students. However, this method is always preferable and more efficient to all these ads you might find on the Internet:
It’s important to note that, in terms of private instruction, the “foreign language” category benefits from the lowest prices (contrary to sports training or SAT prep, for example). This is as low $20 per hour on Superprof (and much lower for webcam based lessons)!
The language of Cervantes isn’t as expensive to learn as you think!
But remember that there are several categories to take into account for lowering these prices even more: the city and state in which you live, the experience of the Spanish teacher, and whether you wish to study Spanish at a distance.
The vast majority of American students choose Spanish as their foreign language in primary and high school.
The language of Cervantes is the most often studied, due in part to the fact that it is widely spoken in the USA and can be useful for gaining employment after school. But what is the national education program like in junior high and high school? How well will it help you learn to speak Spanish?
Students can begin Spanish lessons as early as kindergarten in some schools. This begins with games but then goes to teach Spanish grammar, vocabulary, conjugation, and culture.
The overall goal of National Education is to bring students to oral practice rapidly, so that they can speak about their own lives, communicate via daily expressions or understand films, songs, poems and other literature… To achieve this spoken Spanish goal, courses focus on geography, artistic and literary works, as well as everyday vocabulary and conversational practice.
In high school, Spanish training becomes more complex of course: students are expected to be capable of more advanced conjugation, in the conditional and imperative tenses, negation, Hispanic culture and history (of Spain and Latin America)… The goal here too is to learn a maximum of things about the Spanish language and culture in order to be able to communicate verbally and articulate oneself in writing.
Which option should you choose for preparing for the Spanish SAT II or AP Spanish tests, or your state’s particular exam (New York Regents for example): a language school, a study abroad trip, or private lessons with a native Spanish speaker?
As you can see there are many options for taking lessons to improve your Spanish and prepare for standardized testing or other exams or quizzes!
This testing will have portions of reading comprehension, written expression and oral expression. You should start training for this from junior year, in sessions of 20 minutes or longer, to make the most of your Spanish learning.
Prepare yourself for the day of the exam!
Your Spanish instructors will tell you how you can revise for the exam. Before all oral testing, you should revise your basic Spanish. This means grammar, tenses, adjectives, conjugation and vocabulary. Flashcards are always a good option for listing Spanish words and Spanish phrases. Of course, regular practice, relaxation exercises and structured revisions is the best advice for learning how to speak Spanish!
We applaud your aspiration to learn the Spanish language to become fluent. Once you have found the right teacher, he or she will prepare individualized classes to help you learn to speak Spanish. That might mean more focus on Spanish verbs or conversational Spanish, depending on the learner. You’ll go from being an absolute beginner to advanced Spanish in no time at all!