Learning Spanish


Feb 4, 2009

My name is Ross. I'm from Sydney, but I'm going to be moving to Buenos Aires for a few months. I really don't know much Spanish, and I don't have a lot of time to pick it up. Does anyone have any recommendations for books, or Iphone/Ipod applications that could help? I'm going to be leaving my computer in Sydney.
Hey Ross,

I was actually in the same situation as you. I tried going to a tutor, but it was way too inconvenient and expensive. There's an Iphone application that works really really well called Bueno, Entonces . . ., It's nice because you get the same amount of exposure to spoken Spanish as in lessons, you can (and should) rewatch lessons, and you don't have to travel around the city to get your lesson. The humor in it is good, and it's been way more effective than anything else for me.

Hope this helps!
Hi Ross,
I put Pimsleur (spelling?) on my shuffle and also use Rosetta Stone.

Good luck, Nancy
Coffee Break Spanish and some of the other free podcasts available on the iTunes music store aren't bad. The catch, of course, is that the accent down here is very different from the accent you're going to hear in just about any "spanish learning" program--unless it's specifically teaching Argentinian Spanish. I'm by no means an expert, but the main things to be out on the lookout for are:

the "ll" and "y" are pronounced like the English "sh" or the French "j," as in "je" (I).
S sounds are pretty clear, not like the almost lisped "th" you might hear in Spain.

Take it from someone who learned Spanish somewhere else, the only way that you're going to start recognizing the porteno Spanish accent is by trying to speak with it yourself. If you keep pronouncing, for example, the world "calle" the way you would in Mexico, you aren't going to have a clue what people are saying when you hear them say "cashay."

Buena suerte.
My spanish teacher just raised her fee from 50 pesos to 60 pesos an hour. She meets me at my apartment. Is 60 pesos an hour the going rate?
Toni: 60 pesos/hour is a little high, I would say. I think the going rate for a quality teacher is about 35/hour (I currently pay 55 for 90 minutes).
45 pesos an hour is about the top end going rate, but if she's travelling out of her way that gets added to the cost. 60 an hour sounds a lot though, unless you're just doing one hour sessions.

Michel Thomas "virtual classroom" CDs were a godsend before I came out. Genuinely good fun and you learn a lot of basic survival spanish very quickly, plus you get more comfortable about guessing words you don't know.
I have the Bueno, entonces... Spanish Class application on my phone. It's geared to teaching Argentine Spanish and its hilarious. Obviously its not the only thing you need to pick up the language. I would also suggest language exchanges...I know some people advertise that on Craigslist as they are trying to learn English. You meet for coffee or a walk, and you speak half the time in English and half the time in Spanish. Good luck!