Author: daniel

Why Comprehensible Input Works

What is Comprehensible input? Comprehensible Input, or CI, is the best way to acquire a language naturally. CI refers to the target language that students hear in class and even though they may not be understanding each and every word, they begin to recognize certain structures through repetition. It’s the teacher’s job to create a set of vocabulary that they focus on during the class. You may be wondering how this “acquisition” happens. The point I bring you to is – think about how very small children learn a language. Young children spend the beginning of their lives listening...

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20 Hours of Spanish Immersion

How many hours per week do you spend entirely immersed in Spanish? Most Spanish students would be ashamed to say it, but on average they’re only getting about one solid hour of immersion in per week — and that’s if they’re even actively studying the language at all. As you can imagine, this can pose a huge problem, as the “use it or lose it” philosophy tends to be especially pertinent when it comes to acquiring a foreign language. We’re not ones to just sit by and let our students wither away in the ruins of language acquisition turmoil,...

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6 Rules For Every Intermediate Spanish Student

Recently, I called out all the beginner students for the words, expressions, and rules they were forgetting on a regular basis. (Check that article out here.) Now, it’s time to hold all of you intermediate students accountable. As your parents said when they caught you with a ‘C’ in geometry, “I’m not mad, but I know you can do better moving forward.” Here is a list of ten words, expressions, and rules I hear your intermediate peers get wrong every day. Here we go… 1. darse cuenta de – this crazy mess of words that individually have nothing to...

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10 Rules Every Spanish Student Should Know

Let’s get right down to it. If you are a beginner-level Spanish student (or any level Spanish student for that matter) and you come across something in the following list that is not painfully obvious to you, you literally need to get out some blank flash cards right now and study these until your face falls off. If I were to teach 100 beginner-level students this afternoon, I would bet my cat, Michifú, on 90 of said students forgetting at least 75% of the following list. And anyone who knows me knows how much I love my Michifú. Let’s...

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Does Dreaming in Spanish Mean You’re Fluent?

Have you ever heard someone say, “You really know you’re fluent (or making significant progress) in Spanish when you begin dreaming is Spanish”? I have many times. But there’s a problem. I have been speaking Spanish since 2000 and never once have I noticeably had a dream in Spanish. Heck, I’ve been dreaming since 1985 and I’m unsure I even remember speaking ANY language in any dream I’ve ever had. Does that mean I’m not even fluent in… English?! But let’s back up for a moment. Why is it that “dreaming in Spanish” is being used as a marker...

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