Beginners Spanish 1
If you’ve got an idea of the very basics of Spanish, this course is for you. Join Rob and Lis in these communication focused podcasts, and learn useful Spanish phrases and expressions for a range of every day scenarios.
If you are a complete beginner, you may find it more useful to start with our Spanish from scratch series.
Completing this course will help you...
What do I get?
Downloadable PDF notes
Downloadable PDF notes
Beginners 1: The weather
Welcome to our first episode, all about the weather! Here’s what you’ll learn:
- Questions to ask people when you first meet them
- How to ask about the weather
- How to tell people that it’s hot, cold, raining, or sunny
Beginners 2: Resolutions
We’ve just reached another new year, and another opportunity to make and break new years resolutions! We run through the most popular resolutions, and tell you our own new years resolutions. Here’s what you’ll learn:
- Do they have new years resolutions in Colombia?
- The top 10 most popular resolutions, and how to say them in Spanish
- How to say your own resolutions, in Spanish
Beginners 3: Transport
Learn about different types of transport in Spanish, including a few methods which are unique to Colombia! You’ll learn:
- Different methods of transport
- The cardinal numbers (first, second, third, etc)
- The “masculine problem” (you’ll see what we mean)
- Problems of transport
Beginners 4: Illnesses
Rob and Liz are enfermos (ill)! They talk (moan) about their illnesses, and what they’re going to do about it. In episode 4 you’ll learn:
- Different ways of saying “I have a cold”
- How to say you have a head ache, stomach ache, back ache, or anything-ache!
- How to cure your cold with vitamins, hot drinks, and staying at home (no secret there…)
Beginners 5: Love phrases
Podcast número cinco (not four, as I say in the podcast…) is all about el día de San Valentin, where love is in the air and you learn all about Romantic Spanish. Learn phrases and terms for referring to your significant other, some love idioms, and more. You’ll also learn all about the South American tradition of El día de amor y amistad.
Beginners 6: Moving House
Our recent mudanza to sunny Barnes, London. We talk about the problems we faced, and how we did it.
Beginners 7: Families
Lis and Rob talk about their families. We soon find out that Lis has an enormous family, with over thirty cousins! ¿Cuántos primos tienes tu?
Beginners 8: Sports
How to talk about sports in Spanish: Sports vocabulary, key phrases and conversation. Do you play any sports? What do you think the most popular sports in Colombia are?
Beginners 9: Going out
Talk about going out on the town with your friends – from “juergas” to “citas a ciegas”!
Beginners 10: Feelings and emotions
Learn how to express your inner self, whether good or bad. We also introduce to the verb sentirse – to feel. This is a reflexive verb, so needs a little extra attention when we conjugate it. Also, learn about how using poner and dar can be used in a cool way to describe your emotions!
Beginners 11: Money
Learn vocabulary related to money – how to ask about prices, how to actually say prices (numbers do come in handy!), as well as a few other money related phrases!
Beginners 12: Arguments
Useful phrases for some of the most intense “conversations” you can have: arguments! Tempers may be running high, so it’s always good to have a stock of phrases that you can fall back in should you ever be unfortunate enough to have an argument with a Latino/a or Spaniard!
Beginners 13: Habits and Customs
Using “adverbs of frequency” to talk about how often you do things, how to ask “how often”, and using the incredibly useful verb soler.
Beginners 14: Telling the time
Learn how to tell the time in Spanish, along with other time related phrases.
Beginners 15: Arranging to meet
Building on our previous podcast about how to tell the time, we now give you a few ways that you can arrange to meet with someone. We also take a quick look at the conditional.
Beginners 16: Are you a morning or evening person?
One thing that we’ve noticed since living together is how different we feel about mornings and evenings. Liz is a morning person, and Rob is definitely not…
Beginners 17: Social Networks
Learn the latest Spanish vocabulary around social networks, and communication in the digital age:
- How social networks are changing Spanish (as well as English)
- How to say “update”, “upload”, “download”, “tag”, and other important “digital verbs”
- What is “a like” in Spanish?
Beginners 18: At the doctors
Learn the vocabulary and phrases you’ll need should you ever have to pay a visit to the doctor or pharmacy. You’ll learn how to:
- Ask for a doctor’s appointment
- Describe different types of pain, and how you feel
- Understand common medical procedures
Beginners 19: How to complain
Learn the subtle art of complaining in Spanish:
- Say when something doesn’t work, is broken, or doesn’t function properly
- Use no creo que and hasta que to complain
- Talk about how long you have been waiting
Beginners 20: Driving
Learn important vocabulary and phrases for when you are out and about on the roads in Spain and Latin America. Here’s a taste of what you’ll learn:
- Some rules of the road in Spanish
- Driving verbs, such as “back up”, “pull over”, and “give way”
- All of the types of road and weird road signs you’ll see!
Beginners 21: Dealing with the authorities
Rob and Lis both tell a story about their experiences of dealing with the authorities, in Spain and Colombia. This lesson is focused on comprehension, so be sure to follow along with the transcript if you struggle.
Beginners 22: Spanish proverbs
We explore 6 common and useful Spanish proverbs that you can start using in your conversations right away.
Beginners 23: Asking for favours
Learn different ways and structures that you can ask for favours in Spanish:
- “Lending” vs “borrowing” in Spanish, and why Spanish speakers struggle to understand the difference
- Different ways of asking for a lift, and asking to be dropped off
- Using esperar que and the subjunctive
Beginners 24: Making excuses
Specific language you can use for when you need to make an excuse in Spanish:
- Es que, resulta que, and other ways of “introducing” your excuse
- Phrases using excusas
- Using the past conditional: habría terminado, pero…
Beginners 25: How to pay a compliment
We cover some useful and authentic ways of paying someone a compliment in Spanish
- Using ser and estar when describing someone
- The verbs quedar and verse, meaning “to look”
- ¡Qué bonita estás! structured phrases
Beginners 26: Some pronunciation tips
Learn some of the tell-tale signs of a learner accent:
- Spanish pure vowels
- Soft “d” and “t” sounds
- Using the English “schwa” sound
Beginners 27: Problem solving
Learn useful verbs and constructions to help solve problems:
- Verbs including arreglar, solucionar, and more
- Lo que se puede hacer para… type phrases
- Use the subjunctive with necesitar que – “I need you to…”
Beginners 28: Conversation strategies
Learn all about those little phrases and words which Spanish speakers use to:
- Keep the conversation going
- Show their understanding
- Interrupt people and groups
- Excuse themselves from a conversation
Beginners 29: How to tell a story
All about those little things people say to bring a story to life and help it flow:
- How to start a story
- Sequencing and linking words and phrases
- Introduce new elements to a story
- How to finish a story
Beginners 30: How to tell a joke
Learn a few jokes, guaranteed to make your audience groan:
- Puns, and juegos de palabras
- Chistes con doble sentido
- ¿Qué dijo un… al otro?
- Joke vocabulary
Beginners 31: Using the verb “llevar”
Learn how to use the useful verb “llevar”, literally translated as “to carry”, with time expressions:
“I’ve been doing it for…”
“How long have you been…”
Beginners 32: “Aconsejar” and “no sé si…”
Learn how to give advice in Spanish, using the verb aconsejar, as well as a nifty phrase: no sé si…
Beginners 33: Uses of tener
Learn about the common verb “tener”, and using it in a few different ways to make your Spanish sound more natural.
Beginners 34: Dedicar and dedicarse
How to use the verb dedicar and dedicarse
Beginners 35: Reverse Construction Verbs
A few nifty hacks to improve your use of verbs like gustar, encantar, and other “reverse” construction verbs.