Everything You Need To Learn Portuguese
Portuguese is the sixth most spoken language in the world, with around 240 million people speaking it, and Brazil being the country where most speakers are found. It is the official language in 9 countries, including Portugal, Mozambique, and Angola.
Portuguese is a Latin-based language which falls under the Romance languages category, and as such has many similarities with Spanish, French, Italian, Romanian, and other Latin-based languages.
In terms of linguistic similarities, Portuguese is most closely related to Galician, which is spoken in Northwestern Spain. It also shares about 70% of its lexicon with Spanish. This all means that if you learn Portuguese, you’ll pick up 2 extra languages quite easily.
The great news is, Portuguese learning resources are in abundance, and you won’t have any trouble finding lots of varied materials to help you gain fluency.
European Portuguese Language Learning Books
Your foray into the language can begin with a Portuguese course/study book. This will give you an introduction to the language, basic phrases and vocabulary, as well as grammar rules.
Next on your list should, without a doubt, be a concise Portuguese-English dictionary, for finding the meanings of all those new words you come across, plus seeing how they’re used in different contexts.
Consider getting yourself a Portuguese phrasebook if you’re planning a trip to a country where the language is spoken, as this will enable you to learn the essentials needed to get around and communicate with the locals.
And if you like puzzles, a Portuguese word search book is a great tool for learning/memorizing new vocabulary whilst having fun.
Brazilian Portuguese Language Learning Books
There are a handful of course books that focus on teaching Brazilian Portuguese specifically. You’ll learn much of what you would using a regular Portuguese study book, such as grammar and sentence structure, though with a Brazilian slant.
Portuguese Children’s Books
Reading kids’ books in Portuguese is another great starting point for beginners. Portuguese-language children’s books make learning the language fun and easy, as they’re written in simplistic language that’s usually accompanied by lots of colorful illustrations that help you remember what you’ve learned.
This is a fantastic way to expand your Portuguese vocabulary, get to grips with the basics, and get used to pronouncing words and phrases correctly.
When you’re ready for a greater challenge, finding some interesting Portuguese-language books for older readers should be your next step. While these will be much more difficult to read, especially for beginners, they’re well worth the effort. You’ll give your Portuguese vocabulary an enormous spike, and your overall grasp of the language will improve.
Portuguese Movies & TV Shows
Watching Portuguese-language films or TV shows is a fantastic way to get yourself accustomed to real-life usage of the language. You’ll pick up on the way people talk and interact, and be able to understand what they’re saying even if you haven’t come across certain words and phrases before, as you’ll have visual cues to help you.
Not only that, but movies with Portuguese audio or dubbing will expose you to things like Portuguese slang, regional differences in the language, and common Portuguese sayings. Pretty much like hanging out with native speakers!
DVD - Disney Procurando Nemo (Finding Nemo): Portuguese Edition
Portuguese Digital Courses
If you’re keen on learning Portuguese but don’t have the time or patience to use study books, a Portuguese e-course could be just what you need. These courses are usually composed of audio and/or video lessons, all designed to get you speaking quickly and pronouncing words correctly.
Thanks to Portuguese’s popularity, you have your pick of digital courses to choose from.
One of the stand out courses on this list is a very affordable Udemy Portuguese course that usually doesn’t cost more than a pizza. Udemy’s Portuguese course for beginners is jam-packed with a whopping 24.5 hours of video lessons, and can be accessed from almost any device.
PORTUGUESE UDEMY COURSES
PORTUGUESE AUDIO COURSES
For audio-only Portuguese digital courses, look to some of the big names in language instruction providers. Pimsleur offers both a European and Brazilian Portuguese conversational course, each packed with hours of audio lessons.
Both Collins and Michel Thomas Method offer just European Portuguese audio courses. Each one of these courses has their unique methods and benefits, so it’s more a matter of preference than anything.
You can improve your language skills in many different ways, not just through books or courses. For example, Portuguese flash cards are an easy, portable tool that can boost your vocabulary quickly, and make it easier for you to remember Portuguese words.