Let’s have a look through the first two paragraphs in the Spanish version of Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone and see what we learn

Reading books in Spanish is a brilliant way to improve your language skills. Even the bare minimum will help to increase your comprehension skills, your vocabulary and your understanding of grammatical structures.

Let’s have a read through the first couple of paragraphs in the first Harry Potter book.

In English, the first Harry Potter book is called “Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone” or “Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone” if you’re in the USA, but in Spanish, it’s called “Harry Potter y la piedra filosofal”.

The word “piedra” means “stone” or “rock”, and it’s actually where the name…

Here’s a quick game that will help you to learn a new language

Dr Charisse Nixon, a developmental psychologist at Penn State Erie University, developed a game to show how a phenomenon called “learned helplessness” works. Here’s how it goes:

Here are three anagrams. The letters can be rearranged in each one to form a different word. You should give yourself 5 seconds to solve each one, but if you can’t solve it after 5 seconds, don’t worry, just move onto the next word:

  1. WHIRL

How did you do? Did you manage to solve them all?

Well, if you were to go to one of Charisse’s classes, and you happened to…

If you use the code WELCOME on my Teachable website, you can get any course for $7.50

All of my language courses are available on my Teachable site here: https://3minutelanguages.teachable.com/

If you use the code WELCOME on any course on that site, you can get it for just $7.50


Here is a list of all my courses with links that will automatically apply the WELCOME discount code:

3 Minute Languages

The 3 Minute Languages courses are perfect for the complete beginner. They will get you speaking a language from scratch, assuming you know absolutely nothing. You will be amazed at how quickly you’re able to put sentences together. And you will memorise new words and phrases easily without even trying.

A useful feature of Disney+ is that you can watch the films and programmes in different languages

A few weeks ago, I stumbled across a feature of Disney+ that I hadn’t noticed before: you can watch any film or TV show in another language. This is such a useful tool for language learners, because it means you have thousands of hours of audio in your target language that you can listen to without having to leave your home!

Which languages are available?

I’ve been looking at the different films and programmes available on Disney+, and it looks like most of them are available in the following languages:

  • English
  • Spanish (European and Latin American)
  • French (European and Canadian)
  • Italian
  • German
  • Portuguese


Here’s how to say Happy New Year in French, Spanish, German, Italian and Portuguese


In English, we say “Happy New Year”, but the French generally leave off the “New”

Bonne annéeHappy New Year

In France, they normally say “good health” as well:

Bonne santéGood health
Réveillon du Jour de l’anNew Year’s Eve
Jour de l’AnNew Year’s Day
compte à rebourscountdown
feu d’artificefireworks


In Spain, as 12 o’clock approaches, people get their bowls of grapes out. …

Have you ever wondered what the lyrics to this Italian aria mean?

The Italian aria Nessun dorma is from the opera Turandot by Giacomo Puccini. You might already know that the title means “None shall sleep”, but what about the rest of the lyrics?

Nowadays, however, it is probably most associated with Pavarotti after he sang it at the 1990 FIFA World Cup in Italy.

Let’s have a look at the lyrics, and then see how much new Italian vocabulary we can learn from them:

Nessun dorma! Nessun dorma!
Tu pure, o Principessa,
nella tua fredda stanza,
guardi le stelle
che tremano d’amore, e di speranza!

Ma il mio mistero è…

There’s an app called Kryss, which is a great tool for building vocabulary in a foreign language

I try to stay away from playing games on my phone, because I know that once I start, I’ll become addicted. I remember when I was a child and my mum bought me a GameBoy one Christmas; I played Harvest Moon for two days solid, only coming back to reality to eat!

A couple of weeks ago, I started playing a game called Kryss on my phone. It’s basically a crossword game, but the clues are a little more cryptic and you don’t just play alone; you play against an opponent. Well, as suspected, I became addicted and couldn’t put…

I have been getting a lot of emails saying that my 3MINUTE discount coupon code isn’t working on any of my courses on Udemy

Unfortunately, Udemy changed their policy on coupon codes, so I’m not allowed to offer a code that lasts forever. However, I think I’ve figured it out now. I’m allowed to offer codes that last for five days.

So, for the next five days, if you use the code 3MINUTEMARCH on any of my Udemy language courses, you can get them for $9.99.

I’ve also created a section at the very end of each course where I shall put the updated voucher code. …

Kieran Ball

Teacher and creator of 3 Minute Languages — a series of books and online courses that help you to learn a foreign language quickly and easily www.3minute.club

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