Bonus: Useful Words pt. 1

You won't always know what to say or how to say it. Learn these useful phrases to take the pressure off communication. It is so much more relaxing to speak when you know what to say if you don't understand or run into other language troubles.

How to use this slider:

1. Click the arrows to flip through the slides.
2. Clicking on the icons will play the recording of the phrase.
3. Try to say each word at least once after the recording. Then go through the slides again and try to say the word before listening to the recording.

¿Qué pasa?

Probably one of the most recognized phrases in Spanish besides "gracias", this phrase means "What's wrong?" You might hear it if you are having trouble speaking and the person wants to know what they can do to help. Use one of the other phrases in this list to convey your communication dilemma, whatever it may be.


No comprendo.

Literally, "I don't comprehend (what you said)" You can remember it by thinking of a robot that says "I do not comprehend". It is good to combine with "Lo siento" ("sorry") to say "Sorry...I don't understand..." ("Lo siento...No comprendo...)" Saying so gives the person you're talking to the chance to rephrase their question or change the subject. To say "I comprehend" or "I got it", you can say, "Yo comprendo."


No entiendo.

Probably one of the most useful phrases in Spanish. Similar to "No comprendo", this phrase means "I don't understand." When someone says something that you just don't understand you can say, "Lo siento... No entiendo..." ("Sorry, I don't understand"). Saying so gives the person you're speaking to the chance to rephrase their question or to change the subject. To say the opposite, "I understand.", you say, "Yo entiendo."


No se.

"I don't know." This is useful when someone says something we don't understand or they ask a question that you don't know the answer to. You will probably end up using it just as much as you use the expression in English. To say the opposite, "I know.", you say, "Yo se."


Una vez mas, por favor

It's not always easy to catch something someone says the first time around. Sometimes they speak too quietly or too fast -- or they mumble. Use this phrase to say, "Please repeat that."


Mas despacio, por favor.

Let's face it: native speakers speaking at a natural speed are really difficult to understand. If they would just speak a little slower, then maybe we could understand what they are saying. You use this phrase to say, "Please speak slower."


¿Comó se dice ______ en español?

Sometimes it's just a single word that we don't understand that prevents us from communicating. You can use this phrase, "How do you say _____ in Spanish?" to learn how to say something new. You can switch out "español" to "inglés" to change this question to "How do you say ______ in English?"


¿Hablas inglés?

"Can you speak English?" When you've tried everything else and you still can't understand, you could ask the person if they Speak English. There's nothing wrong with falling back on your native language when you don't know how to say what you want to say.


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