Wednesday, February 11, 2009

Review: Foreign Language Friends

Foreign Language Friends is a web-based learning program geared towards young children and I’m pretty excited about it… no, actually I’m very excited about it. From the site:flf

Foreign Language Friends is a complete multimedia experience designed to help your children learn a foreign language easily and successfully. Through unique and entertaining activities, your children will discover their unique ability to learn a foreign language almost effortlessly. 

The theme-based program covers shapes, body parts, zoo animals, sea animals, family and more. (New themes are added on a regular basis.) With each theme there are seven activities such as Vocab Builder, Memory Match, Animation (completely in the target language) and several others finishing up with a printable booklet that can be used to reinforce the new vocabulary.

Even though your children could use the program independently, they recommend involving the entire family. I would as well. I think it’s very important to reinforce the language at home. For example, after doing the exercises for the shapes section, you and your children could go on a “shape hunt” in your house using the new vocabulary. (In fact, my head is buzzing with ideas for this.)

My six-year old was reluctant at first, as he is when it comes to almost anything that has to do with Spanish, but even this program hooked him. Yes, it did. His favorite parts are the matching game, the animation clip and the vocab builder activity. When I asked what he thought about Foreign Language Friends, he said enthusiastically, “I like it, I just like it!”

Monthly subscriptions are $9.95 a month or save and pay $99.95 for the year. But right now, Foreign Language Friends is offering a 7-day free trial for individuals and families so that you can try it out yourself. (For educational institutions, click here for information on pricing.)

Monday, February 9, 2009

Added some new blogs

I’m not sure if you have noticed my blog list (lower left-hand side), but just in case, I thought I would point out some new ones that I have just added in the last week or so.
More Spanish – Lesson plans & technology for the Spanish classroom is written by Sherry Amorocho, a high school Spanish teacher. It’s fairly new, but looks very promising.
Spanglish Baby – Two Latina moms talking about raising their children bilingual.
¡Vámonos! is written by Lisa Stevens, a primary language teacher in the UK who is also quite a techie.