According to Forbes, there are now over 3 billion of us whizzing our way around the world wide web.
That’s compared to just under 400,000 in 2000. Quite a leap, right?
Apparently, a high percentage of this amount comes down to use of sites like Netflix and social media. That isn’t any big surprise.
However, it also very possibly has something to do with our switch from more traditional methods of learning (languages included) to a whole other world of learning opportunities via the world wide web.
Cue our list of the top websites to get you excited about learning Spanish.
Are you into reading about the latest celebrity gossip? Do you love following sports religiously? Or are you just after some reliable and inspirational websites to nail those verbs, tenses and vocabulary?
No matter what you’re into, there’s something out there for your interests.
10 Best Nontraditional Websites to Learn Spanish Online
This list covers a wide variety of topics, so we’ve broken things down into thematic categories. Scroll down to the section that’s perfect for you, or sample websites from all across the board!
Pop Culture & News Websites
We all like to enjoy a bit of online procrastination and soak up some pop culture from time to time. Many of us are news junkies, and can’t stop reading about the latest breaking news.
However, are you starting to feel like your time could be used more efficiently? Do you spend too many hours scrolling through mindless celebrity goings-on, fashion trends or political campaign rumors? Then, to put it simply—don’t stop!
Yes, you can rest assured that you’re using your time effectively on these types of websites, but the only proviso is that you’re visiting Spanish language sites.
Start heading over to the following Spanish websites if you want to know what celebs have for breakfast, follow the latest trends or if you’re just interested in reading something fun or different.
People en Espanol
A popular online (and printed) magazine in the United States, People magazine also exists in Spanish.
Next time you’re getting your fill of celebrity news and entertainment, you could also be scrubbing up on your grammar and vocabulary. Take, for example, the following excerpt from this recent article. It helpfully makes good use of pronouns, different tenses and vocabulary:
“Molly Sims y su esposo Scott Stuber presentaron el jueves a su hija Scarlett May Stuber, a la que la modelo dio a luz un día antes. ‘Le damos la bienvenida a nuestra familia a Scarlett’, escribió Sims junto a una foto de la pequeña en su página web. ‘Nuestros corazones se hacen más grandes contigo aquí’.”
Telemundo is a video-based website, so if you’re an aural learner then this website is definitely the one for you, with its YouTube-style video clips, reality TV shows, news and telenovelas.
Moreover, if you’ve got a specific interest in areas such as politics or the economy then clips like this one will certainly widen your vocabulary and provide you with useful words and phrases.
This website shares interesting news, features, sports updates and even tells you your horoscope in Spanish so there’s no doubt your Spanish will be exercised endlessly.
What might help is to focus on a particular section that piques your interest. You may also want to choose a topic for which you don’t know much Spanish vocabulary. For example, you could hone in on one of the following areas:
Household items and features
Family and lifestyle
Specific Learning Websites
There comes a time when we have to get down to hardcore Spanish studying—but that time doesn’t have to be now. Luckily, there are some incredible websites out there that make learning less of a chore and more of an exciting challenge. Not to mention, reading authentic material can be extremely rewarding.
Sites like the following are worth a look:
Duolingo really simplifies the art of learning Spanish. You can either take a quick placement test or start Spanish lessons from square one. In the latter care, it’ll have you starting at a level that might seem very simple, but stick with it. You’ll soon find yourself building a good foundation for your Spanish before moving on to more complex teachings and exercises.
Duolingo also allows you to interact and share resources with other users, which can be a really great boost when you’re lacking the motivation or enthusiasm to learn.
Let’s not pretend that the animal icons and sound effects on this website don’t also make it very appealing. It’s just plain fun!
If you’re reading this blog, then you’re obviously aware of FluentU’s existence. In case you haven’t ventured further than the blog, then there some awesome language learning features that you should really know about. Sure, the blog’s got a handle on all the best tips, advice, resources and learning strategies out there today.
But the FluentU language learning program is uniquely effective for learning Spanish on a daily basis.
Other sites use scripted content. FluentU uses a natural approach that helps you ease into the Spanish language and culture over time. You’ll learn Spanish as it’s actually spoken by real people.
FluentU has a wide variety of videos topics, as you can see here:
FluentU brings native videos within reach with interactive transcripts. You can tap on any word to look it up instantly. Every definition has examples that have been written to help you understand how the word is used.
Plus, if you see an interesting word you don’t know, you can add it to a vocab list.
Review a complete interactive transcript under the Dialogue tab, and find words and phrases listed under Vocab.
Learn all the vocabulary in any video with FluentU’s robust learning engine. Swipe left or right to see more examples of the word you’re on.
The best part is that FluentU keeps track of the vocabulary that you’re learning, and gives you extra practice with difficult words. It'll even remind you when it’s time to review what you’ve learned. Every learner has a truly personalized experience, even if they’re studying with the same video.
Coffee Break Spanish
What’s really enticing about this website is the invitation to sit down with a coffee as you learn Spanish. The website’s easy-to-follow sessions also add to its appeal and are well worth checking out.
Some of the resources on the website are free (the two minute challenges are particularly fun if you’re looking for something quick and easy to test yourself).
Truth be told, if you’re looking to properly immerse yourself in Spanish with this site you’ll at least need the low cost subscription. The nice part is that you can test a lot of the resources before fully committing.
Fluencia, a website and app created by the SpanishDict team, is one of the prettier sites out there, with its dreamy photos of far-flung Spanish-speaking countries in the background.
More importantly, it guides you seamlessly through an expansive amount of learning, beginning with a quiz to start you off at the right level. From there, it’ll have you focusing on specific areas that you’re interested in or need help with.
There’s a monthly subscription fee once you reach a certain level, but the site’s simplicity, quality and encouraging messages seem to make it worthwhile.
Sports & Music Websites
What can be better than combining your favorite pastime with learning Spanish?
This is surely an exciting prospect for some Spanish learners who are dedicated sports fans and audiophiles. Even if you’re not quite a sports or music lover, there will still inevitably be resources and materials out there that you can use to improve your Spanish.
The following websites provide great examples of what you should be looking to get out of a Spanish website:
A well-known sports channel worldwide, ESPN provides an excellent sounding board for words and phrases that aren’t only relevant to sports but also to everyday situations. Take, for instance, this choice article, which could be particularly helpful for fine-tuning your future tense.
The website’s fantastic blog section is also a great resource for learning how to express your opinions in Spanish.
The sports section of Telemundo is full of opportunities to improve vocabulary and fine-tune listening skills. And, who knows, if you make visiting its pages a daily ritual then you could someday be translating for a legendary footballer at the next World Cup! Well, we can dream, can’t we?
This is a great website if you like the idea of switching on some Spanish tunes when you’re washing the dishes or getting ready to go out. It’s always a good idea to have a bit of Spanish music ready to play in the background.
It’s surprising how much you pick up when you make learning Spanish part of your daily activities. The nice part of this website is that you can choose your preferred type of music, be it salsa, rock, pop, reggae or jazz. Needless to say, you should tune into music you actually like!
Enjoy these websites, and start making Spanish learning something fun and relevant.
Until next time!
If you liked this post, something tells me that you'll love FluentU, the best way to learn Spanish with real-world videos.