Season 1 – Lesson 01 – Coffee Break Spanish

Welcome to Coffee Break Spanish! In lesson 1 of this first season, you’ll learn to say “hello” and ask people how they’re feeling, using simple, easy-to-learn phrases. Please note that lesson 01 of Season 1 was originally known as lesson 101 of Coffee Break Spanish. We have renumbered the lessons of each season as lessons 1-40 to make things more simple for our listeners.

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Access this lesson and all future lessons of Coffee Break Spanish automatically by subscribing to the podcast. You can access the podcast on your computer, tablet or phone using the appropriate links below.

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The premium version of Coffee Break Spanish Season 1 provides additional materials which will help you move forward more effectively with your Spanish studies. These are available on the Coffee Break Academy.

Video lessons

Listen to each lesson and see the words and phrases covered in the lesson displayed on the screen of your computer, phone or tablet.

Bonus audio

Use our review lessons to practise the language covered in the main lesson, and to pick up some useful bonus vocabulary.

Lesson notes

Study the language of each lesson in greater detail and access additional information about Spanish in our comprehensive lesson notes.

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115 Comments on “Season 1 – Lesson 01 – Coffee Break Spanish”

  1. Avatar

    wow!!! so easy to learn via this site. i have been trying to learn for many years now but found it very difficult as there teacching techniques didnt quite match yours. i love this site. and i hope to be fluent enough to hold a conversation with any spaniards i meet whilst on holidays or at home. gracias. excellente

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      I know this is a really really old comment but for anyone else who might have trouble: Right click on the link and “Save Link As”, it will download as an .mp3.

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    What is the instructors regional accent? (his Spanish accent, not his Scottish accent)
    He pronounces ‘c’ and ‘z’ as ‘th’, eg: grathias, ocho nueve dieth

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      Es la pronunciación del norte de España y la que se corresponde exactamente con las reglas ortográficas utilizadas en el castellano, según la última gran modificación que se hizo, creo que en el siglo XIX.
      La mejor forma de saber si una palabra se escribe con “c” o con “s” o con “ll” o con “y” es conocer su pronunciación en la España del norte.

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    You may have missed it, but he says in this lesson that he’ll be using the pronunciation they use in mainland Spain. As you probably suspected, it’s different from the pronunciation in Mexico and other Latin American countries.

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        Actually, they’re both informal. Como estas literally translates as ‘how are you’ and que tal is more like ‘how are things’. The formal is como esta usted.

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    well well well!i have been trying to learn from google translate which is very complicated but now i’m finally here.this one is perfect, very easier me gusta!

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    sometimes we need to read as the same time we listen, may be more helpful, just a lil advice, im a real beginner.

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    Easy to learn, but can I have the translation in French in place of English. Is it possible? THank you for your reply

  7. Avatar

    Thank you for your programmes, they are really helpful for students with some (pre)intermediate knowledge. Great job! Jana

  8. Avatar

    First lesson very easy, the lesson was over before I knew it..in other words it was interesting and informative that the time went by so quickly. Great way to learn a new language and for free. Give it a try. Thank you for your free lessons

  9. Avatar

    I really wanted to learn another language and it wasn’t spanish…I figured it would be to my benefit to learn the language that is taking over the american english language which is very upsetting to all true americans! Our ancestors came to america wanting to learn the american english, they felt it was a great honor and privilege to learn the language of the country that accepted them as american’s! But as we all know spanish speaking immigrants don’t feel they should learn the language of the country that has excepted them, give them countless opportunities (all free) but they still refuse to learn the language of our great country. I don’t like the fact that I need to cater to them and learn spanish but at least I will know what they truely saying and maybe since learning their language I will be able to help change a few things!! Another note of interest; it is amazing to me that the native spanish speaker picks and chooses what he/she can understand or not understand depending on what they will gain and benefit from by understanding or not understanding our language, which is AMERICAN ENGLISH!!

    1. Avatar

      Why are you posting that comment here? This is a place to comment on the podcast, not your view on spanish speaking immigrants.

      BTW, I love these podcasts, and I’ve lesarned alot from them!! Thanks

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      I’m a “True American” and I’m not at all upset that there are people here speaking Spanish and not ‘American English’. Please speak for yourself.

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      I think you will find that the languages of the Native Americans were a lot more prevelant in north America before American English. I must remind you that French was also more prevelent than English for quite some time. America (and you should check who it was called after!Not an English speaker.) was ‘discovered’ by Christopher Colombus an Italian speaker who arrived with a crew of – wait for it!- Spanish speakers!I am from Ireland, a country where our native language still survives despite being opressed. The result? Ireland has produced some of the finest writers in the language forced on us. James Joyce, Oscar Wilde, Jonathan Swift and Samuel Beckett for example. So learn pocos palabras. It’s not all bad!you might become a great writer like Cervantes. Just stop tilting at windmills!

  10. Avatar

    Too bad the lady doesnt pronunce properly. You should use a native speaker to teach correct pronunciation. La lady says: hola Qui tal?

    1. Avatar

      The ‘lady’ is a learner, and the teacher on the course is using native pronunciation. The whole idea of Coffee Break Spanish is that listeners learn along with the learner, and over the course of the 80 lessons they will improve their pronunciation along with the learner.

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        hello, I would like to know how much does it cost in US dollars for the premium membership and will this include transcript material of each podcast? I tried to signup as a member, but I only received an error message that the membership does not work.

        I look forward to hearing from you soon. Please reply to my email address with your response.

        Thank you in advance,
        Stacie Vazquez

  11. Avatar

    It’s not “has excepted”, it’s “accepted”… You are right, don’t study Spanish… you still need to learn English :>)

  12. Avatar

    hola Mark que tal? he comprado leccion 1-40 silver, pero i cant save Mp4 to my PC.

    Can you help me?

    Me encanta espanol me gusta aprender espanol.

    Mi email es zsohaila@gmail.com



  13. Avatar

    Download buttons don’t work, and the podcast files can’t be found. I suggest if you want people to purchase stuff from you, it’s critical to enable the free stuff to process so that potential purchasers can test it first.

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    I found the pod cast Coffee Break Spanish to be enjoyable and easy to follow. I will be using this format to assist me in my journey to learn Spanish. I wish the rest of you the best in your future endeavors.

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    spanish language is another journey, I think the next step is to stay
    with a spanish family, is there some group that can organise such
    an event ?

  16. Avatar

    I appreciatte the effort of Radio Lingua network to teach Spanish. I such as Spanish teacher I recommend that you use for your records a Spanish native people because is very important the accent in all Spanish conversation. This will be help the students to understand people whom speak this language.

    If you want to learn more about Spanish go to: http://www.lenguavivaperu.com
    Best regards,
    Liliana Pimentel

  17. Pingback: Radio Lingua Network « OneOutOfTen

  18. Avatar

    Being from SoCal, I knew a lot of broken Spanish. But learning the Mainland way of speaking is so interesting! Thank you for this :]

  19. Avatar

    Hi Mark and Kara,

    I’ve recently discovered Coffee Break Spanish and I just wanted to thank you guys for producing such a great podcast! I’ve been really enjoying listening to them and they’ve been so useful.

    Un abrazo muy fuerte!!


  20. Avatar

    Further to an earlier post, ‘Como estas?’ is familiar the same as ‘Que tal?’. The formal version is ‘Como esta?’ or, even more formally ‘Como esta usted?

    Unfortunately I have been unable to put the ‘stress’ accents on que, como and esta.

  21. Avatar

    I love this program for me it is the first of its sort. Thank you! I have spent the last two years learning Spanish without a teacher. This is certainly one great tool.

    Es el mejor!

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    I think your format is very interesting, learning with a colleague “estudiante” is very helpful in understanding and correct common pronunciation and grammar errors.
    More than that I’m Italian, so it’s funny to learn Spanish from English teacher!

  23. Avatar

    I love CBS and now am delighted you’ve started CB German as well. It’s so enjoyable learning this way and when Spanish friends compliment my accent I’m made up.
    Could you clear up one thing – ‘Es’ and ‘esta’ = ‘This’ or ‘is’.
    In ‘Esta es mi madre’ it seems ‘esta’ means ‘this’ and ‘es’ means ‘is’. eg this is my mother. In other sentences, ‘esta’ seems to mean ‘is’. e.g esta lejos? = is far?

    Getting quite confused on a very simple matter!


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      There are 2 ‘to be’ verbs in Spanish, so there are 2 ways to say ‘is’ and they’re used at different times. ‘Es’ comes from the verb ‘ser’ and ‘está’ comes from the verb ‘estar’. There is also the word ‘esta’ (without the accent over the a) which means this. The pronunciations are slightly different – with ‘está’ the stress is on the 2nd syllable, whereas with ‘esta’ the stress is on the 1st syllable.

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    Hey Mark and Kara. I’m a graduate student from China who has a love for learning new languages. So I have been listening to CBF and found it really really helpful. Now I’m just trying out CBS, would probably travel to Costa Rica shortly after.

    Anyway,mucho gracias! Bisous*1000:)

  25. Avatar

    Hello Mark & Cara!
    I’m a Native American and wanted to learn my own language but my mother refused to speak it. She and her brothers were beaten at school if they spoke it. I’ve tried learning through tapes and classes to no avail. So I decided to try Spanish. I found your podcast and I am having the best time learning with Cara! I love that she is making the same mistakes that I make. keep up the good work! I’m just finishing the first group of lesson one! Thank you for being awesome. A.

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