Spanish Classes: A Waste of Time and Money

Hello everyone,

Hopefully I do not come across as pretentious or petulant, but I thought I would advise those thinking of spending money to study a Spanish module or any other language at university not to bother, unless, of course, you require a certificate.

I had my first lesson last night and I must say I was horribly disappointed. Because of Lingq, I am used to listening to content that I find interesting, and content that teaches me something of interest. This class covered morbidly boring content which just resulted in me getting bored! I felt unmotivated and uninterested.

If you do not like working in groups or having to perform uninteresting dialogues then this should be another reason to stay clear of the conventional class room. I, personally, did not feel comfortable or natural performing any of these dialogues. The problem was that I had to stick to these rigid dialogues, and could not be creative and natural. Moreover, I just do not like working in groups and do not particularly want to meet new people.

The only interesting thing about this lesson was when the teacher’s colleague walked into the class room and they both briefly begun to speak their mellifluous Spanish.

An interesting side note: the teacher was teaching us ‘muy’ and ‘mucho’. For those who don’t know, both are roughly translated as ‘a lot’ or ‘very’. The teacher explained that ‘muy’ is used with adjectives and ‘mucho’ for verbs. I said “are there any exceptions to this rule?” (actually, I knew there were exceptions as one of Berta’s Spanish dialogues points out), but the teacher replied in English “there are no exceptions to this rule, ‘muy’ is with an adjective and ‘mucho’ with a verb.” After saying this, I heard a few sniggers directed at me from fellow students.

My disappointment wasn’t with the teachers lack of grammatical knowledge (from what she was teaching, It seemed like she had a good grasp of Spanish grammar), or her attitude (she was a very charming lady), but what disappointed me was the class room environment and conventional methodology of teaching foreign languages!

My humble advice, do not waste your money on Spanish classes, but look at the libraries here and elsewhere; read and listen to content that interests and stimulates you.

I should think you’re preaching to the converted csno! What masochistic impulse prompted you to sign up for such a course? :wink:

Chris, why not start a LingQ club at your school?

“I should think you’re preaching to the converted csno! What masochistic impulse prompted you to sign up for such a course? ;-)”

lol. I had to pick an elective module for my undergraduate course and thought I’d give Spanish a try. I mainly picked it because I thought I’d get a relatively easy pass, and maybe just maybe I’d learn something new and interesting. I know I’m preaching to the converted, but there maybe newbies here having doubts about LingQ, and my intention was to quell those doubts with my own experience.

“Chris, why not start a LingQ club at your school?”

I’m not good at organising full stop! Plus, I’m not really that approachable or good with groups. This isn’t a victim story, I just prefer it that way. I promoted LingQ to one girl in class, but she wasn’t interested. If I have another encounter with a student (which I’m sure I will because I have to do all this damn group work), I’ll be sure to promote LingQ.

I love the idea of a LingQ club at a school!

csno, I know not everyone feels like creating a group, but this is a really good idea. Maybe others will read this and try it out and let us know how it goes. I totally agree with you, by the way, on formal classes not always being very stimulating. Those rigged discussions where you sit and talk about how many brothers and sisters you have, or what the weather is like, are very confining.

I would also like to advise caution when shopping for online language schools.

I have discovered that there are some which offer personal, one-on-one lessons, customised the the student’s wishes and needs, but when you actually investigate it is just the tired, old-fashioned learning from a text-book using a fixed lesson plan, with the internet merely substituting for the conventional classroom and without even the social benefits of meeting fellow class-members. How any student could put up with such inflexible and unimaginitive treatment in the twenty-first century is a mystery to me.