Visiting a foreign country is best enjoyed when we can communicate with the locals. Not only does this allow us to express basic needs and wants, it’s the gateway to understanding a culture and a country. Even if we can’t summon the energy to learn Spanish, a few basic sentences are key in order to get by.
In the second of two pieces looking at writing letters in a more formal style we look at writing in Spanish. Writing in formal language is an important skill whether you’re dealing with a government bureaucracy or if making a request at work. Diana Mejía helps you through each step of writing a letter in Spanish.
There are so many regional differences when speaking the Spanish language that at times even native speakers get confused. Diana Mejía explains how the variations evolved and what to look out for.
Diana Mejía looks at some of los problemas you might have, and lays out some of the basic rules to identify and correctly use grammatical gender in Spanish.
Tildes confuse a fair few Colombians, so it’s no wonder that learners often have a lot of trouble with these little marks. Diana Mejía explains how you can learn to love these insouciant little flicks above vowels.
Take some time to let Katie Jacoby give you a quick run-down on how to express the two extremes of time, afán and demora, in Colombian Spanish.
Los dichos y refranes, Spanish proverb and sayings, are an integral part of a regional culture and identity. Mastering them can be particularly helpful, as a single line can convey thousands of years of oral history, and with it, an incredible amount of information.
'Trabalenguas', as the name implies, will get your tongue stuck trying to figure out their pronunciation. Tangle and torment your tongue with Diana Mejía’s tongue twisters.
Diana Mejía tells us how to transform words into a smaller, cuter and perhaps even less offensive versions of themselves using diminutives, or make them big and violent through augmentatives.
Katie Jacoby presents some of her favourite words in Spanish. Some because they’re beautiful, others because they’re fun to say, others because she likes how they’re used or their meaning, others because she gets a kick out of their translation, and others still because they just have a je ne sais quoi about them.