But alas, that is exactly what I did. To boot, I also didn´t consume sustenance beyond a couple of late night cups of coffee here in the small library that I now attend on the regular.
News In Slow Spanish
This learning site impressed me and today reminded me of exactly why I had originally subscribed to it. Given that I self identify as an A2 level Spanish learner targeting B1, it provides material appropriate for my stage. What do I think it does well?
- Offers fast and slow speech that both sound very good and natural.
- Offers a news blurb directly followed by natural and native conversation between a man and a woman
- Provides an all Spanish grammar lesson illustrating a theme much like you might find by typing something into linguee.
- Provides one weekly episode, each replete with a whole all Spanish discussion section on one particular expression (idiom for example)
- Has over 400 episodes available
- Offers shortcuts, download, and print to PDF options for offline work
- Offers a pronunciación section where you can practice your speech with a few sentences spoken by the narrators and check to see how closely it matches. Done well in that it only takes a minute and if you have doubts you can here just how you sound. First time I have seen this done well.
- Weekly episodes take some time to listen to but are typically broken into short bursts that are less than ten minutes each. This definitley has a language learner in mind and recognizes that most people are not going to be able to hard focus for long stretches at first.
Some negatives include that it offers Spanish from Spain and Latin America, but makes you pick one and stay with it. That is typical however, and I can understand why they charge separately. Their subscription rates offer many possibilities but they are all a bit higher than I would have expected. I suspect they factor in the notion that one can get a one month sub and download content (within their rules). I know I would be better off paying one month at a time since I seem to use it in spurts. Another negative is built into its very foundations in that they only offer news stories mostly following current events. Tends to be too political for my taste and the subject of deportes (sports) often does not proffer enough learning challenge and also seems to crop up often. At the same time though, I hardly fault them, since their website name makes it abundantly clear what is offered and you probably should not embark on that site if you aren´t cool with immersing in news.
I am clearly biased in favor of the site, but I can see it as a positive stepping stone on multiple levels (it looks like they also have an advanced section that I haven´t looked since I am not ready for it). The narrators offer pleasant personalities and voices for the listening.