The best way to learn Spanish?

In the Costa Blanca News (Spain) this week I came across a column that hit on the right way to learn. It presented a passage in English and followed it immediately with a translation of the passage in Spanish underneath. When I first started learning Spanish I found parallel texts like this had a much greater effect than expected. Even though much of the language was too difficult for me, after reading lengthy passages of Spanish with an English translation handy, I felt I was picking up much more than vocabulary. I felt I was gradually getting a feel for the language even if I could not produce any evidence of this in my own output. I was getting a feel for basic grammatical constructions and also a feel for the underlying attitude, mood and psyche of the author. Perhaps more credence should be given to the use of parallel texts when language teaching generally?


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