Spanish at Lake Chapala – Ajijic Mexico

July 15, 2014

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Hi Everyone,

I hope you’ve been enjoying the fun video Spanis lessons by San Juan de la Boca.

I realize that after I had posted them some of them crashed (beyond my control) as when I republish videos from you tube we’re all at their mercy.

Today, we’ll delve a bit deeper into learning some easy to learn Spanish. These words are easy because you already know them. You just have to say the words using the correct Spanish vowel sounds.  Don’t stress out. Yo can get by here at Lake Chapala with very little Spanish, but if you invest a little time in learning some basics you will save money, please our Mexican hosts, and have a wonderful feeling of achievement.

And an added bonus is that learning a new language is a good way to stimulate our senior (and even Baby Boomer) brain cells to work better.  

OK, Here’s your Lesson in Easy Spanish You already know!  Please scroll down.

Spanish You Already Know
(but probably didn’t know that you knew)

This short lesson in Spanish will teach you thousands of words in
just a few easy steps. But before we get to the easy part I want to
teach you the basic pronunciation rules:

A is always pronounced “ah” like in Father.

E is always pronounced like a long A in English “eh”

I is always pronounced like a long E in English “EE” like in greet.

O is always pronounced “O” as in “”oh” A sort of a nasal O and cut off a
bit. Not Ohhhhhhhhh, but “O”.

U is always pronounced like the double “o” in “cool” or “pool”

H is never pronounced because it is silent.

J is pronounced like the “h” in the word “hen”.

LL is pronounced like the “y” in “Yes”

There are more pronunciation rules but these will get you started.

Step 1.

These words are the words you already know that end in “or”.
Many of these words are the same word in both English and

For example: the actor in English = el actor in Spanish

Other examples: doctor, tractor, interior, color, conductor, error,
favor, professor, exterior, inventor, superior

Note: I have used the Spanish spelling of these words, but I know you
recognize them.

No doubt you can think of many other such words. Now, not
everyone you think of will be the same word in Spanish, but many
will be.

Step 2

This step involves thinking about words that you know in English
that end in “al”.

Many of these words will also be the same in English and in

For example: the animal = el animal

Other examples: Criminal, canal, central, commercial, legal, pedal,
local, musical, natural, personal, rural, social

Note: In Spanish “al” ending words are stressed on the last syllable.
Examples: lo – CAL, pe – DAL, can – AL, etc.

Step 3

This step involves the words you already know in English that end
in “ble”. Many of these words are the same in Spanish.

For example: the cable = el cable

Other examples: notable, terrible, posible, formidable, noble,
notable, flexible, probable, horrible, visible, honorable, inevitable

Note: Spanish words that end in “ble” are stressed on the next to the last
syllable. For example: po – SI- ble, hor – RIB – le, no – TAB – le, etc.

Step 4

Another group of common English words that end in “ic” are also
the same as many Spanish words. But, you must add a final “o” to
the Spanish word. Please only use the technique of adding a final “o” in
this situation. It doesn’t work with other word endings. You can’t add an “o” to
“bean” Beano is not a word in Spanish.

For example: romantic = romantico

Other examples: -publico, Atlantico, artistico, aristocratico,
elastico, automatico, anticeptico, etc.

Step 5

Still more English words are the same. Those that end in “ent” or in
“ant” But these words you will need to add the letter “e” to to get
the same word in Spanish.

For example: the president = el presidente

Other examples: accidente, excelente, conveniente, importante,
elefante (elephant), cliente, diferente, inteligente

Note: Spanish words that end in “ent” or “ant” are stresses on the next to the
last syllable. For example: pre-si-DEN – te, ex-ce – LEN – te, etc.

Also the”g” in inteligente is pronounced as the letter “h” in our word “hen”
So, inteligente is pronounced “intelihente”.

Step 6

Many English words that end in ist can be converted into Spanish
words by simply adding the letter”a”.

For example: the dentist = el dentista

Other examples: pianista, violinista, oculista, capitalista,
comunista, optimista etc.

Step 7

English words ending in “ous” can often be converted to Spanish
by changing “ous” to “oso”.

For example: famous = Famoso

Other examples: curioso, delicioso, generoso, Glorioso, ambicioso,
melodioso, religioso, pomposo

Step 8

This is your final step: If you’re still with us, CONGRATULATIONS.
Your hard work will pay large dividends when you use what you’ve
learned and are greeted with a big smile by your Spanish speaking

This next group is all nouns. Learing a lot of nouns is an excellent
way to get jump started into Spanish. You can act out many verbs
but how do you act out “civilizacion”?

Words in English that end in “tion” can usually be changed into
Spanish by changing the “tion” to “cion”.

For example: civilization = civilizacion

Other examples: descripcion, admiracion, exaggeration,
circulatcion, constitucion, cooperacion, invitacion, distibucion,
institucion, transmiscion, administracion, etc.

Note: An Excellent book where I learned these concepts and many more
shortcuts to getting to what I call “survival” level Spanish quickly is
“Madrigal’s Magic Key to Spanish” by Margarita Madrigal published by

It is usually found in paper back and has a yellow cover.

Available on and here at area stores in Lake Chapala.

Hope you enjoyed this post. Let me know what you think below,

Tu amigo, Sid


  • Dave Salyers

    Sid — Good work on the Spanish language. But a few misspellings: exageracion, circulacion, constitucion, transmission. Regards, Dave

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