Pradoventura students go on scavenger hunt!

A good way to practice what the students learned in class is to go on a scavenger hunt. They have to a card to each establishment (like a supermarket, greengrocer, driving school, restaurant or clothes shop…). The task will be done following the instructions on each card, like where to go next and what to do there. They are always related to daily situations, for example asking for the price of a product or to search for something specific. Of course questions related to culture and history are included, like who founded Prado del Rey or which the popular festivals of this village are.

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Pradoventura students go on scavenger hunt!

A good way to practice what the students learned in class is to go on a scavenger hunt. They have to a card to each establishment (like a supermarket, greengrocer, driving school, restaurant or clothes shop…). The task will be done following the instructions on each card, like where to go next and what to do there. They are always related to daily situations, for example asking for the price of a product or to search for something specific. Of course questions related to culture and history are included, like who founded Prado del Rey or which the popular festivals of this village are.

(more…)

Spanish Grammar: Direct and indirect object pronouns

In this video about direct and indirect pronouns, you are going to learn how to differentiate the verbs with one direct object from the verbs with two objects, a direct one and another indirect one. It can be so difficult to use adequately the direct and indirect objects in Spanish! Most of the time, the explanations about this are incomplete or they have many mistakes. For example, we usually hear that we have to ask “to whom…? / ¿a quién?” in order to recognize an indirect object, but this rule does not always work:

– Veo a los niños en la playa -¿A quiénes ves en la playa? -A los niños.

Following this rule, “A los niños” seems to be an indirect object, but actually it is not. In Spanish there are direct objects which refer to a person, and above we have an example.

What a mess! So, how do we differentiate when we have to use a direct object or an indirect object? The key is in the verb and its meaning. We distinguish between two kinds of verbs:

+ Verbos de una “patita” (Verbs with one leg): Verbs which according to their meaning, only need one object. For instance: ver (to see), sentir (to feel), vivir (to live), intentar (to try), estudiar (to study)…

+Verbos de dos “patitas” (Verbs with two legs): Verbs which need two objects (something and someone). For instance: dar (to give), ofrecer (to offer)…

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Learn with Pradoventura!

How to introduce yourself in Spanish?

Do you want to meet and greet new people in Spain?
Our Spanish teacher Odalis will teach you how to introduce yourselves, and thanks to the questions and answers provided by our students and their teacher, you will be able to introduce yourselves to any Spanish speaking person and get to know new people easily. Watch this video and learn with Pradoventura!

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Spanish grammar: the future

Como sabemos, existen dos tipos de futuro en español: “ir a + infinitivo” y el futuro simple “comeré”. Normalmente, ambos tiempos verbales tienen el mismo valor de posterioridad en las acciones, pero quizá queráis saber qué preferencias existen a la hora de elegir uno u otro. En este tutorial, Tania y Laura explican las formas de esos tiempos y algunas de sus particularidades a través de  propuestas creativas y divertidas creadas por ambas profesoras.

Here you can download the cards of the future

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Special Spanish class on the Day of Andalusia

Today, February 28, we celebrated the Day of Andalusia. As we like to introduce cultural content in the Spanish classes in an enjoyable way, we always prepare a special session for this regional holiday. As good Andalusians, we hung little Andalusian flags in the language school, we put a flower in our hair (we explained to the students that at Andalusian festivals women wear a dress called a gypsy dress and a flower) and we began with the Spanish class dedicated to this day. As it was a special Spanish lesson, we put together both groups of students so that they could live this experience together. We also consider that the students learn from each other and it is interesting that they listen to different opinions about Andalusia and that they contrast these.

Day of Andalusia Spanish language school Spain

Firstly, we tought them that Andalusia in one of the 19 autonomous regions in Spain and it consists of 8 provinces: Cádiz, Sevilla, Málaga, Granada, Córdoba, Huelva, Jaén and Almería. We talked about the most important cultural elements of each province of Andalusia, such as the Gran Teatro Falla, the beach “La Caleta”, the Alhambra, the Sierra Nevada, the Science Park, the Picasso Museum, the Alcazaba Of Málaga, the Cervantes Theater, etc.

Likewise, the students were introduced to important people for the Andalusian culture, such as Federico García Lorca, Picasso, Antonio Banderas or Farruquito, all of them well known in Spain and internationally. Adding also some specific flamenco vocabulary (bailaor, tocaor, cantaor …).

In addition, we have made our students aware of the importance of nature protection in Andalusia since 32% of the area are protected natural areas (national parks, natural parks, etc.). We mentioned two especially protected species that are in danger of extinction: the pinsapo (Spanish fir) and the lynx.

To get deeper into the Andalusian culture, we read in class the poem “Andalucía” by Manuel Machado, an admirable Andalusian poet, in which he symbolically defines each province:

Cádiz, salada claridad
Granada, agua oculta que llora
Romana y mora, Córdoba callada
Málaga cantaora
Almería, dorada
Plateado Jaén
Huelva la orilla de las tres carabelas
y Sevilla …

After making sure that all the students understood the meaning of each line of the poem, we made a brainstorming to define among all the students what Andalusia means to them. Getting terms such as flamenco, sea, wine, red sun observing sunset hiking Andalusia Spain(the red sun probably has to do with the sunset we saw on the hiking tour yesterday), etc.. It was fun!

After that, we asked the students to locate each of the provinces on the map, associating what cultural elements are related to each province. They told us what they have learned while being in Andalusia and what they previously knew.

Finally, we did an activity that we called “Some of the treasures of Andalusia that we recommend you to discover”. To carry it out we selected four monuments, places, important persons, traditions or celebrations of each of the Andalusian provinces. We had designed cards with pictures of those elements and asked the students to make an imaginary trip through each Andalusian province, even if it is only on tiptoe. Like that they got to know a little of each of the provinces, its wealth and its treasures. Thus, once the cards were distributed on the table, we asked our students to try to associate each of them with their place of origin.

It was very gratifying, on the one hand, to see how our students recognized many of the pictures, since we had talked about them throughout the session and, on the other hand, how interested they were in those they did not know and had just discovered. The teachers were in charge of transmitting to our students interesting historical, cultural or artistic facts.

At the end of the activity, our students made us aware of their growing interest in touring and visiting the provinces of Andalusia.

It was a very enjoyable session, since everyone participated actively and we interacted a lot. We had planned an additional activity, as we always to in case the lesson flows quicky and there is some time left. In this additional activity the students would have had to creat a poem about Andalusia themselves, working in pairs. Today we did not have any time left for this activity but we are happy with the result of this very nice and relevant class in terms of culture.

To conclude, we went together to have breakfast like every day and as a special touch the owner of the bar played the  hymn of Andalusia for us. We had a great morning.

Here you can download the activity “Algunos de los tesoros de Andalucía que te recomendamos descubrir” for your Spanish class:

DIA DE ANDALUCIA Actividad para clase de español

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Practical Spanish class to celebrate the Day of Andalusia

On February 28 our language school dressed in color and laughter for the day of Andalusia. All the team members prepared interesting activities so that the students felt immersed in the Andalusian culture, since, starting from our philosophy, we understand that culture is a fundamental part of learning Spanish as a foreign language.

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We started with a brainstorming about Andalusia to know the previous knowledge about this Spanish community. It was very interesting because each student was able to contribute their ideas about the eight provinces and their people. The Spanish teachers explained typical Andalusian words, which was quite useful for students. It was very enjoyable because the students could express their opinions in relation to the Andalusian stereotypes and contrast these with the reality.

In the break we had a great typical Andalusian breakfast, in which we could taste a delicious Spanish omelette “tortilla española” and also a magnificent Andalusian cake as well as molletes, a bread from Moorish origin, with a tasty tomatoes and an exquisite olive oil.

After this wonderful tasting the students found a surprise in the class, the Spanish teachers and the director had dressed in the typical costume of Andalusia to give more color to a magical day.

In addition to learning interesting things about Andalusia the students were shown different videos about each of the provinces and they told us which were their favorite places and which of them were included in their future travel plans. We explored the other provinces Sevilla, Málaga, Granada, Córdoba, Almería and Jaén on the website of Andalusia Tourism. Then we showed a video about the province Cádiz, where our language school is located. It gives a insight into the coast and the interior.

Finally and as a finishing touch, we all sang the hymn of Andalusia together.

As much for the students as for the whole team this Spanish class turned out a very gratifying experience since the students could get to know Andalusia in a very interesting and direct form. Through the videos and explanations the students had the opportunity to learn more about the provinces and their festivals and cultures. Our philosophy is that the students learn in a practical way relating content to experiences which become a part of their memories, so that and they will remember more effectively what they have learned.

Spanish Grammar: Future expressions

In the Spanish language we can refer to a future tense in three different ways that do not involve using the simple future. These expressions of the future are: the verbal periphrasis “ir + a + infinitivo”, “querer + infinitivo”, “pensar + infinitivo” and the present indicative. For students of Spanish, it can be a bit difficult to remember how to use one or the other, so our teacher Irene Cañas has recorded a simple video explaining the use of future expressions in Spanish. Here you can watch it and below you will find a table that summarizes her explanation in the video:

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expresiones de futuro

We hope this video helped you to understand how to use these expressions for the future. If you have any questions, just leave us a comment on our blog and we will help you.

See you soon, Spanish grammar fans!

Spanish grammar: “saber” vs. “conocer” (to know)

Some Spanish verbs are difficult to use for students of the Spanish language. Not their grammatical difficulties but for their meaning and context, and in English or other languages they are translated with the same verb. Here we present you two verbs that translate to one single verb in English, the verb to know. Therefore, our teacher Irene Cañas has recorded this video where she explains the differences in use between the verb saber and the verb conocer.

 

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We hope you have understood the difference and you can use saber and conocer better now. If you have any question or comments you can write on the blog and we will help you. See you soon, Spanish grammar geeks!

Season’s greetings

Os deseamos feliz Navidad y que vuestro 2016 sea lleno de salud, felicidad, éxito y amor.
Os agradeceros la confianza que habéis depositado en nosotros y los momentos felices que habéis compartido con nosotros durante estos 11 años. Nos alegraría mucho volver a veros en 2016.

Este año os felicitamos con esta versión flamenca del cuento de Navidad que nos gusta mucho. Más abajo os ponemos la letra para que podáis entender mejor su significado en español.

http://www.youtube.com/embed/JXMhsOxxXS4?version=3&rel=1&fs=1&autohide=2&showsearch=0&showinfo=1&iv_load_policy=1&wmode=transparent

Aquí tenéis la letra.

El nacimiento 4º la mayor

Por el caminito que lleva a Belén
una borriquilla, María y José
la luna los sigue, los quiere alumbrar
qué largo camino, cuándo llegarán.

El viento los mira,
María suspira ya no puedo más
tranquila mi vida, decía José
por el caminito que lleva a Belén.

Acelera el paso, andando deprisa
que ya se divisa, espera mi bien.

Se acabó el camino
bendito destino
ya estamos muy cerca
ya se ve Belén.

La noche esta fría
tranquila María buscaré posada
llamaré a las puertas en la madrugada
y tendrás el hijo que tanto esperabas.

Nadie abrió la puerta
un frío silencio hubo por respuesta
las calles vacías, ni un alma despierta
tan solo la luna los miraba inquieta.

Por las calles de Belén, camina José
buscando cobijo
un viejo establo será, donde nacerá
María tu hijo

Nos quedaremos aquí
entre el buey y la mula nos darán calor
y la luz de luna clara, alumbró su cara
llena de dolor.

Cógeme la mano, aprieta con fuerza
que lo estoy sintiendo
el momento se acerca
gritos y suspiros, sangre derramada
y el llanto de un niño en la madrugada.

Has sido valiente
lo puso en sus brazos le besó en la frente
ya tienes tu hijo, fruto de tu vientre
descansa María, que el niño ya duerme.

Casi amanecía
nació aquella noche, dormía María
el niño lloraba José sonreía
y hasta las estrellas a verlo venían.

Llegó la mañana, despertó María
mirando a su niño le dio con cariño
besos de alegría.

Tres magos de oriente, vinieron a verlo
era su destino y un largo camino
para conocerlo.

Pastores llevaron al recién nacío
ropita de abrigo y leña de olivo
pá’ quitarle el frío.

Se marchó la luna, estrellas y luceros
y el sol alumbraba la divina cara
del Rey de los Cielos.

Pastores llevaron al recién nacío
ropita de abrigo y leña de olivo
pá’ quitarle el frío.

Se marchó la luna, estrellas y luceros
y el sol alumbraba la divina cara
del Rey de los Cielos.

Casi amanecía
nació aquella noche dormía María
el niño lloraba José sonreía
y hasta las estrellas a verlo venían.

Por el caminito que lleva a Belén
una borriquilla, María y José.

por Rafael González

Anotaciones:
nacío = nacido
pá = para