Do you know a little Spanish? How did you learn it? Maybe you took a class, or traveled in a Spanish-speaking country. Maybe you’ve worked through a beginner textbook, or you’re interested in people who speak Spanish.

Have you ever wanted to go beyond these first steps and learn to enjoy the Spanish you know? You can decide to use and enjoy the Spanish you have right now. It will be a great adventure. You will meet new people. It will make you feel young and exhilarated. It will exercise your brain. You will travel intelligently. You will enjoy life more.

I’ve been speaking Spanish, more or less well, for a long time. Here’s what happens: A friend greets me with, “Hola. ¿Qué tal?” I reply,”Bién, muy bién.” Then the conversation abruptly changes to English as my friend apologizes that he or she once knew some Spanish and liked it but has forgotten it all.

What a wasted opportunity. How many entertaining conversations, how many laughs could I have had by now with friends who gathered their courage and plunged into bad Spanish with me?

So come along and have fun with your bad Spanish with me. You may notice I like to have fun with my bad drawings as well!

Scroll down to enjoy more than 50 quick tips and stories to energize your love of Spanish!

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15. Learn vocabulary in categories.

You will remember more of the words you learn if you’ll group them into subject categories. Important categories include parts of the...

14. Learn vocabulary.

Vocabulary has a starring role in language learning. On the one hand, it is the absolute essential to know, and, on the other hand, if...

13. Watch Spanish TV.

Not the news. The announcers speak so fast you’ll be discouraged from the start. Watch one of the extravaganza shows like “Sabadazón” on...

11. Take a CLEP test.

The College Level Examination Program (CLEP) offers two levels of tests of Spanish. Taking a test will cost you about $90 and can be done...

9. Listen to Spanish radio.

It will be mostly music. Try to catch some words. Try to do that for a while before you look online for the lyrics. I’ve had good luck...

8. Apply verb first aid.

If you don’t know how to conjugate the verb, go ahead and use the present tense or even the infinitive of the verb, as we just did with...

7. Learn five workhorse verbs.

To English speakers, the verbs in Spanish are quite confusing. We are accustomed to our own very simple verbs. In the appendix, you’ll...