Are you afraid of speaking a foreign language?

I know I was.  After I’d graduated from university, I celebrated with a holiday to Marbella in Spain.  I wanted to practice my Spanish, but all the shop assistants and waiters automatically spoke to me in English.

learn spanishIn fact, their English was so perfect, I was afraid to try out my Spanish. I thought they wouldn’t understand what I was saying or even worse, laugh at my pronunciation.  So, except for ‘Hola’ and ‘Gracias,’ I spoke English for the rest of the holiday.  I felt like a failure, particularly as I’d just finished two years of Spanish classes at university.

Although I could recite lists of irregular verbs, and I’d even started learning the subjunctive, I wasn’t comfortable speaking Spanish.  I only had a few hours of Spanish classes a week, and also had to study grammar, reading, and writing, which left very little time for speaking practice.  I could understand Spanish speakers, but I didn’t feel confident replying, or starting a conversation myself.

After my holiday, I got a full-time job in the UK.  Without a regular class to motivate me, I stopped practising my Spanish, and forgot most of what I learned.

However, I recently started a location independent freelance blogging business.  I’d love to spend more time in Spain and speak Spanish fluently.  I’ve started learning Spanish again with Rosetta Stone’s online programme.

Rosetta Stone gives me the freedom to study at my own pace, and fit my language learning into my life, when it suits me.

The Rosetta Stone programme includes lots of speaking, even for writing and reading activities.  All the activities in each lesson use the same set of vocabulary, which means I get lots of practice.  But I don’t get bored because there are lots of different activities and games.

At first, I was nervous about talking into the microphone.  But it’s easy, and I soon felt comfortable.  With immediate feedback, I can work on my pronunciation, and if I make a mistake I don’t feel embarrassed because no one else can hear me.

I’ve only taken a few lessons, but I already feel more confident.  Next time I am in Spain I know I won’t be afraid to speak Spanish.



Carol Brennan is a freelance writer and qualified TEFL tutor. She writes authority blog posts on education. Her writer website is Writer Carol. She hopes to one day live a location independent life and would love to spend time visiting the Spanish Costas.

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