Do you remember when you were first learning to speak English? More than likely no. However, it’s a given that you learned by listening to your parents speak English, and repeating words and phrases over and over again. Even though you could speak English at a young age, you weren’t actually expected to read and study grammar until you were much older.
When you live in an environment where a language is spoken all the time, you simply learn the language. While young, you may have made several mistakes, but with your parents’ corrections, you eventually learned how to communicate effectively in English.
Learning Spanish through immersion is based upon this theory. If you can spend time in a Spanish-speaking country, you will naturally pick up on the culture and language in order to better understand what’s going on around you.
If you add Spanish language classes while you’re abroad in a Spanish-speaking country, you’ll pick up the language even faster than you would simply listening and learning. In fact, it’s perfectly reasonable to find yourself pickup more than ten words a day when you learn via immersion. At this rate, it won’t take long for you to begin to speak Spanish fluently and effectively.
Sometimes, you can set up arrangements to stay abroad with a local family so you can learn even more quickly. By placing yourself in an environment similar to what you grew up in, your language skills will improve even more dramatically. If Spanish is spoken around you daily, you’ll have the chance to learn not only the phrases and sentence structure, but also the slang found in all languages. These words become very important when you’re out in public, trying to communicate with people native to the country.
If you aren’t sure where to go, don’t worry – there are many countries where the majority of people don’t know English. This presents a unique problem, as it’s often difficult to simply order food, tell at taxi where you want to go, or seek out assistance if you get lost or need medical attention. Many times, people who aren’t yet able to converse fluently will avoid any contact with a native, simply to avoid feeling inadequate. This is something that you must overcome if you want to benefit from immersion learning.
As an added bonus, learning Spanish will also help you understand the cultures and history associated with the country. You can take advantage of the sight seeing tours and other types of attractions as opportunities to study both the language and the history of the country. Simply interacting with Spanish-speaking people daily will help you to learn the language, but you’ll also reap the rewards of learning more about the country’s inhabitants when you study via immersion.
It’s easy to see why immersion is one of the most common ways to learn Spanish. It’s fast, it’s effective, and you’ll soon see other benefits as well. Learning to speak Spanish is not something you can do overnight – it can be a difficult language to learn and you must have the proper instruction, including tutors, language schools, and other means of instruction. Whatever happens, don’t give up – once you converse with someone in their native tongue, you’ll be surprised at how much you enjoyed it.