Vocabulary is the best way to learn .
I feel the more words you learn, the faster you will learn. If you learn how to say the words, you will be able to hear the words. Anyway for me this is true. Then when your hear spanish spoken you have the vocabulary to put the conversation together. I also carry a little black book with me all the time. If I hear something new ,I put it into my book and there is my homework. I just wanted to share this with all.
Vocabulary really seems to sink in for me when I hear the same new word from two different sources.
For example, I read a short article that used the word "choza", or hut. Then I watched Avatar (the movie) with the Spanish soundtrack, and he used that word, and I recognized it. Avatar also uses "vínculo" a lot (link, or bond). Then yesterday I was listening to News in Slow Spanish and they used "vínculo" also.
I'm much more likely to remember chozo and vínculo now that they have been reinforced from multiple sources. So in addition to practicing and studying vocabulary, to me it is essential to continuously read and listen to Spanish. Studying is essential, and after that reading/listening really seems to drive it all home.
Cyndee, I agree!
Like Robertico says: The more words you know the easier it is to follow a conversation, listen to the radio, or watch TV.
I have hundreds of index cards and keep 25 near my bed to study each week.
...and the more words you are able to identify during a conversation, the more clues you have to what's being said. You don't have to understand every single word to carry on a conversation.
I carry index cards with me, and I am always adding words to them to study.