[Video] Entrevista con Marlon “Señor alemán” Görnert

Hoy nuevamente tengo el gusto de presentar la entrevista a un amigo que realmente se transformó en una charla muy interesante sobre la vida en general y que espero que haya una segunda parte de esta. Quizás esta fue bastante informal, pero creo que le da un gran toque de naturalidad y una sensación de comodidad.

Marlon es alemán y actualmente reside en Estocolmo, Suecia. Sabe alemán, inglés, español (con un perfecto acento porteño), portugués, catalán, francés, sueco e italiano, con un fuerte interés en otros idiomas germánicos y lenguas itálicas, como el sardo. Nos hemos conocido por intereses en común y muchas veces pasamos horas conversando, discutiendo y riéndonos de distintos temas y básicamente, eso queremos plasmar en este video.

Los invito también a seguir a Marlon en su canal de YouTube y su página de Facebook.

 

Taking notes in Chile: a good way to speed up knowledge

It’s been about a month since I went back to University as a student. I haven’t been a regular student since I got my Bachelor’s degree in December 2011, so going back to a study rhythm in which I have to do projects, turn in papers or tasks and take notes (along with working fulltime)… hasn’t been easy (though I won’t deny that… I love being back at University! I like my classes and the environment over there).

Considering that most of my lectures last for more than 120 minutes, it can be tiresome to keep yourself focused and take notes of what my professors are saying. They often talk about so many topics in a short span of time that I don’t know what to write first or by the time I finished a sentence, my professor talks about something unrelated to the first point. In those moments, you have to be an efficient notetaker and luckily, I learned how to use abbreviations and symbols while taking notes.

Around 5th-6th grade my Spanish teacher taught me (and my class) how to be more efficient with note-taking for personal use (that is to say you cannot use them in any kind of formal document, essay, test or exam) through abbreviations. Most of those abbreviations are formed because of Logics, Maths, Science or even… how words sound. They are highly helpful while taking notes in a rush and from there, you can also create your own abbreviations or shortcuts, depending on your interests (for example, since I study humanities, Churches as institution have a small church drawing to save time).

In order to help you to be acquainted with symbols and abbreviations used for note-taking, I’ve made a short list that you can download and use it, in order to practice and take faster notes in Spanish (at least in Chile) or whenever your Chilean friend lends you his/her notes 😉

Download full size version HERE.

Do you use such abbreviations in your native or target language? Do they help you to take notes faster? Share your experience in the comments section!

Lira Popular or learning languages and cultures through poetry and art

pring

As someone who believes that history, culture, society go quite along with language and language learning, it is interesting to always be in the lookout for things people might not know and that might be interesting, not only to other learners, but natives as well.

Up until the 19th century, Chile was probably one of the most underdeveloped regions of the Spanish Empire. This meant that certain things were more relaxed, there were other influences that in other regions weren’t as strong or that news took their time to spread over there. Also, there was a high number of people who couldn’t read or write and access to education or high culture was limited. In fact, the first printing machine arrived to Santiago around the early 19th century. Before, most books were shipped from Spain, Peru (since it was the wealthiest and most important region of the Spanish Empire in South America), the US, the UK or France (carried by the elite who got their education or there or sold by pirates).

After its independence, Chile quickly caught up and print machines became more known. Still, there was a high number of illiterate people who couldn’t read or write. Their source of education was mostly informal: they would watch religious images in Church, they would watch religious plays during certain holidays or inform themselves of what happened in their country and the world by hearing people reading newspapers or so. One of the most popular sources of information for them was the Lira Popular: a simple newspaper that carried certain illustrations done in woodcarving and sensationalist news written in poem format. They were somehow like the tabloids of our time: supernatural news, crime news, religious celebrations or national holidays were their main topics. This style of making and printing news were inspired by Italy, Spain, Portugal or Brazil where they are known as “Cordel literature”.

This genre of poetry/art/journalism became popular in Chile by the last decades of the 19th century. The news followed a certain metric and rhyme that reminded people of Chilean folk music, they were easy to read and were often followed by illustrations. These newspapers were done by people who lived around the most rural/working class neighborhoods of Santiago and Valparaiso. This style of journalism waned by 1920, as people were starting to have more access to elementary education. From 2010, there has been great interest by scholars and the local academic community of preserving what’s left of Lira popular and many people have tried to retake the habit of woodcarving and use it for art or souvenirs, or for scholars, to analyze how the society saw things or what the perception was about women (since many of the verses talk about gender violence), religion, the Army, among other topics. Since 2013, the UNESCO recognized this genre as cultural heritage of Latin America and the Caribbean.

Personally, I think it is a wonderful opportunity to be exposed to these things as they can teach us more about language, culture or even art techniques that people thought they were lost, but they are aesthetically so pleasant. It is a great opportunity for people interested in history, sociology, gender studies, literature or visual arts to come together and compare their analyses regarding one thing. Curiously, I have a particular piece of news that I like, which is about protest regarding the price hike of tram tickets in Santiago, and inviting people to boycott the company. Considering the time it was written, it reminded me of Anarchism and how their thoughts lead, somehow, to creating tango music out of it. You can see how their rhymes work and the use of Bello’s spelling reform, which was widely used in Chile during that time.

You can read more about Lira Popular and check full files about it in these sites (in Spanish): Memoria Chilena, Archivo Bello from the University of Chile.
Do you know similar experiences to Lira Popular in the cultures you are interested? What did you think about it? Do you like reading about history of your target language through alternative sources? Please, let me know in the comments!

El voseo en Chile y porqué no es “mal castellano”

Post originalmente publicado acá. Traducido por el autor.

Debido a varias peticiones, he decidido traducir mi artículo sobre el voseo en Chile, que llama mucho la atención a quiénes aprenden el castellano como también hablantes nativos interesados en Chile.

Muchos de ustedes ya conocen que para la segunda persona singular, el castellano hace la distinción entre la variante formal e informal: usted y tú (nótese que sólo usted lleva mayúscula al inicio cuando es abreviado, es decir Ud. y el resto con minúscula). Sin embargo, muchos variantes y dialectos utilizan el voseo parcialmente o completamente reemplazando a tú. Las dos grandes regiones que han reemplazado al tú por el voseo en casi todas las ocasiones (sino completamente) son la del Río de la Plata (Argentina, Uruguay y Paraguay) y América Central (Guatemala, Nicaragua, Costa Rica, El Salvador y Honduras). Sin embargo, hay también zonas en donde el voseo convive con el tú debido a diferentes razones. Una de ellas es mi país de origen, Chile.

Pese a que gran parte de la comunicación escrita en Chile utiliza tú (con la excepción de la publicidad apuntada a jóvenes, y solamente hace unos años), mucha gente utiliza oralmente el voseo en casa, con amigos o en muchas interacciones informales. Ya que tú y vos viven juntos, muchas de las conjugaciones también son diferentes a las otras regiones voseantes. No obstante, la conjugación el voseo chileno llega a ser intuitiva y con una lógica fácil de seguir.

La típica conjugación regular es de la siguiente manera:

Voseo 4

Ya que el castellano es una lengua que evita utilizar pronombres personales salvo para énfasis, mucha gente no utiliza la palabra vos. Además, ya que el castellano chileno hace gran uso de las aspiraciones de la s, los verbos en voseo están escritos de diferentes maneras. Y aquí viene la parte triste:

Por muchos años, la sociedad chilena ha tenido una autopercepción negativa de cómo hablan. Muchos lingüistas le han echado la culpa a las políticas educacionales del siglo XIX ya que sostenían que la lengua debía estar estandarizada para crear una identidad nacional única y homogénea (ya que se debía construir un estado-nación). Esto creó una mirada negativa sobre lo que ya existía lingüísticamente: palabras provenientes de las lenguas indígenas, el desarrollo del voseo, aspiraciones y otras características. Pese a que ellas se han mantenido en el tiempo y la gente las utiliza en casa o con amigos, en situaciones públicas o con figuras de autoridad cerca, se cambiaba de inmediato a un registro más estándar. Todo esto fue la percepción hegemónica y fue reforzada en los 70 y 80 (cuando miro programas de televisión chilenos de aquel entonces, siento que la manera de hablar suena “poco natural”). Desde los 90, ha comenzado un lenta, pero constante toma de conciencia sobre el castellano chileno, con una mirada positiva y usándolo en medios de comunicación y en la mayoría de contextos, pero usándolo bien. Gran parte de la publicidad para jóvenes utiliza el voseo y su uso oral (en televisión y radio) es muy común. Lamentablemente, todavía no ha sido estandarizado en escrito debido a esa percepción negativa, pero estoy seguro y espero presenciar que el voseo sea completamente aceptado y estandarizado en su variante escrita.

Las reglas del voseo chileno se pueden resumir en 3 puntos:

Voseo 5

Como ya he dicho, debido a una percepción negativa y el poco uso de los pronombres personales, la gente en Chile evita usar vos, salvo en ciertos contextos, como al estar enojado con alguien o mientras uno bromea con amigos. Tanto el tono como el contexto pueden informarte sobre esto. Para evitar decir vos, mucha gente reemplaza el pronombre vos por tú. Así, mucha gente diría (tú) tenís, (tú) sentís y no (vos) tenís ni (vos) sentís al utilizar voseo, para evitar ofender a alguien.

Para ya terminar esto, les adjunto un dato curioso sobre el voseo. Debido a todo lo anterior, ¿qué opinarían si les digo que el verbo ser puede tener hasta 5 formas de decirlo en la segunda persona singular informal? ¡Probablemente es uno de los pocos verbos que tiene 3 conjugaciones y que al combinarlas te dan 5 formas! En la imagen a continuación, verán cómo se conjuga y usa, desde la manera más estándar al inicio y la manera que quizás quieras evitar en la mayoría de contextos al final.

Voseo

Como diría el lingüista chileno Darío Rojas: “Hablar bien consiste en ser ubicado”.

¿Cuáles son sus percepciones del voseo? ¿Han experimentado percepciones negativas de algunas palabras o variantes en su proceso de aprendizaje de idiomas? ¡Compartan sus impresiones en los comentarios!

Y si les interesa aprender más sobre el castellano, pueden contactarme en italki.

Voseo in Chile and why it isn’t “Wrong Spanish”

As you may have seen, once a month there will be a post about Spanish language and certain pecularities that might call the attention of learners and potential ones. This time I’ll get quite personal and devote this post to my own local variety and one of its more evident features: voseo.

Sure, you might have learned that for the second person singular, Spanish makes the distinction between formal and informal register: Usted and tú (note: only Usted has capital letters). However, several dialects also have voseo partially or completely replacing tú. The two biggest regions that have replaced it in most circumstances and even use it in mainstream advertising are the River Plate one (Argentina, Uruguay, Paraguay) and Central America (Guatemala, Nicaragua, Costa Rica and Honduras). However, there are other regions in which voseo lives along with tú due to different reasons. One of them is my country, Chile.

Despite the fact that most written things are done in tú (with the exception of advertisement targeted to younger audiences, and only recently), most people will use voseo at home, with friends or in several informal settings. Also, due that tú and vos live along, even the conjugations are different to the other voseo regions. However, the conjugation becomes quite intuitive and follows a certain logic that is easy to grasp.

The typical, regular conjugations will be, then:

Voseo (2)

Since Spanish is a pro-drop language, most people would avoid saying pronouns as much as they can. Also, Chilean Spanish is well known for aspiration of most s’s, thus you may see voseo written in many ways. And now, here comes the sad part:

For a long time, Chilean society had had a negative perception of its own variety. Many linguists and academics have blamed 19th century educational policies for this, which held that language had to be standarized at any cost, in order to create a single, national and homogenous identity (since a nation-state had to be constructed). This created a negative perception of what used to be there linguistically: loan words from indigenous languages, the development of voseo, aspiration, among other features. Despite many people would use all of these at home or with friends, in public situations with someone of a higher hierarchy nearby, people would tend to use a more standarized feature of the language. That was the mainstream perception, even when mass media arrived to Chile and it was well fostered during the 70s and 80s (whenever I watch old Chilean shows from that time, I feel the language sounds “not natural”). Since the 90s, there has been a slow, but steady process of accepting these features in media and in mainstream society, but using it well. Many adverts targeted to young people use it and it is quite frequent to use it in oral media (locally produced television or radio). To my and many fellow learners’ disgrace, it has yet to be standarized in written language due to the previous perception I have mentioned, but I am quite determined and hopeful that one day, the negative perception of voseo will be dumped and it’d be accepted and standarized in written form.

The rules of when to use voseo in Chile are summarized in these 3 points:

Voseo (1)

As I’ve said before, both due to pro-drop and a previous negative perception, people in Chile avoid to say vos as much as they can, unless in special situations, such as when they are very angry at someone or when teasing among friends. Again, the tone and context can tell you plenty of this. To avoid that and still use voseo, many people would replace the pronoun vos for tú. Thus, most people will say (tú) tenís, (tú) sentís and not (vos) tenís, (vos) sentís while using voseo, to avoid offending someone or so.

To wrap up things, I will attach a curious thing about voseo. Due to all of the previous things I’ve said, what would be your reaction if I tell you that the verb ser (to be) can have up to 5 forms in the second person singular informal variant? It is probably one of the few verbs I know that has three conjugations in voseo which can be combined up to 5 times! On the following image you’ll see how they can be conjugated and used from the most standard on the top, from the one you might want to avoid using under most circumstances on the bottom.

Voseo (3)

As a renowed Chilean linguist (Darío Rojas) would say, “to speak well means to be aware of the context you are in”.

 

What are your perceptions of voseo? Have you experienced negative perceptions of certain words and varieties in your language learning process? Share it in the comments!
And if you are interested to learn more Spanish, feel free to contact me on Italki.

 

The Spanish Fluency Pyramid

No, this is not a pyramid scheme or anything like that. I would say it is a product of my own observation and casual conversations with fellow Spanish native speakers and Spanish learners. In a time in which we are bombarded with what we should focus first in order to be identified as fluent speakers and so. Is grammar that important? Is rolling your r a matter of life or death? What dialect or variety should I learn and which of them is the best/easiest one?

Most of those answers are completely up to you, according to your current situation, your language learning history, your motivation, environment and many other factors any native speaker or even I don’t have to know. However, as a product of observation and conversation with different people (shout out to my Spanish chat group!), I think I have managed to gather some things that can really tell you are fluent at different levels, considering the 4 different language abilities and sorted out in 3 levels of the Spanish Fluency Pyramid! Is it scary? A bit, but I am confident you will enjoy your journey through it.

Spanish Fluency Pyramid

Now here comes the explanation of the three parts of the pyramid.

The base of this pyramid consists on two things: being able to be INDEPENDENT. That does not mean you know all words, verbs and how to construct a sentence by heart, but you do know how to construct a sentence, where the verb or noun goes, you drop pronouns as much as you can, you can give your opinions and ask back. Mistakes can still happen and you wouldn’t be able to speak about anything at more formal occasions, yet there is something that is evident: CONFIDENCE. You would probably make a mistake and either carry on or correct yourself immediately or if being corrected, you thank the person and carry on with your conversation. Confidence is essential for any of the steps above it is a sign you feel at ease with the language.

Now, the middle of this would be pronounciation and being aware of context. One thing many Spanish speakers do is aspiration of certain phonemes. Have you noticed that sometimes your Spanish speaking friends would say something like “e’htoy cansa’o” when they are tired or skip certain sounds at an informal setting? That is not wrong at all! In fact, it’s what makes a language feel alive 🙂 In several varieties, [s] gets aspirated or even ommited, specially in casual settings and it is probably a trademark for many Spanish speaking regions. If you were taught to pronounce all words and phonemes, it is quite good during formal settings, but at a party or while talking with friends, you may sound as distant or quite formal. The only way to be aware of when to do this is being a good listener and probably imitate their aspirations until they can become “yours”. As I already mentioned, the notion between formal and informal settings works different from, for example, an English Speaking context or even among different countries. For example, Peninsular Spanish tends to have a reputation of being less formal in many contexts that in other places would be formal and so. Being aware of the context you are in is important for many people. Your boss may use tú with you, but it wouldn’t be a smart choice to use tú with him or her. You probably don’t know anything about the shopkeeper, but if she or he looks your age, both of you might be quite okay with using tú. Also, formal Spanish tends to be more eloquent and less direct than other languages in formal contexts (if you’d ever see the documents I tend to proofread at work or whenever I have to sign a contract!). These kinds of distinctions are important in order to prove yourself you can transmit your confidence and play with it in different settings.

As for the top of the pyramid, here comes the scary part… most non native Speakers of Spanish often give themselves away with a single sound. For some people, their r’s or j’s; for others, a certain vowel and a long list of etc. Many people are quick to detect that and if you are one of those people who don’t want to give out that, well you can always look for help and work on mastering that pronounciation. There are plenty of YouTube videos who teach you step by step how to drill those sounds and listening always help. It doesn’t matter if you look weird while singing in Spanish while commuting (I’ve done it for my languages, people may stare at me, but I feel happy practicing my language skills with it) or if you tend to look yourself at the mirror while making that sound. You can always look for the method that suits you best because your motivation will do the rest. I also put mastering slang at the top of the pyramid since it is a thing that is even complicated for native speakers. What can be an innocent word in one Spanish speaking country, it may be a complete, different and even rude word in another. Many native speakers will probably have a funny anecdote of using an awkward slang word in another country and getting giggles or weird stares for it. Also, slang words are probably the most alive part of the language since they tend to evolve faster than regular words. What was cool in the 90s may not be cool right now. Again, listening and its use will be your ally at mastering slang words and using the right word in the right context.

I hope you have enjoyed this small guide towards Spanish fluency. If you would like to get this graphic as a printout, you can suscribe to my newsletter on the right sidebar and you will get it on your e-mail inbox during the weekend.

Are there any aspects you would like to add to this pyramid? What were the hardest things you have gone through with learning Spanish? Share it in the comments!

Christmas post: Mikołaj v. Viejo Pascuero

SHOWDOWN!

In order to have fun during this holiday season, I made myself a challenge. What about comparing and making a short list of how Christmas is lived in Poland and in Chile, with vocabulary, food, traditions and such? Hopefully, at the end of the post, I’ll realize where it’s better to spend Christmas.

I’ll make a list with some common questions about the celebrations, so you can understand the similarities and differences better.

  1. Who brings presents? If you think that either Santa Claus or Father Christmas give presents in Chile and Poland, well they don’t. In Chile, not even Papá Noel. The gift giver in Chile is… VIEJO PASCUERO (lit. Old man from Christmas). Now you’ll be highly confused on why the word Pascua is used when you usually associate with Easter. Well, there’s a reason to it. Most religious holidays in the Catholic Church are called Pascuas (from Hebrew Pesah). So, there is Pascua de Resurrección (Easter itself) and Pascua de Navidad (Christmas). Anyways, Viejo Pascuero resembles a lot the depiction of Santa Claus from Coca-Cola. However, many people have tried to adapt him to the actual climate conditions of Chile in December: hot and sunny weather. My friend Natalia has shown on her blog her actual adaptation and there have been songs written about how Christmas is lived here. He visits everyone in Chile at Midnight during Christmas Eve.
    Now, in Poland, things gets more confusing. There is Saint Nicholas (Św. Mikołaj) who visits children during his name day and leaves them candy (Dec 6th) and sports a traditional priest robe and also during Christmas (though current depictions show him closer to the Coca-Cola Santa Claus), buuuut… your family might call him Gwiazdor (Star carrier) or Aniołek (little angel) who actually brings presents after the Christmas Eve dinner.
    Just because Poles get a small sample of what coming next, Poland 1 – Chile 0.
  2. When do they celebrate the most? How do they celebrate it? Okay, December is always a party-filled month, but what these two countries have in common is that they don’t wait for Christmas day itself. Christmas Eve is the most special day here. Both in Poland and Chile, people work half-day and students are already on holiday, so it is a day in which people usually stay at home and get ready for it. Chileans usually go to Misa del Gallo (Christmas Eve Mass) which is held more or less at 7-8pm, when the sun is about to set (woo hoo Christmas in summer!) and after, more or less at 9-10pm, Cena de Nochebuena (Christmas Eve dinner) starts. It’s more or less a fancy dinner in which the most popular dishes are fish preparation, Roasted turkey or chicken and… PAPAS DUQUESAS, small fried balls of mashed potatoes (most people buy them frozen and heat them in an oven though). After that, dessert comes: usually fresh fruit (watermelons, peaches), ice cream or frozen cake and pan de pascua (some kind of Chilean Christstollen, but with no marzipan). For digestif, a cola de mono (monkey tail: milk, coffee, cloves, cinnamon and aguardiente liquor) is a popular drink that is served with ice cubes.
    Poles also have their Christmas Eve dinner, called Wigilia. It is way earlier than Chilean dinner, since it starts when the first star is seen in the sky (ca. 3-4pm). Before that, most Poles fast and this dinner has no meat dishes. It consists of 12 dishes, in which you can find PIEROGI RUSKIE (Ruthenian dumplings -one of my favourite Polish dishes ever-), BARSZCZ (beetroot soup), cold salads, KARP (carp fish), some sweets like PIERNIK (gingerbread), MAKOWIEC (poppy-seed cake), among others. Before dinner starts, you must crack an OPŁATEK (Christmas wafer, quite similar to the one given in Church for communion) and… there’s always one spare seat for unexpected visitors, a token of Polish hospitality.
    I will consider this a tie: Polish food and hospitality is great and Chilean Christmas food isn’t bad. I mean, eating watermelons for Christmas! 🙂 . Poland 2 – Chile 1.
  3. Now… When are presents given and exchanged? This is also different. Chileans get their presents at midnight sharp. Children are asked to look for Viejito Pascuero outside and look at the sky… and at 00:01, presents are magically there! That Viejito Pascuero is quite fast and effective (he should run the post here) 😀 . Children often stay awake for a while, playing with their new toys while grownups stay at home, drinking digestif until everyone goes to bed quite late. In Poland, presents are given right after dinner and at midnight, people tend to go the Pasterka (Christmas mass) in Church.
    Since building up excitement and looking at how happy all children can get with that hope is probably the most interesting phenomenon of Christmas… my point goes to Chile. Poland 2 – Chile 2.
  4. What people do next? And on Christmas day? I must say that in Chile, most people go to bed right after the party. In Poland, they tend to watch TV, especially KEVIN SAM W DOMU (Kevin alone at home or Home Alone) and other Christmas movies. Christmas without Kevin’s adventures in Poland isn’t Christmas at all. In Chile, the lowest ratings on TV ever happen either during Christmas Eve or New Years. Everyone is more focused at preparing the dinner and spending time with family. Sometimes, people may watch random episodes of LOS SIMPSON (The Simpsons) either on one of the local channels or pay TV (usually FOX Latin America holds marathons with episodes of The Simpsons for that time). Yes, for any Chilean under 35, The Simpsons are a show they cannot stop watching or quoting.
    Christmas day in both countries is a day of relaxing and meeting with more relatives and eating the famous leftovers: Resztki z Wigilii in Poland or Los restitos in Chile.
    Since there are more similarities than differences here, both countries get a point: Poland 3 – Chile 3.

CONCLUSION: Both countries have equally exciting, fun and interesting Christmas celebrations and traditions. Sure, for most Poles a Christmas in hot weather is something wild and crazy, whereas for Chileans, eating 12 dishes would be too much to handle. The most important thing is that this day is quite special for both countries as it is a family holiday, despite its initial religious significance. Anyways, with this post I wish you all a Happy End of Year Holiday Season.

Wesołych Świąt & Felices Fiestas!

Being an online language tutor

During the last month, I have decided to take a new step in my language career. I now have a small part time, independent job as an online Spanish language tutor. In what does it consist? What is the difference with being a proper language teacher? What are the methods you can use when you don’t live close to other language learners? I will try to answer these questions according to my experience and what has suited me and my tutorees best.

A language tutor is an educated native speaker of the language that does not need to have an extensive lingusitic or language teaching background. He or she is very aware of how language works due to their academical or language learning formation. They may lack some preparation in certain concepts, but they can make it up by grabbing a good grammar book of their language or remembering their schooling days. Their work differs from a language teacher since the service they offer targets language learners who already have a solid base on the language and need further practice in a certain aspect of the language, a certain topic they need to be more comfortable with (business language, travel contact, academical language, et al.). Most of the work they do is through oral language, yet they can also do written practice from time to time. Mind you, it is a complementary work for learners who have a specific issue with their target language and need to address it.

One of the goals of tutoring in a certain language is making the language learner feel comfortable with their language skills and being able for them to express with no major issues about topics they are interested in. Thus, a language tutor won’t interrupt a learner in the middle of a conversation or so to correct. He or she will be most likely to jot down observations on a piece of paper or so and he or she will let you know when you stopped talking or writing their observations: good and things you need to work on and how they can be solved.

A language tutor also will have to plan their sessions before hand, besides looking at each other’s schedules. If a tutoree wants to work on business language, the tutor will be most likely to contact the tutoree and give him/her a set of topics to prepare: newspaper articles, short TV features about the topic and the tutoring session will be devoted around those issues: a short summary, an opinion and so that will be a good instance to introduce new vocabulary, grammar and even cultural codes of the target language.

Right now, language tutoring is a service mostly offered online on sites like Fiverr.com, iTalki.com, Tandem.me, among other sites. Some tutors are willing to explain their methods on their introduction or even show you a small video with their methods or so. Also, comments or sample videos are important to check if the Tutor fits what is expected or so.

In conclusion, language tutoring is just like any other language-related job that deserves respect for preparation or hard work involved in the academical preparation of tutors and even the time they spend on preparing their sessions. It is not an easy job or for every one as you must be ready to answer most questions or explain aspects of your language and a mere “it’s because we do it this way” is a 100% wrong answer.

Have you considered being a language tutor? Have you used one of their services? Are you a language tutor? Share your experiences in the comments.


If you are interested to contact me as a Spanish language tutor, you can contact me through my iTalki profile. I am more than happy to work for you in your Spanish learning process.

Krzysiek.cl in the media pt. 1

Despite I took this week as a cheat week and preparing myself for the next one, I have two big surprises for you, especially if you speak or are learning Spanish:

MEDIA APPEARANCES 😀

First one was an appearance at My Polyglot Podcast from Jimmy Mello in which I talked about Polish and language learning methods in Spanish. It was plenty of fun for Jimmy and I 🙂

Then, I had the pleasure of being Siskia’s first guest at her new podcast towards Spanish spekaers, Babeltitlán. I am happy to have showcased my motivations and some tips for people who want to study abroad without spending much time and money 😛

Each of those links will carry you directly to the places where you can listen me.