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Phrases Spanish Students Can Use to “Manage” Conversation with Native Speakers

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Yesterday I was tutoring a student who will be traveling to Mexico for spring break. She was excited she would be able to practice her Spanish, but was nervous that people would speak to her too quickly. She was afraid she wouldn’t know what to do or say.

So, I suggested she learn the following phrases so she could “manage” her conversations. These phrases would help slow things down, let the other person know she was learning, and help her feel more in control.

  1. Estoy aprendiendo español. (I am learning Spanish.)
  2. Más despacio, por favor. (More slowly, please.)
  3. Repite, por favor.  (Repeat please)
  4. Lo siento. No entiendo.  (I’m sorry. I don’t understand.)

They are very simple, but extremely helpful. Students often feel self-conscious and overwhelmed when first using their language skills with native speakers. They worry that the conversation will get away from them. Having little “tools” like these can really help them feel more comfortable to make the effort.

Debbie

PS – If you’re looking for a Spanish curriculum for your homeschool or to teach classes, take a look at Spanish for You! It makes teaching and learning Spanish simple, effective, and affordable!

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