Why Spanish Flashcards are effective

Why are Spanish flashcards important?  Well they were important for me and I hope for you. I am an American living in Europe, I thought I did not have the gift to learn languages. Like many people, I believed that language learning is for the gifted or talented, and I do not have talent to learn a language.

I think learning can be frustrating if you have this attitude. Attitude determines altitude.  I basically gave up on language learning as I thought I was quite plainly stunk with learning Spanish.

I figured out a system to learn and it is free and simple.   That is Spanish flashcards.

The problem was I did not understand how to learn Spanish, until I moved to Europe, started to teach and learn languages myself and figured out what works and what does not.

Below I will tell you why I think flashcard of Spanish are the best way to learn a language.

What is the best way to learn Spanish?

I think  with Spanish flashcards you can the learn Spanish language.  Even without any grammar or school.  Why? You can in a short  time memorizes the important words and phases you need to know in a language.

Flashcards test and retest you memory. You use the idea of spaced repetition.  Let me explain, most memory is not a formation problem but a retraction problem.  To speak a language, without referring to the dictionary or relying on an online translator, you need to be able to pull these words and phrases out in an instant. Latina flashcards will train your brain to do this.

The truth is most of learning the language is the ability for the student to memorizes words and phases in a language. Many people want to pick up a language naturally.  This does not work. Why? I am an American and live in Europe and most Americans I know do not speak  a their target language just by living here.  In fact, the only ones I know who have learned to speak a language did so because they studied hard.

Spanish flashcards issue

There are are number of issues with using Spanish flashcards:

  • Too small
  • Words with no pictures
  • Poor choice of vocabulary
Poorly designed Spanish flashcards are clutterd or without pictures.

With Spanish flashcards, like every visual image, design matters.

Flashcard size

I think the best Spanish  flashcards are a reasonable size.

Often Spanish flashcards are too small or no image

Often Spanish flashcards are too small or no image.

Not the size of a business card, like many cards but they should be at least the size of a playing car and thick paper. Publishers of Hispanic flashcards cheap out and print small cards on cheap paper, to save money on their printing and increase their profit margins. However, the problem is this leaves for a very poor user experience.

Spanish flashcard design

The second problem with the second program with flashcards is they have a poor visual design.  Usually they have no picture or some very generic picture which does not aid memory.  They use generic images because to decrease production and design costs.  But the reality is a good flashcard should sensory rich and unique so you will remember it. That is it will stick to your memory.  Your memory part of your limbic system.  Your limbic system imprints things that are important or at least emotional.  This is why for flash cards to be effective they should stand out, like some great painting you like, or your favorite photo.

Too many Spanish words and nouns

Another sales tactic that Spanish flashcards makers do, is give you large quantity of words. Why?  More is better right?

When it comes to Spanish language flaschards - think less is more, or you will be overwhelmed.

When it comes to Spanish language flashcards - think less is more, or you will be overwhelmed.

I do not think so.  In most of my experience teaching students languages, you need to give them the most important things.  It is about efficiency and not over whelming people with too much.  More in my mind equals frustration. Frustration takes the wind out of many people’s sails in learning a languages.

The word choices are very important.  Languages are abstract.  If you focus on learning words in normal Spanish flashcard packs, such as animals and food, then you can name things but not speak the languages.  So speak and understand a language you need to know verbs.  Verbs are the soul of the language.  If you know the action or can express the action of a sentence then you can learn Spanish.

A good Spanish flashcard set

Using flashcards is not just about presenting information. Information about the Spanish language you can get anywhere for free, especially online.  The point of having flashcards is they should be fun to use.

  • Good size and quality paper.
  • Colorful and illustrated with non generic image.
  • Focus on a few important verbs words, rather than countless nouns.

My language flashcards

You can make your own flashcards so you do not need mine. But mine have some advantages.  My flashcards are effective because I have actually learned and taught languages in this way and perfect the art of flashcard learning.  Let me explain.

My Spanish flashcards are beautiful hand drawn art, not some basic photo, they are nice too use and nice to look at, on quality paper and reasonable size.  This will make learning Spanish fun. These language learning tools focus on verbs. I believe verbs are the soul of the Spanish language. Every word I give you is important. These are not necessary a list of high frequency Spanish vocabulary words, rather than are the abstract works that are important to communicate, there is a big difference.

If you use my flashcard pack in a short time you will have the basics of Spanish, beyond the normal language packs. Why? Most Spanish flashcards teach you mostly concrete nouns. Language is an abstraction. nouns are good for naming things and really do not empower you do convey or understand. Nouns are usually implied in the Context.  On he other hand some learning tools give you long Spanish phrases that are too long for your working memory to make use of.

If you have interest write me.

My personal experience with learning a language

The reason I developed these flashcards was, when I first moved to Europe, even though I had studied languages at my high school and my at my university, I basically thought language learn was only for the gifted.

What I did was buy programs, books, and took courses.  Nothing worked, really I do not know if you had the same experience but this was my experience.   I even shelled out the ducats for Rosetta Stone, it was ok, but for me did not really do it. I like the idea but it did not work for me for various reason.

I have also tried free online language courses. They helped but I think people’s brain responds to real physical objects tangible objects better, such as things you can hold and feel and see in your own hand.  Even though I myself am writing language learning software, I prefer physical flashcards.

Then I use some flashcards I bought in Eastern  Europe, where I live.  They were made by a local company. These were reasonable, but not perfect.  They were business card size.   However, I learned much of the the key vocabulary I needed to start to communicate in my target language.  In one month, I learned more than in all my years in school.

In the future if I will want to learn to speak a language I will start with flashcards.   I will not waste any more time or money on other things as I have proven to myself they are for me limited in their effectiveness.I will learn in months or weeks what I tried to learn in years.

If you have had similar experiences trying to learn a language or  with Spanish flashcards of any type please leave a comment as I am interested in accelerated learning.  For me,  Spanish flashcards have become the work horse for my efforts to learn this language because they simply work.