With the Spanish-speaking portion of the population on the rise, it just makes sense that if you aren’t already speaking or learning Spanish, you ought to be. Not only social interactions, but also job opportunities can be greatly expanded if you can communicate effectively in Spanish. And with all the resources on the Internet and in software products, learning Spanish has never been easier or more convenient. If you’re looking for a “learn Spanish program,” there are tons of choices and resources to choose from—and lots of them are either very inexpensive or completely free! There are online tutorials, games to learn Spanish, audio programs, and all kinds of things out there; you just have to look. Here’s an overview of just a few of the options.
One of the first things you’ll want, as you build your own “learn Spanish program,” is a reliable Spanish-English, English-Spanish dictionary. There are many sites on the Internet that provide this, but one of my favorites is offered by Langenberg.com (translation.langenberg.com). This site offers translations from English to most major modern languages, and you can also choose to translate the foreign word or phrase into English. One word of caution about using free online translators: they usually generate a literal, word-for-word translation, not necessarily a correct, idiomatic translation—especially if you’re trying to translate a phrase, rather than a single word. But they can be a great place to quickly check an unfamiliar word or find out how to say something in Spanish.
Spanish Language Games
SpanishPrograms.com has a great online tutorial module that includes several different games to learn Spanish. This “learn Spanish program” has find-the-word puzzles, crosswords, interactive vocabulary games, and lots of resources for teachers and students. SpanishUnlimited.com is another site that features word games, as well as a version of “Hangman” that will test your vocabulary in categories like “La familia” (the family), “Animales” (animals), “Deportes” (sports), and “Colores” (colors). SpanishUnlimited.com also has a large selection of tutorials, lessons, tests, Spanish jokes, pen pal connections, and background information. Best of all—these resources are completely free!
Other Ways to Learn Spanish with Online Programs
StudySpanish.com offers beginning, intermediate, and advanced language programs, so no matter what level of knowledge and skill you have, you can find resources to improve your Spanish. Like many sites, they offer lots of resources for teachers and students, as well. You can join for free, listen to podcasts, and, if you choose, order their 15-CD set program for learning Spanish (they’ll ship it for free).
To help you learn Spanish, programs offered free on the Internet include a variety of audio programs you can purchase, either online or at your local bookstore. Pimsleur (www.pimsleur.com) and Rosetta Stone (www.RosettaStone.com) are two of the most well-known—though not the cheapest. I’ve personally used the Pimsleur program, and it’s very complete and logical in its presentation. In addition to their more extensive courses, they also offer introductory courses that are somewhat less expensive. Audio CDs are a great way to pursue your “learn Spanish program” while you’re in your car or riding the train or bus. You’ll be amazed how much you’ll pick up in a short time!