Mission 5: "Do you speak Spanish?"

People tend to ask this question when they first meet you. For whatever reason, they want to check if you can speak their language. This lesson will teach you the various ways to respond to this question. You can simulate conversations by clicking on a character bubble and taking the part of A or B.

A: ¿Tú hablas español?
B: Sí, yo hablo español.
A: Ah, muy bien.


Yo hablo // Tú hablas - "Hablar" ("To speak") is your first major Spanish verb. "I speak" is "Yo hablo" and "You speak" is "Tú hablas"

"Yo" and "Tú" - Spanish is more flexible than English, in that these words are kind of optional. You can say "Yo hablo" and "Hablo" and they mean pretty much the same thing. The same is true with "Tú hablas" and "Hablas". The difference is very slight. I found it hard to drop the "Yo" and "Tú" at first, because I wanted to make sure people knew what I was saying. Eventually though, you'll realize that dropping these words can make your Spanish appear more natural.

Phrase Builder

Click on an icon to practice these phrases. Try to mimic the accent and intonation in each recording but don't get too stressed out about saying it perfectly.

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Un poco

This means "A little". Even if you know quite a bit of Spanish, this is a good phrase to have handy when someone asks you about your Spanish.

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Lo siento. No hablo español.

"I'm sorry, I don't speak Spanish." This is a polite way of saying you don't speak Spanish.

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Estoy apprendiendo

This means "I'm studying" as in "I'm still studying". This phrase also helps when someone praises you about your Spanish, "Su español es muy bueno." ("Your Spanish is great."). You can say, "Gracias. Estoy apprendiendo."

Conversation Simulator

Click on the icon below to practice answering the question. Try to answer the question like someone is really asking you. You can answer, "Sí, yo hablo español." or "Un poco" or "Lo siento. No hablo español"

¿Tú hablas español?

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Lesson Quiz

1. What does "Un poco" mean?

2. How do you ask someone if they speak English?

Question 1: The correct answer is "A little."

Question 2: The correct answer is "¿Tú hablas inglés?" Remember we use "hablo" when we are talking about ourselves and "hablas" when we are talking about the person in front of us.

Great job! You got both questions right!


Ready for more?

Check out the next lesson or go back for a quick review.