Círculo de Bellas Artes – After-class Activities

We are back with another great after-class activity with AIL Madrid! This time, we went to the Círculo de Bellas Artes, and once again, it was an afternoon of great fun.

Firstly, the Círculo de Bellas Artes is famous for being a hub of artistic talent and expression. This cultural centre is a multidisciplinary centre with activities including visual art, literature, science, philosophy, film, and the performing arts. So inside, there are wonderful exhibitions – there is always something to suit everyone’s tastes! It was founded in 1880 by a group of artists, and since has always kept the passion of art at its core. Now, it is officially declared a ‘Centre for the Protection of the Fine Arts and of Public Interest’.

This building offers two great things, one being the breathtaking rooftop views of the centre of Madrid. There is a small 4€ fee to reach the rooftop, but for the magical view when you get there, it is totally worth it. Our tour group absolutely loved it.

Want to join us on our next tour or activity around Madrid? Simply sign up to one of our courses and you will be invited for free! Visit our website to find out more…

Or if youre curious, read about another one of our activitys here: Trip to the CaixaForum Centre! We would love to see you on our next activity 🙂

Stating your opinion – Spanish exercises

In every language, a major aspect of conversation, written or spoken, is stating your opinion. As a Spanish learner it’ll be one of the first things you want to learn to say. This is why we have created a super helpful worksheet all about stating your opinion! Using these standard phrases, it becomes a simple structure.

In this worksheet we have listed a series of eight sentence starters. They can be followed by any opinion you may have, to help you sound more fluent and grammatically correct. Also, many of the concepts are structured very similarly to the English language, so they shouldn’t be too hard to grasp!

As well as reading the worksheet, try writing out sentences that include all these phrases, so you can get to grips with using them in written conversation. Furthermore, practice with a friend, using all these given structures, by speaking aloud about all your favourite things and dislikes! Then your spoken language skills will be equally as improved.

Afterwards, if you want to get more great Spanish-learning help, visit our website for a whole host of infographics like this one!

Or, read more of our blog to learn more about some fun ways to learn really useful Spanish phrases… Why not read all about what to say and do when going to a restaurant in Spain here!

Visit to CaixaForum – After-class activities

We are back with another blog post about things to do in Madrid! This time, it is a visit to CaixaForum that we recommend. CaixaForum is a culture and exhibition centre in Madrid. It is home to a wide variety of things including ancient, modern and contemporary art, music and poetry festivals, multimedia art, debates on current affairs, social conferences, and family and educational workshops.

The building itself is famous because it has a ‘vertical garden‘ that you can see in the picture above. It is worth paying a visit simply for a photo in front of this unique architecural feature! Then when you venture inside you will be lost in a maze of art and culture for hours. It is the perfect way to spend your afternoon exploring in Madrid.

Our after-class activity group loved this visit to CaixaForum, as well as all the other opportunities we have on offer. If you want to join us for one of these free activities, you just have to enroll on one of our great Spanish courses! View them all on our website here.

Why not read about our trip to the Salamanca neighborhood next? With AIL Madrid, it really is one of the best ways to see the beautiful city of Madrid.

Walking tour of Salamanca – After-class activities

Madrid is a dynamic and diverse city of culture. There are of lots of neighborhoods that offer different things to see, do, eat, and drink. There is so much to explore that we recommend splitting the city up into different sections. Tackling different parts of it on different days is much easier! One of our favourite areas, coincidentally where our language schools are located, is Salamanca. That is why we took our students on a walking tour of Salamanca in one of our fun after-class activites!

Salamanca is renowned for its beautiful building fronts, and high class inhabitants. It has always been a political and financial hub for the city of Madrid. However, it is now combined with becoming a fashion go-to for designer shopping. Queen Isabella II ordered its construction, and architect José de Salamanca designed it. Therefore it has a very expensive feel as you wander the streets.

If you want to join our next walking tour of Salamanca, or any other neighborhood of Madrid, join our family! In order to get access to these fun and FREE after-class activies, you simpy have to be enrolled on one of our courses. To get more information about the courses we offer at AIL Madrid, check out our website

After this, why not read about another one of our fun after-class activities? Previously we wrote about a great tour around the Prado Museum, it is definitely worth a read!

Going to a restaurant – Spanish Exercises

Whether you are here for a weekend on holiday, a semester abroad at university, or you’re lucky enough to live here permanently, it is almost guaranteed that you will be going to a restaurant at some point. Madrid is a culinary hub of amazing restaurants, so there are hundreds of choices to try out some great food. Although they can cater for tourists, many of the restuarants will appreciate your efforts to communicate in Spanish. This is why we have made this helpful cheatsheet for what to say when going to a restaurant!

Can we change table? Have you got a children’s menu? The bill, please? Do you have a reservation? These are the questions you will hear flying about in any restaurant. Simply remember how to say them, and you will be comfortable communicating with your waiter or waitress with no confusion!

Next read our article on how to say numbers in Spanish so you can also cover your bill easily! Then you will be fully prepared for an unforgettable Madrileño feast.

After that, why not check out our website. There you will find more Spanish exercises and cheat-sheets to make your language learning that much quicker and easier…

Museo Prado- After-class activities

AIL Madrid offers free after-class activites to everyone in the AIL family that is enrolled on our courses! Last week there was a trip to Museo Prado to learn about the art, culture and heritage of this world-class art gallery. The students were given a guided tour of the most iconic pieces feautured in the Museo Prado. This gave them a great insight to the stoires behind many of the paintings.

The Prado museum has a huge collection of European art from the 12th to early 20th century. It was originally based on the Spanish Royal Art Collection and has been growing ever since. The gallery now boasts am impressive 21,000 works. The most well-known piece of art on display at the museum is Las Meninas by Velázquez. A trip to this beautiful building is essential when in Madrid, so why not make the most of having a talented tour guide to help you understand all the art better!

Want to join in on the fun we are having in our after-class activites? Sign-up to our school today, by clicking here! To get more of an idea of the activites we offer, read about our tour around Madrid of Los Austrias.

Translating from English – Spanish Exercises

Learning Spanish can seem overwhelming when there is a whole dictionary of new vocabulary to remember. This is why we have created a cheat-sheet that offers some helpful clues to figuring out what words could be in Spanish. Often you will be able to work out the word you need by translating from English. Just follow these rules!

But be careful! Whilst these structures do apply frequently, as with learning any language there are always exceptions to the rule. To be safe it is always best to double check your findings against a dictionary. However, for on the spot translation help we guarantee that you’ll find these tricks helpful!

As an A1 Spanish speaking beginner, you will be comforted to see that many of the word endings are very similar to those of the English language. Translating from English makes picking up new languages stress-free. This familiarity should make recalling the Spanish versions much easier!

If you want more cheats to learning Spanish, why not read our next article about how to say numbers?

For more of our infographics, as well as fun games and exercises to help improve your language learning, check out our website… there is plenty for everyone! Whether you are a beginnner or an expert, we have you covered.

Learning Numbers – Spanish Exercises

If you want to improve your fluency, as well as sounding like a local, you need to be learning numbers in Spanish! This exercise is really useful for shopping, giving quantities, and expressing dates, as it teaches you how to structure large numbers in Spanish. For example, to find out how much something costs in a shop, or to ask for a weight of food at a market, you need to be confident expressing large numbers. Repeat the phrases over and over and soon they will be easy! You will be surprised how useful this activity is, and how often you find yourself reciting these numbers…

You will soon be singing these number tongue-twisters in your sleep… Also, here’s an idea! Once you have learnt how to say all the numbers with 3’s, it is easy to pick up other numbers. The structure is the same, you just have to tweak it slightly!

Learning numbers has never been so easy! If you want more infographics like this to improve your Spanish speaking skills, head to our website, where you will find activities for every ability!

To learn more great hints and tricks to sounding like a local, why not read this article next: Health Vocabulary – Spanish Exercises

Madrid of Los Austrias Walking Tour- After-class Activities

Being the capital city of Spain guarantees that Madrid is full of history. Therefore, there are many different sightseeing opportunities that allow you to learn more about this magical city. At AIL, we host a variety of activities for our students, to teach them more about where they are studying! Here, we opted for a walk through the Madrid of Los Austrias. This taught us more about the history of this beautiful area.

Where we walked: Madrid of Los Austrias

During the 16th century, King Philip II began constructing the House of Austria’s imperial court in Madrid. Despite being so many centuries later, the historic centre of Madrid still conserves the architectural highlights of that time. The Austrias neighboroughood that we explored is famous for being historically significant for this era. We began our walk in the Plaza Mayor, a timeless square that has hosted all kinds of events throughout history. It’s been known to house markets, bullfights, and auto-da-fés, amongst many more. In the middle of the square you’ll see the equestrian statue of Philip III, who ordered the reconstruction of this now-famous plaza. However its current architecture is thanks to Juan de Villanueva’s, following a fire in 1790.

We then walked through the old narrow streets of the time, to the Plaza de la Villa. Our students loved it here because of its range of architectural styles, and its prime location. In this picturesque square you can find: the Lujanes’ House and Tower (15th century), built with a Gothic-Mudejar style, the Cisneros’ House (16th century), a Plateresque palace, and the Casa de la Villa (17th century), which features a Baroque style.

Thanks to this walking tour, our students gained a great insight into the history and culture of Madrid. If you fancy joining us on our next adventure round the city, check out our after-class activities page. All activities are completely free and there are over 80 on offer to all students of AIL. To get involved just sign up for a class today!

Need more persuading? Read about another one of our activities: Madrid’s Centennial Taverns. You won’t want to miss our next activity!

Health Vocabulary – Spanish Exercises

Are you away from home and not feeling yourself? Don’t let an illness ruin your travels! We understand it can be daunting to feel unwell in a foreign country. We’re aware that getting help may seem like a big challenge. This is especially the case if the medical staff you approach can’t speak English. However, the most important thing is that you can accurately describe your symptoms. This will ensure you receive the appropriate medical assistance. Therefore, if you know the right health vocabulary, it’s easy to get the care that you need!

In Spanish, the structures for expressing illnesses and cures are relatively straightforward and similar to in English. If you can remember the health vocabulary we have listed below, you will be confident visiting Spanish medical services. Remember, the medical staff are wanting to understand you and willing help you!

Has this health vocabulary made you feel more confident communicating with Spanish locals? Similarly, why not check out this article next on how to express portion sizes. That way, you can shop and eat hassle-free too!

If you want to continue improving your Spanish skills, take a look at the infographics of different levels that we have on our Language Resources page.