The Best, Free Podcasts for Learning Spanish and Listening to Slow Spanish News
Podcasts (along with subtitled films and series) are a fine way to learn Spanish with a Learn Spanish Podcast and listen to slow Spanish news that are especially useful for improving your oral comprehension. When it comes to memorization, however, podcasts aren’t as effective as the spaced repetition system (used in MosaLingua applications), but you can listen to them while doing something else, like driving or ironing, for example.
Last Updated 28/04/2016
The Best, Free Learn Spanish Podcasts for Learning Spanish and Listening to Slow Spanish News
What is a Learn Spanish Podcast?
According to Wikipedia, a podcast is an episodic series of audio or movie files that users can listen or subscribe to. When you subscribe to a podcast, it gets automatically downloaded on your computer or mobile device.
On iOS (iPhone, iPad, etc.), you can subscribe to podcasts via iTunes (iTunes Store menu->Podcast), and iTunes will automatically download the podcasts you choose onto your iPod or iPhone. This may seem complicated, but it’s actually remarkably plain: all you have to do is click “Subscribe” and the podcast will automatically download onto your iPhone/iPod (or other device).
Podcasts work on most MP3 players and smartphones.
Android phones can use the free app Podcast Junkie, an application that permits users to subscribe to podcasts directly on their mobile device.
A Learn Spanish Podcast is essentially a series of audio recordings in Spanish, specifically intended for people who want to learn Spanish. In general, these podcasts are based on the Pimsleur method, one of the precursors of audio learning methods, but most podcasts do not even come close to this method. The good news is these podcasts are usually free.
The Best Learn Spanish Podcast
I’ve personally spent a lot of time on the search for a good Learn Spanish Podcast, and I have to tell you that most of the podcasts out there are – fairly simply – worthless, or only intended to promote content that you have to pay for or an expensive product that may not even work. So, here is my selection of the best podcasts for learning Spanish and listening to slow Spanish news (that are actually useful!):
Slow Spanish News
In my opinion, this is the best learn Spanish podcast for those of you who have already reached an advanced level and are tired of boring lessons. Users get to listen to useful information – in this case, a summary of the week’s news – in plain Spanish at a slow speed. This doesn’t sound very natural, but it’s much lighter to understand than Spanish news on television at normal speed. On the official website, you’ll find a glossary and the transcripts for each news story (with extra content that you can pay for).
Notes in Spanish (beginner, advanced)
These are well done, progressive courses, but unluckily there is more English spoken than Spanish in the beginner level. However, in the advanced level, Spanish is the superior language.
Coffee Break Spanish
This podcast is made up of several fifteen – twenty minute lessons for beginners. The lessons are trained by a professor, and there is a student who is learning at the same time as you. The learning is progressive, but – of course – when they aren’t speaking Spanish, they’re speaking English (but with a very nice Scottish accent ;-))
Just like with slow Spanish news, you can pay for other material: vocabulary PDFs, grammar points, audio exercises…
Learn Spanish Podcast for advanced learners
For those of you who already know fairly a bit of Spanish and want to maintain it (don’t leave behind about the leaving behind curve), there are podcasts that aren’t focused on instructing the language, but rather on a diversity of interesting topics. There are many websites where you can find directories of Spanish podcasts.
One such website is ivoox.com, where you will find almost all Spanish podcasts organized by topic (e.g. Technology, Sports, Home, Arts, Games, Blogs, Health, etc.).
There you have it – hours of free learn Spanish podcasts. I’ve developed this list of podcasts as I came across them, so if you know of a high quality podcast for learning Spanish, please tell us about it in the comments!