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    I love Spanish.
    I'm just so linguistically frustrated that I can't seem to get my head around the tenses and just speak, so I guess what I'm asking is what techniques are you using? How much do you speak and what do you listen to?

    Help me!!!!!

    POR FAVORRRRRR
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    (Original post by CloudsAndRibbons)
    I love Spanish.
    I'm just so linguistically frustrated that I can't seem to get my head around the tenses and just speak, so I guess what I'm asking is what techniques are you using? How much do you speak and what do you listen to?

    Help me!!!!!

    POR FAVORRRRRR
    I'm sure there are many people on this forum who, like me, would like to try and help you! Can you please tell us what level you're at, and which tenses you're struggling with? It does make a difference to the advice we can give you.
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    You know what? Forget the grammar and concentrate on reading/listening/speaking, whatever you actually enjoy about the language. The grammar will follow along behind without your even noticing it.
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    Welcome Squad
    (Original post by CloudsAndRibbons)
    I love Spanish.
    I'm just so linguistically frustrated that I can't seem to get my head around the tenses and just speak, so I guess what I'm asking is what techniques are you using? How much do you speak and what do you listen to?

    Help me!!!!!

    POR FAVORRRRRR
    This will definitely help you.
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    (Original post by Anna Schoon)
    I'm sure there are many people on this forum who, like me, would like to try and help you! Can you please tell us what level you're at, and which tenses you're struggling with? It does make a difference to the advice we can give you.
    I'm doing AS Spanish and I am my exam board is Edexcel, it's not so much knowing the tenses as it is remembering the endings and using them when I speak
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    (Original post by CloudsAndRibbons)
    I'm doing AS Spanish and I am my exam board is Edexcel, it's not so much knowing the tenses as it is remembering the endings and using them when I speak
    What you're struggling with is actually really hard - that "instant recall" of all that information.

    I'm afraid the only answer to it is also hard - practice, practice and more practice. You need to be 100% familiarised with the conjugations in writing (where you have more time to think about them) before you are likely to get them mostly right when you speak.

    It's well worth the effort, though, because you'll find that you start communicating more efficiently and more fluently almost immediately.

    So the question is: how best to get on top of these pesky conjugations? I should imagine that you can probably do them "in order" - i.e. if you have a verb like "ser" you rattle off: fui,fuiste, fue, fuimos, fuisteis, fueron . If you can't, make sure you can by learning all your verbs by rote. If you can, the next thing is to get at "fuimos" directly without having to rattle through the list - you'll save a lot of time. You can set yourself daily verb practices by choosing a handful of verbs and then, for each, and for different tenses, just write one person. For example:
    Ser: yo - perfect
    Estar: tú - imperfect
    Poder: él - preterite
    and so on.
    This is a totally mechanical practice but it is really what is needed here: a bit like riding a bicycle or learning to swim! This is what I do with my classes and it works really well. I don't know what your teacher is like and how receptive he/she is to suggestions, but I know other teachers who have recently adopted this mechanical method and they are astonished at the results. A friend of mine has just told me that over the Christmas holidays one of her pupils has gone from failing AS to now having a good chance of a good pass, just because she got on top of her verbs over the holidays with me. Admittedly this was for French, but it is no different for Spanish - or any other language, for that matter.

    And please don't believe the posters above who tell you that "the grammar will follow without you noticing" - in my 30-odd years' experience of teaching languages, that is simply not the case!
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    (Original post by Anna Schoon)
    And please don't believe the posters above who tell you that "the grammar will follow without you noticing" - in my 30-odd years' experience of teaching languages, that is simply not the case!
    I was crap at grammar at school, or at least fairly mediocre and uninterested. I then went and lived in Chile for a year, and my Spanish level shot up to something beginning to approach fluency. I still can't explain most of the grammar I know, or understand it particularly, but I can use it just fine, same as I can in English.

    Not saying your method isn't good, it probably is, but it isn't the only method.
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    (Original post by superwolf)
    I was crap at grammar at school, or at least fairly mediocre and uninterested. I then went and lived in Chile for a year, and my Spanish level shot up to something beginning to approach fluency. I still can't explain most of the grammar I know, or understand it particularly, but I can use it just fine, same as I can in English.

    Not saying your method isn't good, it probably is, but it isn't the only method.
    I don't think the OP has the luxury of time to go and spend a year in Chile or any other Spanish-speaking country...

    Of course my method for learning verbs is not the only method; I never suggested that. But it is a tried and tested method which can result in tremendous progress relatively quickly and at minimum expense.
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    (Original post by Anna Schoon)
    I don't think the OP has the luxury of time to go and spend a year in Chile or any other Spanish-speaking country...

    Of course my method for learning verbs is not the only method; I never suggested that. But it is a tried and tested method which can result in tremendous progress relatively quickly and at minimum expense.
    :dontknow: OP didn't give much information. She also haven't said whether she's learning Spanish purely for fun, or whether good grades are her priority. If she's mostly learning it for the love of it, then I still say that following her heart so to speak and doing what she enjoys, whether it be speaking to people, reading or whatever, will result in progress, and without her love of the subject drying up, which is a risk when you concentrate too much on an aspect of the language you don't especially enjoy. Of course concentrating on the grammar will bear results, but so will other methods - it's all down to OP's motives, learning style and generally how she wants to learn the language.
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    (Original post by superwolf)
    :dontknow: OP didn't give much information. She also haven't said whether she's learning Spanish purely for fun, or whether good grades are her priority. If she's mostly learning it for the love of it, then I still say that following her heart so to speak and doing what she enjoys, whether it be speaking to people, reading or whatever, will result in progress, and without her love of the subject drying up, which is a risk when you concentrate too much on an aspect of the language you don't especially enjoy. Of course concentrating on the grammar will bear results, but so will other methods - it's all down to OP's motives, learning style and generally how she wants to learn the language.

    She is actually a scientist, she guesses that her decision to continue with Spanish to AS was based solely on her love for the language but she would also loveeeeeee to get a more-than-decent grade and continue to speak Spanish at university and beyond.
    She'd say that compared to her other Science and Maths ASs, Spanish is the most tasking because it requires her to think and work in a different way, not to mention a different language...
    She thanks you both for your brilliant advice which she will definitely be taking on board and is now feeling kind of silly about referring to herself in the third person and should now stop.

    Before she stops however she would like to know what OP stands for
    :rolleyes::p:
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    Memory software like iVocabulary app or Anki to hammer conjugations etc into your brain before you've had time to get bored of them, then speaking/skpying with natives (or even chatting to yourself :p:) so you get used to actually implementing your knowledge. One of the things I find hardest about foreign languages is that sometimes you know something in theory, but it still doesn't come out right when you say it, so make sure you get used to speaking aloud spontaneously.
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    (Original post by CloudsAndRibbons)
    Before she stops however she would like to know what OP stands for
    :rolleyes::p:
    OP: Original Post. You!!!

    (Original post by xmarilynx)
    Memory software like iVocabulary app or Anki to hammer conjugations etc into your brain before you've had time to get bored of them, then speaking/skpying with natives (or even chatting to yourself :p:) so you get used to actually implementing your knowledge. One of the things I find hardest about foreign languages is that sometimes you know something in theory, but it still doesn't come out right when you say it, so make sure you get used to speaking aloud spontaneously.
    Very true. Chatting to yourself in a foreign language is a very good one, I do it all the time!
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    (Original post by Anna Schoon)
    Very true. Chatting to yourself in a foreign language is a very good one, I do it all the time!
    Glad I'm not the only one!
 
 
 
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