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Beginners – Lightspeed Spanish

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Beginners Spanish Podcast 4 – Names and Introductions

In this beginner Spanish lesson we firstly help you introduce yourself by correctly offering your name and then we show you how to ask someone for their name and introduce a friend. One of the biggest mistakes that beginner students make is introducing themselves incorrectly. You’ll find out that, normally, Spanish speakers don’t say “My name is..” but rather: “I call myself…”. First impressions are everything and so knowing how to greet people correctly, like a true Spanish speaker, makes all the difference. Of course, all the additional information and guidance can be found in the comprehensive Spanish help-sheets. Video for This Spanish Lesson Audio for This Spanish Lesson The post Beginners Spanish Podcast 4 – Names and Introductions appeared first on Lightspeed Spanish.

11mins

1 Sep 2011

Rank #1

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39 Beginners Verbs that begin with DES in Spanish.

Des in Spanish. In this podcast Cynthia and I realised something very important. That was that the verbs with DES in Spanish don’t always have a logical explanation to them. Of course, we have the same kind of verbs in English, only in English they tend to have many and varied prefixes. Sometimes there’s a pattern, sometimes there most certainly isn’t. Some examples. So, let’s take a look at some of the verbs that start with DES in Spanish and see how they work: Destruir = Destroy Here we have an example of a verb that starts with DES in Spanish and in English. The opposite number. What is interesting about the verb Destruir is that it has its antonym/antónimo in Construir. So, as we see, by changing the prefix we change Destroy into Construct. Perhaps it will be easier to see the connection by looking at these words: Destrucción-Construcción. Can we do that each time? So, the question is, ‘If we can create the antonym of this word by whipping off the DES in Spanish and adding CON, can we do that with all if the verbs that start with DES in Spanish?’ The simple answer is NO! Take a look at these examples: Desmayarse = to faint. This is a stand alone verb and ‘Conmayarse’ doesn’t exist as a word. Rather the antonym of the verb ‘to faint’ is: Recobrarse or Recuperarse. Deshacer = to undo. In this example, we just need to take off the Des in Spanish to create the antonym which is Hacer= to do. So, unfortunately, there is no hard and fast rule to know what to do with these verbs that start with Des in Spanish.  There are some patterns but, for the most part, they cannot be counted on every time. It’s the same in English. Of course the same thing applies to the Dis verbs in English too.  Sometimes you can take the Dis off and you get the antonym. Here is an example: Disagree. Agree. However, there are just as many exceptions: Disable – Enable Discard – Retain Disbark – Embark Learn the verbs with Des in Spanish one by one. The bottom line is that, just as we do in English, in Spanish we will have to learn each of the verbs individually.  There really is no hard and fast rule that will help you out. In this podcast we will be doing our best to highlight some of the key verbs with Des in Spanish. In the Helpsheets there’ll be even more! Esperamos que te guste. Gordon y Cynthia:) Video for This Spanish Lesson Audio for This Spanish Lesson The post 39 Beginners Verbs that begin with DES in Spanish. appeared first on Lightspeed Spanish.

10mins

22 Nov 2015

Rank #2

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Beginners Spanish Podcast 6 – Handy Questions

Someone once said that questions are the answer and in your Spanish language learning journey this is very true. To really be able to instigate a conversation in Spanish, you need some great questions. People love to be asked interesting questions and in this free beginner Spanish lesson we help you learn a range of useful Spanish phrases and questions that will give you the confidence you need to make small talk with any Spanish speaker. As always, all the additional information and guidance can be found in our comprehensive Spanish help-sheets. Video of This Spanish Lesson Audio for This Spanish Lesson The post Beginners Spanish Podcast 6 – Handy Questions appeared first on Lightspeed Spanish.

11mins

15 Sep 2011

Rank #3

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37 Beginners The Verb Poder in Spanish Such an important verb!

What is so special about the verb Poder in Spanish? Well, that’s an interesting question. A more appropriate one, however, would be: What’s so special about the verb To Be Able in English? Because to be frank, it’s quite weird and very irregular in English. That’s not to say that the verb Poder in Spanish is any less irregular. However, there’s something strange about how we use the To Be Able verb in English that causes us to have problems when we try to use the verb Poder in Spanish. Are you able to do this or can you do this? The first issue that we have is that, unlike in Spanish, the verb ‘to be able’ is also used as ‘can’. However, the word ‘can’ cannot function as an infinitive. We can’t say: ‘I am going to can to do it.’ Rather we have to say, ‘I am going to be able to do it.’ With the verb Poder in Spanish, it’s much easier: Voy a poder hacerlo. It’s weird in it’s present tense form. We probably are very aware that the verb Poder in Spanish is irregular in present tense. Yet did you realise that it is also irregular in English too? Look at this: I can/Puedo You can/Puedes He/she/it can (not ‘cans’ which is the normal conjugation. e.g He eats, sleeps, works etc.)/Puede We can/Podemos You all can/Podéis They can/Pueden So, as you can see, it’s missing the famous ‘s’ that appears in third person singular in most English verbs. The Conditional ‘Could’, the Preterite ‘Could’ and the Imperfect ‘Could’. The other issue that causes us confusion when we try to use the verb Poder in Spanish is the strange thing it does in English Look at these examples: Pude hacerlo. = I could do it (one off event in which I tried and I did it.) e.g. The door was locked, but finally I could get in. = La puerta estaba cerrada con llave pero al final pude entrar. Podía hacerlo. = I could do it (repetitive action in which I was able to do it many times.) e.g. When i was younger I played the trumpet and I could do it well. = Cuando era joven tocaba la trompeta y podía hacerlo bien. Podría hacerlo. = I could do it (If I wanted to do it. I have the capacity.) e.g. Podría hacerlo si no hubiera otra opción. = I could do it if there were no other option. So, it’s no wonder that we have so many issues when we are working on assimilating and understanding the verb Poder in Spanish. Although it’s irregular in Spanish it is nothing compared to the confusion we have with it in English. Imagine how it must be for a foreign person to have to learn the rules on the verb ‘to be able’. So, before you start to complain bitterly about having problems with the verb Poder in Spanish, spare a thought for all of those people who never had the luxury of learning its English version unconsciously as we did. Watch on as we talk you through this interesting verb. Gordon y Cynthia:) Video for This Spanish Lesson Audio for This Spanish Lesson The post 37 Beginners The Verb Poder in Spanish Such an important verb! appeared first on Lightspeed Spanish.

12mins

15 Oct 2015

Rank #4

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Beginner Spanish Podcast 3 – Alphabet H to Z

In this our third free Spanish lesson online for beginners, we continue to help you polish your Spanish pronunciation and gain greater speaking confidence by teaching you the rest of the Spanish alphabet. Listen in to discover how to develop your “R” sound so you talk like a true Spanish speaker. ¡Buena suerte! Remember, in-depth, additional information and guidance can be found in the comprehensive Spanish help-sheets for beginners. The post Beginner Spanish Podcast 3 – Alphabet H to Z appeared first on Lightspeed Spanish.

15mins

25 Aug 2011

Rank #5

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Beginners Spanish Podcast 5 – Conjugating Spanish Verbs

No matter what some people tell you, if you really want to speak Spanish correctly and be understood well then you must “dominar” the verb conjugation. This just means that you must know how to take a verb like, “to eat” and break it down into the separate people, like “I eat, you eat, she eats” etc. In this free Spanish podcast we’ll show you how to learn our simple, easy to remember and super speedy method of breaking down conjugating Spanish verbs. In ten minutes we can help you save you months of blood, sweat and tears learning Spanish verb conjugation the hard way. As always, all the additional information and guidance can be found in our comprehensive Spanish help-sheets. Video of This Spanish Lesson Audio for This Spanish Lesson The post Beginners Spanish Podcast 5 – Conjugating Spanish Verbs appeared first on Lightspeed Spanish.

14mins

8 Sep 2011

Rank #6

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Beginners Spanish Podcast 18 – Four Important Spanish Verbs

In this Spanish lesson for beginners we help you learn four important Spanish verbs and their, at times, strange structures. You simply can’t get by without these ones! Listen in as we coach you step by step through their usage and help you become comfortable with their conjugations. As always, please note that all the additional information and guidance can be found in the comprehensive Spanish help-sheets. They were written and designed especially with the learner in mind. You won’t be disappointed. Video of This Spanish Lesson Audio for This Spanish Lesson The post Beginners Spanish Podcast 18 – Four Important Spanish Verbs appeared first on Lightspeed Spanish.

10mins

8 Dec 2011

Rank #7

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38 Beginners Lo in Spanish and Lo Importante

Lo in Spanish. So, just what is Lo in Spanish and what does it mean? Well, to answer the first question, LO is what we call an indirect pronoun. What that means is that it is a shortened version of certain Spanish words and we use it to speed up our spoken and written language. What it means. (Most of the time.) What Lo in Spanish means is the following: Him/It. Some examples of this would be: Lo conocí en Berlín. = I met him in Berlin. ¿Lo has visto? = Have you seen it? So, the job of LO in Spanish in these examples is to avoid having to write or say the full name of the thing or person. But wait, that’s not all. But what is going on with sentences like, ‘Lo importante’ or ‘Lo interesante’? Well, in these cases, for us as English speakers we need to think about Lo in Spanish as meaning ‘THING’. ‘Lo importante es que estemos allí para las diez.’ = The importante thing is that we are there for ten. ‘Lo interesante de su discurso era la información sobre la compañía.’= The interesting thing about his talk was the information about the company. So, as you can see, when we place the ‘Lo in Spanish’ before an adjective, it becomes ‘the thing’. Once you understand that, many of the confusions simply fade away. Lo in Spanish is used in other situations, too, all of which we will be covering either in the podcast here or in the Helpsheets that always complement our coaching podcasts. Clearly, we aim to give the viewer as much information in the ten minute classes as we possibly can. However, there is always more to cover. We do that in our Helpsheets which this time around will be crammed with practical exercises so that you get it ‘right first time’ every time you use Lo in Spanish. Other uses of Lo in Spanish. If you want to look further into the use of LO in Spanish then you can check out how the phrases are used such as: Lo de… Lo que… Lo nuestro… In the forthcoming helpsheets (we haven’t got them finished yet, but estamos en ello) we will also be covering these expressions and so much more. So now, enjoy the podcast and we hope that you get great benefit from it. Como siempre, os mandamos un saludo muy grande. Gordon y Cynthia:) Video for This Spanish Lesson Audio for This Spanish Lesson The post 38 Beginners Lo in Spanish and Lo Importante appeared first on Lightspeed Spanish.

11mins

19 Nov 2015

Rank #8

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Beginners Spanish Podcast 8 – The Future

Being able to use the future is fabulous in conversation as well as a fundamental part of your Spanish learning. Here in the eighth beginner Spanish lesson at LightSpeed Spanish we help you learn the basic structure of “going to go” which is the most common and certainly the most straight forward future tense that Spanish speakers have. Once you have the future tense in Spanish, you are going to have a great Spanish level! Much more information is, of course, available in our comprehensive Spanish help-sheets for beginners. Video of This Spanish Lesson Audio for This Spanish Lesson The post Beginners Spanish Podcast 8 – The Future appeared first on Lightspeed Spanish.

10mins

29 Sep 2011

Rank #9

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Beginners Spanish Podcast 30 – Test Your Listening Skills

Learning grammar is so important for any student of the Spanish language. In fact, it’s a vital part of building up your listening skill. However, there comes a time when the grammar needs to be put to one side and the real work of listening to a genuine conversation in Spanish needs to happen. The Right and the Wrong way to listen to a Spanish podcast. Yes, that’s right! There is a right and a wrong way to listen to Spanish being spoken. Over the years we have come across many people who do not know how to listen and have had to learn it as a skill. You may say: Well, all you need do is listen. What can be so difficult about that? The truth of the matter, however, is that it isn’t as simple as you might have imagined. Let us tell you about some of the ways NOT to listen first: The Wrong Way Rabbit in the Headlights. This is probably the most common. Many students when faced with a Spanish speaker talking to them quite literally PANIC. They start a running dialogue in their head that normally goes like this: Oh my God! They’re talking to me in Spanish! What if I don’t understand! What will they think of me! I’m not good enough to have them talking to me! They think I’m fluent! I don’t understand! etc. etc. etc. Finally, the person puts them out of their misery by finishing what they were saying and the poor listener realises that they HAVEN’T HEARD A WORD THEY SAID. I’m sure I know that word. This is another common listening mistake. As someone speaks to you in Spanish,  you hear a word that’s familiar but you can’t quite recall what it means. You start to search your memory asking yourself where you heard it before, whilst all the time telling yourself that you should know it. Finally, the speaker comes to a close and you realise that YOU HAVEN?T HEARD A WORD THEY HAVE SAID. The Right Way The Shower Technique. This is fairly self explanatory.  When you listen to someone what you should do is to imagine that their words are like drops of water from a shower. You let them wash over you without any attempt to focus on one particular drop.  The idea of this is to capture the idea of the sentence and not the individual details of what is being said. If you hear an unfamiliar word, you just let it go by and trust that your mind will fill in the gaps for you. This works very well. Pay attention to when you listen in your own language. If someone asked you to repeat word for word what someone has told you, you would find it very difficult. Our minds focus on the message rather than the details. The Vacant Stare. This combines nicely with the Shower technique in as much as when someone is talking to you in Spanish, you let the words wash over you whilst you adopt a blank kind of mentality. It’s almost like a state of meditation or trance. Let your breathing slow down, soften the focus of your eyes. Relax your mind. When the person has finished, wait for your mind to tell you what they just said. You’ll be amazed how often what your mind tells you they said is absolutely correct. (And now and again it get’s it absolutely wrong, too!) The Power of Three. When you are listening to something NEVER assume that if you cannot understand it the first time around you never will.  This is simply not the case. To know if you can understand something you must first listen to it THREE times as a minimum. The first time you are just getting a very basic idea of what is being said. The second time around your mind begins to help you fill in the details.  The third time, you begin to focus on the words you missed beforehand. There is no shame in listening to something TEN or TWENTY times. How many times must children hear a word before they can use it? Be brave Enough to Ask for Clarity. If you are in a live conversation, then the most valuable phrases you can learn are: ¿Qué significa eso? = What does that mean? and ¿Cómo se dice? = How do you say? and ¿Puedes repetir eso, por favor? = Can you repeat that, please? Listen if you want to Speak. Listening is the key to being able to speak. Many students try to talk all the time and never really move beyond the level they are at. This is because, to improve your Spanish you must listen well. Remember: We have ONE MOUTH and TWO EARS and we should use them in that ratio when learning Spanish. Gracias de Gordon y Cynthia. Video for This Spanish Lesson Audio for This Spanish Lesson The post Beginners Spanish Podcast 30 – Test Your Listening Skills appeared first on Lightspeed Spanish.

10mins

6 Jan 2014

Rank #10

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Beginners Spanish Podcast 19 – Four More Important Spanish Verbs

Did you know that there are more irregular Spanish verbs than there are regular? That’s why you must catch this podcast. Come and join us as we continue helping you to get to grips with four more vitally important verbs that will help you move your Spanish forward at LightSpeed. Of course, all the additional information about this free Spanish podcast can be found in the Spanish help-sheets we offer for all of our lessons. Video of This Spanish Lesson Audio for This Spanish Lesson The post Beginners Spanish Podcast 19 – Four More Important Spanish Verbs appeared first on Lightspeed Spanish.

10mins

15 Dec 2011

Rank #11

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Beginners Spanish Podcast 17 – Review

If you’ve arrived this far…¡Enhorabuena! Now it’s time to review everything we’ve covered by putting it into conversation. Why not challenge yourself and see how much you can pick up the first time! Loads more information can be found, as always, in the comprehensive Spanish help-sheets available now. Video of This Spanish Lesson Audio for This Spanish Lesson The post Beginners Spanish Podcast 17 – Review appeared first on Lightspeed Spanish.

10mins

1 Dec 2011

Rank #12

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35 Beginners Spanish Prepositions The small, important words.

Spanish Prepositions….What the devil are they? Basically, these words are the glue that sticks sentences together. They are words like: with, without, for, from, between, to, along with many, many more. They are the words we use in our own mother tongue with grace, heightened ability and class. However, when it comes to using them in Spanish, everything seems to go a bit ‘patas arriba’. They are the little words. Without even knowing that they were talking about Spanish prepositions, so many of my students have said to me at one time or another: “I’m okay with conjugating verbs. it’s those damn little words that cause me the most trouble.” What they really meant was that it was those damn Spanish prepositions that were causing them the problem. But why are Spanish prepositions so troublesome? Really, it’s their behaviour that catches us on the hop a little. You see, they don’t always behave like English prepositions. That’s to say, sometimes they do, and sometimes they don’t. What is more, many, many Spanish prepositions are attached to verbs and most times, there’s no real pattern that we can see and follow. For example: The verb Aprender has the preposition ‘a’. So, when we want to say: I learn to swim. we have to say: Aprendo a nadar. Yet, when we use Querer to say ‘to want to’ we don’t use any Spanish preposition. For example: Quiero nadar. = I want to swim. Why? I have no idea….because….that’s just what they do…(or, you can spend hours looking through forums to find out why). That’s just the way it is. Basically, this is the real answer: Because they do. so, our suggestion is that you to set about learning the melody of the language so that you ‘just know’ when a verb has a preposition. Is it a big job? Yes!! Is it possible to do? Yes!!!!!! One of the best ways to learn when you should use a Spanish preposition is by listening to spoken Spanish or to read Spanish books.  That’s how you will learn, through dogged repetition, just how to use Spanish prepositions well. Can I just miss them out? Absolutely! You do not need to use Spanish prepositions if you don’t want to. However, your Spanish will be stilted, tarzanesque and difficult to follow at times. Like anything in life, you can choose to do it a different way and you will be certain to get a different result. However, as we have said, Spanish prepositions are the glue that holds your sentences together and so, if you made a model aeroplane without any glue, it would probably fall apart on its first flight (if it flew at all). So, our best advice is to get on to learn them well. Be patient with yourself, however, it’s a long job with many variations. The end result, though, will give you and your listeners great comfort, so it’s really worth going for it. You can make a great start on this by watching our Podcast on this very subject. Buena suerte, Gordon y Cynthia:) Video for This Spanish Lesson Audio for This Spanish Lesson The post 35 Beginners Spanish Prepositions The small, important words. appeared first on Lightspeed Spanish.

10mins

1 Oct 2015

Rank #13

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Spanish Lesson Beginners 24 – Saying AGO in Spanish

Have you wondered how to say, AGO in Spanish? Just as in English, in Spanish there is a specific way to say: “Ten years ago.” or, “Three weeks ago” At first, it might seem a little confusing, given that Spanish speakers put the “Ago” in a different place to us, and that rather than saying, “Ago”, they say, “It makes”. Yes, that’s right. The equivalent Spanish phrase to the English, “Ten years ago.” is “It makes ten years” Why do they use Hace? There is no real answer to this question. In fact, it’s just these kinds of questions that can cause us a hiccough in our learning progress. The reason for that is because once you begin to learn another language you quickly find that many of  the rules you have known and used all of your life in your own language simply don’t apply any more. The best way to deal with these kind of anomalies is to just accept them as the Spanish way. Trust that after a while, using Hacer to talk about time will seem like the most natural thing in the world. You may even start to discover that your English begins to sound a little weird when you speak. Let me give you an example of this. The other day, I (Gordon) was with my two year old son, Sebastián, and I noticed that he was putting his fingers in the door jam. Without thinking I said to him in English, “Sebastián, be careful because you might make your fingers damage.” At the time the sentence sounded perfectly fine to me, until Cynthia began to laugh loudly and bring to my attention that what I had said was in no way an English sentence. I had used the Spanish structure of, “hacerte daño” in an English sentence. For some reason, this was very funny to Cynthia and so she then proceeded to tell all of my family what I had done. The same applies to the use of Hace when you talk about time, or the way Spanish speakers say that they “have years”, or “cold”. The more  you use these words and phrases, the more they will sound perfectly fine to you.  So, say hello to some new language structures and say goodbye to your English. lol. In this podcast we also cover how to say, “since 1999” or “from March of this year” as well as “for the last ten years”. We hope you find it to be of value and will see you in the next podcast. Hasta pronto Video for This Spanish Lesson Audio for This Spanish Lesson The post Spanish Lesson Beginners 24 – Saying AGO in Spanish appeared first on Lightspeed Spanish.

10mins

13 Nov 2013

Rank #14

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Beginners Spanish Podcast 16 – Spanish Question Words

Who? What? When? Where? How? Without these and all the other Spanish question words you simply cannot ask the questions that will lead you to a wonderful Spanish conversation. Join us for this Spanish podcast for beginners to hear some handy ways to commit them to memory forever. Don’t forget that lots more information can be found in the comprehensive Spanish help-sheets available now. Video of This Spanish Lesson Audio for This Spanish Lesson The post Beginners Spanish Podcast 16 – Spanish Question Words appeared first on Lightspeed Spanish.

10mins

24 Nov 2011

Rank #15

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Beginners Spanish Podcast 21- Help with QUE in Spanish

For any serious student of the Spanish language, asking; “What does QUE in Spanish mean?” is probably one of the most fundamental questions that they seek answers to! Not long after you begin your learning journey, you begin to notice the worrying frequency in which QUE, or QUÉ, or LO QUE, for that matter appear in whichever text or exercise you are working through. With this realisation comes certain trepidation as we begin to ask ourselves if we will ever really understand it properly. The Good News. The good news is, however, that it’s not as difficult as it might first seem. Basically, QUE in Spanish is what you might call the cement that joins the bricks of your words and sentences together. It is, literally, everywhere in both written and spoken Spanish, and yet its meanings are not as diverse as you might imagine. Here, it is important to state clearly that having a command of this word is so fundamental to your Spanish that it would be folly not to pay special attention to this podcast. It’s not a one-time listen and probably deserves a number of listens until you have the ideas firmly implanted in your mind. In the ten minutes that we cover this subject we cover all of the main uses of QUE in Spanish and in what contexts you would use them, something which is very important to any student of Spanish. Some of the meanings of QUE. So, what does QUE in Spanish mean? Well, it can mean, THAT, it can also mean, WHICH, it can mean, WHAT as a statement and WHAT? as a question. Sometimes Spanish speakers use QUE in place of WHO, also. A Curious use of QUE. One of the more confusing uses of QUE is when a speaker begins a sentence with it! e.g. …que mañana voy a llegar un poco más tarde. Although the sentence starts with QUE, it would translate like this: I’m going to arrive a little later tomorrow. So why do they put a QUE at the beginning? Well, it’s almost as though the front of the sentence is missing and that what they really wanted to say was: Quería decirte que… = I wanted to tell you that… So, instead of saying the whole sentence, for quickness they skip the beginning and start at the QUE. This isn’t something that we would suggest you use right away, however, now that you are aware you can listen out for it. Only, this time, you won’t be confused about why a Spanish speaker is starting their sentence with QUE. Extra Help. As well as the video and the podcast that comes with this lesson, we offer our helpsheets that assist you in gaining a deeper understanding of how to understand and use this important word. You can be sure to have the question, “What does QUE in Spanish mean?” answered fully and completely. All Helpsheets come with full explanations and exercises to check that you have understood the information we offer you. For those who have more questions than answers, feel free to ask for a one-to-one session on Skype in which we can clear up any doubts or misunderstandings you have. Video for This Spanish Lesson Audio for This Spanish Lesson The post Beginners Spanish Podcast 21- Help with QUE in Spanish appeared first on Lightspeed Spanish.

10mins

4 Nov 2013

Rank #16

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Beginners Spanish Podcast 26 – Spanish Adverbs

An Adverb? Before we look at what a Spanish adverb is, we had better examine just what an adverb is. These are probably one of the little understood parts of English grammar. In fact, so misunderstood are they that they are often omitted from spoken language. An ADVERB is, as it’s name implies, an ADJECTIVE (describing word) that pretends to be a VERB (doing word). How it does that is by tagging LY to its end. So, for example, let’s think of the adjective HAPPY. We know we use it to say things like, “I am happy”. However, if we want to make that into an action, we have to change it to: “I do the work happily.” I’m Doing Good! One adverb which is very much misunderstood is the word “WELL” and its opposite number “BADLY”. If you want to be grammatically correct in English, then when someone asks you the question: “How are you, today?” You should answer with: “I’m WELL” or “I’m doing WELL.” or “I’m not doing too BADLY.” Unfortunately, more and more the answer is heard: “I’m doing GOOD.” or “I’m doing BAD.” In itself, this isn’t a problem except when you are learning another language, such as Spanish. The fact is that we simply cannot mess about with the Spanish adverbs such as BIEN and MAL as much as we do with the English ones. You see, GOOD and BAD are ADJECTIVES, not ADVERBS. So, when you say, “I’M GOOD“, or SOY BUENO in Spanish, you are referring to the type of person that you are. You are saying: “I’M A GOOD PERSON.” and not actually commenting on your state of being, as you do when you say “ESTOY BIEN” which means “I’M FINE/WELL.” A Big Mistake! Even worse, if you mix up the verb with the adjective and say: “ESTOY BUENO”, you are actually saying, “I’M SEXY“. Now, that might be true, but it isn’t something that you want to go around telling people. Better that you let them make their own mind up on that, don’t you think? lol The same applies with the words, MAL and MALO. You use MAL when you want to say that you are feeling bad. “ESTOY MAL” whereas MALO means bad in another way, like a bad person. So, if you say, “SOY MALO” you are saying that you are intrinsically BAD/WICKED/EVIL. The correct version is to say: “ESTOY MAL“, which describes your current state: “I’M POORLY/ILL“. Of all the Spanish adverbs, these are probably the ones that create most problems, however, in this podcast we help you understand how to construct all the adverbs and what their job is. It’s really worth becoming familiar with them, and when you do, your Spanish, as well as your Spanish Adverbs,  will move forward to a new level of excellence. Buena suerte, Gordon y Cynthia Video for This Spanish Lesson Audio for This Spanish Lesson The post Beginners Spanish Podcast 26 – Spanish Adverbs appeared first on Lightspeed Spanish.

11mins

30 Nov 2013

Rank #17

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33 Abs Beginners Saying ANY in Spanish Algunos/Unos

Let’s help you to know how to say ANY in Spanish. What’s really interesting is the fact that in English we use ANY in a couple of ways. We have this way: 1, Do you have any glue in your workshop? and then there’s this kind of ‘any’: 2, I don’t want just any! This difference causes Spanish speakers no end of confusion because in their language they have two distinct words to express these sentiments. In example number 1, the ‘any’ is translated as ‘algún pegamento’ (Other options are: alguno/alguna/algunos/algunas) In example 2, the ‘any’ is translated as ‘cualquiera’. So, to say ANY in Spanish, you have a few options, something which can cause us problems too. Especially when we are faced with the strange ‘cualquier’ word. The STRANGE word CUALQUIER Why is this strange? Well, it’s because this adjective doesn’t behave like normal Spanish adjectives. Rather, it has only two options, regardless of the noun it describes. Look at this: No quiero cualquier cosa. = I don’t want just anything. Yo estaría contento con cualquier coche. = I’d be happy with any car. Mándame un hombre cualquiera. = Send me any man. ¿Cuál quieres?…Cualquiera. = Which one do you want? …Any. Have you noticed that no matter what the gender of the noun that it describes, when it is used before the noun it is always ‘cualquier’? Then, if it is a stand-alone word with no noun after it, it turns into ‘cualquiera’ regardless of the gender of the noun it is referring to. This was always a confusion for me as I began learning Spanish. And so, when I wanted to say ‘any’ in Spanish I would avoid ‘cualquier’ like the plague. Clearly, as you can now see,  you must be able to ‘dominar’ both ‘alguno’ and family as well as ‘cualquier/a’ if you really want to be able to express yourself properly. In this podcast we help you to do this by way of live examples and simple descriptions that will guide you through this tricky ‘puzzle español’. Where to go for help. For more information and guidance on virtually every grammar subject in Spanish all you need do is to use the search bar on our website and you will find what you need along with some simple, easy to understand explanations. Every podcast is backed up by comprehensive Helpsheets and a Transcription/Translation of the spoken Spanish used during the podcast. LightSpeed Spanish also provides online tuition and is soon to begin offering online group classes on predetermined subjects on a weekly basis. Saludos, Gordon y Cynthia Video for This Spanish Lesson Audio for This Spanish Lesson The post 33 Abs Beginners Saying ANY in Spanish Algunos/Unos appeared first on Lightspeed Spanish.

14mins

16 Jun 2015

Rank #18

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Beginners Spanish Podcast 10 – Gustar

Talking about likes and dislikes is not only one of the key parts to Spanish conversation but is also a fabulous conversation piece for any serious student of Spanish. In this Spanish lesson for beginners, we help you learn the basic structure of the verb “to like”. Watch out for the three question formula that will ensure you always get it right! Learn even more about gustar in our comprehensive Spanish help-sheets for beginners. Video of This Spanish Lesson Audio for This Spanish Lesson The post Beginners Spanish Podcast 10 – Gustar appeared first on Lightspeed Spanish.

10mins

13 Oct 2011

Rank #19

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Beginners Spanish Podcast 28 – Easy Spanish Tips and Suggestions

Easy Spanish? This may sound like a cliché and let’s be clear, what we are saying here is NOT the following: Easy Spanish in one weekend! Easy Spanish with 300 words! Easy Spanish without verbs! or even Easy Spanish whilst you sleep! and the best we’ve seen, Easy Spanish without studying!  Así no se hace. No, no, no. Our suggestion is to steer clear of anything that claims to be magical. When we say, Easy Spanish, what we are referring to are ways to make your Spanish easier to use. There are many great ways of learning Spanish and we certainly do not claim to offer you the only way to learn. However, over time we have found that there are some things that really do make a difference. We already have talked in a previous podcast about ensuring that you READ, WRITE, LISTEN and SPEAK Spanish every day, even if it’s just a matter of a few minutes of each. It seems that one of the best ways of learning a language is to chunk it down into small bites. When you look at the entire process involved in learning Spanish, you could easily become overwhelmed by the vastness of it all. That’s why it’s better just to look at the next step, whilst being vaguely aware of what lies ahead without worrying overly about it. Another important requirement is repetition. Just because you’ve seen one thing does not mean that it’s logged into your mind. It’s the dogged repetition that does that. I’ve lost count of the times in which I have covered a particular subject or grammar point for the fourth or fifth time with a student and only then have they had that wonderful “lightbulb” moment in which it all fits together for them. Quite often they say to me: “Ah, I get it now. Why didn’t you tell me that before!” Of course, I had done, many times before, but they simply weren’t in the right place to understand it. Learning language is like working on a giant 100,000 piece jigsaw puzzle and the problem is that you’ve lost the box top that had the whole picture on it. You can recall vaguely what it was, but the details aren’t available. So, what happens is that you have to start forming the corners, the edges etc. and little by little you get pieces of the image, but not the whole picture. Sometimes you manage to get a little cluster of pieces that fit together but you have no idea where they fit into the whole puzzle. And so that’s why you can have lots of information and still feel confused about what it is you are doing. It’s only when one important piece links lots of others that you get that “KERJING” moment and you see the bigger picture. Remember the 80/20 rule and you’ll be much calmer and more patient with yourself. Learning Spanish is 80% frustration and confusion and 20% clarity. Expect it to be like that and you’ll find yourself enjoying the whole process. Welcome the confusion, because we’ve always found that just after confusion comes clarity. Sometimes, you have to wait a while for it to arrive, however! Video for This Spanish Lesson Audio for This Spanish Lesson The post Beginners Spanish Podcast 28 – Easy Spanish Tips and Suggestions appeared first on Lightspeed Spanish.

10mins

29 Dec 2013

Rank #20