The best method for learning Spanish is total immersion in the language. However, you might not have the time or the money to take an extended learning holiday to ramp up your Spanish skills. And while there are some excellent software programs and sets of CDs that you can purchase, the Internet has a fantastic array of free language learning resources. Below are links to and brief descriptions of a selection of Spanish learning tools.
Palabea: The Speaking World and My Happy Planet are both community oriented sites. On each site, users create a profile and then are able to chat and practice with native speakers of their target language. Both are social networking sites, so the value in using them would come from communicating in Spanish with native speakers and others who are learning the language.
If you already speak some Spanish, there are two great sites to explore regional slang. Tu Babel is an online dictionary of slang and regionalisms created by the online community. The “angel” button is a nice feature, and will enable you to block entries that aren’t PG-rated. Jergas de Habla Hispana is another great, constantly growing resource for those seeking to understand the varied and colorful slang of the Spanish-speaking world. Both sites are completely in Spanish, and require a fairly good level of comprehension, but can be indispensable if you communicate with Spanish-speakers and want to really understand the words they use.