We asked
Spanish tutor

Kieran Ball about his Spanish Course For beginners ‘3 Minute Spanish’

Kieran is the creator of the Spanish for beginners course '3 Minute Spanish' available on Udemy , 3minute.club , Amazon , and skillshare

How does your course aid true beginners?

Kieran Ball
The way I wrote 3 Minute Spanish was to assume that the learner has zero knowledge of the Spanish language, and zero knowledge of confusing grammatical terms. Everything is introduced in a simple and easy-to-understand way, and the student learns lots of useful words and phrases that they can put together to form their own sentences.

What essential skills does your course require?

Kieran Ball
The good thing about 3 Minute Spanish is that you need no prior knowledge or skills. I truly believe that anybody can learn to speak a foreign language, and I adapted my method over many years, tweaking it and improving it to make sure that it worked for anybody. Whether you’re completely new to Spanish, or you’ve tried and failed to learn it in the past, you will succeed with 3 Minute Spanish

What will students learn in your course?

Kieran Ball
In the 3 Minute Spanish course, you’ll learn a base vocabulary of extremely useful words and phrases that you can use as soon as you arrive in any Spanish-speaking country. You’ll learn to put these words and phrases together to form your own sentences, and I’ll give you plenty of learning techniques to show you how to make sure you remember all this new knowledge. You’ll learn how to describe things, how to give your opinion, how to be polite, how to pronounce Spanish words and much more. You’ll also look at grammatical features of the language in a very easy-to-understand way – you’ll learn what nouns and adjectives are, and how to make them plural. You’ll be speaking Spanish and forming your own sentences before the end of the very first lesson!

Weekly time commitment for the course?

Kieran Ball
The 3 Minute Spanish course is set out in such a way that anybody, even with the most hectic of schedules, can find time to learn to speak Spanish. Each lesson is broken down into 3-minute chunks (hence the name), and this means that you can easily fit in one video every single day. Little and often is the best approach to learning anything as it develops consistency, which is the key to success. By keeping your study sessions short but regular, you’ll find it quickly becomes a habit, you’ll learn things much more quickly and Spanish won’t ever feel like a chore – you’ll maintain enough motivation to carry on to fluency!

What are common challenges for Spanish beginners?

Kieran Ball
One of the biggest challenges when learning a foreign language, or anything for that matter, is a drop in the initial motivation. People very often start off very excited to start learning something new, and they spend hours and hours studying hard in the early stages. However, very soon, this motivation begins to dwindle, and this makes it harder to continue. With the 3 Minute Spanish courses, I encourage you to only learn for a few minutes at a time; you ought to stop your learning session before you get tired, and that way, you’ll be eager to continue next time. This helps you to make learning Spanish become a daily habit, and you’ll also find your mind is fresher and more readily able to learn new things.

Do you focus on a specific dialect?

Kieran Ball
The Spanish I teach in this course can be understood in any Spanish-speaking country. However, if there are any specific terms that might be very different in different countries, I point these out.

How do you weave in Spanish culture?

Kieran Ball
Language and culture go hand in hand. There are ways to say things in English that are very different to how you would approach them in Spanish. Even things as simple as saying please and thank you are very different in Spanish-speaking countries. If you were in a restaurant in England and you said to the waiter, “Listen, give me a glass of wine”, they would consider you very rude and impolite. However, this is exactly how you would say it in Spanish, and nobody would think you rude in the slightest. I find these differences very interesting, and learning about them helps us to understand the people much better.

What resources do you suggest for beginners?

Kieran Ball
As well as the courses, I have written and created lots of blog posts and YouTube videos that come at Spanish from many different angles. If there are some days where you simply cannot be bothered to do a lesson, then just click on one of my YouTube videos or read one of my articles, and you’ll still be improving your language skills, just in a different way.

Any notable success stories from students?

Kieran Ball
My courses have been taken by over 500,000 people all over the world, and on all course platforms, I’ve maintained a very high rating. On Udemy, for example, my average rating is 4.8 out of 5 stars, so it’s nice to see that people are finding the courses to be useful and high quality. I get daily feedback from students who have learnt Spanish for a multitude of different reasons including for travelling, to pass an exam or to talk to family members who don’t speak English. It still feels weird to hear from somebody on the other side of the world and have them tell me they listen to my lessons every day!

Key traits of successful students?

Kieran Ball
A successful student is one who isn’t dissuaded by mistakes. Mistakes are normal and mistakes are good because they help us to improve. The only people who don’t make mistakes are those who don’t push themselves enough. My very first language teacher said that the goal is to be understood – if you say a sentence and there are ten mistakes in it, but the other person has understood what you were saying, well, that is a success

Tips for practicing outside the class?

Kieran Ball
A very useful way to practise Spanish is to get a Spanish penpal. There are many sites online that match you up with penpals in any language you’re learning. You can start off by chatting via email or even WhatsApp, and then as you get more confident, you can move onto video chatting.

What’s next after completing your course?

Kieran Ball
After completing 3 Minute Spanish – Course 1, there are plenty more courses to take. The series of courses lead on from one another, and build on knowledge you learnt in previous courses. So, once you’ve finished course 1, sign up to course 2!

What’s your top advice for beginners?

Kieran Ball
Form a habit and don’t compare yourself to others. Once learning becomes a daily habit, the hardest battle is won, but another battle you’ll have to fight is comparing yourself to others. I always find it useful, once you’re a slightly more advanced learner, to go back and look at some of your earlier lessons, and you’ll see how far you’ve come. This is a great motivator to keep you on track

Any misconceptions in Spanish learning?

Kieran Ball
A common misconception is that there are some people who just aren’t very good at learning languages, and this is rubbish. If you speak your own language, then you can learn another; it’s as simple as that.