If you want to say the word “to” in Spanish, it’s going to depend on how you intend to use it. The word can either be employed as a preposition or can be assumed as part of the infinitive form of a verb. Generally, “a” can mean “to, at, of, into, by, upon.” “Para” can mean, “for, to, of, by, at, towards.” And “en” can mean “n, on, at, to, into, for.” Yet there are other forms of “to”, including hasta, por, hacia, según, and contra.
Mastering the ins-and-out of “to” in Spanish can seem tricky, but they come naturally with time—particularly if you already speak related languages like English, Italian, or French. Italian and French are closely related to Spanish in the same Latin/“romance language” family—whereas English uses many French and Latin/Italian words that are cognates (lingual cousins of one another). That’s why you’ll notice that there are many English words and phrases like the word “chemistry” that sound remarkably similar in French (chimie), Italian (chimica), and Spanish (química). Many beginning students also find that Spanish has a remarkably easy to understand pronunciation system, with the exception of a few irregularities in pronunciation. This is, quite fortunately, unlike English (known to be one of the most difficult languages to master). Better yet, the Spanish alphabet is a near-match to English and most other major European languages. There are only three additional letters you will need to learn: ch (chay), ñ (eñe), and ll (elle).
With Rosetta Stone’s immersive approach, you’ll learn the language, not just the words. What makes Rosetta Stone unique is that we prepare you to use your new language in the real world. So it’s not just about the features, but what you’re able to do because of them. That way, you’ll be ready to handle any situation while sounding great.
Like anything worthwhile, there are few shortcuts, but if you combine individual practice in the Rosetta Stone award-winning mobile app and practice with other Spanish language learners in Live Tutoring, you can have absolute control over your learning speed and, ultimately, your long-term progress.
Common Words in Spanish
There are basic building blocks that make for a great place to start with learning Spanish. Essential words and phrases like who, what, when, where, why, yes, no, please, etc. can simplify your entrance into everyday conversation in Spanish.
- Sí = Yes
- No = No
- ¿Quién? = Who?
- ¿Qué? = What?
- ¿Por qué? = Why?
- ¿Dónde? = Where?
- Hola = Hello
- Me gusta = I like
- No me gusta = I don’t like
- Adiós = Goodbye
- Por favor = Please
- Gracias = Thank You
- Lo siento = Sorry
- Salud = Bless you
Even with the above in mind, Spanish does have some important differences in pronunciation that can make it feel like a challenge for newer learners. As one example, the letter r is pronounced differently and takes some practice for most new learners. This distinct sound is formed by tapping the tip of the tongue on the roof of the mouth, about a third of the way back in the mouth. Some Spanish language experts suggest new Spanish learners practice making the “tt” sound, as it sounds in the English word butter.
Advancing your skills in pronunciation means getting feedback and making specific corrections (even if word-by-word), practicing, and persisting in your education – until both your tongue and brain develop their own feel for how to form the sounds that compose the Spanish language . Rosetta Stone’s patented speech-recognition engine, TruAccent, is embedded into every lesson to provide real-time feedback on your pronunciation. TruAccent compares your voice to native and non-native speakers, so you get real-time feedback for the most accurate pronunciation. It’s also adjustable, which allows you to fine-tune your accent. Developed by integrating and processing the natural speech of native and non-native Spanish speakers, TruAccent is among the most powerful tools to help you feel confident in your ability to speak more accurately..
Once you’re comfortable with the basics—the real bedrock of the language—it’s natural to transition to the even longer phrases that form the backbone of daily conversations. Rosetta Stone’s short and targeted language lessons are purpose-built with this in mind. The lessons move you towards speaking and conversing with confidence in real-world situations. To continue to progress with Spanish and advance from the newcomer stage to a practical intermediate level, it will help to focus on strategies and tactics that accelerate your understanding of the Spanish language. Rosetta Stone makes that process feel natural.
Try Our Award-Winning App
Surround yourself with Spanish whenever, wherever with the Rosetta Stone app.
Download a unit and knock it out on the train or a flight. Select a 5-10 minute lesson and sneak it in while you wait in line or for your ride to show up. And explore dynamic features, like Seek and Speak, where you can point at an object in the real world and get a translation.
The best part? You don’t have to choose between app or desktop. Both come with your subscription and sync, so you can switch between devices seamlessly.