Learn Spanish Outside The Classroom
By Nora Wallenius.
There’s a new fad that is sweeping across Buenos Aires. And no, it is not just peanut butter. It’s a fun way to meet travelers, expats, and Argentines to practice Spanish, and any other languages you speak, in a pressure free environment. Language exchanges promote cross cultural interaction by bringing groups of people from around the world to one place to practice language skills and share their culture.
Whether you are in Buenos Aires for a day, a week, or a year, being able to communicate in Spanish is a basic necessity. There are many Spanish language schools in the city that are great for learning the grammar and structure of the Spanish language. Taking these skills and implementing them outside of the classroom is where learning a language gets tricky.
Language immersion has been proven as the most effective way to truly become fluent in a language, and a language exchange is the perfect forum to begin on your adventure abroad. You will be able to meet people from many different countries, but most importantly, Argentines! Why is a language exchange different than learning Spanish in the classroom? Everyone attending is out of their comfort zone and so there is no fear of making a mistake or being intimidated by native speakers or professors. Of course, it doesn’t hurt that these exchanges take place with a cocktail in hand, usually at Happy Hour price!
Here are a few options in Buenos Aires to try out for any day of the week:
The best things about Mundo Lingo are it’s three rotating locations across the city and the price – completely free! Mundo Lingo not only encourages Spanish and English interaction, but all other languages are welcome! Participants are given flag stickers of the languages they speak, and are encouraged to look for others with similar flags. Participation is free and the bars offer drink specials. Plus it takes place three nights a week in three different bars in Palermo and Microcentro, so it is convenient and a new experience every time!
Photo Credit: Mundo Lingo
Buenos Aires Swap is a weekly event where you can swap experiences in English and Spanish in a brewery in San Telmo. Participants are given a badge that includes a “word of the day” so partners have a conversation starter. Conversations begin switch from English to Spanish and vice versa every 15 minutes to ensure sufficient practice in both languages. Entrance and one drink is included in the price. The beers are delicious and music is flowing, a perfect atmosphere to let your language inhibitions go.
Photo Credit: Buenos Aires Swap
Tuesdays at 8:00 pm, BREOGHAN Brew Bar, in San Telmo (Bolívar 860)
Participation + drink: AR$50
Spanglish is a language exchange that brings together travelers, locals, and just enough beer in a slightly more structured format. The format is one-on-one “mini-conversations” that last for 10 minutes (5 in Spanish, 5 in English), which gives you the chance to practice your conversation skills with multiple native speakers.
Spanglish also offers individual Spanish lessons and discounted combinations of lessons and events to optimize your learning. Multiple locations and discounts for University students make Spanish a one stop shop for Spanish practice!
Thursdays at Tazz Soho (Armenia 1744 – Palermo) 8PM – 10PM
Saturdays at Funes y La Maga (Borges 1660 – Palermo) 8PM – 10PM
Price: 50 pesos, 30 pesos for full-time university students
Private Classes:The 5 class package (5 private 1-to-1 classes) is 400 pesos.
Promotions: Buy one class an a free event is included.400 pesos for 5 classes and 5 events to practice what you’re learning. For an additional 100 pesos you can have access to all of their events.
If you’re looking to get your Spanish on, make some new international friends, and enjoy a few drinks, attending a language exchange in Buenos Aires should be at the top of your list!