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One Word at a Time

We often delve into learning a new language by trying to master complete phrases. But one of the easiest ways to learn is word by word. So we have a tip that you can start using right away:
Make a list of the top five English words you use every day with your kids and replace them with the Spanish words.
By the end of one week, the five words you’ve selected should be completely replaced by their Spanish translations. And if you want them to stick, you can permanently replace those words and use only the Spanish form at home. Once you’ve mastered those five key words, add five key phrases that use those words... Learn and repeat, one word at a time!

Use Your Words!

friend (male)
el amigo (m)
el ah-MEE-go
los amigos (m pl)
friend (female)
la amiga (f)
lah ah-MEE-gah
las amigas (f pl)
We are friends.
Nosotros somos amigos.
no-SO-tros SO-mos ah-MEE-gos


Grammar Tip

Learning to read in Spanish is pretty easy. While there are exceptions, the letters pretty much sound the same no matter the word. Let’s start with our vowels. There are only five vowel sounds in Spanish:
a = ah – like the “a” sound in awful   
ex. amigo  ah-MEE-go

e = eh – like the “e” sound in elephant  
ex. bebe  beh-BEH

i = ee – like the “ee” sound in bistro  
ex. lindo  LEEN-do
o = oh –  like the “o” sound in ocean  
ex. oso  OH-soh

u = oo – like the “o” sound in do  
ex. uva   OO-vah

Links We Like

Two new studies demonstrate that multilingual exposure improves not only children’s cognitive skills but also their social abilities. Read more.

The Spanish Promise Blog

Start Where Language Begins: At Home
In my journey as a bilingual mother, I’ve been stopped many times by moms wanting to speak a second language. The questions are always the same: How did you learn? How did you do it? And they often conclude with “That’s amazing. I wish I could do the same.” 
Read more.

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Practice and learn Spanish with your child every day with MamaLingua for iPhone. With categories like bathing, playing, reading, and sleeping, MamaLingua includes words and phrases you use every day with your young child. Get the app!
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