We just love languages in our home. And now that I have a couple kids, all wanting to learn a language, I am always looking for things that can help them along. My oldest son decided to begin learning Spanish recently, in addition to Chinese and French. Definitely want to encourage him and so I was thrilled to be offered another review opportunity from Middlebury Interactive Languages. This year we’re reviewing Elementary Spanish 1: Grades 3-5 (last year we reviewed their Chinese program) and are super excited about it too.
Middlebury Interactive Languages offers an online, immersion style learning program for students of all ages, in a number of different languages. Last year we reviewed the Elementary Chinese 1, for grades 3-5 program which my son just loved. He has continued his studies in Chinese since then, but was eager to try out their Spanish program this time around.
We were given six months of access to the first semester of this course and are using it about three times per week. I do encourage my son to work on his language studies at least 3 days a week but always find his progress is more evident when he does daily work. Not huge amounts but maybe a little reading or review of concepts learned in that week. 🙂
Middlebury Interactive Languages offers a variety of courses for elementary, middle and high school level students in Spanish, German, Chinese, and French (some even have an AP option). What a great opportunity this is in language learning.
The website is very user friendly, and for the most part, my oldest can complete his work on this independently each day. I stick close by though since its important for me to be able to know what he is learning so that I can help him if the need arises. And really, since I love languages too, this is just a fun opportunity to learn with my kids!
The first semester involves learning basic vocabulary and sentence structure within common areas like family, numbers, greetings and lots of others things that are a part of our kids lives. I love that because it makes it so much easier for them to use it. The lesson includes a story, told in Spanish, and a cultural lesson too. What a great way to make this a part of a study on Spain even! There are also PDF files with translations for all of the vocabulary, stories, and songs (we made a point of printing these and putting them in a folder as we went along). This is great for when he wants to review some thing during an “off” day. And its fun to her him working it out as he reads the stories (or sings) to his brother and sisters.
What’s also really neat about this (although we did not use this feature) is the option to purchase the course with a teacher, who grades the speaking labs/quizzes in this course. I remember when I as studying overseas (long time ago) finding out how far I was from truly being fluent once I was in another country. Certainly its not a big deal right now with my son being so young, but should he ever wish to go further with his language studies this would be a great way to encourage him in his studies.
Just as before, we are really enjoying this course! We love the tories and songs and all the lessons that we are learning as we go long. There is such a great variety of material in this program, it is never dull or boring.
My son really loved the Speaking Lab in this program. This is where he had the chance to listen to the Spanish words or phrases being learned and then record himself saying the same words and phrases. Sometimes he even did silly voices; I caught him and his brother being the “Spanish Darth Vader” once. It was a great way for him to be able to hear himself speaking the language and if he wasn’t content with his accent, try again.
As a homeschool momma of four children, once who loves languages, I love this program. It’s not just a learning program but it includes so much more making this a real experience for our children. I love that my son can work independently too (I admit though often I was right there, and my younger son too). I think I even learned a bit of Spanish myself. And before I forget they even have a gradebook where you can see the scores for all lessons and quizzes that have been completed. This is a great way to make sure my son is staying on track and see where we need to review and where he is doing great too.
I think its important for our children to learn another language and while it can be a daunting task for many, Middlebury Interactive Languages makes it so much simpler. Which makes it that much more fun for all. And with this being a self-paced program, there is even less pressure; for younger ones this is a great way to ensure “mastery” of the concepts being learned. Besides that, with all the games, songs and stories incorporated into this program, they don’t even realize they are learning.
See how Middlebury Interactive Languages operates in this brief video. You can also check out the FAQ for system requirements. From cultural lessons, to authentic historical stories all perfectly combined for each lesson, this is so much more than learning a language. Full of audio, video and speech exercises (some worksheets and coloring pages too) its a multi-sensory approach that makes learning fun!