It’s time to start setting up a glossary of useful terms on this website, so I don’t drive the regular readers mad by repeating 10 times a week what, for example, an intercambio is. So here is entry number 1, the intercambio, which I’ll cite for the first time in the next post.
Intercambio (m.) – Language exchange
The intercambio system is designed to help people improve their spoken language fluency, and is widely used in Spain. The idea is to meet up with a real Spanish speaking person, in a bar or cafe for example, and chat for half the time in Spanish, and and half the time in English. That way both of you get great, natural practice in the language you want to learn (of course this works with any combination of languages).
Plus you get to make a new friend, and probably meet their friends too… and then you’ll be speaking Spanish all the time! I cannot recommend the intercambio strongly enough as a way to improve your Spanish, and to feel a whole lot happier about life if you have just arrived in Spain (again, there is no reason why this shouldn’t work outside Spain too – see the intercambio section in the forum to find a long-distance intercambio!).
Intercambios can be found via: notice boards in language schools, bookshops and universities; in classified ads in the local English press, and on-line small ads services such as loquo.com; asking around (if you teach English, your students will know lots of people). Demand for English speakers is high, so it shouldn’t be hard to have several intercambios on the go at once!
One more thing: a lot of people use the intercambio game in a ‘you never know who I might meet’ dating fashion. Nothing wrong with that – I actually married my favourite intercambio 😉
What Spanish terms would you like to see in the NFS Spain Glossary? Suggestions below please!