Let’s start off by saying that no particular language learning plan (least of all Spanish) will work without hard work and diligence. You will encounter setbacks; that’s ok. Just power through them.
As I said in the review of Fluenz, I believe that adult learning is different than that of a child natively learning a language. We can learn grammar and even though it may feel dry, the adult brain will pick up on those structures as ‘tricks’, so to speak, and eventually internalize them.
Having said that, no one wants an grammar-only approach. That’s why learning how to form sentences from the get-go is important. Learning that an la manzana es roja or el auto es blanco doesn’t help when you want to strike up a conversation with an interesting person at a bar in Buenos Aires.
So here are a couple different systems that I think give a holistic approach to Spanish.
- Pimsleur + Madrigal’s Magic Key + Spanish for Dummies
- Synergy Spanish + Spanish for Dummies
- Rocket Spanish + Madrigal’s Magic Key
- Fluenz + Madrigal’s Magic Key
Fluenz is one of the most diverse programs out there (audio, speaking, grammar, real-life situations, games, etc).
Pimsleur is supremely underrated due to it being audio only but if you go through all three levels, it’s very powerful.
Rocket Spanish is very audio based as well but adds games and exercises.
Synergy is much like a software version of Madrigal’s in that it’s based around the tricks of learning 138 words that unlock a ton of sentences and structures (which is why I paired it with Spanish for Dummies).
Lastly, I’d suggest picking up a good Spanish-English/English-Spanish dictionary. Or use Google Translate.
This is a lot of information to process. This isn’t a quick learning process. It’s a commitment. But don’t let that paralyze you. Jump in. Work hard. Follow-through and soon you’ll be speaking Spanish as well!