Vocabulary

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Lesson Transcript

Hi!
Welcome to Introduction to Spanish.
My name is Alisha and I'm joined by...
Hi everyone! I'm Lia
In this lesson, you'll learn the basics of Spanish pronunciation.
Accents &Dialects
Spanish is a rich language that's decorated with a wide variety of accents and dialects. Since accents and dialects play a huge role in pronunciation, let's take a more detailed look at the different types of accents and dialects of Spanish from around the world.
First off, an accent is just a particular way of pronouncing words, like “tomato” or “tomato.” They may sound slightly different from one another, but all the rules that govern their use in the language are essentially the same.
Dialects, on the other hand, may branch off from the standard language by differing in grammar, word order, and of course, pronunciation as well. Therefore, it's generally harder to understand a dialect than an accent.
First, let's make some distinctions as to how we refer to the Spanish language. First: Español. Español is generally used to refer to the "Spanish language" as a super group; this includes ALL varieties of Spanish spoken in Spain and internationally.
Beneath that is Castilian, which is the actual term used to exclusively refer to the Spanish spoken in Spain.
Español
|
Castilian, Mexican Spanish, Argentinian
Mexican Spanish is a dialect of Spanish that is spoken in Mexico. Unsurprisingly, due to its proximity to the USA, Mexican Spanish uses far more English words than other dialects of Spanish.
Another example, which we mentioned in the previous episode, is Argentinian. Argentinian is another dialect of Spanish spoken in Argentina, and it closely resembles Italian because a huge wave of Italians migrated to Argentina during the 20th century. So Argentinian actually sounds a bit like Italian.
Pace
Pace is a very important aspect of Spanish, because it varies greatly depending on the dialect of Spanish spoken.
Spanish is almost renowned for being a fast-paced language.
The pace greatly depends on the region, however, as people in Mexico and some South American countries, generally speak slower than speakers from Spain.
In some Spanish-speaking countries, it's common practice to shorten words. For example, words ending in an "s" will instead have the final vowel prolonged. Casas for instance, would be pronounced casaa.
We also mentioned before that some dialects of Spanish are influenced by other languages such as Italian and English. Mexican Spanish uses a lot of English words - and English being considered a slower paced language - slows down the pace of the language, and that's one of the reasons Mexican Spanish is slower than the Spanish spoken in Spain.
The pace of Spanish, then, depends greatly on the dialect of Spanish.
English vs. Spanish sounds
For the most part, English and Spanish share a lot of the same sounds which generally correspond to the same letters.
Thankfully, learning Spanish pronunciation is much easier than English pronunciation. Learning English is more a matter of memorization and practice, whereas Spanish is a combination of learning and practice. It takes much much longer for a student to learn English pronunciation than Spanish pronunciation.
That's because there are many more irregular pronunciations of words in English than there are in Spanish.
Take these words for example:
The first word is pronounced colonel, not co-lo-nel.
The second word is pronounced arise. Adding an N however, doesn't give you a-rise-n but arisen.
The last word is pronounced eight, but adding an H doesn't give you h-eight. Instead, it becomes height.
colonel
arise-arisen
eight-height
Spanish, on the other hand, can mostly be pronounced as it's read.
Almendra (“almond”)
The word Almendra, meaning “almond”, is pronounced Al - MEN- dra. It's pronounced exactly the same as it's written.
Almendra
The same thing happens with the word Carretera, meaning “road”:
Carretera
it's pronounced Ca- rre - te -ra. Exactly how it's written.
Carretera
That's a good example, which demonstrates sounds that do not exist in English.
That's right. The double RR here, is a rolled R. It can be a little tricky for some learners.
Carretera
Another common word is perro, meaning “dog”:
perro
perro
The trick is to build pressure at the point of contact, using the tip of your tongue to contact the top teeth and gum ridge, and then releasing the pressure quickly by flicking the tongue up and back. When you release the pressure, allow only the smallest amount of air to pass through, so that a tiny passage opens and closes rapidly. This should cause the tongue to vibrate or "roll" correctly.
Try again.
perro
perro
Well done! Let's wrap up this lesson by recapping what we've learned.
In this lesson, you learned about accents and dialects in Spanish, that the spoken pace depends on the dialect, and that Spanish is mostly pronounced as it's written.
We've covered only the basics of Spanish pronunciation. If you're interested in learning more, check out the entire course we created named "The Ultimate Guide to Spanish Pronunciation.” In that course, we cover and break down every single sound in Spanish, showing you mouth and tongue positioning, and giving you tips to help you perfect your Spanish pronunciation.
In the next lesson, we'll introduce you to the basics of Spanish grammar, where you'll learn how to form sentences and ask questions in Spanish!
See you in the next lesson. Bye!
Bye~!

54 Comments

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Sorry, please keep your comment under 800 characters. Got a complicated question? Try asking your teacher using My Teacher Messenger.

SpanishPod101.comVerified
Friday at 6:30 pm
Pinned Comment
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Did you like this video? Try our Ultimate Spanish Pronunciation Guide!

SpanishPod101.comVerified
Monday at 10:41 am
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Hello Bob Roos,


Thank you for posting.

We’ll consider your feedback about gender information for our future development.


The link in the first comment is fixed. We're sorry for the inconvenience caused.

Sincerely,

Lena

Team SpanishPod101.com

bob roos
Saturday at 7:56 pm
Your comment is awaiting moderation.

Perhaps I should have been more specific in my question - Why do you not include the article in the online material? It seems to me that the initial contact with a word is where the lasting impressions are made. In this lession you mention perro and carretera and don't indicate the gender of either word as an article or even mention it as M, F or N. Why not?


I am finding your website very confusing. Take for example the comment posted on Friday about the "Ultimate Spanish Pronunciation Guide!" with a line following. The page that the link refers to does NOT have the word "pronunciation" or any mention of it. Why give such a link? I followed it to get further information about pronunciation only to find that I was going to have to search further. Not fun.

SpanishPod101.comVerified
Wednesday at 7:01 pm
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Hola bob roos,


Thank you for your remark. Please note that we only include the articles in our Lesson Notes which you can download as PDFs. If you are ever in doubt about the gender of a noun, please head over to the Spanish Dictionary at https://www.spanishpod101.com/spanish-dictionary/ and search for the vocabulary item. 😉


Saludos,

Levente

Team SpanishPod101.com

bob roos
Tuesday at 7:33 pm
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Why do you not include the article before the noun (el,la) when giving vocabulary? How are we supposed to remember it if we don't hear and see it?

SpanishPod101.comVerified
Saturday at 7:46 am
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Hola Jean y Autiana,

Muchas gracias for your kind words! ❤️️ So nice to hear you like learning Spanish with us!


Hola Gehad,

Muchas gracias for your question. Spanish is a syllable-timed language, in contrast with English and other Germanic languages (German, Luxembourgish, Dutch, Frisian, Danish, Norwegian, Swedish, and Icelandic) which are all stress-timed. 😉


If you have any more questions or comments, please don't hesitate to contact us again!


Saludos,

Levente

Team SpanishPod101.com

Gehad
Friday at 3:01 am
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is spanish stress timed or syllable timed language

Autiana
Friday at 10:06 am
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i love perro❤️️

Jean
Thursday at 8:29 am
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Love this lesson. Thanks

SpanishPod101.com
Wednesday at 8:02 pm
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Hi DI,


Please check out this lesson that also explains about the word order in Spanish:

All About Spanish Grammar

https://www.spanishpod101.com/lesson/all-about-3-all-about-spanish-grammar/


And our special material about 5 Ways To Improve Your Spanish Speaking Skills:

https://www.spanishpod101.com/blog/2015/09/17/5-ways-to-improve-your-spanish-speaking-skills/


Keep up studying well and soon you’ll get great results!


Saludos,

Cristiane

Team SpanishPod101.com

DI
Wednesday at 3:28 pm
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I have been studying Spanish for a longtime. However, I do not speak or understand word order. I think it will be easy for me to pick up. ❤️️❤️️❤️️