Question from a student:
What are some good places to find a conversation partner to practice with outside of class?
There are quite a few possibilities:
http://www.conversationexchange.com/ is a site where you can find people to talk to via text, e-mail, Skype or in person in your city (this is my favorite choice). With these situations you’re doing a conversation exchange, usually 15-30 minutes in English and then the same in Spanish.
You can ask your classmates if any of them would be interested in getting together in between classes. We have several groups of students in numerous classes that get together with other students 1-3 x per week. I’ve seen a huge improvement in their Spanish. Any exposure helps (even if it’s not with a native speaker). You can also put a note on PBO’s Facebook page, that you’re looking for a conversation partner or mentor or ask around when you go to the social club events. The students who attend the events are usually the most dedicated. So are the ones on Facebook. These are the students that take advantage of everything PBO offers, so they’re both great places to find a conversation partner.
You can put an ad in Craigslist, in Spanish, stating that you’re looking for a conversation partner who speaks Spanish and wants to learn English. If you do this please be safe and meet in a public place 🙂
Ask someone that you know to help you. Every single one of you know Spanish speakers here in SD. Ask one of your friends or colleagues if they would be willing to practice with you for 30 minutes to an hour a week. Maybe you could take them to lunch or coffee or even do a favor for them like take their dog for a walk or babysit their kid.
Go to places where you will be able to speak Spanish. The last time I went to see a movie in a mall in Chula Vista, my husband commented 15 minutes after we got to the mall that so far he had not heard ANY English.
Two of our students Cathy & Dale used to go to Old Town on a Friday night and go talk to the shop keepers in Spanish…it’s just a matter of going places that you know you will have the opportunity to speak Spanish.
You can also go to Mexican markets like http://panchovillamarket.com/ or http://www.northgatemarkets.com/ – not only can you get your shopping done and speak Spanish, but you will be immersed in a cultural experience! And it is quite an experience – you will never go to boring old Vons again.
The bottom line is that you’re lucky to live in San Diego because the opportunities are literally everywhere. It’s just a matter of putting yourself out there 🙂 ¡Buena suerte!
La tarea opcional de esta semana:
…es practicar el pretérito. Cada noche van a hacer una lista de 3 cosas que hicieron ese día, usando el pretérito. La próxima semana pueden compartir algunas de esas cosas con nosotros en clase. Si quieren practicar un poco más les recomendamos http://www.studyspanish.com/tutorial.htm. La sexta unidad se trata del pretérito y el imperfecto.
Después de una semana deben tener 21 frases cortas, con un verbo diferente para cada una.
La optional homework this week:
…is to practice the preterit. Every night you’re going to make a list of 3 things you did earlier that day, using the preterit tense. Next week you can share a few of those things in class. If you want to put in some extra practice, I would recommend: http://www.studyspanish.com/tutorial.htm. Unit 6 is all about the preterit and imperfect.
By the end of the week you should have 21 short sentences, each using a different verb.