Learning The Spanish Alphabet

It hit me yesterday when I was going through my Anki cards and doing the recall.

The system has been set up in a way that asks me to spell some of the words.

Up until now I have been saying the letters in “English”. That means I can rattle off the spelling of a word very quickly.

But I am trying to learn to speak Spanish.

Why don’t I learn the Spanish alphabet instead – Doh!!!

I can’t believe I took so long to cotton on to that one.

This of course is going to be a useful skill to develop.   When I am conversing with a native Spanish speaker on my road trip and they use a word I don’t understand, I can ask them to spell it for me.

Alternatively, if I want to ask them how to pronounce a word in Spanish, I can spell it out for them.

Oh the fun we’ll have…

So I did a bit of research on the alphabet and discovered a few things.

Until 2010, the official Spanish language alphabet had 29 letters. All of the usual English ones plus CH, LL and ñ.

A meeting of some official forum attended by the 22 Spanish speaking countries agreed to remove CH and LL from the official alphabeticalisation of the language.

So now the official Spanish alphabet is:

a, b, c, d, e, f, g, h, i, j, k, l, m, n, ñ, o, p, q, r, s, t, u, v, w, x, y, z.

That makes things a bit easier.

So I created a set of Anki cards to learn the correct pronunciations of the words (which according to this website  are:

AH (a), BAY (b), SAY [THAY, in Spain] (c), DAY (d), EY (e),

EH-fay (f), HAY (g), AH-chay (h), EE (i), HOH-tah (j), KAH (k),

EH-lay (l), EH-may (m), EH-nay (n), EH-nyay (ñ), OH (o),

PAY (p), COO (q), EH-rray (r), EH-say (s), TAY (t), OOH (u),

OOH-bay (v), DOH-blay OOH-bay (w),

EH-kees (x), YAY (y), SAY-tah [THAY-tah, in Spain] (z).

Using this information I created a set of cards to learn the alphabet which I will then use to spell different words….this should help my learning.

Oh, if only life were that simple!

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