- Language (grammar, vocabulary & pronunciation resources)
- Reading material
- Online dictionaries
- Multimedia resources
- TV, radio
- Social networks
- Purchasing Spanish books in Hong Kong
Map or Resources to Learn Spanish (MIRO)
A website to learn Spanish maintained by a group of teachers. It is free, clear and has comprehensive grammar explanations, including a random Spanish verb test generator, as well as a diverse range of interesting cultural articles. It also offers the option of purchasing additional ‘premium’ services.
The pronunciation section is particularly interesting for students that need to improve this particular skill.
An online programme created by the Cervantes Institute to teach Spanish to young learners. It includes vocabulary activities and interactive stories
A website created and maintained by Gerald Erichen, a North American journalist who provides a comprehensive set of well-explained grammar lessons, as well as many other interesting and original articles.
Professor Enrique Yepes has created a collection of resources for intermediate and advanced students of Spanish from Bowdoin College in Brunswick, Maine. It contains grammar explanations and exercises, a guide to Spanish writing-style, articles, etc.
Professor Matthew D. Stroud from the Department of Modern Languages at Trinity University, in San Antonio, Texas, has created this website with loads of Spanish Grammar exercises with auto correction.
Annenberg Learner is a North American company whose multimedia resources help teachers increase their expertise in their fields. Many programs are also intended for students in the classroom and viewers at home. You can watch episodes of ‘Destinos’, a soap-opera in Spanish. The episodes begin with basic and end with advanced language, providing a fun and effective way to practice your Spanish listening skills.
This is an excellent website to view how the sounds of Spanish are articulated and to learn the basics of Spanish phonetics.
Centro Virtual Cervantes – Lecturas Paso a Paso
The virtual resource centre of the Cervantes Institute (Centro Virtual Cervantes) has a section called ‘Lecturas paso a paso’ where you can find reading materials organised according to your level.
Centro Virtual Cervantes – Historias de debajo de la luna
Another section called ‘Historias de debajo de la luna’ where you can find reading materials from different countries written by locals who describe their customs, legends and others.
The University of Manitoba in Winnipeg, Canada has created this website as part of a Project to collect stories from all over the world written in Spanish. A great resource for advanced learners who want to branch out and experience some Spanish texts.
Among the many available options, these dictionaries seem particularly helpful to us. Most of them have also a free mobile app version downloadable in Android and iPhone.
A multilingual Spanish dictionary that also provides grammar tips, flashcards and other useful resources for Spanish language learning, which makes it particularly useful for beginner students.
This multilingual online dictionary allows you to find synonyms, definitions and translations of Spanish words from and into several languages. Very useful for students of all levels.
This monolingual dictionary is particularly useful for intermediate or advanced level students. It is a very comprehensive source because it has been developed by theReal Academia de la Lengua Española (Royal Academy of the Spanish Language), which is the is the official institution responsible for overseeing the Spanish language in Spain.
Diccionario del español coloquial
Sometimes you may have to search for informal expressions that don’t show up in regular dictionaries. This monolingual dictionary providing definitions of colloquial expressions in Spanish can help in such situations.
A monolingual dictionary for foreigners with easy definitions, provided by SM, a Spanish publishing house.
Fundación de la Lengua Española
The Spanish Language Foundation is a private institution created to respond to a twofold desire: on the one hand to promote the Spanish language and culture in countries where Spanish is not the main language, and secondly to spread the image of Spain and Castilla y León throughout the world. It offers different multimedia channels for students to practice their Spanish and know more about the culture:
- Practica Español Website to practice Spanish with EFE PRESS news contents, supported by the Instituto Cervantes and the Fundación de la Lengua Española.
- Campus Virtual Website that offers a wide range of online courses to learn Spanish
- Canal desarrollo A portal with content related to immigration, information for immigrants, visas, working experience, etc.
Professor Orlando R. Kelm from the University of Austin, Texas has created this site to provide video activities for Spanish students of different levels. Spanish Proficiency Exercises is a compilation of brief video clips in which native speakers of Spanish from various locations throughout Latin America and Spain demonstrate various language tasks. The videos come with transcripts as well.
A very useful compilation of Spanish learning materials and resources provided by the British broadcaster.
The British newspaper has created this language resources website with a collection of useful articles to read, vocabulary and grammar structures for different situations and audio files.
A resource for students and teachers. Students can use it to learn or to supplement their learning and teachers can use it to supplement their lessons plans. It offers free videos made by Spanish speakers or students all with a teaching point about vocabulary, grammar or culture. Each video is accompanied by a script and a translation.
A language portal to learn Spanish with a dictionary, games, quizzes, etc.
A section from the virtual resource centre of the Cervantes Institute where you can find games to learn and practice your Spanish.
Official webpage of the Centro Virtual Cervantes, part of Instituto Cervantes. You will find lots of resources and information.
Diccionario de gestos españoles
A great website where common gestures used by Spanish speakers are explained and illustrated with examples of use.
One of the most interesting Spanish websites to find movies free or at a low cost to watch online with very good quality. It includes independent movies from all over the world.
A digital magazine sponsored by the government of Castilla y León that includes videos (and their transcript) about Spanish and Latin American history and art.
TV, radio and press
La nación http://www.lanacion.com.ar/
Buenos Aires Herald http://www.buenosairesherald.com/
Radio Caracol http://www.caracol.com.co/
Antena tres http://www.antena3.com/
El país http://elpais.com/
El público http://www.publico.es/
El mundo http://www.elmundo.es/
La Jornada http://www.jornada.unam.mx/ultimas
El Universal http://www.eluniversal.com.mx/noticias.html
Alba ciudad http://albaciudad.org/wp/
El Universal http://www.eluniversal.com/
El Correo del Orinoco http://www.correodelorinoco.gob.ve/
Podcasts are certainly one of the most convenient ways to develop our listening skill. You can download them onto your computer or smartphone and listen to them during a commute, working out, tidying your place, having a coffee… Nowadays, you can listen to many podcasts that are specifically designed for Spanish language learners (apart from the ones that are for Spanish speakers which might be too challenging for you) and you can download them easily from their websites or online broadcasters like Itunes. These are only a few of the many you can find:
Audiria is free and provides programs for all levels. They have an enormous amount of material as they upload podcasts every day. They also provide exercises and other resources.
A lot of free material as well as the chance to listen to hosts from many Spanish-speaking countries so you can be exposed to some of the many accents of Spanish.
Created by an English-Colombian real life couple, Spanish obsessed prides podcasts for beginners, intermediated and advanced students.
Quite formal in structure and focused on grammar. Their website contains a lot of additional materials.
Very complete podcast that emphasizes conversational Spanish on up to date subjects. It comes with transcriptions, worksheets and vocabulary tasks.
You can listen to their many podcasts, do their exercises or check out their links for videos and resources.
Notes in Spanish is a very popular podcast produced by an English-Spanish couple that lives in Madrid. It provides materials for every level and they also focus in conversational everyday Spanish.
A live Spanish class where up-to-date news are told at a slighter slower pace with the help of flash cards, grammar support, pronunciation practice etc.
A podcast for learners of Spanish who wish to revise and update what they have learnt. In the blog you can find the transcription of some of the most up-to-date news and videos which are being discussed in Spain.
Even if their effectiveness is still put into question by some, nobody can deny that mobile apps for language learning are generally convenient, attractive and cheap (or even free), which is certainly why they are becoming so popular. These are just a few of the many apps available for you to learn and practice Spanish, but you can find reviews and comparative charts like this easily on the web.
It’s free, and, while not particularly grammar heavy, it doesn’t only focus on vocabulary, allowing you to practice verb tenses, for example.
Free and particularly focused to acquire and memorize vocabulary, as the name implies.
A very original game to learn Spanish… with cats. Seriously. It is also free.
A Spanish language course, more than a game. They offer some free contents, but otherwise requires paid subscription.
A game that allows you to learn and practice Spanish as you compete with other users. It contains some free materials, but otherwise requires paid subscription.
Apart from the usual ones (facebook, Twitter, Whatsapp…), which can also be useful tools for language learning and practice, certain social networks are focused on language learning, such as:
An online space where you can meet speakers of other languages and have virtual exchanges to practice any language you are learning.
A social network for Spanish language learners.
Website that allows you to practice your written skills with a pen pal.
Purchasing Spanish books in Hong Kong
Most bookshops in Hong Kong sell Spanish dictionaries or grammar books, however, to buy textbooks in Hong Kong there are limited options:
An online store that provides books for people learning or teaching Spanish in Hong Kong. They also distribute other materials printed and/or made in Spain such as educational toys/games, backpacks or notebooks.
This bookstore has a limited range of Spanish books on sale. It’s located in Central (2/F Duke of Wellington House, 14, Wellington Street, Central). Tel: 2526 9215
A Language school in Hong Kong which sells a selection of textbooks from Spanish publishing houses.
Spanish learning materials publishing houses from Spain
On-line shops in Spain
A famous franchise of bookstores around Spain. Their flagship store is in Madrid (C/Gran Vía) but they have a website as well where you can browse for ELE materials.
A wholesale book distributor that sells books at a lower price from that offered by publishers. They also serve retail.