Explanation of the Callan Method for Spanish

The Questions and Answers

The teacher asks you questions

The Callan Method books are full of questions.
Each question practises a word or a piece of grammar.

The teacher stands behind a table and asks questions to students one by one. You never know when the teacher will ask you, so you are always concentrating in the lessons.

The teacher speaks quickly

We speak quickly because it is natural to speak quickly; you must get used to the speed of normal spoken Spanish.

Another important reason is that we don’t want to give you time to translate and think in your own language.

Also, we don’t want you to stop and think about the grammar while you are speaking. We want you to speak as a reflex, instinctively. You mustn’t worry about making mistakes. You may make a lot of mistakes in the lessons, but Callan Method teachers correct your mistakes, and you learn from the corrections.

It is, of course, a good idea to read your book at home, to think about the grammar and learn the vocabulary. But the lessons are times to practise your listening and speaking with your books closed!

The teacher says the question twice

We ask the questions twice because the Callan Method is quick, and perhaps you won’t understand everything the first time you hear the question.

The teacher immediately starts the beginning of the answer for you

This is to help you (‘push’ you) to start speaking immediately. If the teacher does not do this, you might start to translate into your language.

Your answer must be long and use the same structure as the question

We want long answers because we want you to speak as much as possible. We want you to use the same words and grammar as in the questions because we want you to practise lots of different structures, not only the ones you feel comfortable with.

If possible, you must answer first with a negative part and then a positive part

In this way, you practise using negative and positive verb forms, you learn opposites, and you speak more.

The teacher says the answer with you, at the same time as you

The teacher speaks with you to help you to speak as fluently as possible, to stop you translating or thinking too much, and to ‘push’ you through the answer.

The teacher corrects every mistake at the moment you make it

With the Callan Method, all your mistakes are corrected immediately; this is very different from nearly all other methods. You learn from the correction of your mistakes, and constant correction results in fast progress.


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