Spanish in a Month – Learn Spanish Documentary
by Connor Grooms
I just finished watching this Very Good documentary made by Connor Grooms. In it, Grooms documents himself on his one month journey to learn Spanish to conversation fluency. There are a number of great points to point out about this film.
Four Key Take-Aways
1. Grooms’ Background
- I really appreciated the fact that Grooms showed his current Spanish level. He was obviously a very beginner. I’m sure many of us Americans can relate to the level of which Grooms was at prior to his experiment.
- Upon careful inspection into Grooms’ life, from what he discussed in the beginning of the film, it’s clear to me that he has a great habit of learning. Even better, learning things rapidly in a short amount of time. That tells me that Grooms’ has already developed a skill that many beginner language learners may lack. That is, knowing how to learn.
2. A Clear Objective. Defined goals.
- From the beginning Grooms’ redefined fluency for himself. @1min47secs
“It’s easy to get caught up in the word fluency, but what does that really mean? I aim to be functionally conversational. Meaning I can have friends who speak no English, and get by fine, and have normal conversations. But I’m not perfect, and I still don’t know some words.”
- Grooms’ immediately did an 80/20 analysis of what he wanted to learn in Spanish to make the most out of his one-month goal. He got rid of the fluff, omitting grammar, and focused on vocabulary that included “connectors, heavy-use verbs, directional words, and coping phrases.” Grooms’ even guided his private tutor to cater to his personal goals and skipped lessons that he wouldn’t use or need.
2.Found a Mentor
- A recent blog post by Busuu said to “find role models” as a proven way to turn language learning from a chore to a habit. Grooms’ exemplified this trait perfectly when he spoke to the famous polyglot, Benny Lewis (author of the blog Fluent in 3 Months). Even Tony Robbins says “The surest way to achieve success is to model someone who is already successful… find someone who is the best in your chosen field and emulate them.” As his #1 secret key to success.
3. Learned Pronunciation First
- Pronunciation is #1 on my list of first steps to learning a foreign language, so it made me smile to see that Grooms’ applied this to his goal. He turned to Idahosa Ness’ pronunciation training system called The Mimic Method. What’s great about Ness’ program is that not only does he teach the pronunciation of several languages, but he teaches the physiology behind how these sounds are made, the stress within words and sentences, and how sentences flow together.
- I am sure that many of us can attest to how fleeting the feeling of motivation is. I like to remember a quote from a favorite motivation video of mine, Welcome to the Grind which is, “Momentum is a cruel mistress, she can turn on a dime on the smallest mistake.” Grooms’ seemed to be aware of this and so he enlisted the help of Brian Kwong from the Add1Challenge to provide some needed accountability to this ambitious project.
Spanish in a Month is a great documentary, certainly one of a kind. A worth-while investment of 30 minutes of any language leaner’s time.
Connor Grooms now provides a Spanish private tutoring service at https://baselang.com/. When I decide to relearn Spanish, I would definitely give Baselang a try.
You can contact Connor on Twitter @connorgrooms