Watching TV shows is one of the best ways to learn a language: with this type of activity, you will sharpen your ear, better understand the language and pronunciation, become familiar with colloquial expressions and expand your vocabulary.
Nowadays, you can find audiovisual content in any language on platforms such as Amazon, Netflix or HBO, which makes your search much easier.
At Españolé, we have selected some of the best TV shows to learn Spanish which can be of great help to complement your Spanish classes at our school.
These are national productions, some of which are recognised all over the world, and which will help you understand a little more about Spanish culture.
But, before you get your blanket and popcorn ready, we are going to give you some practical tips for learning Spanish by watching shows.
How to improve my Spanish by watching TV series? 6 basic tips
Watching TV shows is one of the most useful methods to avoid the most common mistakes made by Spanish learners.
Here are some tips that can help you:
Define your own learning objectives
Watching TV shows to learn Spanish is a more flexible and slower method than doing an intensive Spanish course.
Moreover, you will be able to entertain yourself and improve your language skills almost without noticing it.
Even so, you should set yourself clear, measurable and achievable learning goals to keep you motivated.
Audio in Spanish with subtitles in your language
Ideally, the subtitles of the shows should be in the same language you want to learn: this way, you will improve your understanding of the context and you will learn almost without realising it.
The problem is that this technique is only valid if you already have a good knowledge of Spanish (level B1 or B2).
If you are a beginner (level A1 and A2 of Spanish) or you have just started your Spanish studies, we recommend you to watch the series with the audio in Spanish and the subtitles in your native language so that you can identify the words you don’t know and understand what you are watching.
You will also learn some of the hardest words to pronounce in Spanish.
Look for shows that you already know or that motivate you
What kind of TV shows are the best for learning Spanish?
We don’t have an answer to this question, because it depends on your tastes and interests.
Our recommendation is to look for Spanish shows available in their original version and with subtitles in your language that you have already seen.
Animated series are also an alternative for a basic language level because the plot is usually simple and the pronunciation is very clear.
Write down your doubts and new vocabulary
A trick to learning Spanish by watching series is to review the grammar you know and write down new words that appear in the dialogues.
Having the subtitles in Spanish is important because that way you will see how they are spelled correctly.
We also recommend that you have a dictionary or a translator nearby.
You don’t need to stop the series all the time, because you will lose the thread. But you can do a search exercise at the end of each episode.
Repeat aloud the pronunciation of Spanish words or phrases
Repeating out loud the words or phrases you want to learn will help you memorise concepts and reinforce your knowledge of grammar.
If you like voice-overs, you can even imitate the pronunciation of the characters, especially if they have a clear pronunciation.
Make a summary of the chapters… And tell your Spanish friends about it
When you finish each chapter, make a summary and tell your Spanish-speaking friends, classmates or teachers about it.
They will surely give you some grammar tips and give you some new words or expressions to learn.
Top 5 of the best TV shows to learn Spanish
This is our Top Five recommended TV shows to learn Spanish:
El Ministerio del Tiempo (The Ministry of Time)
El Ministerio del Tiempo is a very famous fiction show.
Produced by RTVE, it has four seasons and deals with the history of Spain in an original way: through the eyes of a special police force that travels to different epochs to ensure that history is fulfilled and that everything follows its course.
Cuéntame (Remember When)
This show is highly recommended, both to study Spanish and to learn more about the history and customs of this country.
Cuéntame tells the story of the Alcántara family, a middle-class Spanish family living in Madrid.
The show follows the life trajectories of its characters from the 1960s to the present day.
Vis a vis
Originally, Vis a Vis was the Spanish version of the successful American TV show Orange is the New Black.
The quality of its plots, starring several women in prison, goes much further, which gave it great success and recognition in Spain.
This Netflix blockbuster has had international success, becoming one of the most watched Spanish shows in the world and launching its protagonists to stardom.
Élite is a teen drama set in a prestigious public school attended by wealthy students and children of working people.
The TV drama deals with their relationships and personal conflicts.
La Casa de Papel (Money Heist)
La Casa de Papel is one of the most recent audiovisual phenomena and one of the best TV shows to learn Spanish.
Surely you know its plot: a man nicknamed “The Professor” plans to rob the Casa de la Moneda, which is where money is made in Spain.
To do this, he recruits a group of thieves/robbers, each of them nicknamed after a city in the world (Tokyo, Helsinki, Lisbon, Moscow, etc.) so as not to reveal their true identity.
Its main attractions? This show has action, interesting characters and surprise plots that will not leave you indifferent.
Other recommended TV shows to learn Spanish are:
- Las Chicas del Cable.
- Aquí no Hay Quien Viva.
- Allí Abajo.
- Los Secretos de Laura.best tv shos
- La Reina del Sur.
- Paquita Salas.
- La Catedral del Mar.
- Alta Mar.