Tenemos un durazno atrás de la casa y viendo por mi ventana hoy en la mañana, me di cuenta de que los duraznos casi están listos para comer. Algunos se han caído por las fuertes lluvias que hemos tenido, pero hay muchos todavía en el árbol. Creo que sólo tengo que esperar unos días y podré comer el primero de la temporada. Ya se me antojó un pie de durazno- mmmmm. ¡Qué rico!
There is all kinds of advice out there concerning how to learn a foreign language and specifically Spanish. I think I’ll join the pack and chime in with my advice. So…. tada…. here’s my handy dandy list of 11 things you should do to learn a foreign language.
1. Sign up for a class.
You have many options here. You probably have a Community College (also know as a Junior College) somewhere near. They most likely offer foreign language classes. Stop by and get the current class schedule and see if they have night classes, summer classes or even special adult classes. You might even want to talk with the head of the foreign language department to see what’s available. If you can’t stop by, they probably even have their course listings on the internet. Look ‘em up. Your local university probably accepts non-enrolled/part-time students into lower-level classes. That could also be a good option. Another option: Your local adult center, besides offering exercise classes and weekly Bingo, they probably offer French/Spanish lessons. If you’re learning Spanish, it’s a pretty widely-studied language, so you’ve got that on your side.
The main point here about signing up for a class, is it will help you keep progressing. Whether you know next to nothing, or you’re already pretty fluent, getting out to a class and learning or even helping others will help keep you from stagnating in what you know.
2. Buy (and use) a dictionary (or three)
This sounds pretty straightforward, and it is. Get yourself a good, two-way Spanish < -> English dictionary (or use Tomísimo online). When you run into words you don’t know look them up. If you don’t have access to your dictionary, write down the words and look them up later. When I was in Costa Rica studying Spanish, I carried around a small notebook writing down all the words I heard but didn’t know. Then at night, I would look up all the words and study them. It helped immensely.
You also might want to get a good Spanish-Spanish dictionary. This is for when you’re a bit more advanced, you can look up words in Spanish and read the definitions in Spanish. This can really give you a jump-start in learning.
The third dictionary you need is a visual dictionary. While I’d say this is optional, it can really be useful. Once while we were watching Cool Runnings, we wanted to look up ‘bobsled’ in Spanish. The only place I found it was in a Visual dictionary. Visual dictionaries can also be a conversation piece. You can flip through the pages with your conversation partner and discuss various topics that you find in the dictionary. Continue reading “11 ways to learn Spanish or any foreign language”
The Hotel “Casa San Blas” in Cusco, Peru has a couple of webcams, one pointing to the main square “Plaza de las Armas” and a second one viewing a side street. The picture refreshes every 30 seconds and you can actually see that people have moved around etc. Click on the pictures below to go to the actual webcam on the hotel’s website. Pretty cool if you have gone to Cusco to study Spanish or if you know someone who’s there. Actually, let’s do this. If you know someone who’s in Cusco right now, try to get in touch with them, and tell them to go stand in the main square and let’s see if these cameras are for real.
Update: I’ve gone back to the webcams several times, and you can see people moving, see cars driving down that narrow street and all, so I’m pretty convinced that it’s for real. Here’s what Cusco looks like at night.
Five Mexican fishermen set out to sea in October 1995. Three have just made it back after more than nine months at sea. They survived by drinking rainwater and eating raw fish and birds, including seagulls and ducks. Two of the five did not survive. More than nine months after setting out on the Pacific ocean to hunt shark, the three Mexicans were rescued by Tiawanese fishermen just days ago. Some news media claim that the men are not fishermen and have made up the story as cover for their drug smuggling operations. Who knows, but it’s still an interesting story. Lot’s of people I’ve talked to say they’d never eat raw fish/birds, but after about 3 weeks at sea with nothing to eat, I think I’d go for some raw fish. Think of it as Sushi. If you want to read more, there are plenty of news stories.
I thought it was about time to open a blog so I can record my thoughts and doings as I go about learning Spanish and maintaining Tomísimo.
As you can see at the top of this page and the image here, I’ve been working on updating the Tomísimo logo for a while and I think I finally have something that I’m pleased with. It’s not all that different from the current logo, but I think it looks more polished and professional. I’ve got lots of things on my plate, but I plan on updating and freshening the entire Tomísimo look when I get time. And on top of that, I’ve got lots of neat features and pages planned, I just need to find time to publish them. This blog design should give you a pretty good idea of where I want to go with the design/look for the entire site. Let me know what you think.