Welcome to my experiment! Bwahaha. I believe that learning languages should be fun, efficient, and relevant. That’s why I wanted to develop a curriculum that incorporates pop culture, through video, music, memes, and other media. Sign up to receive lessons and interactive stuff in your inbox.
Here are some FAQs.
How does it work?
Your commitment is to participate three times a week. On Mondays and Wednesdays you get an email containing a hand-picked Vine – a six-second video in Spanish, created by a native Spanish speaker somewhere in the world. The email contains six sections:
- The Vine – watch and enjoy!
- Transcript – see what was said in the Vine, written out in Spanish.
- Explanation – a translation and explanation in English
- Slo-Mo Version – a short audio recording of the dialogue from the Vine, spoken very slowly and clearly, with pauses for you to repeat and practice pronunciation.
- Useful Phrases – a harvest of phrases in this Vine that you could apply to your own everyday conversation
- Vocabulary – a review of the vocabulary used in this Vine. Quiz yourself.
On Fridays you’ll receive an interactive activity – a mini “quiz” or perhaps a game – for you to complete online. When filling it out, make sure to include your name if you want feedback from me.
What levels do you cater to?
That’s part of the experiment. My aim is to cater to all levels. If you’re a beginner, you can listen to the slo-mo recording, and read the Going Deeper section to understand the basics. If you’re more advanced, you can read as much of it as you find helpful. Even if you are almost fluent, you should be getting something out of this: entertainment, accent practice, and real modern phrases from real people.
Ok, but what if I am a total beginner, like, all I know is “hola”?
This curriculum is for you, too. I believe that beginners should have the opportunity to learn languages the way babies learn – all at once. Understanding conjugation and different tenses is important. But when we study different tenses separately, in a vacuum, we miss out on their interconnectivity and relevance to actual conversation. With Spanish in 6 Seconds, you will learn tenses as they arise in Vines, instead of focusing only on present indicative, and then only on past preterite, etc. I will break each tense down thoroughly, and you will have the opportunity to practice examples from different tenses every week. When you’re actually speaking Spanish, you’ll have to integrate your knowledge of all tenses, and choose between different tenses based on the situation, so why not learn that from the beginning?
- They’re short and sweet – 6 seconds
- They are often hilarious – what better way to understand a language and culture than through humor?
- They are sometimes inappropriate but I’ll pick the appropriate ones for now 🙂
- They often contain puns, which help strengthen vocabulary
- They are typically sketch comedy scenes that center around everyday situations. This enables you to learn practical phrases. Common situations include:
- chatting with friends
- meeting someone for the first time
- asking someone for directions
- buying something at a store
- ordering at a restaurant
- They enable you to see how Spanish speakers from different countries talk. Right now Vine has over 40 million users. The majority of Viners I follow are from Mexico and Spain, but I make sure to seek out Viners from other countries as well, including Argentina, Venezuela, and Puerto Rico.
Why only 3 times a week? Shouldn’t a language be practiced every day?
Yes! If you are able to practice every day, go for it. I chose three times a week because I think realistically it’s impractical to ask people to engage with an email service every day. If you think you could manage Spanish In Six Seconds as a daily service, write to me and we’ll work something out.
Ok, show me some lessons.
Browse the categories at the bottom of this page to view different types of lessons. For instance, you can select lessons geared towards beginners, or lessons focused on commands, or lessons that contain content made by Spanish speakers in Mexico, etc.
I’d love your feedback on any and all parts of this experiment. Here’s a contact form for you to tell me what you think. Please use it liberally.