Saturday, June 7, 2008

Let's talk about podcasts

For the foreign-language student, podcasts can be very useful. To listen to them, you don't really even need an MP3 player. You could just listen to them on your laptop or desktop. Here are the ones I listen to on a regular basis:

1) SpanishPod - There are five levels offered: newbie, elementary, intermediate, upper-intermediate and advanced. I mostly listen to the last three. Normally you'll hear a dialogue and then the host and teacher break it down afterwards. They talk about the grammar and vocabulary in some detail. Please check the web site for more information.

I enjoy these podcasts a great deal. The hosts are quite personable and talk about everyday topics which I have found to be very useful. If you have an mp3 player that displays lyrics, you can also read the transcripts of the dialogue as you listen. If not, you can see the transcript on your computer if you have iTunes (right-click on podcast-->get info-->lyrics tab). Peninsular and Latin American Spanish

2) Notes in Spanish - This is done by a husband and wife team. Ben is originally from England, but has been in Spain for many years. Marina is from Spain. There are three levels: beginner, intermediate and advanced. I listen to the last two. They have also put out some videos. I enjoy their podcasts as well - they seem like old friends to me. You can also post in the forum about the podcasts as well as many other topics. It's a great way to practice your written Spanish. Peninsular Spanish

3) Español Segunda Lengua para Todos - This podcast is all in Spanish. First she talks about a topic and then she goes back and explains certain phrases and words. On her podcast page you can find the transcript in Spanish and English. What I like to do is copy the Spanish version, then paste it in the lyrics section in iTunes (see above). This way I can read the transcript on my iPod as I listen. Peninsular

4) Radio Nederland - Now, this isn't exactly an educational podcast. It's simply a news podcast that I like to listen to while cooking supper. I don't undertand everything they say, but my comprehension is improving. It's a good one to have on in the background as you're doing other things. I try not to worry too much if I don't catch it all.

5) El Bloguipodio - "Los blogueros" talk mainly about politics, but believe it or not they actually make it entertaining. I really enjoy listening to them when I have the time. They're based out of Washington, D.C.

Okay, so we've talked about a few podcasts. Now what? The next thing is to download iTunes which is free. For me, since I have an iPod, this is about the best way to subscribe to the podcasts and keep them organized.

What are some of your favorite Spanish-language podcasts? Please list them in the comments section. ¡Gracias!


Josh said...

I usually just listen to music or the news while I'm at work but I should start listening to some of these podcasts to sneak in a little extra Spanish time.

Josh said...

I just started listening to the SpanishPod podcasts at work. They are great! I like how they have a conversation and then go back and explain the grammar and vocabulary.