Find me the perfect Spanish training website
November 16, 2011 6:18 AM   Subscribe

Spanish verb training website like this but with all the tenses?

I basically want a website that has this exact functionality. Present me an english PHRASE "they began", "we will have begun", "were we to have stalled" and I translate it by typing, not multiple choice or anything. This website is exactly what I want but does not include future perfect, conditional perfect, imperative, subjunctive, imperfect subjunctive, etc.

I have an app called Conjugation nation which does include these tenses and is great, but at this point I've learned all the conjugations based on their tense "pluscuamperfecto", etc. That work is done. Tell me to conjugate a verb in a given tense and I can do that no problem. What I want to build is the direct relationship between intended meaning and translation without the "what grammatical tense should I use here" stop in between.
posted by nathancaswell to Writing & Language (9 answers total) 16 users marked this as a favorite
This might help, not sure. It looks like it has verb drills in all the different tenses.
posted by daydreamer at 8:18 AM on November 16, 2011

Response by poster: I'm actually already a member of that site, daydreamer. The grammar lessons were quite helpful but the verb trainer leaves a lot to be desired. Since it doesn't throw them at you randomly you don't have to come up with the conjugations on the fly. You just conjugate each tense in big blocks.
posted by nathancaswell at 8:29 AM on November 16, 2011

Ah, gotcha. I will be following this...I would like to find something like that as well.
posted by daydreamer at 8:45 AM on November 16, 2011

I looked all over the place for an app like this and I couldn't find one. So what I did was I made a spreadsheet with a boatload of simple sentences that are really just verb conjugation excuses. English in column A, Spanish in Column B, exactly like your example. Then I loaded the spreadsheet up into Anki and I do the spaced-repetition noise on it. This works OK.

I thought about writing the app, but I wasn't totally sold that this would be a good learning method and it sounded like my general tendency towards yak-shaving was taking over ("Hey...I *could* memorize all these Spanish words...OR I COULD START PROGRAMMING SOME CRAP!") so I went with Anki. On the other hand, now that it looks like at least three of us are interested in this...maybe if I finish my work pile I'll take a crack at it.
posted by jeb at 9:31 AM on November 16, 2011's grammar section has quizzes and explanations. They may not be exactly what you're looking for, but they do provide additional practice. And they've helped me quite a bit.
posted by evolvinglines at 9:57 AM on November 16, 2011

I think the reason an app like this doesn't exist is that more advanced tenses/moods don't have simple English equivalents--you need context from a sentence. If jeb finds a way around that, though, I'll be delighted.
posted by randomname25 at 2:04 PM on November 16, 2011

I think the reason an app like this doesn't exist is that more advanced tenses/moods don't have simple English equivalents--you need context from a sentence. If jeb finds a way around that, though, I'll be delighted.

True. I have no idea how to do that. I am still at a pretty basic level, and the way I deal with this in my Anki deck is just using a pattern in my sentences where I basically know what I'm looking for, which is kind of a cheat, but I hope it helps make the process more automatic and takes out the intermediate "which tense/mood is this" step. I don't know.
posted by jeb at 2:10 PM on November 16, 2011

I'd also like something like this. I've created my own virtual flashcards that offer an English phrase or sentence that needs to be translated using the proper tenses. I'm using Flashcards Deluxe on the iPhone, which allows public sharing of decks, and I've been meaning to put my deck out there. I'll look into how easy it is.

The phrases are things like "I didn't think you would like it," "I had a feeling about what I was going to hear," "He should have gotten there by now," "Maybe there's something we could do about it," and "It would be helpful if you could come." They come from novels, telenovelas, Mexican friends, and the hugely helpful WordReference site.

It seems like it would be relatively easy for someone to put together a product or site that helps us practice this trickier stuff. Hey, product developers: Show us a phrase and make us type the Spanish version. If you can't automatically check for errors in our translation because there are too many possible variations, it would at least be helpful to see the recommended translation, along with any relevant grammar explanations.
posted by ceiba at 2:48 PM on November 16, 2011

Response by poster: Update... finally found a program that does what I want. It's not cheap but it does it.
posted by nathancaswell at 10:49 AM on October 16, 2012

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