Middlebury Interactive Languages is a company that offers online language classes in Spanish, Chinese, French, and German. Middlebury started as a college language course that used immersion to teach language comprehension and to accelerate the speed that students became fluent. Now Middlebury has altered this hugely successful method to make it work for students!
For this review, we were given a full semester (6 months worth) access to the Elementary Spanish 1 course. This course is for students with little to no Spanish exposure, geared mostly towards kids in Kindergarten through 2nd Grade. The course is fully online and uses pictures, video, text, and real life experiences to help the student fully grasp the language. The focus of this level was listening, speaking, writing, and reading basic Spanish.
An added bonus is that not only do students learn beginning Spanish, they also learn a lot about the cultures and myths and legends common in these cultures.
How We Used It:
When I signed up for this review, I intended it to be for Josie. However, after snooping around the webstite I decided that I wanted in too. I took two years of Spanish in high school and only remember how to introduce myself and a few, very basic phrases. I've wanted to learn more for quite some time and have zero shame sitting in on a second graders class to do it!
I had high hopes for this program and while it was a colorful, user friendly website, it just didn't work for us.
There wasn't much instruction, but more videos in Spanish repeated a few times. I think the goal was for the kids to pick up on what the words were by watching (hence, the immersion part of the program). This frustrated Josie since she couldn't figure out what they were saying. I had her continue and she did learn a few words, but didn't enjoy it.
I've said this before, but Josie has a hard time with a lot of computer programs. She just doesn't get into it, which results in opposition. If you have a student that enjoys computer time, this very well may be a great program for them. Immersion style learning has a huge success rate. I think I would try this style again when she is a bit older.
Spanish Courses - $120