The materials in this FSI Spanish Basics course volume 1 (of 4) have been developed to present Spanish as a spoken language, and the skills of understanding and speaking are accordingly emphasized. The method of presentation will likely be new to students acquainted with more traditional methods of language teaching. In order to understand the materials, one must first understand the method upon which they are built.
Method of Teaching
The method is known as GUILES IMITATION. It may appear to be new, but actually it has been used by a considerable number of teachers for many years, though its greatest popularity has come since the second World War. Its goal is to teach one to speak easily, fluently, with very little accent, and to do this without conscious effort, just as one speaks his own language without conscious effort. There are two very important aspects of this method. First, learning a relatively small body of Material so well that it requires very little effort to produce it. This is OVERLEARNING. If a student overlearns every dialog and drill as he goes through this book, he will almost certainly experience rapid progress in learning the language.
The second aspect is learning to authentically manipulate the sounds, sequences, and patterns of the language. The important implication here is the reality of both the model and the imitation. The model (teacher, recording, etc.) must provide Spanish as people really speak it in actual conversations, and the student must be helped to an accurate imitation. Above all, the normal tempo of pronunciation must be the classroom standard; slowing down is, in this context, distortion. The complete course consists of sixty units, each requiring some ten class and laboratory hours plus out-side study to master. The course is a six-hundred-hours course which may be studied intensively over a period of about six months, or may be spread at the rate of a unit a week over a period of sixty weeks (four college semesters). Either a native speaker or a teacher with very little accent in his Spanish is necessary as the model for imitation.
Other Volumes of Spanish Basic Course:
You can find the other volumes of the course at the Live Lingua Project here:
- FSI Spanish Basics Course - Volume 2
- FSI Spanish Basics Course - Volume 3
- FSI Spanish Basics Course - Volume 4
Spanish also called Castilian (castellano), is a Romance language that originated in Castile, a region in Spain. There are approximately 407 million people speaking Spanish as a native language, making it the second-most-spoken language by number of native speakers after Mandarin. It also has 60 million speakers as a second language, and 20 million students as a foreign language. Spanish is one of the six official languages of the United Nations, and is used as an official language by the European Union and Mercosur. Spanish is the most popular second language learned by native speakers of American English. From the last decades of the 20th century, the study of Spanish as a foreign language has grown significantly, facilitated in part because of the growing population demographics and economies of many Spanish-speaking countries, growing international tourism and the search for less expensive retirement destinations by North Americans and Europeans.
Spanish is spoken in: Spain, Mexico, Colombia, Argentina, Peru, Venezuela, Chile, Ecuador, Guatemala, Cuba, Bolivia, Dominican Republic, Honduras, Paraguay, El Salvador, Nicaragua, Costa Rica, Puerto Rico, Panama, Uruguay, Equatorial Guinea
Spanish is also called: Castellano, Castilian, Castillan, Español