Learning Spanish and Expression

December 15, 2012

A lot of higher level Spanish students have their basic grammar and vocabulary down, but have problems with usual sayings and expressions used by original Spanish speakers.

At the time you read a passage in class, have students underline every expression which has not been trained before.

Many of the not familiar phrases also have verbs that the students do know, however within the expression it will not translate properly. I’m considering sayings such as : “Ponerse las pilas” or “Échale ganas”.

A lot of students are going to understand the verb “poner” and define it as “to put”. This undoubtedly doesn’t help to translate “Pónganse las pilas.”  For every passage which you read in class your students will probably find one or two of these expressions. You can also make a decision which ones you would like them to focus on.

Write the expression on the board and explain to the students exactly what it means, give an example of how it is used and make the class train it. For homework, or class work if in case you have computers, inform them to type the expression into Search engines. Every student will be to find five examples of the expression used by a original speaker in a sentence.

Make your class recognize that perhaps it will not be the first five results on the search. They may have to search a bit to find some great examples of the expression used within a sentence. Inform your students to make note of these five important examples and to write, in English, the idea of exactly what is to be communicated.


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