Our teaching methodology is ideal for building practical Spanish conversational skills at a fast pace.
SpanishBlackbelt provides its Spanish language instruction in accordance to accelerated language learning principles through:
By delivering personalized Spanish courses that have been designed in house to attract the interest of students with different backgrounds using a variety of multi-sensory materials and activities to adapt to students' learning styles in accordance to the theory of multiple intelligences.
By replicating a total language immersion experience through the use of proprietary learning material and role plays, and by having structured guided conversations almost entirely in Spanish softened up with the aid of body language, dramatization, and visual aids, while increasing speed and sophistication of the language gradually as the students travels through the different class levels of Spanish fluency.
By keeping things simple and systematically introducing chunks of vocabulary, patterns and structures while focusing on what is practical or strictly needed, pointing out similarities and differences between both languages, and relying on exemplification, repetition, roleplaying, and mnemonic techniques to aid with memorization.
Exposing students to the cultural, social, political and economic aspects of Latin-American countries and the Hispanic community in general by matching them with a professionally-trained native Spanish speaking tutor.
Our Spanish classes are very practical and conducted almost entirely in Spanish using a speech that gently increases in complexity, speed and sophistication so that you can get the feeling that you are understanding almost everything that the tutor is saying. You will learn to speak in Spanish in a context that considers your unique needs, interests and prior knowledge simply because we know students will learn faster when they are paying attention to something they care about. If taking private classes, we could include more English in the sessions although the more Spanish is used the quicker you will start using the language verbally.
Our Spanish classes focus mainly on developing your speaking and listening skills because this is precisely what interests most of our students. Having said so, attention is also given to develop all other skills of the language such as reading, writing, grammar and vocabulary acquisition. Of course, if you are taking private classes, we could also focus exclusively on any specific skills if that is what you are looking for.
You will be using Spanish in engaging exercises and activities that will prepare you to communicate with confidence in any situation. When a weakness or problem area is identified, your native Spanish speaking tutor will take the time to explain the theory you need to know to overcome that weakness.
All small group classes will be 2-hours long. A typical one-on-one class will last 2 hours but you could choose to meet as little as 1 hour long or as much as 4 hours long. In each of those hours you will be working on improving a specific structure and vocabulary set. The framework to make this possible will be provided by a syllabus that we will be using to give structure to your classes.
Each syllabus will have 16 chapters, and ideally we will aim at working on the content of each chapter in an hour. Our syllabi consist of 16 chapters designed to enhance your language skills. Each chapter focuses on different aspects such as grammar and vocabulary to provide a comprehensive learning experience.
We value your comfort and productivity, which is why we've incorporated a 5-minute intermission between each hour. This allows for brief relaxation and reflection before diving into the next chapter, ensuring that you stay fresh and engaged throughout your learning journey.
In line with our commitment to interactive learning, we have eliminated traditional lectures from our classes. Instead, we provide you with the necessary theoretical framework through our user-friendly online student center. This pre-class preparation ensures that your in-class time is exclusively devoted to participatory activities, enabling you to put your Spanish skills into practice immediately.
Get ready for an exhilarating experience as we switch activities every 15 minutes, keeping the classes interesting and dynamic. By immersing yourself in a range of engaging exercises, you'll not only master Spanish efficiently but also develop the confidence to use it in real-life situations.
While all our tutors are fluent in English, they have been specifically instructed to teach you in Spanish, and we believe this approach will greatly benefit you. Embracing a full immersion experience might seem challenging at first, but we assure you that the long-term advantages are worth it. By learning through this method, you will achieve better and faster results in developing your conversational Spanish skills.
We understand that initially, you may feel more comfortable using English, and your tutor is happy to accommodate that. However, we kindly request that you consider trusting our expertise and immerse yourself in the Spanish language as much as possible. While your tutor can assist you in English when necessary, please note that progress may be slower compared to fully embracing the immersion approach.
Rest assured, even during classes conducted entirely in Spanish, you have the freedom to interrupt your tutor at any time and request explanations in English. Your tutor is committed to making sure you understand the lessons through various means, such as gestures, acting, writing, drawing, speaking slowly, simplifying grammar, and carefully selecting words. These techniques are specifically designed to minimize any potential frustration while still providing you with the valuable exposure to the Spanish language.
We genuinely believe that immersing yourself in Spanish will yield tremendous benefits in your language learning journey. Trust in our methodology, and you'll soon witness the remarkable progress you can make.
Most of our Spanish classes focus on developing your conversational skills without losing attention to reading, writing, grammar and vocabulary acquisition.
Some private classes may instead focus mostly or exclusively on any of these other skills as per the request of the student. There should be no need to sign up for supplemental classes anywhere else.
Most of our Spanish students are mostly interested in improving their speaking abilities. We strongly believe that this objective is not achieved in a short time by paying too much attention to grammar. It is indeed grammar that makes most people lose confidence while speaking.
The idea is that there is only a limited amount of time to be exposed to the language. Studying grammar would distract you from your ultimate objective.
Our method is deductive. You practice in class using the target language in role plays, dialogues, conversations and presentations that address your topics of interest... and then stop to review the grammar/areas that your tutor identified as areas of opportunity for improvement. Grammar, therefore, is analyzed only when specific mistakes are made. That way you learn it within a context so that you can recall what you learn easier.
Please note however that grammar is not the enemy. It is only the enemy if poorly taught. A student will never be able to converse fluently without addressing it. Our approach is to incorporate grammar principles (or logic and structure as we call it) in each conversational class so that a new topic is worked with extensively and verbally in a fun way. If not being able to use and distinguish the tenses for example, a student will most likely end up making significant mistakes as part of their job, and may even put people at risk.
Our Spanish tutors undergo a meticulous selection process, rigorous training, and continuous monitoring to ensure that they possess the necessary flexibility and expertise to adapt our curriculum to your specific requirements. We prioritize your unique learning needs and strive to provide personalized instruction tailored to your strengths and weaknesses.
To further support your learning journey, we have developed comprehensive materials that are accessible through our online student center. These materials have been carefully crafted to address a wide range of proficiency levels, ensuring that you receive targeted instruction appropriate for your skill set and class format. We highly recommend utilizing these resources to ensure thorough coverage of the essential structures and vocabulary relevant to your level before progressing to the next.
By combining the adaptability of our tutors with the comprehensive materials we offer, we are dedicated to providing you with an exceptional learning experience that caters to your individual needs.
Yes. All of our teaching material has been developed by our Academics Department and is accessible online at no extra cost by our students and Spanish tutors.
This material includes a syllabus that will cover topics related to the emphasis you showed interest on, Spanish grammar guides, role plays, conversations, multimedia material and much more.
We do not use text books or grammar books. Grammar books are normally not good tools to learn a language. Most of them are too long, impractical and confusing. They can sometimes be used, though, as reference to clarify ideas.
Our online student center, in contrast, is much better simply because it covers what you need to use in most conversations in very simple terms.
Please note that if you require us to follow a specific book, and not our own material, you will be responsible for sharing this material with your tutor electronically by either providing her/him with a pdf, a link to it, or by screen sharing. If the book is only available in physical form and you would need your tutor to have a copy of it, you will need to send us the link to the book on Amazon and add the cost of it to your tuition. We would then purchase it and send it to the instructor. The cost to purchase the book will be non-refundable.
Teaching material is accessible by our current students at no extra charge through our site. There students will be able to access all material to be used in class and additional resources to complement your face-to-face instruction with some self-studying at home.
Students will be able to generate printouts of this material 24x7.
Yes! All of our learning materials are embedded in Hispanic culture. Materials include among others, role plays of situations that you would encounter while interacting with Hispanics here or in their native soils. They may also include hispanic songs, movies, newspaper articles, and topics of discussion relevant to Latin America and Spain.
The fact that your tutor will be a native Spanish speaker will also help you get more comfortable interacting with Hispanics while getting used to his/her sense of humor, opinions, interaction, topics of interest, and in depth knowledge of issues facing the Hispanic world.
To safeguard our intellectual property, only our current students have access to our proprietary teaching material. Just like all of them, you will have access to it at no extra cost once you enroll for any of our courses.
If after you are given access to this material you believe that it will not add the value that you were expecting, you will be entitled to request a full refund provided that you notify our office of this request by email within the following 48 hours after you had your first session. You may also request to be transferred to a higher or lower level if needed.
In order to provide you with some detail, though, material for each of the 10 levels of our course for Everyday Conversation for example includes 16 chapters, each with a specific vocabulary set and grammar structure with which you will be working on with the help of your tutor.
The syllabus for each level will include theory that you can read at home to be more ready to participate in class when trying to put in practice that theory. These syllabi will also include activities suggested to be done at home (homework) so that you can try to apply that theory yourself first before you apply it in front of your classmates and/or tutor. Your tutor will then guide you in class through different participatory activities and help you along the way with praise, reinforcement, and aid.
Main objectives for each of our levels can be found here.
Most people have some prior knowledge of Spanish when joining the program. They have either studied it in high school or in college. Despite this experience being welcomed, students may still be placed in the Beginner 1 level, Pearl Belt, for example, if not able to recall or use the language verbally and efficiently in the present tense.
Homework is not mandatory in private one-on-one classes but highly recommended. Homework is required as part of group sessions.
As part of your homework, you will be required to read theory related to the concepts to be worked on in each of the following classes so that you can take advantage of the program. Homework will also include some assignments so that you can attempt to put into practice those concepts you read about. It is by trying on your own and bringing those efforts back to class that you will take most advantage of the program. Your native Spanish tutor will be able to clarify any doubts that you may have and engage you in activities so that you can put into practice in real conversations the topics to which each session will be dedicated.
Homework typically will require probably the same number of hours per week as the number of hours that you meet with your tutor. As an alternative, but only in the case of one-on-one classes, we can dedicate time of class to do the activities normally recommended to be done at home, but this will slow down the new content coverage in half.
Between theory, at-home activities and in-class exercises, expect to work with learning materials anywhere between 2 to 10 pages per hour of class. Teaching materials are accessible only by active students.