Learning a new language should not be limited only to textbooks and homework, and we at Alegre Spanish Schools give you some ideas so that you can practice your Spanish in your day-to-day life.

Practice reading in Spanish

Change the language of your devices

Consider switching your phone, computer, tablet, Facebook profile, and whatever else you can, to the Spanish language. This is an easy way to practice Spanish, as you will see a lot of the context you always use, in the language you are trying to learn, and you will associate it faster.

For example, every time you look at your phone, you will see the date in Spanish, thus reinforcing the days of the week and the months of the year. Facebook will often ask you if you like to add friends, in this way you will know the verb add in English and its equivalent to Spanish.

Seeing some of the same words repeated constantly will help you become more familiar with the language.

Searches in Spanish

How many times a day do you Google something you needed to find? If you do a search, for example, on Wikipedia, use the Spanish version so that you can see the information offered in this version before you switch to the one shown in the English version. The same with any search you do, try to enter the Spanish versions and see how much you can understand.

Read newspapers in Spanish

In many cities you can find newspapers for free, and you can also find them on the internet. If you want to travel to Mexico or a Latin American country, visit a news site such as El Universal, Jornada, Reforma, etc., and read the information that is detailed there, this can help you practice your understanding of the language, as well as pronunciation. . In addition to practicing, you inform yourself about what is happening in the place you want to travel.

Read a book in Spanish

We recommend starting with youth reading or novels written by Latino authors that are popular and do not contain complex vocabulary. Or you can also start with poetry, which, despite being a bit complex, is short.

Another option you can do is buy a translated book, like the ones that exist for novels in English such as Harry Potter, the da Vinci code, etc. With these you will be able to compare the writing and the uses of different words.

Learn with games in Spanish

Since your game is set up in Spanish, many of the games in your store will appear in Spanish as well. Trivia games will help you to be faster to practice Spanish, since many of these are based on answering before the established time.

Learn Spanish with these greetings, ask for directions and order food.

It is not that difficult to make yourself understood in Spanish (many of the people who speak Spanish in Latin America and Europe are very nice when your pronunciation fails and they help you make yourself understood better). A combination of pantomime and basic Spanish words can help you travel in a country like Mexico. Please and thank you always go well, and if you have a book with some phrases, it would help you a lot too.

Greet people in Spanish

If you only plan to learn a phrase in Spanish, try to make it a way of greeting. Locals will always appreciate your effort to speak their language, so learning how to greet them will help you have a better time.

  • Hello: hola (oh-lah)
  • Good morning: Buenos días (bway-nos dee-ahs)
  • Good afternoon: Buenas tardes (bway-nahs tar-des)
  • Good evening: Buenas noches (bway-nahs noh-chess)
  • How are you?: ¿Cómo está? (coh-moh es-tah)
  • Good, thank you: Bien, gracias (bee-ehn, grah-see-ahs)
  • Can you speak English?: ¿Habla inglés? (hah-blah een-glays)

Ask for directions

As a traveler, some of the most common phrases you can learn are those that are related to asking for directions. Maybe you need to ask someone where a hotel is nearby, where the bathroom is located or where you can get some food, and of course, you will need to understand their answer as well.

  • Where is…?: ¿Dónde está…? (Dhohn-dheh ehs-TAH)
  • Where is a restaurant?: ¿Dónde hay un restaurante? (Dhohn-dheh eye oon rest-ore-rahn-tay)
  • Where is the restroom?: ¿Dónde está el baño? (Dhohn-dheh ehs-tah el ban-yo)
  • How far?: ¿A qué distancia? (Ah kay dhees-tan-syah)
  • Right: A la derecha (Ah lah dey-ray-chah) 
  • Left: A la izquierda (Ah lah eez-key-ayr-dah)
  • Ahead: Derecho (De-rey-choh)
  • Can you help me?: ¿Puede ayudarme? (Pweh-dhe ah-yoo-dh-ahr-meh)
  • Please: Por favor (por fav-ore)
  • Thank you: Gracias (gra-see-uhs)

Eat in a restaurant

When you are not asking locals for directions, maybe it is because you are asking for food and drinks in restaurants. After all, you will find the best food in places where they don’t have the English menu for tourists, trust us. Learn the basics in restaurants and you will be able to enjoy the best food you have ever tried on your travels.

  • How much is it?: ¿Cuanto cuesta? (Kwahn-toh kweh-stah)
  • The bill, please: La cuenta, por favor (Lah kwhen-tah, por-fav-ore)
  • That was delicious: Estuvo delicioso (est-ooh-vo del-ish-ee-oh-so)
  • I am vegetarian: Soy vegetariano/a (soy veg-et-air-ee-an-oh/ah)
  • A table: Una mesa (oona me-sah)
  • A menu: Un menú (oon mey-noo)
  • A drink: Una bebida (oon-ah beh-beed-ah)
  • Beer: Cerveza (ser-vay-sah)
  • Red or white wine: Vino tinto or blanco (vee-noh teen-toh or blahn-coh)
  • Water: Agua (ahg-wah)
  • A coffee: Un café (uhn cah-fey)
  • Sandwich: Torta (tore-tah)
  • Burger: Hamburguesa (ham-burg-ess-ah)
  • Chicken: Pollo (poy-oh)
  • Spicy: Picante (pick-ant-ay)

If at the end of the day you consider staying longer in a Spanish-speaking place, we suggest you visit Alegre Spanish School and learn about our Spanish courses for tourists.

Have you taken Spanish classes?, have you learned grammar in Spanish?, have you considered doing it?. Then you are with the best company. There are approximately 572 million Spanish speakers in the world today, and this number will continue to grow.

You have probably already learned that English grammar works very differently from Spanish grammar. Do you have problems with these rules? Don’t worry, we will help you.

Here are some of the most important grammar in Spanish rules when it comes to speaking Spanish.

Noun gender

In English, a noun can have a gender (he, she, her, him) but in Spanish, all nouns have a gender. This does not mean that Spanish speakers think that a chair is female, but the form of the noun indicates that it is female, unlike English.

When you combine a noun and an adjective, they must match. The noun controls the gender of the sentence. For example, if you want to talk about a red chair, the chair is feminine, therefore, the color takes a feminine form and is said red, on the other hand, if you talk about a bedroom, this noun is masculine, therefore, the color it would be red.

Check out this video to learn more about nouns and their genders:

Pluralization

Like gender, nouns and adjectives must agree in number, whether singular or plural. Unlike English, which can have a singular adjective alongside a plural noun.

Using the same examples as above, if you wanted to talk about red chairs, you would do so with both in the plural, unlike in English, which would be red chairs (color in the singular).

Contractions

The Spanish language only has two contractions.
Unlike English, contractions are not optional in Spanish. Writing “to him” instead of “to” is considered a misspelling.

Examples:

  • I go to the gym (wrong)
  • I go to the gym (correct)
  • I come from the future (wrong)
  • I come from the future (correct)

Here is a video to understand more about these contractions:

Adjectives come after the noun (usually)

This may seem very strange to English speakers, since, in English sentences, adjectives are always put before nouns.

If you want to write that someone has a green house, they do not put green house as they would in English, but “green house”. This is a very important rule in Spanish grammar, and it is one of the first habits that must be changed when we are learning Spanish.

Don’t worry if you don’t understand it the first time, over time it will be easier for you to get used to these grammatical structures.

If you have doubts about this topic, check the following video:

Mexico is known for its cultural richness, traditions, colors, natural beauty, and magical places. And it is also one of the favorite places for those who want to learn Spanish in a more native way.

If you want to know more about these claims we make, keep reading …

But before we dive in, why is learning Spanish a good idea?

Well, it is the second most widely spoken language in the world, so it would be very useful for you to travel.

Spanish was originally born in the Iberian Peninsula, but today it has more speakers in Latin America where it is the official language of 18 countries including Mexico.

But why is Mexico the best place to learn Spanish? Here are some reasons.

The warmth of the people

When you are walking down a street in Mexico, it is very common for people to smile at you. This happens because that is how Mexicans are, there is no reason behind this, they are warm and friendly people. If you plan to travel to Mexico and learn Spanish, it is very likely that you will be able to make friends before even forming a complete sentence in Spanish.

One of the most important things for Mexican society is the family. There is a very strong connection between all the members, uncles, cousins, nephews, godparents, etc. A Mexican knows how to share, I will enjoy spending time with his family, so, if you are kind, they will see you as part of the family and you will not have to worry about liking them.

Exquisite food

Mexican cuisine is simply delicious, and it goes beyond tacos and tequila. There are many dishes that you will surely love such as cochinita pibil, enchiladas, pozole and others that you will surely enjoy a lot, yes, be careful with the chili.

Maybe you like Mexican food and you don’t even know it. Have you ever eaten avocado or chocolate? Well, these are Mexican! The variety of dishes and flavors is immense, in fact, UNESCO gave it the recognition of Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity.

Safe and beautiful cities

The myth that exists about security in Mexico is well known, and yes, there are cities that are violent like in any other country, but in Mexico there are also cities that could be even safer than some cities in Europe. For example, in Mérida, Yucatán, a 2017 CNN Money report designated this city as the best city to retire abroad. Excellent climate, low costs and you also have cities like Cancun and Playa del Carmen in less than two hours.

In addition to all this, the Yucatan peninsula is also one of the favorite destinations for international students who are looking to learn Spanish, as well as have an immersive cultural experience. This in addition to the fact that in the peninsula you can find beauties such as beaches, caves, cenotes, lagoons, and other extraordinary landscapes.

Learn Spanish with native speakers

Believe us when we say that there is no better way to learn Spanish than with native speakers, because with them the practice is much easier. In addition, in this way you lose the fear of speaking thanks to the trust that exists with the locals.

If you want to know more about the Spanish courses that you can take at Alegre Spanish Schools, contact us and start learning Spanish in the best places in Mexico.

One of the best ways to speak Spanish in México its by doing it with the locals, talking with them about the ordinary themes like the local food, the traditions, the culture about the city, etc. this will help you to get more confident about the language and speak fluently.

¿What are the best cities in Mexico to learn Spanish?

Mexico City is one of the best places to learn and speak spanish at the same time that you enjoy the culture.

Mexico City or the City of Mexico is the capital of Mexico and the most populous city in North America. It’s the biggest urban core in the Mexican republic and the principal political, economic, social, academical, financial, business, touristic, cultural, fashion and more… center.

The culture in Mexico City

Being the capital of one of the biggest prehispanic empire, the richest viceroyalty in the spanish empire and finally the capital of the actual Mexico, this city has a very rich story and many artistic and cultural expressions.

The Mexican culture, since the pre-classic Mesoamerica era, has been surrounded by art. Art that we still can see in the different museum around the city. The most important museums about the story of Mexico are:

  • Museo Nacional de Antropología
  • Museo del Templo Mayor

Many ceramic pieces still are in good state but the most of them were destroyed in the conquest of Mexico.

Other museums where you can find the cultural meaning of Mexico are:

  • Museo de Arte Moderno
  • Museo Universitario Arte Contemporáneo
  • Museo Soumaya
  • Museo Frida Khalo
  • And others

If you want to walk more by the downtown, you can find more and more cultural spaces, like Polyforum Cultural Siqueiros, El Teatro de la Ciudad “Esperanza Iris”, the Arena Ciudad de México, Auditorio Nacional and many others.

If you want to have a conversation about food, the guajolota it’s a typical dish that you can consider to talk about, it’s the traditional lunch and consist in a torta of tamal.

The mexican gastronomy is one of the most famous around the world, the tacos, the tortilla, and the meat are the usual food for every person in the capital.

But if you want to taste another dish, you can do it here too. In other parts from Mexico City you can find international restaurants and coffe shops of haute cuisine from regions like France, Italy, Portugal, Poland, Spain, Thailand, Japan, Korea, China, Lebanon, Peru, Argentina, Brazil and more. And of course, there are establishments dedicated to the Mexican gastronomy from all country.

So, if you want to learn Spanish, or practice it, come and visit alegre Spanish schools. Learn Spanish while you spend your vacations in Mexico City.