The Gringa Way is a 5 Phase Principle and 5 Phase Method designed specifically for native English speaking people who want to learn usable Spanish without the headaches, and years of frustration spent in a traditional classroom. The Gringa Way provides students the ability to learn the Spanish language from the ground up, learning the basics and working your way forward, phase by phase. The technique emphasizes correlating your native English language to the Spanish language, making it easier for you to correlate the foreignness of learning a second language.
The Gringa Way 5 Principles:
1.Relate your native English language to learning Spanish – this is the foundation of the The Gringa Way. Most Spanish teaching is geared towards getting you to think in Spanish and forgetting your English language while learning Spanish. However, if you don’t think about how to relate what you are learning and how to compare the language that you already know (English) to the one you are trying to learn (Spanish), how will you be able to make sense out of it? That is why The Gringa Way focuses all learning of the Spanish language to things that you can relate to in English, therefore helping you make more sense out of it!
2. Reading, Listening, Speaking, Writing – This is the order that The Gringa Way emphasizes learning the Spanish language. Most schools around the world teach reading first, then writing, then listening and finally speaking. This is probably why, even if you have learned vocabulary or Spanish grammar before, you are afraid to speak because you are afraid not saying something correct. Speaking is the most crucial part of a language, and for second language acquisition, the hardest. It is the most crucial because you have to speak to people in order to communicate. Of course you could always write down each thing you want to say on a piece of paper and hand it to people but you and I both know that doesn’t happen and in reality, can’t work effectively. Therefore, you have to know how to speak! It is the hardest part of learning a second language because it takes more brain effort, due to the fact that you need to remember what you have read and learned and you need to do so faster (unlike writing where you have enough time to write down your thoughts, check your text for errors, erase if incorrect, etc.). To give you an example, I took 4 to 5 years of Spanish before I entered a classroom where we were actually asked to speak and give oral answers and opinions, instead of just listening to the teacher talk.
3. Practice Out Loud, Don’t Just Read! This is very important and you should adapt this principle from the time you read the first Spanish word in this book. As mentioned in principle two, if you just read and do not speak, you will feel inhibited when you finally try to speak. You should practice saying every word out loud, this way you will train both your brain and your mouth, allowing both of them to help you communicate verbally!
4. Do not Translate Word for Word – Spanish is a very literal language (which will be covered in this book) but it cannot always be translated literally from English. You need to encompass the Spanish language as an overall whole. Once you see the big picture, you will realize the importance of not always translating word for word!
5.Motivation & Memory- These are the key ingredients you must have and continue to use throughout your Spanish language learning journey. Motivation is numero uno! You must be motivated to learn. Even if you are being forced to learn for a certain reason; i.e. mandatory class in high school or college, in order to obtain a new job, receive a promotion, etc. you must continue your motivation! Memorizing and remembering what you are learning is key to retention, which ultimately provides you with your knowledge. Last but not least, you need to PRACTICE! Think about sports players or Olympians….do you think they get to be as good as they are without practice? Not a chance! They dedicate so much of their time to practicing their specialty. That is why they get so good at it!
The Gringa Way Five Phases:
Phase 1 – Introduction to Basics
The Introduction Phase in The Gringa Way serves to introduce you to the language, as well as the most basic elements of the Spanish language. The idea is to start with very simple and basic concepts and relate them to the English language. This will provide you with an easier way to correlate the learning of Spanish to English
Phase 2 – Basics
The Basics Phase continues to build on from the Introduction Phase and introduces you to more basic elements of the language. This phase is important because you have already been exposed to the most elemental components of a language and now begin learning more concepts.
Phase 3 – Basics Intermediate
This phase is where you will start to advance a little more with your Spanish. It is where you should begin to be able to start using your retention of the basics to help you see the language more clearly.
Phase 4 – Intermediate
The Intermediate phase is where you really start getting further into the core of the language and start learning items that will advance your availability to be able to speak. This phase contains a lot of the “meat and potatoes” of the language and also contains some of the most confusing items for English speakers. This section will baffle you at first and even frustrate you but it is imperative that you learn the items in this phase backwards and forward.
Phase 5 – Advanced
This is the last phase and it really is the pinnacle of your Spanish language acquisition. Not only will you be exposed to one of the most important areas of the Spanish language but also one of the most difficult to learn, verbs. This is a very crucial phase as you will not only learn items that are needed in order to speak in a Spanish sentence but you will also learn how to form a sentence. You will be able to incorporate everything you have learned in Phases 1- 4 in this phase as well.