Anyone who follows my blog knows that I am an absolute fan of learning languages, I am native English but speak other languages. I have been speaking Spanish for 15 years, Italian for 2, basic Portuguese and just started to learn Greek (very difficult). I wasn’t the best in my class in Spanish, I wasn’t the best at reading tasks and didn’t have much confidence in myself. Instead I found other ways to learn Spanish. It went from online vocab practice, to music and then to films. As I learned new languages, I didn’t want to forget about my other languages. I needed something simple to keep up my knowledge.
That is when Audible came to my mind, there was a 30 day free trial and then a monthly charge of £7.99 after the trial where you would get 1 credit to your account. You can get a lot of books for one credit. I started to listen to Paul Noble’s audiobooks on Spanish and Italian and it has been a nice refresher for me and also learned words I had no clue about! So if you are thinking about learning a language, and find listening a better way to learn do consider Audible!
What is Audible?
Audible is owned by Amazon and has a website/app to make listening to audiobooks, podcasts and original series from wherever you are in the world. The best thing about Audible is that, even after 4 months with them I decided to save money and listen to the books I had and they were still mine to listen to even after I cancelled. Also, if you aren’t enjoying the book you are currently listening to you can always exchange a book at any time! You aren’t constricted in anyway.
For members there are free audio shows, alongside deals on selected books throughout the month. Because you can listen whether you are online or offline, you can listen whether you are on the bus to work, on a flight or on a beach sipping on a cocktail. I tend to listen to my 2 books on Italian and Spanish whilst doing my make-up before work – only time to fit it in!
The good thing is about Audible, is that you can sign in with your Amazon account. However, they do a 30 day free trial, which you can cancel at any point. As mentioned before, it is then £7.99 a month for which you get one credit a month (1 book). This is what I chose and what recommend you choose too as a starting point. I am not a massive book reader, nor do I read them fast and prefer to take my time with one book. However you can pay £14.99 a month for 2 credits (2 books), £69.99 a year for 12 credits (12 books a year) or £109.99 a year for 24 credits (24 books a year). So there are choices for all sorts of book readers/listeners.
Like I mentioned before, even though I cancelled to finish my current books and save money I still have access to my books and can listen to them anywhere. Plus, seeing as I have an amazon account I can always re-register with ease.
There are so many language audiobooks for you all to expand your knowledge and learn some new words. However, if you are thinking about learning Spanish or Italian, I recommend you listen to the Paul Noble audiobooks. He explains everything really well, clear and slow so you have the chance to write down any notes and practice the words being said. It is good for beginners, as well as those looking to practice their existing vocabulary. There is something actually quite calming about his voice, so even though I know a lot of words in Spanish it makes it easy to listen to him and go over the words I know already. However, here are the books I suggest you read…
Learn Spanish with Paul Noble Complete Course
Learn Italian with Paul Noble Complete Course
Next Steps in Spanish with Paul Noble Complete Course
Learn Spanish Word Power 101 (Not Paul Noble)
If you fancy French or Mandarin he also has these audiobooks available alongside other languages in the Audible store so the world is your oyster!
How it Works
It is very simple, just click the title you would like and click play and you are off. There are plenty of features on Audible including going back/forward 30 seconds if you missed out on a few sentences and need a refresher. The narration speed is set to 1x, however you can always speed this up or slow it down depending on how fast you would like the narrator to speak. I find 1x perfect for learning languages.
You can see the overview of chapters, so if there is a certain chapter or part of the book you want to go over, it is very easy to navigate. It is said that 15 minutes a day of languages will enable you to learn it easier, so you can set a sleep timer so that once the 15 minutes set is over, the audiobook will stop. You can make bookmarks and clips of the places that have important information, as well as rate the books for others to enjoy.
This is by far my favourite part, because I love analysing stats. Firstly, you have a listening level which says what type of listener you are. There are five levels, Newbie – Novice – Professional – Scholar and Master. I have a total listening time of 24 hours and I am still on Newbie with 25 hours to go – it is actually very motivating to me. There are badges you can collect, so far I have Stats Surfer (because I always check the stats), Bitesized Bookworm (listened to at least three different titles a day), Weekend Warrior (listened to at least 5 hours total on a weekend) and High Noon (listened for at least three hours during lunchtime). There are so many more badges to collect and not having them makes me want to listen more.
There is a listening time stat, which mentions your time spent listening on “today”, daily comparisons, hours spent listening per month and total time spent listening. So far, my total time is 1 day and 47 minutes. It also shows how many titles you have, however I don’t think that part is so important.
Is it worth it?
I 100% believe this is worth it, due to how flexible the website/app is in terms of pricing and accessibility. You have a 30 day free trial, which by far is enough time for you to know if you really want to continue. It is also another very good way to learn a language, especially if you learn better by listening – I wasn’t until the past few years.
The app is very easy to navigate and with the access to books even after you cancel still there, it means you can listen wherever you like and can always re-apply for membership once you need a new book. For £7.99 a credit, compared to what you would normally pay for a book (some can be £15) I believe that it is a great deal.
I was completely worried in college, because I wasn’t the best at Spanish and some of the methods I didn’t really benefit from. I was super nervous thinking, will I ever get an A grade? I soon discovered new methods and applied myself to them and still continue to learn each day. There are plenty of ways to learn a language, and Audible is a great method to learn one.
If you are still unsure about learning a language, here are a list of Reasons Why You Should Learn a Language. It is such a great skill to have and can often lead to some amazing adventures. Hope you are all having a good week!