Learn Spanish by watching Mexican telenovelas!

Or just some good Spanish TV series 🙂

In the ‘90s Mexican telenovelas were quite popular in the Balkans. Ever since I was 5 or 6 years old I used to watch Kasandra with my grandma. I was unable to read the subtitles so I was always asking her to tell me who said what.  I also watched some other ones like Marisol, I really liked her hair so I made my mom do my hair like hers. When I started going to primary school and learned how to read I kept on watching these programs. They were of very poor quality but when you visit your grandma and she’s watching it you get caught up in it, it provokes interest. When I was a bit older and I knew better I started watching Spanish TV shows such as Los Serrano and Un paso adelante that were quite popular in Serbia 10-15 years ago. Since we don’t dub but put subtitles I started understanding Spanish a lot. With time I even stopped looking at the translation. It wasn’t just me, I think everyone in the Balkans knows some basics in Spanish like ‘gracias’, ‘te quiero’, buenas noches’, but also expressions like ‘lárgate de mi casa, ‘estoy embarazada’ and ‘yo soy tu madre’ that are typical for telenovelas.

I could understand Spanish but I couldn’t speak it without knowing any grammar, so I took 2 years of Spanish at university but kept on studying on my own afterwards as well. I didn’t master some grammar stuff yet such as el subjuntivo but I did notice that the TV shows and movies I watched had helped me a lot. When I was doing an a1 level course at uni and I had an oral exam I would stop in the middle of my sentence wondering was ‘ no creo que sea tan dificil’ correct, and what is this ‘sea’ even? When you listen to the language you are learning a lot, you pick up the difficult parts of grammar more easily.

At times knowing so many words is not good for you. I did a free a1 course in a voluntary center and I was super bored cause it was too easy for me so I raised my hand and asked ‘what does joder mean?’ since I heard it a lot on Los Serrano. The teacher was confused and looked at me in disbelief and then replied ‘well literally it means to fuck, but it’s like fuck or damn, it’s something you say when you are angry or shocked’, probably like she was when I had asked her this. I could have guessed the meaning myself. Boredom made me do it.

Besides Mexican and Spanish TV shows being so popular here in the Balkans, Latin music is popular all over the world. This makes learning Spanish so much easier. When the rhythm is in your head you just have to know the lyrics and learn what it means. Lastly, some of my favorite thriller movies in Spanish would be Relatos salvajes, El cuerpo, El laberinto del fauno, Los ojos de Julia. And some new comedies No hay devoluciones, Perdiendo el norte and Señor dame paciencia. Besides English, I do believe that Spanish is one of the easiest languages to learn. And to me personally it is the most beautiful language in the word. It is spoken in so many countries and with so many different accents, to me castellano and the Argentinean accent are the most beautiful. And those two are quite easy to recognize.

And you? Did you watch some Mexican telenovelas or Spanish TV shows? What is your favorite Spanish movie? Let me know in the comments.

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