Learning a foreign language is not just interesting; it also requires your time and dedication. If you are like most people, you do not want to sound like an idiot while speaking a new language. Do not get us wrong, we know that making mistakes is natural; however, there are a few mistakes that can be easily avoided while learning Spanish.
If are a native English speaker, one challenge that you may face is training yourself to think in Spanish terms. It is normal for a native English speaker to pronounce Spanish words with an English bias. However, it is important to address and correct these tendencies in advance.
Below is the list of 5 common mistakes that might make you sound less intelligent than you are in real life. Follow these guidelines to make your Spanish sound more authentic and natural.
Dia – A Masculine Word
To a native of English, the word ‘dia’ may sound feminine; however, it is a masculine noun in Spanish. This means that it requires the use of masculine articles and adjectives such as Buenos dias (not buenas dias), el otro dia (not la otra dia).
Never Translate Word for Word
Both the languages are different, which means that word-to-word translation may lead to mistakes. For example – ‘I am going to buy a pair of pants’ won’t be translated word-to-word in Spanish. In Spanish, the translation would be ‘Voy a comprar pantalones.’ Here, the words ‘a pair of’ are dropped.
You can’t Interchange the Words ‘Aqui’ And ‘Aca’
Both the words ‘aqui,’ and ‘aca’ refer to a location that is close to the speaker; however, these words are not interchangeable. For example – You may use ‘Aca’ with verbs of motion, while ‘aqui’ is used in other instances.
Understand False Cognates
Keep in mind that lots of Spanish words may look and sound like English words but appearance can be deceiving. For example – the word ‘asistir’ does not mean ‘to assist,’ instead it means ‘to attend.’
Don’t Confuse Date
To express ‘date’ as in what is the date today? Use the word ‘fecha,’ however, to express ‘date’ as in ‘an appointment with someone, use the word ‘cita.’
In order to avoid making mistakes, it is important to identify them as early as possible. If you need document translation from some other language to Spanish, make sure to consult professionals in order to avoid embarrassments.
Have you made any embarrassing mistake while learning a foreign language? Share your experiences in the comments’ section.