HomeQ&AListening is hard.

Listening is hard.

7
votes

Hi everyone. I am learning spanish and can write and speak a little. Probably the late beginner early intermediate level, but I have a real problem listening and recognising what has been said. When a sentence is said, I recognise some words but when i understand those words another 5000 words have been said. I can just keep up. The other thing is when a sentence is written, 9 times out of 10 I know the meaning of most of the words but to understand the sentence is a bit tricky sometimes. Can someone please tell me that this it is not me but just a thing that always happens when you are learning a new language. Does everyone go through this??? Any help will be appreciated. ohh p.s..... I am going to Argentina in March and I want to be able to at least have and understand a basic conversation. regards.

9655 views
updated DIC 4, 2009
edited by nizhoni1
posted by mike123587

29 Answers

1
vote

Hello Mike , welcome to the forum. My answer to your question is that you are describing a common experience.Good luck in your studies and journey. I am going to edit your post for you as proper English is required on this site.

updated NOV 8, 2009
posted by nizhoni1
7
votes

One word, Mike:

(A hard one...)

Patience.

There's no shortcut!

Some days I felt like crying

Other days my brain felt like mush

Sometimes my feeble attempts to communicate in Spanish would unleash a torrent of sentences from the other person causing me to feel scared

But slowly, eventually it started clicking and I was . that I kept at it.

All these suggestions you see here can help. Just keep at it!

.

updated NOV 9, 2009
posted by chaparrito
6
votes

I spent a long period not understanding anything at all. I went to the doctor's and I couldn't understand anything he said either. Finally, he shouted at me and I understood immediately. "Estás sordo?"

updated NOV 9, 2009
posted by 00515f39
Your post made me laugh...I had to give it a vote for that .... - nonombre, NOV 8, 2009
4
votes

Wow guys. Gracias por ayudame tanto rapido. I didnt think i would get these responses so fast. I try to listen as much as i can, and i can say one thing, that i am learning!! But it is a very "testing" learning process. I have come this close to giving up but no,, I have made a decision to learn this language even if it takes me 50 years!!!!!

updated NOV 10, 2009
posted by mike123587
3
votes

G'day Mike,

"owyagoin?" and "didyaavagoodweegend?" - yes another Aussie, and apparently we are the worst offenders for speaking English way-too-quickly and running our words together.. Aussieelision perhaps?

And the going to Argentina thing? Don't worry too much, I went to Costa Rica this year with my terrible Spanish but once I told them I was there to learn/improve (Spanish) everyone I met went to no end of trouble to help me - I'm sure it will be the same in Argentina - just soak it all up and have fun!

And recently here I've had connected, through "Selecttv" satelite television, four channels, totally in Spanish - ($34.95 a month) - well worth it if you can stretch the budget!

Annie.

updated NOV 10, 2009
posted by nonombre
How long were you in costa rica? i am thinking of visiting there, maybe moving - cheeseisyummy, NOV 7, 2009
Seven weeks, this year - lots to see - I loved it! - nonombre, NOV 7, 2009
yeah- I agree with that- you will learn spanish when you are there but i guess it's good to know a bit before you go!:) - April-Sarah, NOV 8, 2009
3
votes

Yes, this is normal. I have this problem too even now, however by listening to everything I can in spanish as much as possible, movies, music, and by speaking aloud in spanish often especially while reading (even though people might think you're crazy to talk to yourself), I am slowly understanding what is being said more and more. It's like a little lightbulb goes on, but it takes time and lots of it. Especially when I've heard a song 100 times with no clue on what they are saying, and then one day I hear it again and actually pick up on what they said. It amazes me. It does take lots of practice though, and I think if you try to speak alot, then you get used to how words sound when 'meshed' together. Hang in there, you'll get it.

updated NOV 8, 2009
posted by cheeseisyummy
3
votes

Try and try. After 3 years I am still striving to reach that day when I can understand my Mexican friends in open coversation. To make things worse I am very hard of hearing and I read lips in English. With these deficits I am going to master espanol, no matter what.

updated NOV 8, 2009
posted by jamesgv0r
2
votes

Try Pimsleur Spanish course. Concentrates on listening and speaking. Has improved my conversational skills no end! Keep plugging on, you'll get there.

updated NOV 9, 2009
posted by Traceyadina
2
votes

Los acentos de Argentinos son difíciles de entender. Tengo amigas Colombianas quien me dicen que no es facíl aunque por ellas para entenderlos.

updated NOV 9, 2009
posted by gayland--Smith
From what I understand, there is quite a bit of slang and regional usage (In Buenos Aires, I think that they call it "Lunfardo") that can throw you off especially in Buenos Aires. - Izanoni1, NOV 8, 2009
well... acentos and grammar in argentina are different, closer in sound to italian, so don't be too hard on yourself. - zenejero, NOV 9, 2009
2
votes

What seems to be working the best for me right now is reading newspaper articles out loud for an hour a day and watching TV for 4 hours a day, both in Spanish of course.

updated NOV 8, 2009
posted by lorenzo9
2
votes

I would say this is normal. I studied Spanish for four years in school and have the opportunity to speak it up to 4-6 hours a day, but comprehending what is spoken and speaking is the worst for me. I also feel I write fairly well, (although my conjugating is very rusty right now.) The only saving grace I have is that the person I converse with is very patient and speaks very slowly with me!

updated NOV 8, 2009
posted by aloshek
1
vote

Here is a site you might find useful: Spanish Listening Proficiency

A number of different voices, subjects and spoken Spanish that ranges from beginner level to "superior".

Yes, I myself get one CD story in Spanish "down" (i.e., I can understand it directly without translation in my head) and move to the next to find that I once again have the sense that I can understand nothing at all!

But I am encouraged when I go back to my beginning tapes ... ones I once listened to but couldn't even hear where one syslable, word, sentence or sometimes even tape!! ended and the next began. And yet I hear something that now sounds as familiar to me as English.

You are very fortunate to be able to go to a country where you will be immersed! ... and after that it should all be downhill.

updated JUL 7, 2012
posted by Janice
1
vote

Hola a todas. I just had another dream last night in spanish. From what i have been told this is a good thing. Maybe the more listening i am doing is paying off!!!!

updated DIC 4, 2009
posted by mike123587
Yay! - chaparrito, DIC 4, 2009
1
vote

Does anyone have the link to the pimsuler webpage. I might have a geese at it. If that works for me it will hit the nail on the head. woo-hoooo. Anything that can improve my listen and speaking will be as sweet as a nut.!!! Sorry aussie slang!!! I get carried away sometimes when i see something new that will improve my learning!!!!!

updated NOV 10, 2009
posted by mike123587
The link is in my edited answer above ! - Peter_W, NOV 10, 2009
1
vote

Oh yeah mike123587, you might want to check out the movie "Nine Queens"(Nueve reinas), as it takes place in argentina so you will get a general idea of their "accent"...

imdb

updated NOV 10, 2009
posted by cheeseisyummy
hey! that movie had a remake! - zenejero, NOV 9, 2009
Whats the remake? - cheeseisyummy, NOV 10, 2009
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