665 million are engaged in a daily flurry of friending, liking, tagging, updating statuses and uploading photos.
The billions of likes registered by Facebook every day don’t lie.
The people love Facebook and have welcomed it into their homes, computers, and smartphones.
Are you a devoted follower or a casual clicker?
Do you exhaust your home feed and take to stalking complete strangers?
Regardless of your level of fandom, you’ve unknowingly been sitting on a stick of dynamite that can blast you faster and further ahead in your Spanish learning progress.
Dynamite captures the raw energy of Facebook as a learning tool, but in hindsight that sounds a bit self-destructive.
Rather, imagine Facebook as the internet equivalent of a visiting a laid back lounge-café where you always bump into old friends, overhear bits and pieces of conversations, and meet new people.
With people and conversations all around you, this strangely friendly café could be the perfect environment to become conversational in a foreign language.
Why Learn Spanish with Facebook?
- Minimize your study time stress. Learning Spanish through interacting with friends and looking at photos is a lot less mentally taxing than pounding the books.
- Make Facebook time double as Spanish learning time. Guilty of constantly responding to those chat message pings and red notification flags? Redeem yourself by making it a valuable learning experience.
- Acquire the vocabulary specific to your interests and hobbies. Whatever your interests are, a Spanish speaker has likely made a Facebook fan page or group to discuss and celebrate.
- Keep it fresh. The internet is constantly growing and changing. Information is zipping around the globe at light speed. Every day you will have new, fresh content set before you to keep learning interesting and relevant.
- Facebook’s layout is super easy to navigate. You can set everything to Spanish and still know what’s going on. Be real, you probably could get yourself to your wall blindfolded.
- Absorb Spanish into your mind naturally. Passively learn as you scroll down your home page and casually encounter Spanish words used in context.
- Help out a friend in need. Your Facebook friends will see your likes, group memberships and activities. Maybe you’ll help somebody find a fantastic language learning resource!
- Facebook is worldwide. This makes it easier to interact with people in different countries and learn various accents and idioms.
How to Learn Spanish with Facebook
Unleash the Spanish-pocalypse.
Go to your preferences and change your interface language to Spanish. Soon you’ll be picking up on all kinds of useful Spanish vocabulary! Here are the must-know words and phrases:
Inicio = Home
Comentar = To comment
Compartir = To share
Etiquetar foto = To tag a photo
Me gusta = I like
¿Qué estás pensando? = What’s on your mind?
And just in case you need to bail out and switch back to English:
Get connected with the best companies and educational organizations offering Spanish learning tools.
It may sound creepy that Facebook is totally commercial. On the upside, this means that companies are exposing themselves to the public more than ever. Marketers are trying to reach out to you, the customer, using their Facebook pages. Like pages for companies like Berlitz, Rosetta Stone and Fluenz to get notifications about upcoming language classes, events and discounts and promotions for learning tools. While you’re visiting their page, you go a step further and scroll through their wall posts to see what people are buzzing about. Are there tons of outraged and dissatisfied customers? Or is everyone thanking the company for their help?
There’s an app for that.
Facebook browsing can be enhanced by apps like New Culture Alley and PlaySay, out there striving to build Spanish learning on top of Facebook. Rather than just reading and translating to yourself, these apps challenge you, quiz you, and keep track of imaginary points to give you that hallmark of technology-age generations: instant gratification. Check out to start playing!
“Like” the right pages.
There aren’t just companies out there. Left and right, individuals are uniting to create language learning communities out of sheer passion. Beyond the pages for Spanish students, there are pages founded by native Spanish speakers endorsing political candidates, enjoying Taylor Swift’s new hits, cheering football teams to glory, and making fun of hipsters. Find an interesting Spanish page and click “like!”
Getting the right content on your home page is easy when you know where to look. Here are some great pages for learning Spanish with the ability to teach you, intrigue you, and brighten your day:
The mission statement of this powerhouse language software company is to integrate learning into real life situations. Their programs consistently keep speed with rapidly evolving technology, pumping Spanish into people’s lives with online courses, social media, forums, smartphone apps, blogs and more. What makes this unique is connectivity. It all flows together – you’ll never learn something on your online class and find yourself back at lesson #1 in another application.
That same connectivity extends to Transparent Spanish’s Facebook page. People from all over the world are here swapping language learning battle stories, exchanging learning resources, griping and bellyaching about verb tenses, and laughing about how their accents used to sound. From casual blog posts about fumbling through beginning Spanish to articles reviewing polished learning tools, a great deal of helpful content gets posted here. Transparent Spanish itself takes care of its community of followers by posting daily vocabulary words, grammar lessons, and insightful articles. This place is all about the experience of learning Spanish.
Learn Spanish (A Word a Day)
Silently infiltrate your brain by sneaking it one Spanish vocabulary word per day. The method is as simple as it sounds –a new word gets posted daily and slips into your home news feed. You’ll forget you ever liked the page and then, nestled between your friend’s sister’s birthday pictures and your Aunt Anne’s end-of-the-world conspiracy theories, you’ll spot that day’s Spanish word with the translation, part of speech, and example of usage.
1001 Reasons to Learn Spanish
Despite its enticing nominal promise, the 1001 reasons are nowhere to be found. This page doesn’t always make sense, but it knows what makes people smile. It has proven itself to be an amusing grab-bag of humor, music, random trivia and Spanish lessons.
Today my newsfeed was graced by:
1) A cartoon eggplant dancing the Macarena – eggplant in Spanish is berenjena, which sounds just enough like Macarena to fit the tune.
2) Spanish Charlie Brown (Carlos Marrón?) chatting up his elementary school crush.
3) An explanation of the various uses of the word friolero.
If you’re looking for random bits of Spanish silliness on your feed, this should be your first stop.
Sometimes inspiring, sometimes 50 Shades of Grey, the Spanish-Quotes Facebook page draws its content from a choice assortment of celebrities and celebrated works. In one day you might expect to see Spanish language translations of quotes from Margaret Thatcher, the Big Bang Theory, Frank Zappa and Eminem. This page updates in infrequent spasms, and after a week of absence it will suddenly blast you with 6 posts in a day. However, they’ve been going for a while so feel free to visit the page and scroll through past entries when boredom strikes.
Me encanta el español
Are you a sentimental person? Step on board the nostalgia train! Colorful, details pictures are overlaid with Spanish vocabulary words, blithely cheerful cartoon characters have Spanish conversations in speech bubbles, and verb tenses are set in structured charts. If you ever took language classes in elementary school, the posts on this page will feel eerily familiar. Like, “did I see this page in my 7th grade Spanish activity book?” kind of familiar. It’s actually really adorable, and kids are taught this way for good reason – it works (especially for those visual learners among us)!
And One More Thing…
If you like learning entertaining and memorable Spanish lessons like these, then you’ll love FluentU.
FluentU takes real-world videos like music videos, commercials, news, and inspiring talks and turns them into Spanish learning experiences.
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 like soccer, TV shows, business, movies and even magical realism, 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. If you see an interesting word you don’t know, you can add it to a vocab list.
Learn all the vocabulary in any video with FluentU’s Learn Mode. 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 it recommends you examples and videos based on the words you’ve already learned. Every learner has a truly personalized experience, even if they’re learning the same video.
Start using FluentU for free on the website with your computer or tablet or, better yet, download the FluentU app from the iTunes or Google Play store for iOS and Android devices!
If you liked this post, something tells me that you'll love FluentU, the best way to learn Spanish with real-world videos.