Emphasis in Spanish Words: Listening Challenge

Tell the difference between an instruction and preterite

So how important is emphasis in Spanish words?  It’s actually pretty important.  In Spanish, accents (tildes) are important and can often be overlooked by Spanish students.  If you are like Cody they can be hard to hear as well.  Let’s take a look at an example from the video.

Llamé a la secretaria. – I called the secretary

Llame a la secretaria. – Call the secretary

Everything is the same except for that little accent mark or tilde over the “e” in the first sentence.  Did you notice how much the sentence changed with the use of the accent mark/tilde?  It changed an “order” or “instruction” to a sentence in “past”.  This is really easy to see when you have the word written down in front of you but can be a lot harder when you are just listening to someone speak.

Time To Practice

So in this video, we are going to do just that.  In the first part of the Spanish practice, Maria is going to say a word and you have to figure out what syllable in the word is getting the emphasis.  For the second part of the practice, Maria is going to say a sentence in Spanish and you will have to figure out if the sentence is an instruction or in the past.  You will do this by listening for the emphasis like in the first activity.  The emphasis that Maria puts on words in the sentence with accents will let you know if the sentence is in the past or if the sentence is an instruction.

Now if you have trouble when you are speaking Spanish giving the emphasis on words in the past, we have a tip for you.  Every time you see a tilde picture someone pinching you right as you are about to say it.  This will give you the emphasis that the tilde will need for people to understand.  Just make sure you do not go crazy with it and look as if you are an angry Spanish student.  Maria says that it is important to overexaggerate the sound and then over time as you speak, slowly dial it back so that it sounds more natural.

It can be a hard topic to get your head around but if you keep practicing it will make sense.  Also, remember if you liked this video make sure to head over to youtube and give it a thumbs up and subscribe.

We also did part two around this topic you can watch it here.

 

How did you do? Do you understand the importance of emphasis in Spanish words?  It can be a hard topic to get your head around but if you keep practicing it will make sense.  Remember if you liked this video make sure to head over to youtube and give it a thumbs up and subscribe.

If you like this video then you will love our courses.  We have a basic course that will help you get started in learning the language.  We also have a subscription course for intermediate and advanced students.  More information below or click the link below to learn more.

Check out our Spanish Course!

For intermediate and advanced Spanish students we have a membership called Español En Uso.  It is like a gym membership for you Spanish.  Everything you need to get over any roadblocks with learning the language.  Inside the membership area, you will find several courses designed by Maria specifically for problems students at this level face.  Courses that will help you understand native speakers better and understand TV shows.  There is also a book and movie club with live discussion every month.  Also, there are live classes every month where Maria works with select students and helps them with their Spanish.  You also get access to our closed Facebook group where you can interact with other Spanish students like yourself and get feedback from Maria on your Spanish.  If you are interested click here or the image below!

espanol en uso emphasis in spanish words

Want more Spanish Listening Activities?

If you like this type of video you can find more Spanish Listening Activities here.  Too difficult for you then check out some of our other videos with Cody and Maria here.

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Practice your Spanish listening with us!

Have fun and improve your Spanish listening skills with our interactive activities!  Click here to begin boosting your Spanish listening skills with our engaging and entertaining posts.

If you’re finding the listening exercises too difficult, click here to watch these videos for a more gradual learning experience with Cody and Maria.

Remember to subscribe to our YouTube channel for more Spanish listening material and to keep improving your skills!

Learn all the Spanish you need for real life in a practical, fun, and easy-to-understand way with Maria and Cody.  

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Unlock your Spanish voice!

Learn all the Spanish you need for real life.

Unlock your Spanish voice!

Learn all the Spanish you need for real life.