Advanced Spanish Preservation For Short Attention Spans
March 24, 2014 2:47 AM   Subscribe

Hi, folks. Through work and study, I achieved fluency in Spanish. In my current job, I was hired to do bilingual work, but I have had very little opportunity to speak Spanish for about six months. I'm worried I may be forgetting Spanish, which is really very bad for me on many levels. Please help me find a few ways to keep in touch with the language.

I like some Spanish fiction writers and I've seen a ton of movies in Spanish. I plan on reading more in Spanish and watching more media in Spanish. I know about reading newspapers in Spanish, etc.

The thing is, given my current life situation, I have a lot of time to muck around on the internet. I have fairly serious distracting events during my time on the Web, so I can't get too too absorbed in things. I'm wondering if folks can recommend some Youtube channels like EatYourKimchi? Is there a Spanish language equivalent of Metafilter? What out there in Spanish can keep my attention?

I learned Spanish before the world was as online as it is now. I'm sure people are meeting language partners and speaking with them through the net, but I'm not sure how this is done. Can someone fill me in? Is there a site where I can just hire a native speaker in another country to speak with me about challenging topics?

I'd love to hear from others who have rescued themselves from almost forgetting languages. I really need to get back on the wagon!
posted by Hennimore to Writing & Language (10 answers total) 6 users marked this as a favorite
Is there a reason why you can't watch Spanish-language TV? Watching telenovellas and so on seems like an easy way to keep your language skills current. (Maybe you're in a country without Telemundo. Here in the US, Spanish is very easy to come by.)
posted by Ursula Hitler at 2:51 AM on March 24, 2014

Response by poster: I'm in the US. I don't have a TV, but telenovelas have always bored me.
posted by Hennimore at 3:30 AM on March 24, 2014

You could buy some skype language lessons on a site like verbalplanet? The skype works great for chatting to a native speaker and you can pay via paypal.
posted by yoHighness at 3:30 AM on March 24, 2014

Duolingo might be a good answer for you. You can add a competitive element. I would compete against you, although I haven't quite achieved fluency.

There area also Spanish language message boards for all kinds of topics. There are probably Spanish language newsletters for your field of work. And of course there are newspapers available online.

And yes, you can find people online to speak Spanish with you on skype. This might be something for taskrabbit or even craigslist.
posted by bilabial at 3:58 AM on March 24, 2014

Is there a Spanish language equivalent of Metafilter?

The (Castilian-) Spanish equivalent-ish of Reddit if Reddit was a news aggregator like Digg is Menéame, but IMO it's a bit on the decline. You need to focus on Latin American Spanish, right?
posted by sukeban at 4:22 AM on March 24, 2014 [1 favorite]

Sukeban that may not help Hennimore but it's great for me, thanks!
posted by tinkletown at 5:32 AM on March 24, 2014

Do some volunteering with an immigrants group?
posted by charlemangy at 6:30 AM on March 24, 2014

If you're the sort that goes to church and your area is one in which there are a lot of Spanish speakers, you could go to Spanish mass.
posted by dis_integration at 8:33 AM on March 24, 2014
posted by Che boludo! at 7:20 AM on March 25, 2014

I am a huge fan of Spanish-language podcasts, and there are a ton of offerings from RTVE, Spain's public radio service. Some of them are nice and short - like Secretos de rodaje and Ciencia al cubo ( ... huh. Those always used to be about 5 minutes long but for the last couple of months it looks like they've gone up to half-hour shows.)

If you like science, has a bunch of great shows, some short, some long.

When I have time, I like to push myself a bit with these, so it's not just passive listening. So I might take a 2 or 3 minute podcast and try to transcribe the whole thing, then look up any words I don't know; or I'll find an article online, find some words to add to my vocabulary deck in Anki (flashcard software), and then maybe try to write up a quick summary in my own words.

You can also practice writing on lang-8. For speaking practice, I haven't personally used iTalki, but I've seen it mentioned here on Metafilter.

Finally, are you in or near a town with meetups? You can also try Craigslist to look for language exchange partners.
posted by kristi at 9:02 AM on March 26, 2014 [1 favorite]

« Older How many different colors does this quilt need?   |   If baby leaves the train station headed west at 65... Newer »
This thread is closed to new comments.