There are no teachers, native speakers or impatient advanced speakers here so:
The charlas take place on Zoom and there are currently five each week: (you can see the days and times here)
When you first arrive you’ll be in the main zoom room and in this room we speak English. So when you first arrive you’ll be greeted in English and you have a chance to settle in without having to worry about speaking any Spanish at all!
Then we do two things:
1. We break into pairs and have a conversation in Spanish, and then
We talk abut everyday things such as where we live, our family, our jobs, our interests etc. Common discussion points are why you’ve started to learn Spanish and how long you’ve been learning.
If you get stuck, you can switch to English to get yourself past the block and then continue in Spanish.
Because your charla partner is also a learner, you’ll probably find the vocabulary not too hard and of course, if there’s a word or phrase you don’t understand, just ask!
The chats last 10-15 minutes and then you’ll be returned to the main group. We have three charlas during the hour. At each one, you’ll get a different person to speak to (depending on how well I can manage the break-out rooms!)
Usually you’ll be in a pair but sometimes you’ll be in a group of three depending of how many people turn up.
2. We return to the main room and talk about our experiences as Spanish learners
One of the benefits of belonging to this group is the ability to talk about our challenges, learnings, breakthroughs.
So after each charla there’s an opportunity for a debrief where we can reflect on how the charla went and what we learned from doing it.
We have these conversations in English so that it’s not a strain to express the sometimes intricate ideas we want to talk about.
At the end of the hour, if you have time, you’re welcome to stay in the main room for our “sobre mesa” where we share stories – both poignant and funny – about when we used our Spanish in el mundo real!
Here’s a typical conversation.
We also talk about tools and resources we’ve found useful.
Then this is not the group for you. There are heaps of resources out there for people wanting teachers or feedback but this is not one of them.
We are different – we just open our mouths and give it a go and nobody interrupts to correct you or tries to give you a lesson.
Watch the introductory video below and decide whether to continue on the the self-assessment / application process.
If you’ve been studying Spanish for a while, have intermediate levels of comprehension and want to practice conversational Spanish, you’ll be a welcome member of this community.
I get it. Many or our members have had difficult experiences using their Spanish with teachers and in practice groups. That’s one of the reason I created ¡Charlemos! to be the way it is!
Check out this video where participants talk about their experience of the group:
“Thank you for such a warm welcome. I have been involved in dozens of group chats and this is 100% different.
Just to give everyone an idea of how phobic I am of speaking Spanish: the night before I know I will be on a chat, I don’t sleep and all day I have anxiety. Most of the time, I am a no-show. Even groups like Rosetta Stone where NO ONE can see you or even know who you are, I have such anxiety that I pay for the class and don’t show up. I have read articles about it and nothing seems to help.
I feel a complete weight has been lifted off and I was so excited when I hung up that I called my husband to tell him. It was a huge step for me. I HIGHLY recommend that anyone who feels even remotely shy to join Tony Burns and his group whenever you can. Thank you Tony and everyone for your patience and kindness. I had so much fun!!!!!!! “
We are not a teaching group so you need to be beyond Beginner. You need to be able to understand every day questions and statements so that you can take part in a conversation.
Your listening skills are more important than your speaking skills because, if you need to or want to, you can respond in English. But you’ll need to be able to understand Intermediate Spanish in order to do that.
I’ve created a self-assessment so that you can check out your level and determine if you’re ready to participate. If you’d like to do the self-assessment, watch the video below and if you understand most or all of it, then it’s worth your while to ask to do the self-assessment.
If you struggle to understand this video, do more work on your listening skills and come back to us later!
How did you get on? Did you understand most of that? If so, it’s worth doing our self-assessment / application to join.
To do that, contact me using Facebook Messenger and let me know you’d like to join ¡Charlemos!
To do this:
i. go to my Facebook Profile and
ii. click the Messenger Button that looks like this:
Tell me you’ve watched the introductory video and you’d like do the self-assessment/application in order to join my community. I’ll send you a link so you can get started.
If you don’t think you’re ready, click here for some suggested resources to help you with your listening comprehension.