Thinking about learning a second language? Spanish might be a good choice, especially if you live in the United States where there is an ever-growing population of Spanish speakers.

A lot people speak Spanish. In fact, it’s one of the most widely spoken languages in the world. About 400 million people speak Spanish, including nearly half of the Western Hemisphere. Spanish is spoken in more than 20 countries including Mexico, Spain, Argentina, Cuba and Costa Rica.

But there are more reasons why learning Spanish is worth the effort.

First of all, Spanish is easier to learn than most other languages. The reason why is that Spanish shares many words with English. English speakers find the grammar easier than Slavic languages like Russian or Asian languages like Japanese or Mandarin. And it’s easy to pronounce. While students learning English may struggle to pronounce difficult words like “pneumonia”, you will have no such problem with Spanish. Spanish is a phonetic language and you pronounce the words as they are written.

Spanish is a great language for travel since it’s spoken in many of the popular travel destinations like Cancun, Punta Cana, and Ibiza. Being able to speak the local language and communicate with the native population makes travel easier and provides a more fulfilling travel experience.

Did you know that learning Spanish will sharpen your mind? Learning a new language is good for the brain. You may have seen articles in the news about how older people can prevent mental aging and retain their mental acuity by learning or speaking a second language.

Speaking a second language feels good. It makes you feel smart. It makes you feel like you accomplished something valuable and important. It gives you self-confidence.

It’s also a great way to make new friends. You’ll meet new study partners. You’ll meet teachers and tutors. You’ll practice your Spanish by chatting with people by email or instant messenger or Skype.

Learning Spanish could be could for your pocketbook too. It could help you get a job. Being able to speak a second language looks good on your resume and could open doors for you in a globalized economy.

After you learn to speak Spanish, why stop there? Once you know how to speak Spanish you will find it easier to learn other Romance languages like Italian and French. The grammar and much of the vocabulary are similar. Also, Portuguese will be a breeze.

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