Series Using English to learn Spanish
The textbooks series
Using English to Learn Spanish
takes advantage of the
similarities between Spanish and English
to present the new language as a sister language. By using those words that you already know from English and Spanish, you will be guided through short lessons. You will find your words at your pace and will enjoy putting them to work.
The books are organized in sections that correspond to milestones: sounds, words and sentences. First it will teach you how to read and write in Spanish; then it will help you learn words efficiently. Finally, it will show you how to build sentences and communicate
The textbooks stick to what constitutes standard Spanish. The rules of spelling and grammar are the same in any of the Spanish-speaking countries, and twenty-two National Academies work to maintain this unity.
It's also using English to teach Spanish. Self-educated students will also find exercises and frequently asked questions to learn from home or from the street. The expansion of the
Spanish language in the U.S. will make this learning even easier and even more fun. This is why the books don’t require any audiovisual or additional material, just your enthusiasm, to quickly develop your Spanish.
INTRODUCTION FROM SPANISH FOR CALIFORNIANS
AN INTRODUCTION TO TAKE OFF
Any speaker can learn any language. No language has a specific sound or a structure that a baby cannot learn. We humans all have the same speech organs and brains. All languages have the same three components: a set of individual sounds, or letters, which are grouped to form words, which, in turn, are grouped to form sentences.
Accordingly this book is divided into sections, with the following goals:
Section I, SOUNDS, introduces and explains the elemental sounds. Spanish is very simple in terms of pronunciation and spelling. So simple that, at the end of Section I, you will be able to read in Spanish (though you won’t know what you are saying).
Section II, VOCABULARY, explains the rules that you need in order to learn words efficiently and advance in your personal dictionary. English and Spanish have many words in common. This section introduces the terms “number,” “gender,” and “conjugation” in order to recognize “word patterns.” These chapters show how words change their form (e.g. lion, lioness, lions, lionesses). At the end of this section you will be able to look up any word in the dictionary and start your own vocabulary list without mistakes.
Section III, GRAMMAR, will give you the norms that you need in order to create and understand sentences. Spanish and English have many similarities in grammar. This section devotes one chapter to each of the nine types of words (determiners, nouns, adjectives, etc.) and the structures to which they give rise. At the end of this section, you will know how to create any sentence (using only three basic verb structures).
Section IV, VERB TENSES, is devoted to the last type of words. Spanish is very intense in verbs (similar number of verbs as English, but more variable). However, verbs follow very consistent rules.
At the end of this book, you should be able to write, read, understand and speak; you will be able to communicate any thoughts you have. From that point on, to become more eloquent in Spanish, it will be only a matter of increasing your vocabulary, and confort level in speaking.
Every chapter will display:
- The core of the lesson, with: language patterns, examples, golden rules and warnings
- Frequently Asked Questions
Regarding which vocabulary to learn, we encourage you to learn a consistent set of words per day (say, ten). Some words are imposed by the language, like in English “a,”, “the,” “to,” “but,” etc.(Yes, the boring ones). Throughout the text we will call them grammatical words. These are the words that you will find in the Vocabulary at the end of each chapter.
Other words should come from your area of interest; those are the words that should make your learning process fun. However those days that you don’t feel inspired to find your own words, you may opt to adopt words from the examples of this book. A tip to memorize is to learn in sets: words that are related, like colors, animals, cooking ingredients, sports, etc.
We discourage you to learn vocabulary systematically until completing Chapter 8: How to Learn Words Efficiently. Remember: “Keep it simple; when it isn’t simple it doesn’t work.”
This book follows an academic order of chapters. This is the organized manner to present the language. This organization will help you know where you are when learning as well as look up topics when reviewing. If you find a chapter with extensive vocabulary or that is too detailed, you may go ahead and move on as long as what you leave behind is just that: memorization. However, completing chapters will give you the extra reward of confidence.
We have identified five elements that are not found in English, and can be obstacles in learning. With time, these five items will become easier to understand. You will find a warning as these are introduced in the text.
- Objects have gender (Chapter 5).
- There are two verbs for “to be”: “ser” and “estar” (Chapter 11).
- The words “le, la, lo” are not easily translated by “him, her” (Chapter 13).
- There are two types of past tense: the preterite and the imperfect past (Chapters 22 and 23).
- There are two extra tenses; they are called the present subjunctive and the past subjunctive (Chapters 27 and 28).
Without further ado, here is the Spanish Language.