“Those who know nothing of foreign languages know nothing of their own.” ‒Johann Wolfgang von Goethe
If you Learn Spanish (or any foreign language) you will find it is also an excellent way to improve your comprehension of English. You see, when you learn a foreign language, you have to dissect it into lots of specific (and sometimes complicated) parts. Speaking English is natural because you grew up speaking and writing it, so you never really had to dissect it. Once you start looking more closely at Spanish, you’ll realize a lot about English.
Once you learn about Spanish pronunciation, you will figure out that English pronunciation often makes no sense. All the vowels have 2 different sounds, letter combinations change pronunciations depending on the word, and words that are spelled exactly the same have different pronunciations. For example – “I read the book.” Wait- past or present? Without hearing the word “read” or knowing the context – who can tell?! Spanish pronunciation is much more straight forward.
A lot of people complain about how many verb tenses Spanish has. The truth is, English has almost as many, you have just never put a name on them. You use them without even thinking twice. Look at this sentence:
I would have gone to the store that day if I had had enough money, but because I always wanted new clothes when I was young. I didn’t have money and I didn’t buy anything.
So many different tenses! Other than just basic “past tense,” can you name any of these tenses? Probably not. However, if I put in Spanish, I bet advanced Spanish students could identify a few:
Hubiese ido a la tienda ese día si hubiera tenido suficiente dinero, porque yo siempre quería ropa nueva cuando era joven. No tenía dinero y no compré nada.
Parts of Speech
When you study Spanish, all those schoolhouse rock songs like “conjunction junction” and “Lolly, lolly, lolly get your Adverbs here” seem relevant again. When you speak English, you toss in conjunctions, adverbs, adjectives, and prepositions without a second thought. When you learn Spanish, you’ll have to learn the proper words to use for all those parts of speech, which makes you much more aware of them in your native language.
Check out these other articles about How to Speak Spanish.