HomeQ&AHow can I improve my Spanish listening abilities?

How can I improve my Spanish listening abilities?

2
votes

So, my Spanish teacher has us listen to Spanish songs, mostly Shakira's, and try to write as much of the lyrics as we can. Unfortunately, for me, I am terrible at this because I rarely, if ever, use or hear the words/styles in class that are present in the songs. However, other students, about half of them, do pretty job at this assignment. Why is this? I can write as good or better than a number of those people. We have taken the same amount (years) of Spanish classes. I don't understand it. It's not like they practice, with the exception of a few people; but this is only reading practice. Why are they better at it than me? How can I effectively improve my listening abilities? Thank you.

10299 views
updated DIC 20, 2009
posted by zmanuel
I would be great if you could tell me exactly what I should listen to. Thanks again. - zmanuel, DIC 17, 2009
Thank you eveybody that answered. I'm taking your advice and I'm already seeing improvement. - zmanuel, DIC 20, 2009

6 Answers

0
votes

Everybody's different.

You might find Destinos helpful...I got that from user Goyo.

Also, you can activate the Spanish language track on many of the movie DVDs you already own. Try it with and without subtitles (English and Spanish)...unfortunately, for US made movies, the Spanish subtitles will not exactly match the spoken Spanish.

updated DIC 20, 2009
posted by webdunce
1
vote

Music can be hard to understand. You might want to try with spoken material as well. Even if you don´t try to write it down, listening a lot will help you distinguish words and phrases.

Here is a good site for practicing listening: euronews

The videos are not too fast, and they have a transscript in Spanish.

updated DIC 17, 2009
posted by kattya
I like that site. It's alwasy nice when you can see the words being spoken. - webdunce, DIC 17, 2009
1
vote

Practice makes perfect. Practice for a certain amount of time everyday. You can only get better!

updated DIC 17, 2009
posted by edgedonkey
0
votes

I have had a similar problem in the past. The problem is reading silently to yourself does not train your ear to understand the words when you hear them. Of course some people are naturally better at this than others. Nothing you can do about that. I would recommend reading spanish material aloud so you can hear it rather than just reading it silently to yourself. Also check out the Spanish media link at the bottom of this page for some resources for listening practice. You could also check your local library or online websites like amazon.com where you can get spanish conversation courses to practice your listening and speaking abilities.

updated DIC 17, 2009
posted by fatchocobo
0
votes

I think it is important to keep in mind that just the act of listening will help you. Whether or not you even understand the content, you can pick up a lot about pronunciation and accents from listening. I think you'll find that this will later on increase the speed at which you can speak without saying filler words like "Um", and your accent will sound much smoother. Plus, deep down on some unconscious level, you'll start to have a better understanding of sentence structure and grammar.

After all, that's how you learned your first language. When you were a baby, you didn't understand the words, but you learned how to speak properly and construct sentences by listening.

updated DIC 17, 2009
posted by ElCantante
0
votes

try some other Spanish/South American artists: Jarabe de Palo for instance is much easier to understand the diction and has some very interesting poetic songs; Juanes is also much easier to understand than some others when i listen, at first i don't even try to understand/translate the lyrics, i just listen and get the feel for the music and the song, then some words start to sink in and it is pretty exciting...light bulb going off! enjoy

updated DIC 17, 2009
posted by AnaBailarina
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