Friday, June 21, 2013

Make the most of your immersion experience in Salamanca!

There are many opportunities open to you on a daily basis now that you are in Salamanca, to improve your Spanish Language skills. Take as much advantage as you can in your new country by putting yourself in situations where you have to speak the language. Instead of reverting to your native tongue, practice with your fellow students after class. You may stumble across the words but this is part of the journey to improvement!
Stop off at a fruit stall and have a conversation with the seller on the produce for sale or go to the grocery store, where you have to read labels and talk to cashiers. Think of as many public situations as you can that will compel you to interact with locals so that you can practice speaking to help expand your vocabulary. It may seem intimidating or frustrating at first but the more you practice the better you will get.
Keep a small notebook handy to make notes of new words or frequently used phrases. Use it as a reference guide. Eventually you would keep referring to it less and less.
Label up! Using some brightly colored Post It Notes, walk around your apartment or your room and label the things you use or see. Constantly seeing the labels in Spanish will help to imprint the names of these objects in your memory.
Keep a record of your daily activities by writing in Spanish what you’ve done or experienced and how it made you feel. This will help improve your writing skills and expand your vocabulary.
There are plenty of different ways to maximize your language learning skills while studying abroad but the most important thing to remember, however, is to step out of your comfort zone. Language learning necessitates making mistakes constantly, but this is all a part of the journey to improvement. If you have any tips that have worked for you and you would like to share with the other students feel free to leave a note in the comment section. Buena suerte!
Debra, Student in Tia Tula

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