To learn Portuguese there is one key point you need to decide - Portuguese or Brazilian Portuguese? The two main dialects are slightly different. Because of the size and influence of Brazil and its culture, I would lean toward Brazilian, unless you have a specific need or desire to learn the dialect of Portugal itself.
Portuguese is closely related to Spanish and Italian, and just like them is relatively easy to pronounce and read for a native English speaker. There are some interesting nasalized vowels (like its other cousin language French) but they aren't too difficult once you get a handle on them. If you already have some experience with one of those languages, Portuguese is a breeze! Here are a few of the best resources available to learn Portuguese.
Learn Portuguese Grammar
This is an excellent site for getting the basics of Portuguese grammar. A site on learning Portuguese from Finland? It's a small world!
Beginner Portuguese Lessons
This site is complete with lessons for beginners with sound files. A good complement to the grammar site. Put these two sites together to begin learning Portuguese for free!
Learn Portuguese Now
This site has lots of material to begin learning Brazilian Portuguese. Common words and phrases, learning tips, culture and more.
Internet/Free Transparent Language offers a free vocabulary trainer to get started learning Portuguese - Free BYKI™ Lite download by Transparent Language
Internet/Free Truly one of the best possible resources to learn Portuguese is
You can download (for free!) a massive 2 volume set of the comprehensive FSI language method with audio and the course text in pdf format. There is also a cool Spanish to Portuguese course for those who know Spanish and would like to use that knowledge to gain Portuguese with minimal effort!
Book/Audio Combo The Living Language series, published by Random House, brings to life a well thought-out program in a compact package, by using a 'building block' approach to learn Portuguese. The Basic Complete set includes a 40 lesson coursebook, which doubles as a phrasebook because it has lots of variations of the most common or useful phrases, a dictionary with plenty of idioms and expressions, and 2 90-minute cd's.
Living Language Ultimate - This is a notch up from the Basic Complete set, it includes a 400+ page coursebook, 4 cd's that are coordinated with the book and an additional 4 cd's to work with away from the book. This is a great combination of the old school approach with the big coursebook for the serious student, but the extra cd's are a great addition. An ideal choice to learn Portuguese.
Pimsleur Comprehensive Portuguese (Brazilian)
Pimsleur's Comprehensive courses come with 16 cd's per level, 15 audio and 1 reading lesson cd with a booklet. Pimsleur is the king of all-audio programs. You will begin speaking Portuguese immediately, and learning conversation with native speakers. Almost all the grammar is learned by doing. That's the beauty of Pimsleur, it's painless and fun. The only drawback to Pimsleur is that there is only a little bit of reading practice, I think some kind of supplemental reading material is needed. Since Portuguese is relatively easy to read, this is a very minor problem. I'd still choose Pimsleur Comprehensive over all other methods, it's the best. Read my
Review of Pimsleur.
Transparent Portuguese Premium uses native speaker audio, text, video, games and dialogues to immerse you in the Portuguese language. With 15,000 words in mp3 format to use in your iPod or mp3 player and it can be fully integrated with BYKI. Also with a 6 month guarantee. Much more affordable than some other software programs and overall, a great resource to study Portuguese!
For more online resources for learning Portuguese go to the
Portuguese Language Resources Page
, where you will find a short list of internet sites to help you learn Portuguese and learn more about Brazilian and Portuguese culture.
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